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The Tie Rod

The Tie Rod

Tie Rod

A tie rod is a metal rod that is a part of a car’s suspension system. Tie rod ends are a common wear point on a car’s suspension system. They are equipped with a kingpin end and a ball end.

BALL

From ensuring steering stability and smooth handling to delivering a comfortable ride, the suspension system plays a key role in the performance of your vehicle. Made up of many parts, two important pieces of your car’s suspension system are ball joints and tie rods. Do you know the difference between these two parts? (Source: www.drivparts.com Both ball joints and tie rod ends are each a part of the front suspension and steering system of your car and are located between the front wheels. The steering system spans the entire length between the front wheels, connecting the two wheels together, while the suspension system is contained just inside each front wheel. Effectively, the steering system is a separate system from the suspension system, but the two systems work hand in hand in to steer your vehicle down the road. (Source:www.drivparts.com))

Ball joints are a part of the suspension system. Basically, ball joints provide a pivot point for each front wheel to pivot, or turn upon, as the steering system turns the front wheels left and right and the control arms move up and down. (Source: www.drivparts.com Ball joints and tie rod ends are not connected to each other but are both connected to a mechanism called a spindle. This spindle is connected to your front wheel. A ball joint is connected to the top and bottom of the spindle, while the tie rod end connects to the spindle and controls its pivot which allows vehicle to be steered. (Source:www.drivparts.com wEach of the control arms of your front suspension system, upper and lower, have a ball joint at the outermost end of the control at its closest point to the front wheel. In the case of strut-type suspension, there is only one lower ball joint affixed to the lower control arm at the same point. (Source:ww.drivparts.com)))

This ball and socket type configuration creates the ability for the wheels to turn left and right and move vertically with changes in the road surface while at the same time supporting the weight of the vehicle and providing a comfortable ride. (Source: www.drivparts.com)

Ball joints and tie rods have nothing to do with each other, yet everything to do with each other. As a part of the suspension system, the ball joint supports the weight of the vehicle and allows the steering to turn the car left or right and up and down. The ball joint and suspension system can perform that function independently of the steering system and tie rod ends. However, the tie rod needs the ball joint to support the weight of the vehicle and at the same time, allow the front wheels the ability to pivot left and right. (Source: www.drivparts.com)

Transfers steering force from steering wheel to running wheel and at the same time absorbs road bumps and shocks as well as vibration in order to maintain handling stability. Running wheel side of tie-rod end is constructed with ball joint to respond to road bumps (vertical shocks) and to wheel turns (horizontal movement). The other end has a thread for connecting rod or rack end. By turning the connecting rod or rack end toe-in is adjusted as one of wheel alignments. (Source: www.gmb.jp In order to realize these goals, GMB utilizes high-friction resistent resin(POM:ACETAL), special synthetic grease to minimize friction. Inside dust cover a mud-preventive grease is contained to maximize ball joint life. (Source:www.gmb.jp))

Ball stud has tapering shaft and male thread to mount and fasten on wheel section. (Source: www.gmb.jp Ball joint section contains ball stud. Plastic ball seat is inserted between ball stud and housing. Special synthetic grease is added to prevent friction. A plug or cap is inserted and then housing is caulked to prevent leakage. (Source:www.gmb.jp))

LEMFÖRDER tie rods for passenger cars, vans and light commercial vehicles ensure precise steering and safe handling. The forces introduced into the steering gear are transmitted via the inner axial joint through the tie rod to the outer ball joint, the tie rod end piece. A thread in the middle of the wheel allows for sensitive adjustment of both wheels. (Source: aftermarket.zf.com)

LEMFÖRDER tie rods for passenger cars, vans and light commercial vehicles ensure precise steering and safe handling. The forces introduced into the steering gear are transmitted via the inner axial joint through the tie rod to the outer ball joint, the tie rod end piece. A thread in the middle of the wheel allows for sensitive adjustment of both wheels. (Source: aftermarket.zf.com)

A tie rod is made of two components: the inner and outer tie rod ends. Both tie rod ends have ball joints. The inner tie rod end is greased and protected by the steering rack boot. The outer tie rod end is also filled with grease, but it's protected by a small rubber or plastic boot. The most common problem with either tie rod ends is when they wear out and get loose. Often this happens when a rubber boot cracks or breaks and the moisture penetrates inside the tie rod end causing corrosion. Outer tie rod ends fail more often. Problems with tie rod ends are more common in heavier cars and SUVs due to greater load. (Source: www.testingautos.com A tie rod is a part of the steering system. Some large SUVs, pickup trucks and older cars have a steering system with a recirculating ball mechanism. Modern cars come with rack-and-pinion steering. Tie rods in both systems have the same function: they connect the steering rack or linkage to the steering knuckles. (Source:www.testingautos.com))

www.testingautos.com)This might result in shaking in the front end that comes and goes at certain speeds. This problem is especially common in older SUVs and pickup trucks with a recirculating-ball steering system. A weak steering damper makes the problem worse. (Source:

SUSPENSION

The pros at your local Les Schwab can perform a free visual inspection of your steering and suspension components. All to help you decide if your vehicle needs an alignment or if your tie rods, or other steering and suspension components are worn. (Source: www.lesschwab.com)

Chassis: axle bearings, suspension strut mounts, control arm mounts (Source: aftermarket.zf.com The problem is that often, a loose tie rod end may not produce any symptoms. Many mechanics will tell you that when the vehicle comes for an oil change and a tie rod end (or some other part of the front end) is about to fall off, the owner might be very surprised to find this out. For this reason, the steering system, as well as brakes, suspension and other underneath components must be inspected at least once a year. The only way to properly inspect tie rods and other steering and suspension components is when the vehicle is raised on a lift. See how a loose outer tie rod looks like. (Source:www.testingautos.com))

 

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