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3 sets of ball joints by 58k?

Discussion in 'Ford Trucks' started by Mark13, Feb 25, 2009.

  1. Mark13

    Mark13 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,719

    A friend of mine has an 02 f350, 7.3/auto, reg cab, long bed. Has f550 front leaves and a block in the rear and 295 tires and an 8ft unimount pro on it. The truck currently has aroung 58k on it and at about 56k we did the 3rd set of ball joints on it. The truck never was really plowed with, just a few driveways but has almost always has 285-305 sized tires on it. Is something wacky with the truck or are the tires to blame? I've talked to a few others who are getting 100k+ out of a set of ball joints on any given 7.3 or 6.0 ford.

    It just's concern since I'm looking at trucks and have found a few nice fords but I don't want to run 285 or 305 tires and a 900lb plow and make a sport out of replacing ball joints once a year.

    Edit, not sure if it makes a difference but I'm looking at the 00-03 7.3s and 97 f350 7.3s
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2009
  2. FordFisherman

    FordFisherman PlowSite.com Addict
    from 06611
    Messages: 1,593

    Are the hub assemblies worn? Not the lockouts but the actual hubs: they don't hold up with the bigger tires. My 04 350 gas is on its second set of ball joints but Im at 86K, and I hear the rumble again on rough pavement. If you search for powerstroke repair in the Ford truck forum there is a whole video on how to r/r the hub assemblies.
  3. Mark13

    Mark13 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,719

    We checked his hub assemblies, they seemed fine.
  4. Brant'sLawnCare

    Brant'sLawnCare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,748

    I think Ford ball joints go out usually about every 60,000 miles. Something has to be wrong with the truck. Or maybe the springs are too hard on it.
  5. Ggg6

    Ggg6 Senior Member
    from IL
    Messages: 521

    Mark I have a 00 F350 PSD x-code fronts with a Unimount 8.5', tires are 255/85. I get about two years+ on a set of ball joints. Make certain they are a good brand like Moog, and grease them a lot. Also don't over tighten them when you install them. You will have to look up the specs but it is something like the bottom joint is tightened to 150 ft.lb. and then the upper is tightened till you have about 15-20 lbs of pull to turn it without the tie rod connected.
  6. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,417

    Maybe you want to have a repair shop take a look, that seems rather excessive.

    For my old style Furds, I had a set go at 19K, 59K, 61K and 78K. All different trucks. The '00 that went 78K just had them done again, somewhere around 115K.

    My new style I'm going on 58K and 38K, all originals.

    MOWBIZZ Senior Member
    Messages: 500

    I have an 04 PSD I bought used (with 5200 miles on it!) and the ball joints were replaced at 23k both uppers and lowers...thankfully, I bought an extended warranty and it only cost me $100. Then a couple thousand miles later, some other front end parts (can't recall what they're called) but they're the long rods with bushings that were out of spec and making noise over small bumps in the road...another $100 under warranty...
    I'm glad I bought the warranty...
  8. Sweetpete

    Sweetpete Senior Member
    Messages: 325

    Hey Mark:

    I had my joints go at about 38k and I have the lighter engine (V8). So, I replaced them with Moog. From what I've read and heard from other Ford guys, these are pretty much the best ball joints on the market and they're greasable.

    The Ford factory ball joints are junk.

    DGODGR Senior Member
    from s/w co
    Messages: 639

    Maybe I should have mine checked out. My truck (2000 F350 PSD 4x4) has a little over 200,000 miles on the original ball joints. Lately I have noticed a slight "clunk" when applying the barkes. It doesn't happen all the time but often enough. It seems to occur when the weight shifts to the front, as it drops a bit with the weight transfer. I am getting about 60,000 miles on a set of tires. What do you need to do to check the ball joints?
  10. Mark13

    Mark13 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,719

    The first 2 sets were done at ford, this last set we did at the highschool. So we had the autoshop teacher there who quit being a mechanic at a dealer to teach at the school. So he was there for help/info and my friend is very mechanical and he knew what to expect and what was involved in doing them.
  11. EaTmYtAiLpIpEs

    EaTmYtAiLpIpEs 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,607

    my 03 has 146k and it is on its second set of ball joints I believe. I changed them back in october or november.
  12. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,417

    Well the first 2 sets are easily explained. And nothing against any mechs that work at dealers, but I will never let a dealer do any non-warranty work on any of my vehicles again. Had enough bad experiences.
  13. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,780

    Hi Mark13. No doubt the F550 leaves and the bigger tires are not helping. The front suspension is all out of wack!

    ADMSWELDING Senior Member
    Messages: 397

    grease grease and more grease

    If you don,t grease you will be replacing them alot.
  15. EaTmYtAiLpIpEs

    EaTmYtAiLpIpEs 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,607

    the balljoints that I took off the truck didnt have nay grease fittings on them. the new moog's I put in do.