View Full Version : Lubing Outer Tie-Rod Joint/Upper Ball Joint

11-08-2004, 12:06 PM
Hello all. I thought a couple of more questions on the front suspension rebuild.

I'm adding new outer tie-rod joints. Do I just fill the rubber boot with grease?

I'm re-using the upper ball joints, but I'm installing new rubber boots on them. Should I fill the bottom of the boot with grease or just put grease in the joint through the zerk?


Rick O.
11-08-2004, 01:21 PM
The tie rod ends come lubed from the factory; no need to grease the boots. Ball joints should be lubed their Zerks.

11-08-2004, 01:30 PM
I was wondering if the tie rod ends were lubed, because these wouldn't budge when I took them out of the box and tried to move them by hand. They came with a plastic brace on the exterior to hold them at a 90 degree angle in the box. I took the brace off and couldn't move the joint.

Mark Jones
11-08-2004, 05:53 PM
Gee, you got me thinkning Cain; I just installed new tie rod ends on my Spitfire and they were extremely stiff as well.

I've heard of people filling a syring with grease; poking the needle through the rubber boot and greasing them that way. Gives new meaning to shooting up. I have also heard of people drilling a hole through the top of a sealed tie rod end and installing a zerk; you'd have to very careful to keep metal filings out though.

11-15-2004, 08:51 AM
Hi Cain,

I just saw your post and hope you've got the job done, but, if not, here's a little info. Most tie rod end replacements now offered are the sealed type, pre-greased at the factory and no attention needed or possible (although it's possible to use a syringe, as suggested, to add grease, or some have modified to add a grease zerk but that's tricky, keeping metal chips from the drilling and tapping out of the ball). The thought on this is just to replace them when worn, rather than try to lube them regularly. It's still possible to find the ends with zerks that require grease, but I don't know of a reliable source for LBCs.

As to the top ball joint, why aren't you replacing it? It takes a pretty good beating and chances are if the tie rod ends need replacement, so too does the upper ball joint. I try to replace all wear & tear parts at the same time, since I don't enjoy taking the front suspension apart any more often than necessary. If you do just replace the boot, it's your call whether to pack the boot with some grease or just fill it once it's installed. The latter method will probably make reassembly less messy. If you do reuse the upper ball joint, while it's apart it might be a good idea to push some fresh grease through the ball to purge any dirt that's found a way in and get all the old grease out. Good luck with the project!

11-15-2004, 09:51 AM
FYI, the upper ball joints and the tie-rod-ends that I ordered from TRF all had zerks in them.