Chrysler Neon 1995-1999 Repair Guide

Lower Ball Joint

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INSPECTION



See Figure 1

The front suspension ball joints operate with no free-play. The ball joints are replaceable ONLY as an assembly. Do not attempt any type of repair on the ball joint assembly. The ball joint is a press fit into the lower control arm with the joint stud retained in the steering knuckle by the clamp bolt. To check the ball joint, with the weight of the vehicle resting on the road wheels, grasp the grease fitting and without using any tools, attempt to move the grease fitting. If the ball joint is worn the grease fitting will move easily. If movement is noted, replacement of the ball joint is recommended.



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Fig. Fig. 1: Wiggle the grease fitting with your fingers. If it moves, the ball joint should be replaced

REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



See Figures 2 and 3

  1. Raise and safely support the vehicle. Remove the wheel and tire assembly.
  2.  
  3. Remove the lower control arm from the vehicle, as outlined in this section.
  4.  
  5. Carefully pry the seal boot off the ball joint, using a suitable prytool.
  6.  



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Fig. Fig. 2: Use prytool to carefully remove the ball joint seal boot

  1. Using a suitable press remove the ball joint from the lower control arm.
  2.  

To install:
  1. Reinstall the ball joint into the lower control arm with the notch in the ball joint stud facing the front lower control arm bushing.
  2.  
  3. Using a suitable press, press the ball joint into the lower control arm.
  4.  
  5. Reinstall the ball joint boot seal using a suitable driver such as a large socket or suitable sized piece of pipe. Do not use a shop press as was used to install the ball joint as a press exerts too much force.
  6.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 3: Use a driver, such as a large socket to install the ball joint boot seal

  1. Reinstall the lower control arm, as outlined in this section.
  2.  
  3. Reinstall the wheels and lower the vehicle.
  4.  
  5. The toe should be checked and adjusted as necessary.
  6.  

 
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