[HELP - 2001 Ford Focus] Inner/Outer tie rod replacement - Focus Fanatics
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Old 11-25-2011, 09:08 PM   #1
Oblivion
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Question [HELP - 2001 Ford Focus] Inner/Outer tie rod replacement

Hello.

I am trying to replace the driver-side: inner tie rod boot, inner tie rod, and outer tie rod, on a 2001 Ford Focus ZX3.
I have successfully removed the outer tie rod, and the inner tie rod boot. Those weren't of much any difficulty.

The problem:
The ball-and-socket joint has no flat surfaces, no "hex" to grab, or anything else. It is a smooth sphere. I am under the impression it is the ORIGINAL 10 year old part. No "special removal tool" will grab onto it (EG: Crow foot wrench).

How am I supposed to go about removing it (inner tie rod) from the steering rack without damaging anything? I have seen suggestions from scouring the internet. Some suggest you use a pipe wrench, others, a pair of channel-lock pliers. There is a very limited amount of room, though. Making everything very difficult!

Here are three images of how it looks currently (used a spotlight):
- 2001 Ford Focus ZX3 - DRIVER SIDE

Thank you to anyone who can help, in advance. It's heavily appreciated. :)


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Old 11-26-2011, 12:01 AM   #2
sailor
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This is why when the inners go bad, the usual fix is a rebuilt rack....

There WAS a thread showing the process a couple years ago, try a search to see if you come up with anything in the 'Tires, Wheels, Brakes" section...

And yeah, pipe wrench was that poster's answer....

Make sure the rack itself is good, so you don't waste $ and effort on the ends & find you need a rack anyways....

Luck!
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Old 01-27-2012, 08:46 PM   #3
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Hello.

First of all: I am sorry for the belated reply. I have been very busy!
Second of all: Thank you VERY much for the assistance. I fixed it shortly the day after.

I had gone to AutoZone and bought a 14" pipe wrench and it worked like a charm.

Thanks, again! :)
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Old 01-27-2012, 11:15 PM   #4
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Pipe wrench is how I did mine as well! No need to replace the rack...thats just more work!
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Old 01-28-2012, 07:24 PM   #5
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I used a pipe wrench also - but was replacing control arms too so that gave me more room - not much, but enough. The hardest part if, I recall correctly, was installing the new inner tie rod. Flipping the pipe wrench over to get it to bite for the installation was a tighter fit.

As sailor mentioned - previous threads have suggestions. One I read at the time was where someone 'ground' flat spots on the sphere surface to get an opened ended wrench to work.
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