Continental 2000-2002

Removal & Installation

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Drag (Center) Link





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Fig. Remove the cotter pins and nuts that attach the inner tie rod ends to the center link

  1. Raise and safely support the vehicle.
  2.  
  3. Remove the cotter pins and nuts that attach the inner tie rod ends to the center link. Discard the cotter pins.
  4.  
  5. Disconnect the inner tie rod ends from the center link using removal tool 3290-D or equivalent.
  6.  
  7. Remove the cotter pin and nut that retains the pitman arm to the center link. Disconnect the pitman arm from the center link using removal tool 3290-D or equivalent.
  8.  
  9. Remove the cotter pin and nut retaining the idler arm to the center link and remove the center link. Discard the cotter pin.
  10.  

To install:

  1. Position the center link to the pitman arm and idler arm and loosely install the nuts. Place the idler arm and front wheels in the straight-ahead position to maintain steering wheel alignment and prevent bushing damage. Tighten the nuts to 43-47 ft. lbs. (59-63 Nm) and install new cotter pins.
  2.  


NOTE
If, after the nut has been torqued, the nut castellations and stud hole do not align for cotter pin installation, tighten the nut further until the cotter pin can be installed. Never back off the nut.

  1. Install the tie rode ends on the center link and tighten the nuts to 43-47 ft. lbs. (59-63 Nm). Install new cotter pins.
  2.  
  3. Lower the vehicle.
  4.  
  5. Check the toe and adjust, if necessary.
  6.  

Idler Arm





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Fig. Remove the bolts and nuts holding the idler arm to the frame

  1. Raise and safely support the vehicle.
  2.  
  3. Remove the cotter pin, nut, and washer retaining the center link to the idler arm. Discard the cotter pin.
  4.  
  5. Remove the center link from the idler arm.
  6.  
  7. Remove the bolts and nuts holding the idler arm to the frame and remove the idler arm.
  8.  

To install:

  1. Install the idler arm to the frame with the bolts and nuts. Tighten to 85-97 ft. lbs. (115-132 Nm).
  2.  
  3. Place the idler arm and front wheels in the straight-ahead position to maintain steering wheel alignment and prevent bushing damage.
  4.  
  5. Install the center link nut and washer and tighten to 43-47 ft. lbs. (59-63 Nm). Install a new cotter pin.
  6.  


NOTE
If, after the nut has been torqued, the nut castellations and stud hole do not align for cotter pin installation, tighten the nut further until the cotter pin can be installed. Never back off the nut.

  1. Lower the vehicle.
  2.  

Pitman Arm





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Fig. Remove and discard the cotter pin from the castellated nut that attaches the center link to the pitman arm



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Fig. Remove the castellated nut



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Fig. A large deepwell socket, typically 1 5/16 in., is needed to remove the pitman arm retaining nut



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Fig. Remove the pitman arm retaining nut and lockwasher



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Fig. Install a suitable pitman arm puller onto the pitman arm



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Fig. Carefully tighten the puller's forcing screw until the pitman arm breaks loose



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Fig. Remove the pitman arm from the steering gear sector shaft

  1. Position the front wheels in the straight-ahead position.
  2.  
  3. Raise and safely support the vehicle.
  4.  
  5. Remove and discard the cotter pin from the castellated nut that attaches the center link to the pitman arm. Remove the castellated nut.
  6.  
  7. Disconnect the center link from the pitman arm using removal tool 3290-D or equivalent.
  8.  
  9. Remove the pitman arm retaining nut and lockwasher
  10.  
  11. Make sure the front wheel are in the straight-ahead position. Remove the pitman arm from the steering gear sector shaft using pitman arm puller T64P-3590-F or equivalent.
  12.  

To install:

  1. With the front wheels in the straight-ahead position, place the pitman arm, pointing it rearward, on the sector shaft. Align the blind tooth on the pitman arm with the blind tooth on the steering gear sector shaft.
  2.  
  3. Install the nut and lockwasher and tighten to 233-250 ft. lbs. (316-338 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Install the center link on the pitman arm and install the castellated nut. Tighten the nut to 43-47 ft. lbs. (59-63 Nm) and install a new cotter pin.
  6.  


NOTE
If, after the nut has been torqued, the nut castellations and stud hole do not align for cotter pin installation, tighten the nut further until the cotter pin can be installed. Never back off the nut.

  1. Lower the vehicle.
  2.  

Tie Rod Ends



  1. Raise and support the vehicle safely.
  2.  
  3. Remove the cotter pin and nut from the tie rod end ball stud.
  4.  
  5. Loosen the tie rod adjusting sleeve clamp bolts and remove the rod end from the spindle arm or center link, using removal tool 3290-D or equivalent.
  6.  
  7. Remove the tie rod end from the sleeve, counting the exact number of turns required doing so. Discard all parts removed from the sleeve.
  8.  

To install:

  1. Install the new tie rod end into the sleeve, using the exact number of turns it took to remove the old one. Install the tie rod end ball stud into the spindle arm or center link.
  2.  
  3. Install the stud nut. Tighten to 43-47 ft. lbs. (59-63 Nm) and install a new cotter pin.
  4.  


NOTE
If, after the nut has been torqued, the nut castellations and stud hole do not align for cotter pin installation, tighten the nut further until the cotter pin can be installed. Never back off the nut.

  1. Check the toe and adjust if necessary. Loosen the clamps from the sleeve and oil the sleeve, clamps, bolts, and nuts. Position the adjusting sleeve clamps as shown in the figure, then tighten the clamp nuts to 20-22 ft. lbs. (27-29 Nm).
  2.  



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Fig. Remove the tie rod end-to-steering knuckle retaining nut



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Fig. A special removal tool like this one from Lisle® can be used to remove the tie rod end from the knuckle. Just install the tool on the tie rod end and tighten the forcing screw to . . .



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Fig. . . . remove the tie rod end from the knuckle



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Fig. Spraying a quality rust penetrant onto the tie rod adjusting sleeve is a good idea before attempting to remove it



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Fig. Loosen the adjusting sleeve bolt



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Fig. Mark the tie rod end before removal to ensure to reinstall it as close as possible to the previous alignment position



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Fig. Grasp the tie rod end with a pair of pliers or other suitable tool and slowly turn it out of the adjusting sleeve to remove it

 
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