Front Left Knuckle/Ball Joint Replacement

Lincoln LS

  1. nghtshd88

    nghtshd88 Well-Known LVC Member

    Messages:
    359
    Likes Received:
    7
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2011
    Location:
    New Jersey
    Front lower ball joint just went out, sounds pretty bad and my alignment even changed a little. Really don't want to keep driving for obvious reasons.. Last thing I haven't replaced up front recently besides the LCA itself. The knuckle with joint is or $500-$600 unless I get mevotech which is $120 something. Really dont feel like take the hub assembly off again..

    Is it possible to just get the ball joint and press in/out without taking the hub off??

    If so what is a good joint to buy moog? Finally some warmer weather coming and want to get it apart asap.

    Got the passenger side knuckle with joint a few years ago and still sitting on it.
     
  2. joegr

    joegr Dedicated LVC Member

    Messages:
    20,455
    Likes Received:
    1,683
    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2005
    Location:
    Gulfport
    No, it's not. The knuckle is aluminum. It has to be very carefully heated to press one in. To do that it has to be removed from the car, and the hub removed from the knuckle. You will be taking a chance. The knuckle could just suddenly crack apart some time later on the road after being stressed like this. I haven't heard of this actually happening, but it is possible. There are certainly posts on here about them breaking while trying to press the joint in, and about them being slightly distorted in ways that were not apparent, but then causing lots of problems.
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
    • nghtshd88

      nghtshd88 Well-Known LVC Member

      Messages:
      359
      Likes Received:
      7
      Joined:
      Feb 1, 2011
      Location:
      New Jersey
      Thats what I had thought.. well 500+ or mevotech? Think ill try mevotech. Its just too much of a difference.
       
    • milehighmikey

      milehighmikey Dedicated LVC Member

      Messages:
      815
      Likes Received:
      60
      Joined:
      Apr 2, 2007
      Location:
      Nashua
      Hopefully, Mevotech quality has gone up, because I bought 4 of their knuckles and had the ball joints go bad in a matter of a couple of months. So bad that the internal friction was enough to unscrew the ball joint from the nylock nut by 2 turns in a 90 mile drive. (rather than internally allow rotation, the joints froze so solidly that they instead rotated the entire joint that was locked in with a nylock nut that had been torqued to 110 lb ft) You are correct that your alignment is probably off, with anything deteriorated inside the ball joint, your front end geometry can be way off. In my car with the bad joint, the car would shift a half lane at highway speed going over bridge transition joints. Very scary. A quick solution which could help is to poke a needle style grease gun through your ball joint weather shield rubber and load it up with grease. Preferably with that wheel off the ground to that the pressure will be off what is left of the ball and allow grease to get between the worn out surfaces.
       
    • nghtshd88

      nghtshd88 Well-Known LVC Member

      Messages:
      359
      Likes Received:
      7
      Joined:
      Feb 1, 2011
      Location:
      New Jersey
      Well that sounds very disconcerning. 4?? Really didnt want to spend that much on the knuckle. Maybe will try to score an oem low mileage piece.
       
    • craigh

      craigh Well-Known LVC Member

      Messages:
      465
      Likes Received:
      19
      Joined:
      Nov 27, 2004
      Location:
      Chanhassen, MN
      what year is your LS? I have a used one knuckle and ball joint. Was going to put it in my car but I have the 14mm and this is 16mm and would not fit. Let me know if you are interested.
       
    • 04_Sport_LS

      04_Sport_LS Dedicated LVC Member

      Messages:
      3,883
      Likes Received:
      493
      Joined:
      Jun 12, 2012
      Location:
      Somewhere around Lake Erie
    • 04_Sport_LS

      04_Sport_LS Dedicated LVC Member

      Messages:
      3,883
      Likes Received:
      493
      Joined:
      Jun 12, 2012
      Location:
      Somewhere around Lake Erie
      And IF you decide to try this... make sure you buy the high $$$ Moog ball joints with the "metal gusher bearing". Anything with a plastic insert around the ball joint will just melt.
       
    • nghtshd88

      nghtshd88 Well-Known LVC Member

      Messages:
      359
      Likes Received:
      7
      Joined:
      Feb 1, 2011
      Location:
      New Jersey
      I would only buy the best joints if I was but that does seem more involved then what im willing to do anymore. Going to try a used oem knuckle that is in good shape for the time being. Probably the safest and least costly route doing it myself. At least the hub assmebly will be lose (recently changed).

      Have an accessory pulley that went bad, window actuator needing replacement and rear speaker to replace. Just did both rear hubs, alignment new DWS.. need to repair my LSE bumper. It never ends.

      Probably be in the market for something newer by spring
       
      Last edited: Feb 26, 2021
    • 04_Sport_LS

      04_Sport_LS Dedicated LVC Member

      Messages:
      3,883
      Likes Received:
      493
      Joined:
      Jun 12, 2012
      Location:
      Somewhere around Lake Erie
      I can tell you for a fact, that by the time the knuckle is heated to the point that the old ball joint will lightly tap out, (and drop to the floor), the temp of the knuckle where the hub bolts in... is close to 700 degrees. The heat will crawl right up the knuckle... from the ring that holds the ball joint. I kept checking various places with a temp gun as I was doing this. Surprisingly... the ring where the ball joint was, only hit about 450F.

      And yes... I did get one ball joint cocked just enough that it wedged in the hole and wouldn't go in. So I had to tap it back out and throw the ball joint back in the freezer again for about a half hour... and start over. And I let everything cool to ambient temp before I reinstalled the knuckles.

      Would I do this with a Mevotech knuckle??? Hell NO !!!!
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
      • nghtshd88

        nghtshd88 Well-Known LVC Member

        Messages:
        359
        Likes Received:
        7
        Joined:
        Feb 1, 2011
        Location:
        New Jersey
        PM'd you.
         
      • craigh

        craigh Well-Known LVC Member

        Messages:
        465
        Likes Received:
        19
        Joined:
        Nov 27, 2004
        Location:
        Chanhassen, MN
        nghtshd88 Check the response. Contact me
         
      • T-Flip

        T-Flip Active LVC Member

        Messages:
        57
        Likes Received:
        19
        Joined:
        Nov 3, 2020
        Location:
        ?


        I've had my passenger side ball joint replaced by a mechanic without issue, just make sure you let them know to be careful and that it's aluminum and easy to crack.
         
      • 04_Sport_LS

        04_Sport_LS Dedicated LVC Member

        Messages:
        3,883
        Likes Received:
        493
        Joined:
        Jun 12, 2012
        Location:
        Somewhere around Lake Erie
        If you have to tell/remind a mechanic that aluminum will crack under pressure, force, or twist... they aren't much of a mechanic.
         
        • Like Like x 1
        • Agree Agree x 1

        Share This Page

        1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
          By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.