Do your tie rods need to be replaced?
Have you noticed some uneven wear on your tires lately? If so, it's possible you could simply need an alignment. But if that is coupled with a lack of steering response, then what you might need are new tie rod ends. These steering linkage components provide your vehicle with the firm and crisp action you felt when it was new. Over time, all parts start to show signs of wear; the tie rod ends and ball studs will become loose. This causes understeer - a condition in which the car does not respond as much as the driver commands. Understeer is a small problem at first, but can become serious if you need to react to a sudden pothole in the road or a car that's blindly backing out of a parking space. In those types of emergent situations, sloppy steering caused by tie rod failure can lead to serious consequences. And since replacing either your inner or outer tie rod ends is a relatively straight forward procedure, there's no reason to put off fixing a damaged part any longer.
Where are my tie rods?Tie rod ends
have been around since the beginning of cars, and have always served to actuate the pivot (or change the direction) of the front wheels. The outer tie rod ends connect to the steering knuckle, the inner tie rod ends connect to the center link or the steering rack (depending on the vehicle), and they both connect to each other using a threaded sleeve. So as the driver turns the steering wheel, that motion is translated to the rack or center link and all of the other connected linkage components are moving in unison in the same direction. When the ball studs at either end of the links grow old and loose, that movement becomes more gradual and the steering as a whole is less responsive.
D.I.Y. tie rod replacement.
Checking and replacing a tie rod end can be an easy to moderate task depending on your steering system, and with the right tools and enough time any mechanic or DIY-er with some experience can do the job.
- First, the car needs to be jacked up on stands, and the wheel (or wheels) must come off.
- Next, take a measurement from the connecting end of the tie rod to the center of the stud. You will need this measurement later when it comes time to screw the new one back in. Now remove the cotter pin and locking nut.
- Then, a tie rod puller should be used to back the ball stud out of the hole so that it can be unscrewed from the connecting sleeve. If the tie rod is bad, then you'll notice right away that the ball stud is going to be loose.
- Finally, install the new tie rod using the same steps in reverse and notice how much better your steering feels.
The right stuff is right here.
Don't put off getting your new tie rod ends any longer. Whether you are overhauling the steering linkage on your classic muscle car or just fixing the right outer tie rod on your daily driver after accidentally jumping a curb, we have the parts for you. Choose from our inventory of new reproduction or genuine tie rod ends; all quality at great values. Car Parts Discount has the brands you know, and can ship right away for quick delivery. Get your car back on the road where it belongs.