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Failed PA safety inspection...

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Joined: 23 May 2007

PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2007 10:01 am    Post subject: Failed PA safety inspection... Reply with quote

Hi folks,

I have a 98 TJ and an 87 YJ. With recent life changes (moved, got married, changing jobs, 8-mo. old baby) I have not kept up with the 'wheeling lifestyle or with my *J maintenance as much as I should have. Therefore I come to you groveling for assistance in an "emergency" situation.

I've always worked on my own vehicles (did the whole bottom-end on my YJ, and a spring lift and a bunch of other stuff) but I'm very "rusty" now (no pun intended) and my TJ just failed its inspection. The guy on the phone at PepBoys told me that both rear u-joints need replacing, as well as the fact that I have missing sway bar links in the front.

Well duh!! I removed the WHOLE SWAY BAR a couple years ago... but now that I live in PA (transplant from Mass), I guess if the 'bar came with the vehicle from the factory, it has to be there, and be functional, to pass the inspection. (They didn't notice it last year I guess.)

So, my questions are as follows, if anyone could be so kind as to assist:

1. "Both" rear U-joints would just mean those on the output shaft, correct? I'm working from home today and the Jeep is still at their lot so I can't get under it right now to look, but AFAICR those are the only U-joints in the rear. In any case, I was going to get some "Brute Force" joints from AutoZone, any comments on those?

2. Any special techniques for replacing the joints, or is it pretty straight forward? Just get underneath, take the stuff apart, replace the parts and put it back together? Anyone have the torque specs on these bolts?

3. For the sway bar: my links were rotted clean off before I took out the bar. So I need to get new parts. What do I need altogether? I know I need the link bushings, and I would like to put in some quick-disconnect links to replace the OEM ones. Any suggestions on where to buy some that are reasonably-priced?

Any help would be much appreciated. Money is tight right now and I only have a week to get it done but I know I will save money doing it myself, plus I don't like turning my Jeep over to your average shop monkeys if I can avoid it. And I need to get to know my Jeep again so it will be a good refresher. I did some searches on this board already but didn't find quite the level of detail that I may need.
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Joined: 08 May 2007

PostPosted: Fri May 25, 2007 1:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just get some good spicer u-joints those are like factory and are better than the gimick type Brute force i don't know alot about. Spicer i do as for the bar any bone yard if you got rid of your old one and mesure the diameter before getting your bushings they may ask as for dicos i have the same ? i want to get some don't know which are the best.

Oh yea he must be talking about the rear D/Shaft Fron and rear joints.

Hope this helps.

Also 15yrs at pep boys in Ca. I would never take my ride there.

Just my Opinion.

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Joined: 23 May 2007

PostPosted: Fri May 25, 2007 4:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks -- I actually already ended up getting the Brute Force ones from AZ. Also, I bought JKS QD links from Quadratec, I'd read a lot of recommendations for them. They came with the bushings and hardware, too.

About Pep Boys -- I totally agree with you. Only reason I took it there for inspection is that it is the cheapest around. Costs about $55 which is cheap, at least around here. (I know the prices in some/many other states (including MA) are uniform, but in PA the shops can set their own rates.)
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Mikey TJ

Joined: 14 Jul 2007
Location: Richmond, VA USA

PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2007 6:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow! I thought living in VA with a Jeep was bad. I'm so happy not to live in PA -- at least our inspections are a uniform $15/yr. Oh yeah, and I can drive doorless without hassle from the cops. To keep my post more on topic: I'm sure you'll love the JKS discos.
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Joined: 02 Jan 2004
Location: Delaware

PostPosted: Sun Jul 15, 2007 3:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

make sure you have either a decent benchvise and an assortment of deepwell sockets or a u-joint press. either combination will work fine for swapping them out.
chris (DE inspections are free, $20 a year for the tag sticker, and you can get more than one year at a time)
2003 TJ Sport
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