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HOW TO CHECK YOUR BALL JOINTS.


 
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skrracing
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Joined: 18 May 2004
Location: So-Cal

PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2005 11:46 am    Post subject: HOW TO CHECK YOUR BALL JOINTS. Reply with quote

OK guys, This is not a tech write up but just a guide to help you find out if you have bad lower ball joints. If you do not feel good about doing this yourself or you do not know how to do this in a safe manner...then by all means take you KJ to a shop or dealer nad have them check your ball joints for you.

Please use good judgement while doing any work on any vehicle.

Again...do not do this if you have not read all of this or feel you might doing something wrong or unsafe. This is just a guideline not a step by step tech article.

Place your KJ on a level driveway and set the parking brake.

Place a floor jack under the lower control arm and lift the tire off the ground about 3 inches. The jack must be uner the conrtol arm and not anything else. You are unloading the spring from the ball joint. if you lift any where else this test is not going to work.

Use a pry bar or 2x4 and slide it under the tire that is lifted. Use enough force to see if there is any play by lifting and releasing the tire. Do not apply too much lifting force to knock the vehicle off the jack.

See if you feel any play...but also have someone else watch to see if there is any play in the balljoint.

If you fell or see any play the ball joint must be replaced. Do not delay on having it replaced because it will at some time seperate and the whell will come off your Jeep.

If you do not feel any play or see any movement for sure...Then your lower ball joint should be good.

While you still have it lifted go to the top of the tire and try moving it from side to side...Push and pull it to see if you feel any play. If it is bad it will have a very small bump or pop feel to it. Again do this slow and dont do it hard enought to pull it off the floor jack.

If you have any bad ball joints.. have it repaired and then PLEASE repot it to the other link I post about ball joint failures.

Thanks. later...Clint

Here are a few pictures that might help.







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quadna71
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Joined: 02 Jan 2004
Location: Delaware

PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2005 1:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

is there a chance that the extra angles and leverage provided by the lift/tire combo you're running induced more strain than was intended for the KJ? not trying to play devil's advocate as i think your libby is a beast. well, maybe i am a little - but i still like the jeep. it's just that even though it's touted as trail rated, i truly don't think they intended nor designed the OEM ball joints to be taking the sort of abuse that you've put on yours regularly. please don't take this as a knock as i think what you're doing with yours is great. but it's sort of like me complaining that my u-joints are failing at an accelerated rate - even though i regularly push them up too and past what point any stock jeep is expected to be seeing.
chris
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skrracing
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Joined: 18 May 2004
Location: So-Cal

PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2005 2:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The lifted KJs might be sooner but stock non lifted KJ are having the same problems. The recall was for the 02-03 and then they added a small heat shield that was going to cure this problem... We are now seeing 04 and 05s failing as well both lifted and non lifted. my main concern right now is to be sure to get the 04-05s added to the recall. The guys that hqve failed are getting a buch of crap from some of the dealers. This is something ALL dealers need to cover. The recall really helps to get this taken care of. Hope that helps. later...Clint
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quadna71
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Joined: 02 Jan 2004
Location: Delaware

PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2005 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

that does make sense now...it sounded at first like you were venting over yours...and considering the lift i was thinking..... but yeah, they should be included soon into their recall hopefully.
chris
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skrracing
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Joined: 18 May 2004
Location: So-Cal

PostPosted: Sat Dec 24, 2005 8:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am not venting at all... This is a real issue that I am reporting and want everyone to be aware of it. I am on my second KJ and this was just as huge of an issue from day one.

I am capable of doing any...any task... on any vehicle and the ball joint replacement is a very easy task so I dont need anyone to deal with this for me...

If you have a KJ and are not keep a very close eye on the lower ball joints...then shame on you because this is a huge real issue.
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