Question about 1999 Ford Explorer

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How do i check the ball joints 99 xplorer 4x4

I was told by an inspection station that all my balljoints were bad & needed replacement.
the car seems to handle fine and has less than 100,000 miles on it.
can you tell me how to check them myself?

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  • George DeMore
    George DeMore May 11, 2010

    What kind of inspection are you refering to?

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Hello;
To check ball joints is relatively easy. There is a load carrying ball joint and a pivot ball joint. The pivot joint gets minimal wear. To check the load ball joint, jack up the wheel to be checked. With about an 1" of clearance off the ground, place your hand on top of the tire and wityh a long sturdy bar under the tire, move the bar up and down. Feel for lateral movement at the wheel. you want to make sure that the wheel bearings are good and the movement is slight if any.
Rich
RPM Northwest

Posted on Apr 13, 2009

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Jack up one of the front wheels off the ground enough to wedge a 3 foot solid bar or pipe under the tire. The ball joints are the pivot points when you turn the wheels left to right. There is a upper ball joint and a lower ball joint. Lift on the bar to pry up an down between the tire and the ground if you can lift the car with out feeling slack the ball joints are ok. If you feel movement without feeling the car move up and down the ball joints are worn. You will feel and hear a knocking play. Repeat with the other side. If you feel play verify by watching the ball joints ( the pivot points) and having someone lift on the bar.

Posted on Apr 13, 2009

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