Tire wiggles side-to-side. Ball joints or tie rod ends? - Diesel Forum - TheDieselStop.com
1999-2007 General Questions General questions related to 1999-2007 Super Duty trucks. If it doesn't fit the other categories, post it here. Gas engine discussion that pertains to all models is allowed. Specific gas engine questions should use the Gas Engines forum.

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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-30-2009, 06:25 AM Thread Starter
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Tire wiggles side-to-side. Ball joints or tie rod ends?

Hi Everyone,

I am trying to track down a front-end problem on my '03 6.0L FX4 with 155k on the clock. My problem is a "scrunching" noise during suspension compression and a slight pop when I turn.

I jacked the front-end up to check for tire or suspension play, thinking I have bad ball joints. There is no movement if I put a pry bar under the tire and push upward, nor does the tire move if I wiggle it from top and bottom. However, I have a fair amount of play if grab it on the sides and wiggle left to right/side-to-side.

I can't find much when I search, probably because I'm not searching the right keywords. Is a left-to-right/side-to-side wiggle bad tie rods or bad ball joints? Thanks in advance for the input!!

2006 Ford F-250 FX4 CCSB
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-30-2009, 10:26 AM
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The best way I found to find a loose joint was have somebody get in the truck and turn the wheel side to side why I look under the front. Most of the time you will be able to see whats causing the slop.

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-30-2009, 10:37 AM
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a side to side wiggle in most cases is a tie rod......

When looking for ball joints I jack the front of my truck up and grab the bottom of the tire and pull back and forth....no play=good ball joints
Then i grab the sides of the tire (steering locked) and wiggle side to side and if there is a considerable amount of play I'll wiggle it again and look at the tie rod ends

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