Nissan Stanza/200SX/240SX 1982-1992 Repair Guide

Lower Ball Joints

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INSPECTION



Dial Indicator Method

See Figure 1



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Fig. Fig. 1: Measuring ball joint play with a dial indicator

  1. Raise and support the vehicle safely.
  2.  
  3. Clamp a dial indicator to the transverse link and place the tip of the dial on the lower edge of the brake caliper.
  4.  
  5. Zero the indicator.
  6.  
  7. Make sure the front wheels are straight ahead and the brake pedal is fully depressed.
  8.  
  9. Insert a long prybar between the transverse link and the inner rim of the wheel.
  10.  
  11. Push down and release the prybar and observe the reading (deflection) on the dial indicator. Take several readings and use the maximum dial indicator deflection as the ball joint vertical end-play. Make sure to 0 the indicator after each reading. If the reading is not within specifications, replace the transverse link or the ball joint. Ball joint vertical end-play specifications are as follows:

    200SX and 240SX- 0 in. (0mm)
     
    1982-89 Stanza - 0.0040.-039 in. (0.1-1.0mm)
     
    1990-92 Stanza - 0 in. (0mm)
     
    Stanza Wagon-0.098 in. (2.5mm) or less
     

  12.  

Visual Approximation Method

The lower ball joint should be replaced when play becomes excessive. An effective way to visually approximate ball joint vertical end-play without the use of a dial indicator is to perform the following:

  1. Raise and safely support the vehicle until the wheel is clear of the ground. Do not place the jack under the ball joint; it must be unloaded.
  2.  
  3. Place a long prybar under the tire and move the wheel up and down. Keep one hand on top of the tire while doing this.
  4.  
  5. If 1 / 4 in. (6mm) or more of play exists at the top of the tire, the ball joint should be replaced. Be sure the wheel bearings are properly adjusted before making this measurement. A double check can be made; while the tire is being moved up and down, observe the ball joint. If play is seen, replace the ball joint.
  6.  

REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



Rear Wheel Drive

See Figures 2, 3 and 4

If there is a plugged hole in the bottom of the joint for installation of a grease fitting, install a fitting. The ball joint should be greased every 15,000 miles or 1 year.

The transverse link (lower control arm) must be removed and then the ball joint must be pressed out.

  1. Raise and support the vehicle safely.
  2.  
  3. Remove the front wheels.
  4.  



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Fig. Fig. 2: Cross section of a ball joint - note the plug (remove the plug) at the bottom for a grease fitting - make sure the rubber boot is in good condition



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Fig. Fig. 3: Removal of lower ball joint assembly - 200SX



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Fig. Fig. 4: Separate ball joint from the knuckle arm with press - 200SX

  1. Remove the stabilizer bar and tension rod.
  2.  
  3. Remove the transverse link and knuckle arm.
  4.  
  5. Separate the knuckle arm from the ball joint with a suitable press.
  6.  
  7. Replace the transverse link/ball joint assembly.
  8.  
  9. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. Refer to the illustrations. Final tightening needs to be carried out under Unladen conditions with tires on ground. All fluid levels and fuel full and all components installed in the correct position.
  10.  

Front Wheel Drive

See Figure 5

  1. Raise and support the vehicle safely.
  2.  
  3. Remove the front wheel.
  4.  



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Fig. Fig. 5: Lower ball joint removal - Stanza

  1. Remove the wheel bearing lock-nut.
  2.  
  3. Separate the tie rod end ball joint from the steering knuckle with a ball joint remover, being careful not to damage the ball joint dust cover if the ball joint is to be used again.
  4.  
  5. Loosen, but do not remove the strut retaining upper nuts.
  6.  
  7. Remove the nut that attaches the ball joint to the transverse link.
  8.  
  9. Separate the halfshaft from the knuckle by lightly taping the end of the shaft.
  10.  
  11. Separate the ball joint from the knuckle using the proper tool.
  12.  
  13. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. Always replace the ball joint retaining bolts and cotter pins after each disassembly. Refer to the illustrations as guide for additional specifications.
  14.  

 
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