A how to for U & L Ball Joint Replacement (and sway bar end links) - Page 3 - Chevy TrailBlazer, TrailBlazer SS and GMC Envoy Forum



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Go Back   Chevy TrailBlazer, TrailBlazer SS and GMC Envoy Forum > 2002 - 2009 TrailBlazer/Envoy Tech > 02-09 Brakes, Suspension, Wheels and Tires > Suspension

Suspension Suspension

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  #21  
Old 07-11-2009, 01:24 AM
02ENVOYMAZ 02ENVOYMAZ is offline
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2002 GMC Envoy SLE
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Great how to. I've just purchased the lift kit from markmc, and will be doing the upper and lower ball joints and end links while doing the lift. thanks for the advise.
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  #22  
Old 07-25-2009, 10:14 PM
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ShadowClutch ShadowClutch is offline
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Did this all day. The write up was a good bit of help, but the hardest part was fitting the right ball joint press parts together.

The handling improvement is fantastic. No more excessive boaty body roll, clunking, clanking, etc. steering seems a bit tighter, too. Didn't need an alignment either. Very happy.
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  #23  
Old 07-29-2009, 10:28 PM
BENMAC45 BENMAC45 is offline
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Lightbulb

I did one side today (upper and lower). Holy cow. Hard work but doesn't have to be. Lesson learned: don't do this on a 90degree day in the blazing sun.


The other posts made it possible to do so thanks for posting.

FIRST THING IS FIRST. 2WD IS DIFFERENT THAN 4WD. There are a couple posts that differ slightly on whether or not to take the hub assy off.

If you are a 2wd owner than good for you because you don't have to pull the hub off to get the lower ball joint out. 4wd owners need to work harder. .
And the book does this project the hard way. no need to. just follow the posts above.

To get the hub off, all I needed was to remove the three (triangle patterned) bolts from behind the hub. Just break them free at first. To fully get the hub off you will need a deep 36mm socket. Once the three bolts and axle nut are off mine was frozen in place due to Maine winters. I hit it with the hammer and pried the axle away from the hub.

Tools i needed.
1. previously mentioned ball joint tool. (aka front end service kit)
2. full set of sockets. i used 1/4, 3/8, and 1/2 drivers
3. 24" breaker bar. THIS WAS CRITICAL.
4. 36mm deep socket (axle nut)
5. ball joint separator (big fork like tool)
6. needle nose
7. chisel (heavy duty)
8. grease gun w/chassis grease
9. big hammer

Follow the other posts and you'll be okay. One last thing. I was scared that after putting my lower ball joint in that it was defective because as i tightened the bottom nut the stud kept spinning. Just get it on up to that point and reassemble everything tire included. Once the suspension has a load on it, the ball joint gets "seated" and you can fully tighten the nut then.

good luck.
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  #24  
Old 08-20-2009, 08:06 AM
playstrings playstrings is offline
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Just a note that I am sure most people are aware of ... but some of your local parts suppliers have rental or loaner programs on specialty tools. I got the hub puller free for 2 days. Saved a lot of fighting with the hubs. I am now going back to look at the ball joint tool LOL..... Thanks for the tips...
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  #25  
Old 09-13-2009, 12:52 PM
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mubai mubai is offline
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I failed PA State Inspection on the lower ball joints. The shop wanted $600 to replace them. So, I decided to do this myself. I ordered the Moog lower ball joints from www.rockauto.com for $100 for the pair.

Questions:
1. Do I "NEED" to remove the wheel assembly and loosen the axel nut?
2. If my rotor is stuck, how do I get it loose without damaging it?
3. I just bought a new jack, Craftsman, it raises 19 inches. Where do I place the jack? And then the jack stands?
4. How long do you think it will take me to do this?

My mechanical skills are limited, b/c I haven't had the opportunity to do a lot of work, I guess is a good thing. I have replaced the following: windshield wiper motor, spark plugs, rear brakes and rotors and serpentine belt. I tried the fan clutch and waterpump, but failed miserably because I didn't have special fan clutch wrench.

Truck is 4x4 with 145K miles.

Any additional advice would be great. Just a little intimidated, this will be my biggest job.
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  #26  
Old 09-13-2009, 01:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mubai View Post
1. Do I "NEED" to remove the wheel assembly and loosen the axel nut?
Yes, absolutely. And you need a 35mm socket to do that. Do you own the rest of the tools listed? How about renting the ball joint press kit?
Quote:
2. If my rotor is stuck, how do I get it loose without damaging it?
Rubber mallet or dead blow hammer after using some PB Blaster. Don't forget to take off the circular stud spring clips if 1 or 2 are present from the factory.
Quote:
3. I just bought a new jack, Craftsman, it raises 19 inches. Where do I place the jack? And then the jack stands?
This is a truly scary question. Don't you have an experienced friend you can bribe to help you? More than any other question, this is an issue of great personal safety, and you need to know this from experience or a personal friend rather than asking us on an Internet forum.
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4. How long do you think it will take me to do this?
It's harder than the fan clutch. The successful accomplishment of this is seriously in doubt if you don't have somebody helping you who's done similar suspension work before. Everybody expands their experience by pushing the envelope a bit at a time, but how did you do the rear brakes without a jack and jack stands? If you did it with the factory jack that came with the vehicle and no jack stands, that's a serious safety risk. Please - we don't want you to be the first trailvoy member pinned under a vehicle and injured. Phone a friend. Get help. We can't substitute for that.



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  #27  
Old 09-13-2009, 02:31 PM
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mubai mubai is offline
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Roadie, as always, thanks for the wonderful insight.

1. Yes, I own all of the tools or will rent or borrow them.
2. OK, thanks for the tip, that's what I suspected. I changed the front brakes and rotors on my wife's Hyundai and used WD-40 and a regular hammer on the rotors. Since I want to preserve these rotors, I'll go out and get a the mallet hammers and PB Blaster.
3. I've raised my truck with the bottle jack as instructed by the manual and then used (2) jack stands to support it in couple locations. I now have the craftsman jack which I just put together and tested it on the frame of the vehicle and it raises the tires off just fine. I "bribed" a guy from Autozone to show me how to do the rear brakes. Went to his house and we worked on it together - cost me $60 for the lesson :-)
4. I really appreciate your concern for my saftey and I'm a bit of chicken when it comes to getting underneath the vehicle without it properly supported. I just thought there was a specific place to place the jack stands to support the control arm so that it didn't drop to the ground in addition to supporting the vehicle.
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  #28  
Old 09-13-2009, 03:04 PM
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the_bull2009 the_bull2009 is offline
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I just replaced my sway bar links also. They were a pain but I useda grinder to get the originals off. I belive I installed Moog also. I need to replace my upper and lower ball joints as well but I will need to have help considering that I am just starting to learn some of this stuff.
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  #29  
Old 09-13-2009, 07:39 PM
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the roadie the roadie is offline
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OK - you would not believe the inexperience level of some new members here. I have to advise caution at all times.

Just support the frame. You need the control arm to droop to get the weight off it.



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  #30  
Old 09-18-2009, 11:37 AM
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mubai mubai is offline
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I'll be replacing the lower ball joints tomorrow morning, Saturday Sept 19th. I'm in the Philadelphia area and if you want to come over and lend a hand feel free to PM me.

I understand it's not the most exciting thing to do on Saturday , but if you're going to change your own, you might as well get some practice.
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