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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I went to get an alignment, they said there was movement in these parts.....are these hard to replace? Do I need special tools? Can I buy the ends or should I buy a whole new rod? If I seem like I don't know what I'm talking about...explain please.

Thanks :bigthumb:
 

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herbivore
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the tie-rod assembly is a piece of metal stock with both ends threaded. In the outboard end of the tie-rod, the 'tie rod end' is threaded on using a locknut to keep it from becoming mis-adjusted, it houses a ball-joint which is connected to the steering knuckle. By design it is very easy to replace the tie rod end, but if it is seized in there, you might need some heat to break the threads loose. As well, you'll need to pop the ball-joint at the steering knuckle. With the right tools, i.e. pickle-fork and hammer or ball-joint removal tool, metric wrenches, air impact gun (not necessarily needed, but I wouldn't even try this job without it). That should be about all you'll need, and maybe 4-5 hours if you've never done work in that area of the car before.



You'll need parts 15 or 13 (or both if they are both loose) and one of each of the following for each side you are replacing: 14, 21,22,23


I hope this helped
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks!!

What's the difference between the inner and outer tie rod? they said both were loose.....
 

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herbivore
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hrmmmm, I dunno, the only end that should develop play is the outer end... the inboard end is threaded into the rack and pinion unit...
 

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hrmmmm, I dunno, the only end that should develop play is the outer end... the inboard end is threaded into the rack and pinion unit...
The inside could possibly develope play. #1 is the inner tie rod. It's basically a ball joint with threaded studs on both sides.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks! I'll go out and check on it. This is my first time to work with the steering stuff...hopefully the last time too. It doesn't seem too hard...
 

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The tool itself costs about 9 dollars. Tie rod ends take about 10 min to change. Just did it on mine.
 

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My rack-ends (inner tie-rods) appear to be worn, especially on the left. This suprises me as the car has only done 60 000 miles.
 

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When I jack my car up you can grab one of the wheels at the 9 & 3 o'clock position and rock it slightly, if you can move it easily at all then something's wrong. When you grab the wheel at the 12 & 6 o'clock position there is no play at all, the way it should be. I had someone put their hand on each ball-joint in turn as I rocked the wheel side-to-side and they could feel the slack in the rack-end.
 

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When I jack my car up you can grab one of the wheels at the 9 & 3 o'clock position and rock it slightly, if you can move it easily at all then something's wrong. When you grab the wheel at the 12 & 6 o'clock position there is no play at all, the way it should be. I had someone put their hand on each ball-joint in turn as I rocked the wheel side-to-side and they could feel the slack in the rack-end.
Your inner/outer tie rod ends may be bad, but I don't know if rocking it at 9 & 3 is a valid test, unless the steering column is locked (ie. key out, wheel turned til it clicks.) If it's not locked, you can shake it a good deal...it may be a valid test if it's locked, but I don't know.

The test that I've seen for tie-rods is that if you remove the tie rod end from the knuckle and can easily move the shaft with your fingers, it's pretty worn...if the inner tie rod droops all the way down when you let it hang in the air, it is also worn. Does anyone know if this is valid?

I'd rather not replace my inners, if they're still serviceable :)
 

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what you said about the whole taking it out and checking it is true. In all honesty though who would want to go through all that trouble of taking them out and checking them like that. The 9 o'clock and 3 o'clock theory is actually the best way to do it but make sure that the steering wheel is locked. Also if you are removing the outer tie rod many times you can just hit the steering knuckle where it is attached with a hammer a couple times and it will pop right out.
 

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I just replaced my inner tie rods and outer tie rod ends, so I figured I'd share my experience and maybe help someone else down the road.

Popping the end ball joints was not terribly hard. A pitman puller would have worked well, but I actually opted not to bother with it as I knew I was replacing the ends and didn't mind if I damaged them. People in this forum have commented that the smaller pitman puller that Autozone rents out works well. I simply reinstalled the castle nut upside down until the end of the bolt was flush with the flat of the nut and tapped it out with a hammer. I would not recommend this if you were not replacing the tie rod ends, but I would probably still do it that way, just use a block of wood to prevent damage to the nut. Or get that pitman puller.

As it turns out, my inner joints were pretty loose. I don't think they were really bad, but they did drop all the way under the weight of the tie rod ends, which new inner tie rods will not do. That combined with the fact that both dust boots were torn and contaminates could be already working their way into the ball joints made me decide to put everything back together and wait until I could order new inner tie rods.

I used OEM inner tie rods, boots, and clamps, but opted to go with Autozone Duralast tie rod ends, which saved me about $40 for the pair. Aftermarket inner tie rods are no cheaper than OEM ones at the discount Honda parts centers. Boots and clamps could be found for cheaper, but I decided to buy those from Honda.

The hardest part was loosening the tightening nut for the tie rod end. It took a lot of patience. With one of them, I ended up inserting a wrench onto the nut and wedging the other end against the car frame, then taking another wrench wedged against another part of the frame, prying at it before it finally came loose. Hard work, even with PB Blaster. Count the number of rotations to remove the tie rod end and install the new ones the same number. You will still need an alignment, but this way you will be were you were before the job.

Removing the inner tie rods was not tough at all. I used inner tie rod tools from Autozone, which cost about $56, but fully refunded on return. You need part number 27024 and part number 27042. They worked beautifully with a long 1/2" wrench and about 60-70 ft-lbs of torque. I reinstalled them at 47 ft-lbs, as specified in the Helms. One thing the manual says is the stake the lock washer on the inner tie rod, but the ones on there were not staked, and I think the alignment shop that installed those did that probably 9 years ago. It's difficult to do with rack on, so I decided that it wasn't too crucial - just my opinion, though.

Everything else went back together very easily and it was a pretty simple job even as I was figuring it all out for the first time.
 

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Yeah, I had a b!tch of a time staking those lock washers with the rack on the car. They are steel and not easily deformed. I got two sides pretty good, one not so good, and one hardly at all. I used blue loctite on the inner threads so maybe that'll help over time.
 
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