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Which Balljoints???

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by Esteban86K5, Mar 16, 2001.

  1. Esteban86K5

    Esteban86K5 1/2 ton status

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    I've been doing some price comparison on balljonts and there is such a big price difference. Should I go with the Moog ones that are $40 with a one year warranty or the local parts store has them at $19 with a lifetime warranty. The way I look at it is that the more often I have to replace them the more often I inspect the rest of the related components. I guess I'm just trying to convince myself that less expensive isn't alwasys bad.

    WHAT DO YOU THINK?????


    Esteban
     
  2. muddin4fun

    muddin4fun 3/4 ton status

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    $19 for ones with a lifetime warrenty? Am I reading that correctly? If you beat on them alot, get the lifetime warrenty if you will put them in yourselves. If you have someone do it, get the better ones.

    [​IMG] Keep your feet dry [​IMG]
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  3. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    The Moog is almost certainly much higher quality which would lead to longer MTBF (Mean Time Between Failures). However, it will likely be out of warrantee by the time it fails so you will eventually (if you keep and use the truck) be replacing it again at your expense.

    The cheaper version is just that, cheaper. The MTBF will be much shorter and you have a higher chance of experiencing a failure off-road. That said, for the price you could carry a spare for it at the same total price as one Moog. If it fails, you can fix it and return the broken one as long as you keep the receipts. Check the warranty though, it may only cover wear, not physical breakage (I have no idea, just occurred to me that it may have fine print since they often want to find some way out of the warranty).

    Anyway, if the lower MTBF does not bother you and you do regular inspections (don't want to have a ball joint fall off on the interstate at 70!) then the cheap with the extra is probably not a bad choice. If you want to fix it and forget it (well, as much as possible allowing for periodic inspections and grease) the go for the Moog. Even with the Moog, you might want a spare if you do extreme wheelin'.


    Bad Dog

    85 K30 CUCV, 350 TBI, TH400, NP205, D60/C14, 4.56
    Coming soon: 4" lift, 40" tires, massive cutting, shorter wb and rear overhang.
     
  4. belly

    belly Registered Member

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    Just a thought on lifetime warranties, most refer to the life of the product, not yours. It really is a worthless statement in some instances. I ran into this when buying some tools, once they broke, their life was over and no claim could be made. I've learnt that quality kit is cheaper in the long run.
     
  5. taterblazer

    taterblazer 1/2 ton status

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    I just put some Napa ones in. They seem fine to me! Napa RoX!
     
  6. Cavalry

    Cavalry 1/2 ton status

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    The first set of replacement balljoints I put in were Autozone lifetime ones. They failed after 10KMI. Sure they have a lifetime warranty and I can get them anywhere but IMO replacing balljoints REALLY SUCKS! I am going with MOOG next time. The autozone ones also are a bitch to lube the top one...you have to pull the axle to lube. The moogs can be lubed on a regular basis without dissasembly.

    Luke
    84 K5
    [​IMG]
     
  7. Blazer79

    Blazer79 1/2 ton status

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    One very nice feature about the Moog ones is that both upper and lower are greaseable without having to disassemble everything to get there. I think that was the main reason why my old balljoints failed quickly. They were greaseable, but the grease zit would not fit without removing the axleshaft.

    Now I got the Moog ones and the upper ones are greaseable through the side. I think if you grease them often, they'll last very long.

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  8. reddog64

    reddog64 1/2 ton status

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    How hard are these to replace??? Will this help tighten my steering up...

    Um... yes officer I know it's too big...
     
  9. Blazer79

    Blazer79 1/2 ton status

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    I had these installed by a mechanic, but they don't look that hard to replace. These are not the only parts that can be causing trouble on your steering. If anything else is bad, you may still feel your steering loose. Make sure you check the tie rod ends, and check for a cracked frame near the steering box. Make sure to look well, sometimes it's hard to find those cracks. If you haven't already, install an ORD steering brace kit, even if it hasn't cracked yet.

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  10. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    Yeah, you should inspect it from end to end. If the frame is cracked, you'll need to fix it before putting on the brace. They make kits for repairing it. The box itself can sometimes get sloppy after allot of use. If you can turn the input shaft back and forth any without the output moving, then it may be worn out or need adjusting. Note, they won't move at the same rate, but, if the input moves, the output should. Just a little slop is not a big deal but if you have much it leads to "Dukes of Hazard" style driving (if you've seen the show you know what I mean). Anyway, if it is not worn out completely, you can generally adjust the slop out of the Saginaw boxes by tightening the adjustment screw on the top. There will be a small allen screw with a larger lock nut on it. Just loosen the lock nut and *gently* tighten the allen screw a little at a time till you get all (or most) of the slop out. TIGHTEN NO MORE THAN REQUIRED, OVERTIGHTEN AND YOU WILL RUIN THE BOX. It generally takes a box end wrench to hold the nut while you adjust the screw. When you get it adjusted, hold the allen wrench, and tighten the nut without letting the screw turn. If you turn the nut without holding the screw, the nut can turn the screw far enough to ruin the box.

    Bad Dog

    85 K30 CUCV, 350 TBI, TH400, NP205, D60/C14, 4.56
    Coming soon: 4" lift, 40" tires, massive cutting, shorter wb and rear overhang.
     
  11. taterblazer

    taterblazer 1/2 ton status

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    Tools!!!

    You will need special tools to do this. Harbor Freight sells a tool called the 3 in 1 that will work for $40. A better tool will run $130. This tool rocked for pressing out the U joints on the front also! You will probaly need a tool to get out the spindle bearing while your in there. It's something like a sliding hammer. I didn't have one and mildly damaged my spindle. You will need a pickle fork to get the drag link and tie rod end off. You might want to put a nut almost flush with the tie rod end and beat it off, don't use the castle nut, they are hard to find and very soft. To get the steering arm off turn all the way to the right and beat the hell out of it. Better have an air wrench for driving your ball joint tool. If you have any questions email me. tater is good!
     

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