by Mike Slaughter
Date Added: Monday 22 August, 2016
My dust boots on the OSF top upper ball joint and OS track rod end failed the MOT. Garage said new arm and end, £360. But why don’t YOU just replace the boots? Apart from splitting the joints (I’d buy a good screw pincher separator next time) it’s a simple task AS LONG AS YOU DO A BIT OF PREP.
Once you have prized the old boots off, plenty of grease and just press the new ones onto a step. They are a bit of an interference fit but its rubber and it’s greased, it will go together. Once fitted, it should stay in place no matter how much you waggle the joint.
Key to it is try to put the correct boot in the correct place! The rod end is bigger than the upper ball and the two boots were just in a bag. Anyway, a 30mm socket, clasp the socket and arm between both hands and squeeze. You can finish off with a G-clamp or similar but that may not be needed. No need to take the top arm off.
For the rod end you’ll need a 32mm DEEP socket a normal one may not go down enough because of the ball joint thread hitting the back of the socket. Fortunately I had a bit of tubing of exactly the correct size. Support the end on some blocks of wood and press down. I used two 4inch square fence post off cuts. No need to remove the rod end – no need to have the tracking re-aligned!
Don’t forget new split pins. Good luck. It’s all in the prep.