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Old 02-17-2012, 08:06 PM   #1
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Checking if ball joints are worn

Been having some bad tire wear and some steering wander with my 2002, its lifted 3" suspension and 1" body with 33" tires. Trying to narrow down the culprit. Its not death wobble. Its more of a wandering. It likes to pull right then come back straight then pull left (almost a slalom). Its not necessarily gentle as it pulls pretty good but its not enough to through me off the road. Ball joints came to mind since the tie rod ends and track bar seem pretty solid.

How much should they move? I've heard NO movement at all. When i lift on the wheel and watch it moves so slightly its tough to tell. the boot flexes like a mm.

I also greased them and within two pumps of the gun the grease was spurting out the side of the boot. Does this indicate a bad boot which in turn would lead to rusty or worn ball joints?

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Old 02-17-2012, 10:04 PM   #2
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Make certain your front hub bearings are not shot as well. Had an old Dodge Power Wagon. Ball Joints etc. were ok, it was the fron wheel bearings.

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Old 02-18-2012, 10:42 AM   #3
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how are you checking them? you wanna jack the tire up off the ground and get a good size bar, out under the tire and lift. Works best with 2 people. one to run the bar and one to watch the ball joints. If your jacking it up and seeing the ball joints move their probably shot..
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Old 02-19-2012, 10:03 PM   #4
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It was just myself, had the wheel off and grabbed and lifted on the hub. Like i said i saw the slightest of wiggle. Nothing like i've see examples of or heard.
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