Ball Joint replacement - Nissan Xterra Forum
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post #1 of 5 Old 01-06-2012, 08:57 PM Thread Starter
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2000 XE V6 Xterra
Ball Joint replacement

I searched a bit and nothing popped at me, so I'll take the hit when one of you guys point out 3 different search result links for me..

This is in regards to a 1G 2WD that is completely stock and will remain that way.

My ball joints are looking pretty rough all around, (inner/outer tie-rod ends, UCA/LCA) The boots are torn and while there doesn't seem to be any play on them now, I'm starting the steps to replacing them down the road.

Tie rod ends are easy enough and for the price, I'll just go ahead and replace all 4 ends. As far as the ball joints on the UCA/LCA's, has anyone attempted with success to replace just the ball joint? RockAuto, as well as most of the popular OEM parts places list ball joints individually.

Looking at the factory service manual, it tells you to replace the entire arm if the joint is bad. I know that some vehicles have the ball joints 'tabbed' or spiked to prevent removal. Is this the case with the X?

Like I said, the truck is stock so I have no intentions of upgrading, unless it looks to be more cost effective than going with OEM arms. Upper's aren't incredibly bad @ $134 through Courtesy, but lowers are $280 and change a piece! If I can get away with replacing just the ball joints, I'll be happy.

Thanks for any input from you guys that have done this. I really just need to hear either Yes, you can press them out, or No they can't be replaced separately from the arm, so I can start budgeting to redo the front suspension this summer.

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post #2 of 5 Old 01-06-2012, 09:03 PM
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There is a DIY for the LBJ on the Gen 1 trucks and I have replaced mine so the lower can be done. I have aftermarket UCA's and I don't even recall what the uppers looked like, sorry. Someone will be along to give some advice on the upper ball joints.

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post #3 of 5 Old 01-06-2012, 10:39 PM
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2002 Xterra
I replaced all my ball joints. Without taking the A-Arms off. You have to get a little creative and unless you are a fairly strong dude, you may not be able to get the uppers off.

AFter I did my ball joints I then did my timing belt. Which was a total walk in the park ice cream and rainbows, kitty cats, pretty birds singing.

If I had to do it again I would, but I'd rather do 2 timing belts compared to one set of ball joints haha

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post #4 of 5 Old 01-07-2012, 08:33 AM
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post #5 of 5 Old 01-07-2012, 10:14 AM
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2002 Xterra

just follow Stu's link above..dead on...Im not a mechanic, but I did my lowers in one afternoon..I have a 2wd 02 Xterra and dont have road salt issues, etc.

be sure to have jackstands and a spare floorjack would be handy, but not needed. I also rented a ball joint press, but didnt need it either. The top of the LBJ has a 1 and 7/8" nut which has tabs notched over on it. Just take a cold chisel and knock them back..and you can undo the nut and whack out the joint...clean it up really good.

I couldnt get my uppers off..the ball joint press I had rented wasnt long enough, so I just left them for now...
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