A correction or two... the locknut on the outer tie rod end is a 19mm, not
17. And when installing the lower ball joint in the steering knuckle, make
sure the cotter pin hole is parallel to the knuckle, not in line with it.
You want to be able to replace the cotter pin as easily as possible.
Also, if any of the cv boots are torn or otherwise busted, good chance the
joint has gone south. We had a new boot kit for our passenger side, but
closer examination and a careful scrutiny of Haynes convinced us to just get
a rebuilt driveaxle and go with it. A core charge will probably apply when
you buy the part. This is what we did to replace the passenger side
You have to get down and dirty again. First take your oil change pan and
drain the transaxle (that's the part the driveaxles fit into) of its oil.
Looking at the transaxle from the passenger side, there will be a plug at
the lowest point which takes a 3/8socket. You may want to use your 1/2x3/8
adapter to enable use of the larger ratchet. Once the transaxle is drained,
replace the plug and remove the oil.
Take a pry bar and put it between the transaxle and the metal end of the
driveaxle and pry the driveaxle off. It should come out pretty easily.
Slide it all the way out of the way. Get your replacement driveaxle and
check to make sure the spring clip is on the end. I found it best to keep
the outer end of the driveaxle tied up with wire while I worked on the inner
part. Slide the end of the driveaxle into the transaxle as far as you can.
If you can shove it in until it seats, well and good. I couldn't. There
were no round wooden dowels close by at the time so I used a wooden 1x2
about fifteen inches long and a rubber mallet, placed the 1x2 verrrry
carefully on the lip of the metal end of the driveaxle on the boot side and
gave it a few light taps with the mallet. It seated as I tapped. You can
tell if the driveaxle seats because if it does, you can't pull it back out
with your hands. That's it, and it's pretty simple, really.
On reassembly of the steering knuckle, coat the part of the end of the
driveaxle that fits into the hub with a light coat of grease. You may find
it easier to to fit the end of the driveaxle in the knuckle as you hold the
knuckle, then you can lift the knuckle and put the end of the lower ball
joint down in the lower control arm. It's almost a downhill run from here
on in. Once the knuckle is back in place, replace the lower ball joint nut,
fit the upper control arm ball joint and the outer tie rod end into the
knuckle. If you've waited until now to remove the outer tie rod end, one
way is to replace the nut on the tie rod ball joint, loosen the 19mm
locknut, remove the nut from the ball joint and unscrew the tie rod end. Be
sure and either mark the location of the locknut when tight or count the
number of turns it takes to remove the tie rod end.
More about struts... we put them last in line to be reinstalled. It may go
easier in replacing the strut if the bottom is lubed with kitchen sink soap
before the strut is placed in the damper fork. We didn't do that on the
first strut, and it has been tedious to get it back in place. Also, be
careful in mounting the strut to get the brake hose connections in the right
And it goes on...