Suspension Gurus I Need Help

crzyhrse99

Active Member
Mar 30, 2005
259
3
28
43
Kansas
My wife has been dd the stang for a while now and I drive it every couple weeks when Im home from work. I took it out this evening and it was a handfull at highway speed, I couldnt keep it straight in the road it just kept dipping to the left and right. I stopped checked all the lugs to see if maybe it was a loose wheel but all was good there.

I have my 16" pony winter wheels on and I remember that they seemed to "track" quite a bit after I put them on in Dec., but thats nothing like it is now its impossible to keep it in a straight line. I put it on the ramps when I got home and looked everything over/checked for any loose bolts but I dont really know much about suspension or what to look for.

About a month ago I had a ball joint making a lot of noise so I replaced both with the steeda ball joints, could that be related? Could it be an alignment issue, I would think it would either pull left or right but its jolting both ways on me?

Sorry for the long post but I dont know where to even start.
 
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Jun 12, 2009
340
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florida
I would think the ball joints could screw up the alignment. how does it ride? does going over bumps feel harder/jerkier than it used to? could be the struts have gone bad. how many miles on the car?
a good shop should be able to tell you if your struts are bad or not. I would definently look into getting it aligned, but if the struts are bad, replace them first & then get the alignment. oh yeah, has the car been lowered?
 

bhuff30

Founding Member
Dec 11, 2001
6,035
35
129
Olathe KS
You will need to put the front wheels in the air and wiggle things around (or have a shop check it). It is pretty common from outer tie rods to go bad. That will let the steering wander. I've also had a bad hub (integrated wheel bearings) do the the same thing. You'll just have to physically check for play. it will be apparent.

I wouldn't think the ball joints are the cause. Ball joints would allow the top and bottom of the wheel to wiggle. You are looking for something that will allow the wheel to wiggle left and right, so outer tie rods, inner tie rods or the hub is most likely.
 

crzyhrse99

Active Member
Mar 30, 2005
259
3
28
43
Kansas
Thx for the replys, I was thinking tie rods. I guess ill take it in to the stealership and have them put it on the lift and check things over. Car has 140K on it, sportlines, tokico hps, steeda x2 ball joints btw.
 
Jun 12, 2009
340
0
17
florida
Thx for the replys, I was thinking tie rods. I guess ill take it in to the stealership and have them put it on the lift and check things over. Car has 140K on it, sportlines, tokico hps, steeda x2 ball joints btw.
nice suspension mods! I thought I mentioned tie rods too but I looked at my post again & noticed I didn't. so yeah, +1 on the tie rods. that was actually the first thing that came to mind then the other thoughts came flooding in.....I must be getting old:shrug::D
 

joshjwc9

Active Member
Jun 12, 2006
1,095
17
39
Palm Harbor, FL
Replace the tie rods. If you dont have a bumpsteer kit I would suggest a set since you need tie rods anyways. Then get a alignment. You will notice a difference iMO after getting the bumpsteer and alignment done.
 

jeremy canter

Member
Dec 2, 2008
402
0
17
Orange County , NY
if you put x2's on your car you'll have to get it re-alined it will be way off and will dart like your talkin about >I just did the x2 in my cobra and the car looks like it has a broken rod because the wheels are so far out of alinement
 

crzyhrse99

Active Member
Mar 30, 2005
259
3
28
43
Kansas
My next question is if its a tie rod, is this something that if you replace it on 1 side do you need to replace on the other as well? When checking for worn tie rods are you just checking for excessive movement from left to right like bhuff said, and how can you tell if its an inner or outer tie rod? I will be getting an alignment, I just want to make sure I dont have to replace any other parts first.

Sorry for all the questions but I need you guys to school me so I can teach the wifey because ill be out of town when it gets taken in to be checked over and I dont want them to try to hose her.
 

bhuff30

Founding Member
Dec 11, 2001
6,035
35
129
Olathe KS
I normally visually check to see if the problem is the inner or outer tie rod. You can wiggle the wheel left and right and just look to see what moves along with the wheel and what doesn't. It isn't common for inner tie rods to go bad, because they are sealed inside the steering rack. Most likely, it is an outer tie rod, because those are open to the elements... but it could also be a hub (the integrated wheel bearing unit).

I've always replaced outer tie rods in pairs. If one is bad, then it makes sense that the other is nearly worn out too, right? Also, you will need an alignment after replacing the tie rods, so you might as well replace both at once, so you don't have to pay for an alignment twice.
 
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