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86-95 Trucks & 4Runners 2nd/3rd gen pickups, and 1st/2nd gen 4Runners with IFS

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Old 04-01-2008, 12:52 PM   #1 (permalink)
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tie rod ends too much play?

so I was told that I have too much play in my tie rod ends. What exactly does this mean? I would think I need a little flex but they twist pretty good, I would say about 15-20 degrees in both directions. Do I need new bushings? what will fix this? thanks
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Old 04-01-2008, 01:52 PM   #2 (permalink)
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That would be very bad. Just ask Taikowaza about bad/worn tie rods. I was able to move his front wheels about 3/4-1" side to side because of bad steering parts. Get them replaced ASAP.
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Hmmm, dunno. Ask the oem Nazi DC.
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I'll cut you.
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Old 04-01-2008, 03:29 PM   #3 (permalink)
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JS, you're suppose to be able to twist them front to back - that's normal. The "play" is when you can suspend the wheel in the air and move it left to right without moving the other wheel. This is a very unsafe condition and must be repaired quickly. Fortunately, it's quite simple and you can probably do it yourself, then only pay for the alignment when you're finished.

I can get tie rod ends (TRE's) for about $15 each locally. If you're going to tackle it yourself, refer to http://www.yotatech.com/f2/tie-rod-replacement-141221/ ;
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The outer end is easy to do yourself. Just loosen the jam-nut. Loosen the nut holding onto the tie rod. Take a hammer and hit the tie rod stud (since you are already replacing it, then it won't matter if you damage the threads). Count how many turns unscrewing the end and install the new one with the same number of turns. At our shop we usually do an alignment with it, but few of them actually are far off during the toe adjustments.
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Old 04-01-2008, 05:55 PM   #4 (permalink)
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try tightening them first or if they wont tighten than replace them
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Old 04-01-2008, 06:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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try tightening them first or if they wont tighten than replace them
Not likely. They're junk, replace them.

If by some weird cosmic shift they sheared the cotter pin and the nut loosened up thereby letting the actual rod end become loose (not likely as you usually have to whack the pickle fork pretty sharply in order to break them loose) they are still gonna be junk. Replace them.
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Old 04-02-2008, 05:35 AM   #6 (permalink)
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so what causes them to go bad they look pretty sturdy but I always hear about them going bad on all kinds of vehicles. Also this is it right? http://info.rockauto.com/BeckArnley/...ml?1014450.jpg
has anyone ordered from this company before? $10 a piece.
Any recommendations on where to buy for quality and price?
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Old 04-02-2008, 07:42 AM   #7 (permalink)
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They are a wear item and eventually just get sloppy and need replaced. Oversized tires can contribute to early failure, especially if it is a high mileage rig. They start to wear and you get play. If you continue to drive the vehicle they will eventually wear to the point that the actual joint seperates and you end up on the side of the road with your front tires pointing off in different directions.

I've never ordered from rockauto. Price seems kinda low, but any price seems low compared to the dealer

Stop by Harbor Freight or NAPA and get yourself a $10 pickle fork too. It makes seperating the tie rod end from the steering knuckle much easier.

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Old 04-03-2008, 05:17 AM   #8 (permalink)
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what about the inners do they go bad too? I cant see mine they are covered with a rubber boot. Also I do have big tires 12". I think ill go a bit smaller as they just rub when fully turned. Should I do anything to extend the life of the rods? obviously keep them aligned. thanks
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Old 04-03-2008, 05:23 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Yes, inners go bad too. Replace both sides, inners and outers and you will be all brand new in the tie rod department. Git r done.
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Old 04-03-2008, 06:16 AM   #10 (permalink)
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As I understand worn tire rods also lead to uneven tire wear.
as an addendum shop around a bit for that alignment. makes sure you get one from a reputable place. As I understand it alignments are a little hard to do and it requires more than just knowing how to operate the machine. spend the time to find someone you trust to do the alignment and your tire wear should speak for the value of that time well spent.
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Old 04-03-2008, 06:43 AM   #11 (permalink)
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thanks guys i will do both inner and outer its got 130k, and I know someone with a shop who will let me do the alignment for next to nothing.
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Old 04-03-2008, 06:43 AM
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