Can you just replace the bushing on a Tie Rod? - JeepForum.com
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Unread 01-12-2011, 02:20 PM   #1
Jeepman_97
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Can you just replace the bushing on a Tie Rod?

So I'm over here from the Chereokee section. I'm updrading my Tie Rod and Drag Link. After going to the boneyard, I picked up both parts real cheap ($35) It came out of a 95 ZJ w 5.2L V8.

The bushings to the outer tie rod and drag link (both are the long bars) look okay, but I'd prefer to just replace them with new rubber bushings.

Has anyone just replaced the rubber bushings w/o having to buy a brand new enitire outter tie rod and drag link bar? If so, where did you get the bushings from? Parts stores and dealer don't just sell the bushings.

Thanks!



P.S. Just to clairfy, these are not the small tie rod ends you can get from the parts store. I'm talking about the draglink bar that connects to the passenger wheel and long tie rod that's connected to it.

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Unread 01-12-2011, 02:31 PM   #2
Yardman Harry
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I think what you mean are the boots on the joints.

The boots are not sold as an OEM replacement item, at least not that I have found, you have to go to NAPA or advance to get after market boots.

I found though that the boots dry rot faster. So I ditched NAPA and bought some energy suspension poly boots for the tie rod ends. I have been using them for 4 years now, they work good, just be sure to watch them more than you use to.

Yard
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Unread 01-12-2011, 02:56 PM   #3
Jeepman_97
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Thanks for the quick reply.

I was hoping to replace the enitre rubber bushing that includes the grease fitting. You can kinda see the rubber bushing in this pic:

http://shop.advanceautoparts.com/web...S_715146537___

I have to check how much play is in the bolt connected to the bushing. If it's bad, can you just replace the boot? (Sorry, first time replacing Tie Rods)
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Unread 01-12-2011, 03:02 PM   #4
Jeepman_97
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The bushing for the Tie Rod and Drag Link looks similar to a Ball Joint. I guess what I should ask, if a ball joint is worn out, can you just replace the rubber boot with a energy suspension boot to upgrade and fix it?
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Unread 01-12-2011, 03:06 PM   #5
ZJ5point2GCL
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thats just a dust boot, i think you are looking to replace the tie rod ends, which are only replaceable on the drag link and the pitman arm, and the tie rod on the left knuckle (so both the ones that have threads on them in the adjuster sleeves), the other ones need the whole tie rod/ drag link to be replaced.


a tie rod end is the ball joint looking like thing.
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Unread 01-12-2011, 03:50 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZJ5point2GCL View Post
thats just a dust boot, i think you are looking to replace the tie rod ends, which are only replaceable on the drag link and the pitman arm, and the tie rod on the left knuckle (so both the ones that have threads on them in the adjuster sleeves), the other ones need the whole tie rod/ drag link to be replaced.


a tie rod end is the ball joint looking like thing.

You hit the nail on the head! So it looks like you have to replace the entire bar in order to have a new bushing.

Darn!... Well is it worth installilng the High Energy Dust boots? The jeep see's the trail atleast once a month. How hard is it to install? Do you just put it on over the boot?
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Unread 01-12-2011, 04:21 PM   #7
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I don't think you're understanding how this works. You have to replace the entire tie rod end. The bushing you're referring to is just the dust boot and a new tie rod will come with new rubber boots. The poly boots simply last longer so you can swap out the rubber one for it and it will hold up longer.
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Unread 01-12-2011, 04:24 PM   #8
ZJ5point2GCL
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Do you need new boots? Or does the joint have play?

Better question, what are you trying to achieve?
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Unread 01-13-2011, 11:17 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coolcatracing View Post
I don't think you're understanding how this works. You have to replace the entire tie rod end. The bushing you're referring to is just the dust boot and a new tie rod will come with new rubber boots. The poly boots simply last longer so you can swap out the rubber one for it and it will hold up longer.
No it all makes sense now. You guys answered my question. The rubber bushing at the end of the Drag Link (at the passenger wheel) and the Tie rod (where it connects to the drag link, not the short ones) is not replaceable.

I was hoping to just replace all rubber bushings on the Drag Link and Tie Rod since I got them so cheap.
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Unread 01-13-2011, 11:22 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZJ5point2GCL View Post
Do you need new boots? Or does the joint have play?

Better question, what are you trying to achieve?

I need to re-inspect all the joints again. (Don't have it with me). From what I remember, the joints seemed tight, so I'll just keep them as is. I just figured since it came off a 1995 it would have been best to replace all rubber bushings.

Since I can't replace the greasable bushings, is it worth replacing the boots (Dust Sheild) with High Energy ones? Is it complicated to install and what's the advantage of running them?

Thanks!
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Unread 01-13-2011, 11:23 AM   #11
ZJ5point2GCL
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they are not bushings, the don't do anything other than keep the grease in a dust out, the actual joint that wears out is a ball joint.

the rubber boots do NOTHING.

edit, sorry i posted before you last post showed up. if you need new boots you most likely need new joints, but there is no benefit changing them to the energy ones
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Unread 01-13-2011, 11:26 AM   #12
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you also cant really tell if the joint is bad until it is installed, unless it is extremely bad
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Unread 01-13-2011, 11:42 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeepman_97 View Post
I need to re-inspect all the joints again. (Don't have it with me). From what I remember, the joints seemed tight, so I'll just keep them as is. I just figured since it came off a 1995 it would have been best to replace all rubber bushings.

Since I can't replace the greasable bushings, is it worth replacing the boots (Dust Sheild) with High Energy ones? Is it complicated to install and what's the advantage of running them?

Thanks!
Yeah, there is just a little mix up in terminology here.

A 'bushing' does not exist on the tie rod or drag link. There are ball studs and ball stud seals or more commonly known as boots. The ball stud is the part that connects the tie rod and drag link ends to the steering knuckles and pitman arm.

The ball stud is not replaceable, it is can only be serviced by regular greasings via the zerk fittings found on each ball stud. The ball stud seal (or boot) should be inspected at each greasing interval for damage.

If a ball stud needs replacing, you can either purchase a tie rod end left or right hand threads, (which includes a new ball stud and ball stud seal) or the drag link end, or the tie rod itself.

If your ball studs turn out to be okay, but your boots are damaged, there are no oem replacement boots on the market, instead you will need to purchase energy suspension poly boots (best quality) or napa boots (dont last long)

If your boots are okay, and your ball studs are okay, just pump some grease in there and youre good to go!

Yard
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1997 Jeep Wrangler Sahara Ed. I6 - 4.0 litre, 4" SL, D44 rear, 4:56 Gears, AA SYE with double cardon custom rear Drive Shaft, IRO Adj CAs, Kevins Rear Adj TB with JOHNNY JOINT end

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