How To Replace Ball Joints On A Jeep Wrangler

By | May 7, 2017

This will teach you how to replace your ball joints on a jeep.
You will need some tools that maybe you can borrow from a friend.
Or buy them also some auto parts stores even rent them out.
You will need ball joint press kit to remove the ball joints and a front end service kit to remove the tie rod ends.
Tools kits as shown in photo.

Get started by loosing up the lug nuts on your wheel don’t remove them all of the way.
Now you are ready to jack up the vehicle and put it on jack stands.
It is a good idea to have a heavy duty jack and heavy duty jack stand.
Always take safety seriously.
Only jack up your vehicle on the frame the same goes for the jack stand.
Just put them on the frame.
If you jack up your vehicle on other parts you can do serous damage to the vehicle and it is not safe.
See photos of vehicle safely jacked up on the frame.

Now That you have your vehicle safely jacked up on the frame.
You can remove the lug nuts all of the way and remove the wheel.
After you have removed the wheel you will need to remove the cotter pin From the hub.
As shown in photo.

After you have removed the cotter pin the nut will come off with the spring washer.
As shown in photo.

Now you are ready to remove the nut on the hub.
You will need to hold back the hub with a long breaker bar.
Other wise the hub will spin when trying to remove the nut.
In most cases the nut will be on relay tight so you might need a breaker bar on your socket to remove it.
As Shown in photo.

Then go in to your engine and remove the cap on your master cylinder.
That will take the pressure the the brake caliper.
As shown in photo.

Next we are ready to remove the caliper bolts.
There are two bolts one on the top of the caliper and one on the bottom of the caliper.
As shown in photo’s.

Top Caliper Bolt

Bottom Caliper bolt

After you have removed the caliper bolts.
You can remove the caliper you might need to carefully hit it with a hammer to remove it.
As you are hitting it with a hammer hold it so it does not fall or you can damage the hose that is connected to the caliper.
Once you have remover the caliper you can put it on the frame and attach it with a coat hanger to the frame so it does not fall.
As shown in photo.

Then we can go ahead and remove the brake rotor.
As shown in photo.

Then you can remove the three bolts that hold on the hub.
Hub shown in photo.

Now you need to remove the bolts that hold on the hub to the knuckle.
As shown in photo bolt one.

Remove the second bolt as shown in photo.

Last remove bolt three as shown in photo.

Now you are ready to remove the tie rod end.
As Shown in photo.

First remove the cotter pin then loosen up the nut.
In some cases you can hit the top of the nut with a hammer and the tie rod end will pop out.
Be very careful not to damage the threads on the tie rod or you will need to replace the tie rod end.
If you can not get it off be tapping on it with a hammer.
You will need to use a tool from the front end service kit.
As shown in photo.

You will need to tighten up on the bolt on the front end service tool to get the tie rod end off.
In some cases you might need to hit the front end service tool with a hammer to break it free.

Next you can slide off the hub it will also come off with the shield there will also be a washer in the hub don’t loose it
Photo shown removing the hub.

Now you are ready to remove the axle.
Be very careful when removing the axle not to get it dirty or damage it.
As shown in photo removing axle.

After that is complete you need to remove the cotter pins and nuts that hold the knuckle to the ball joints
As shown in photo top ball joint and bottom ball joint.

After you have removed the nuts from the ball joints and will need to hit the top of the knuckle with a sledge hammer to remove it.
You might need to hit it very hard it will be stuck.
Also be careful when it falls so you don’t get hit by it.
Knuckle As shown in photo.

The lower ball joint you will need to press it down to remove it.
And thew upper ball joint you will need to press it up to remove it.
Now start by pressing out the lower ball joint.
I will be using this set up to press it out.
As shown in photo.

You will need to turn the c clamp until you here the ball joint pop out.
You will need to turn the c clamp bolt clock wise to remove it.
After you have removed the lower ball joint you are ready to remove the upper ball joint.
You will fallow the same steps to remove the upper ball joint.
But it will be different accessories from the ball joint kit to press it in.
This is the set up I used to remove thew upper ball joint.

Now that you have removed the lower and upper ball joint.
You will want to clean out the inside of the shaft where the ball joints where.
Don’t leave any debris left in it, you want it to be clean.
As shown in photo.

Now that you have removed the old ball joints and cleaned everything up you are ready to install the new ball joints.
Make sure you install the ball joints in the right place.
The upper ball joint will have a zerk fitting on it the lower one wont.
As shown in photo.

Now we are ready to install the ball joints.
We will start by installing the upper ball joint.
And pressing it down this is the set up I will be using to press it down.
As shown in photo.

You will need to turn the c clamp bolt clock wise to press it in.
Now you can install the lower ball joint.
I will be using this set up as shown in photo.

Make sure both ball joints are all of the pressed in.
Now you are ready to reattach the knuckle.
Slide it in to place and install the lower bolt.
Then install the upper bolt.
Make sure to check your manufacture’s specifications what to torch the bolts down to.
And make sure the castle nut is lines up wright so you can put the cotter pin threw it.
Photo shown knuckle reattached.

Next you will need to reattach the tie rod end.
As shown in photo.

Reinstall the tie rod nut back on make sure you can slide the cotter pin back on.
Now you can install the axle back in be very careful not to get it dirty.
Make sure you seat the axle all of the way back in
Installing axle as shown in photo.

Next reinstall the hub and the shield back.
Hub and shield as shown in photo.

It can be easier to reinstall it putting on the shield on first with a blot throw it.
As shown in photo.

Then slide on the hub align it with the bolt.
Some times it can help to giggle the hub a little to help get it on the bolt.
Be careful not the cross tread it.
Install the two other bolts get them hand tight.
Then tighten them down all of the way.
Now you can put the washer and nut back on.
As seen in photo.

Tighten the not to manufacturers specifications you will need a breaker bar to hold the hub back so it does not turn.
Next you can reinstall the spring washer and the cap and the cotter pin.
As shown in photo.

Go ahead and slid the brake rotor back on.
As shown in photo.

Now you can reinstall the brake caliper back on it will go on best by sliding the bottom of the caliper first.
It is a good idea to replace the caliper bolts because sometimes they break when re tighten them down.
New ones should be under $10.
It is better to replace them then taking a chance if they break you might need to drill them out.
Be careful not to cross treads the bolts when tighten them down.
Photo showing caliper reattach.

Next you can reattach your wheel put the lug nuts on hand tight.
Then remove the jack stand lower the jeep down from the jack.
And tighten down the lugs nuts and you are done you can follow the same steps for the other side.

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