Tie rods on your Buick transmit the steering motion from the steering rack to the wheels. They should be replaced when you feel looseness in the steering wheel. If you feel that any part of the steering system isn't working as it should, then stop driving the vehicle, inspect it and replace what is needed. Fortunately, replacing the tie rod ends on your Buick is simple, cheap and quick.
Things You'll Need
- Eye protection
- Jack stands
- Lug nut wrench
- Needle nose pliers
- Tie rod separator
- Tie rod puller
- New tie rods
Jack the Buick up and place it securely on jack stands.
Remove the wheels with a lug nut wrench that can be found in the trunk.
Remove the cotter pin from the tie rod end with needle nose pliers.
Remove the nut from the tie rod end with a ratchet.
Pull the tie rod off of the steering knuckle with a tie rod separator. Simply place the tie rod separator between the tie rod and the steering knuckle and hammer the end of the tie rod puller until the tie rod pops out.
Use white-out to mark where the tie rod end meets the inner tie rod. Doing this will reference how far to thread in the new tie rod and will ensure that your alignment won't be too far off.
Loosen the old tie rod with a 19 mm wrench and unscrew the tie rod from the inner tie rod.
Thread in the new tie rod up to the white mark that you made earlier and tighten the nut with a wrench.
Place the tie rod through the steering knuckle, tighten the nut, place the cotter pin through it and secure it.
Replace the wheels and lower the Buick. Take the car to get it aligned because the alignment will be slightly off due to your work. An alignment will ensure that your tires don't wear prematurely.
Tips & Warnings
- Removing the outer tie rod from the inner tie rod may be difficult because the nut may be rusted on. To free the nut, use either an oxy-acetylene torch or MAPP gas that you can purchase from your local hardware store, heat the nut until it is red hot then remove it.
- Wear safety glasses when working on your Buick.
- "Automotive Diagnosis, Service and Repair;" Stockel; 2006
- Photo Credit David McNew/Getty Images News/Getty Images
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