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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-10-2010, 07:28 PM Thread Starter
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Replacing Ball Joints with MOOG

Originally Posted by Scubastevie View Post
So I finished 1 Ball Joint today. After Numerous Problems and 0 know how when it comes to this stuff I can finally explain how / what to do.

First: Jack Up Tire(I Know sounds easy but I used an area near the one bolt so that it can lift high enough. Remove Bolts Etc.(Easy Stuff)

Second Gather tools: 13/16th Socket, 18mm Socket, 13/16th Wrench, Adjustable Wrench, Ball Joint Press(Rented), Ball Joint Fork(rented), Impact wrench(Borrowed), breaker bar, 1/2 Ratchet.

Third: (Tools Needed: Hammer, 18mm Socket, Impact Wrench, Universal socket?)Remove Bolt 1, which is going to be the bolt connecting the ball joint to the steering knuckle. I first removed the nut, this was easy using the impact wrench, Giving it some tug should help. You then need to remove the other side and the corroded mess of a bolt. You will have to use some wd-40 and some hammering but it will eventually come out. I used a universal with the impact wrench to remove.

Fourth: (Tools Needed: 13/16th Socket, 13/16th Wrench, Impact Hammer or Ratchet)Start undoing the bolt running vertical to the ground that connects the LCA to the chassis. This bolt has a nut that must be held in place with the 13/16th wrench while removing using either impact wrench or ratchet. Once you get that out its pretty simply removed.

Fifth: (Tools Needed: Ratchet, 13/16th Socket, 13/16th Wrench <heckler> my 07 FDII used 3/4" on this bolt </heckler>) The Bolt that connects parallel to to the ground directly behind the ball joint area/ tire. Its kind of a pain to get to, but you can ratchet out a while using 13/16th Socket then finally use a wrench to get it out. It is the last thing holding the LCA in other than ball joint. I un-popped a few of the pins holding up that black plastic to get in there.

Sixth: (Tools Needed: Ball Joint Fork, Hammer)I used the ball joint fork to remove the ball joint from the knuckle. This worked easily and i had the lower control arm out in no time at all. <heckler> Don't waste your time not using a balljoint fork. You won't get it apart without the fork. $17 at Canadian Tire </heckler>

Seven: (Tools Needed: Ball Joint PressI used the ball joint press to be able to remove the old ball joint. I used THIS video to find out how to remove the old ball joint. I then used THIS video to see how to press a new one in. WATCH THE SECOND ALL THE WAY THROUGH, teaches you how to get them in straight, which I had problem.
Remember what TAG said, Push out the ball joint that is in there, through the top from the bottom.. Then, press in the new ball joint from the top to the bottom.I'll try for picks next.

<heckler> I ended up using a 10T hydraulic press and some creativity (read annoying waste of time) with a cast iron pipe fitting and some sockets. Then a 1-1/2" PVC pipe coupling ended up being the cheapest (and only) thing I could find that fit over the dust boot to press it onto the joint </heckler>

Eight : Tools Needed: Big SocketTo put the dust boot on the new ball joint, I read this"try the socket trick. It works perfect. Just get a big socket so it goes over the boot and seats on the bottom part that is harder material and tap it couple time and will go in perfectly." and it seems to work perfectly.

Nine: Put C-Ring around Ball Joint (easy) and then put everything back together.

You may want to grease everything and get an alignment, but that is all for actually replacing the ball joint.

It took a while, but I now have knowledge.

Hopefully this helps

Scuba Stevie
Here's a problem solver bulletin from MOOG

Thanks Scuba Stevie!

Discussion Thread is here

Last edited by heckler; 12-15-2010 at 12:10 AM.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-14-2011, 01:26 PM
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Seven: (Tools Needed: Ball Joint Press) I used the ball joint press to be able to remove the old ball joint.... ...Remember what TAG said, Push out the ball joint that is in there, through the top from the bottom.. Then, press in the new ball joint from the top to the bottom.I'll try for picks next.
As I pointed out in the main thread on this, this is incorrect. TAG actually said to push the old ball joint DOWN FROM THE TOP, and out the bottom. This is the SAME direction that you push the new ball joint in.

I know that this sounds unusual, but it is because MOOG was basically redesigning the way this is all assembled. Their kit is a "problem solver", and is a very ingenious design. Be sure to read the PDF linked above, and you will see a nice pic of the direction of "old out" and "new in".

I wanted to make this clear, as I read the instructions and tried this from bottom to top... and realized something was wrong (luckily before something broke) when it would not budge. It comes out quite easily when pushed down and out.

By the way, I did this with the control arms on the Jeep. No need to remove them, if you jack up the vehicle high enough to make room for the ball joint presser's screw.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-15-2013, 10:50 PM
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I did this today, thanks for the guide. Only thing I had to do differently on my '08 was use a wire wheel to remove the bottom of the boot on the OEM ball joint to expose a ring that I had to remove before it would move when I pressed it out.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 06-02-2013, 12:03 AM
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I just replaced the whole control arm with MOOG (not just the balljoint but the whole control arm).
Very good product.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 09:24 AM
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[Then a 1-1/2" PVC pipe coupling ended up being the cheapest (and only) thing I could find that fit over the dust boot to press it onto the joint </heckler>]

I just did this today, and Kudos for figuring out the PVC pipe trick, it worked perfectly. I was trying all kinds of things like heating the boot up (to expand the metal ring that's molded inside the rubber), using sockets, etc. The 1.5" pipe fits snugly over the boot, and then I just used the ball joint press to slide it right on!

Thanks to everyone for their help!
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-01-2015, 02:53 PM
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Thanks for the excellent guide and PVC coupling hint.

Here's a link for the mechanically identical 2007 Dodge Caliber manual PDF download

The ball joint - lower control arm info ( including bolt torque ) is on pg. 60 - 65
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-12-2015, 09:23 PM
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Anyone looking for an inexpensive ball joint press should check out the one at
Harbor Freight Tools if there is a store near you.

Not exactly professional quality but the one I bought ( I opened it up before purchase
to check the thread and the "sloppyness" of the fit in the "C" frame) was pretty good
and worked fine as long as you alternated which direction the clamp was aimed
( two cranks down, loosen slightly, swing the frame 180 degrees, two more cranks,
loosen slightly, swing 180 degrees back ) so the ball joints press out ( and in ) evenly.

Pretty good deal @ $79.99 - 20% off coupon
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