Question about 1993 Mercury Grand Marquis
How could i have damaged the ball joints when i was stuck in the snow? One was replaced a couple of years ago, just because of normal wear; shouldn't they last much longer? i have a 2002 Lincoln LS.
I could more easily believe damaged wheel bearings after being stuck in snow than both ball joints. If you're being told by a garage, mechanic or dealer that your ball joints need to be replaced after being stuck in the snow it's possible that A) You are being ripped off as mentioned by Markkholer: Many places like Monroe and Midas love to use this line. B) An inexperienced mechanic may have mistaken play at the hub itself for play due to bad ball joints. C) They actually are bad - it's possible that the replacement joints used by the repair facility that did the work were low grade aftermarket replacements.
Just as an example, I restored a 78 Chevy C10 step side pickup. Brand new ball joints were one of the steps I took in restoration. I took it to Midas (my mistake) because they were the only garage in the area who had inspection stickers available the day I needed it done. They put it on the rack and checked the suspension, which is not even part of the New York State inspection. I was told after half an hour that I needed new ball joints because both mine were "shot." After going out with the mechanic and pointing out that they were brand new, and showing them the receipt for them in the glove box, they changed their tune and claimed they confused my vehicle with the one next to it.
As for mechanics making mistakes in diagnosing a problem, it does happen sometimes. After all nobody's perfect.
Third, I mentioned poor quality parts. Many repair shops have a bad habit of charging for top quality parts then using cheaper ones that they keep on hand. Worse, I used to work in auto part sales to commercial dealerships and repair shops. On more than one occasion I actually had garage owners tell me "Man I ain't payin that much for that part! I'll go over to the junkyard and grab a couple instead." A dangerous and unethical practice, but it does happen.
As markkholer said, you really should take a good look at what they are claiming is wrong. Make them prove the joints are bad before you let them replace them.
Posted on Feb 08, 2009
Normal wear and tear will cause ball joints to fail maybe every 4-6 years, if you live somewhere reasonably smooth. If you live in the northeast, the road conditions are quite bad.(Just moved back to texas from newyork), pot holes and poorly repaired roads will reduce the life of all you suspension and steering components greatly. Also driving style, ie. hard cornering and steering, heavy braking, can also be a factor. Make sure you see the faulty component, even if you get a little dirty, it's important to see the failure. Shops will rip you off in a heart beat to get the rates on labor and parts for a car such as yours.
Posted on Jan 23, 2009
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017
SOURCE: Both ball joints need replacing
just normal wear, i am like you, they should last longer, and some do, and others don't, thats the nature of the beast. back in the day, they put grease serts in so you could grease them, and very seldom they went out. you did not do any damage to them from the snow or by rocking back and forth. hope this shead some light on your delima. OLD SCHOOL.
Posted on Jan 23, 2009
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