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Need a couple of answers- ball joint and tie rod end replacement

12-03-2009, 04:15 AM
This past weekend my buddy and i did a rear brake job and replaced a leaky brake line on my '99 4WD Jimmy and we decided while we were inspecting the front brakes for wear, we'd check the front suspension componenets for wear, since the front tires had been wearing on the inside. The bottom of the front wheels visibly stick out farther than the top. Using the push-pull method we determined that the ball joints were bad on both sides, and there is a ton of play in the outer tie rod ends.

I did a search on this forum and in the Blazer forum and found the posts about replacing the ball joints, and the tie rod ends seem to be doable. Neither my friend (who's more mechanically inclined than me) or i have ever done this before, but i can't afford to pay the garage $50 or more /hr in labor if i can do it myself. But i need to know the answer to a couple of questions.
1. I went to price "pickle fork" tools and there were three sizes, which size to get? And can this same tool be used to pop the tie rod end joints loose? Or do i need a puller? $$$ are a big issue....
2. Do i jack up the wheels under the control arm, or under the frame or axle? Do i need to release pressure somewhere so the ball joints don't pop out and maim or kill me? :icon16::headshake
3. Is the hub nut 35 or 36mm? I've seen both posted on here? I need to buy this socket and don't want to get the wrong one.

I plan on getting parts this coming Sat. and doing the job Sun. and possibly Mon. if need be. If anyone would care to follow my post, even though i'm getting a manual, i'm sure i will need more help. Any answers would be MOST appreciated!!!!! I need to get this Jimmy on the road to drive to work.

12-16-2009, 07:21 PM
Saw this post today. I have done the ball joints and tie rod ends on my jimmy. Did you do the job this past weekend? If not, I will give you the answers. Were they original OEM ball joints? If so, I bet you had fun drilling/grinding the rivets off. Let me know.:cool:

12-25-2009, 05:49 AM
I finished the ball joints/tie rod ends a couple of weekends ago...and yes the rivets were fun. I actually just chiseled them off with a smaller sized chisel and used a punch on what was left...not too hard a job just time consuming. My major hassle has been the brakes, i replaced one of the rubber brake lines on the rear driver's side. Tried to bleed the brakes only to discover i had a major leak in one of the metal brake lines that runs along the frame, above the rear driver's side wheel. I took it to a mechanic for that, ended up replacing both rear calipers. Now i'm having probelms getting the air bled out of the rear driver's caliper. The brakes work ok, just a little mushy....thanks for the reply.

12-25-2009, 10:21 AM
If air got into the abs unit it may have to be bled using the proper scanner to activate the abs solenoids.

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