Upper Knuckle Ball-Joint Replacement

Discussion in 'How-to Guides' started by GlitchMobile, Nov 4, 2008.

  1. GlitchMobile

    GlitchMobile New Member

    Upper Knuckle Ball-Joint Replacement

    The vehicle on which the upper knuckle ball-joint was replaced, was a 4WD, 2003, K2500 Chevy Suburban.

    The repair manual indicated to elevate the vehicle, then remove the wheel. Easy so far. At this point the manual indicates to release the torsion bar suspension (no coil suspension) and remove the brake caliper, followed by the rotor and axle. Seeing that this would increase the number of hours for servicing the upper knuckle ball joint, I opted out to not disturb the these respective parts.


    Instead I positioned a small hydraulic jack beneath the lower wish bone, http://www.flickr.com/photos/1375381...n/photostream/
    and proceeded to remove the lock nut on the upper knuckle ball-joint.

    Then using a pickle fork and a 5 lbs hammer, separated the upper wishbone from the steering knuckle.

    At the moment the ball-joint released, the knuckle assembly dropped down towards oneself with the weight of the brake caliper and rotor. However, the lower ball-joint prevented the entire assembly from falling down. So be prepared to catch and secure it. In hindsight, it would be practical to attach a safety wire around this assembly before dislodging the ball-joint, with enough slack, thus preventing the assembly from dropping.

    Now using a ball-joint press tool, the worn upper ball-joint was removed,

    then after a new ball-joint was installed. (The new ball-joint had a marking indicating which side needed to be positioned inboard).http://www.flickr.com/photos/1375381...n/photostream/

    Then using the small hydraulic jack, the lower wishbone was raised up along with the knuckle assembly , and meshed onto the upper ball-joint stud. The ball-joint’s stud was torqued to 50 NM. (Needle nose vise-grips® were used to hold the ball-joint stud from rotating, while tightening on the nut.)

    The wheel was then reinstalled and the vehicle was ready to roll. Total working time was about 2.5 hours.

    Some of the tools needed: Ratchet set, preferably with at least an 18 inch long ratchet wrench for added leverage, torque wrench, ball-joint press, vise grips, 5 pound hammer, pickle fork, two hydraulic jacks and safety tripods, grease gun.

    Attached Files:

  2. ChevyFan

    ChevyFan The Sheriff Staff Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    Good write-up, some of the photos don't appear to be showing up though. You can host them here to make them load better.
  3. GlitchMobile

    GlitchMobile New Member

    The "insert image" button only requests me to enter an url for the photos.
    I would prefer to imbed the photos but am unfamiliar with the process.
    Is there a FAQ addressing how to host the photos on GMTRUCKCLUB.com?

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