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Discussion Starter #1
I went in for an oil change on a 97 Nissan Altima with 130K, and the dealer said all 4 tie rods are loose. said it would cost $400 plus an alignment to get em replaced. I had trouble believing all 4 are loose at the same time. I called some other places and they said that the outer tie rods are available but the inner ones come as part of some assembly. Any know what thats about?

My question is, is this something easy enough to do by myself, or should i get it done by a shop. I dont really have tools either though. Also, is the dealer price too high? Anyone know where I could find exploded diagrams on the internet?

Thanks
 

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2.0T, 2.3T, and 2.4 N/A
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$400? damn, that's a rip off...

Editl; sorry to answer your question, go to your local suspension place (where they do shocks and springs, and shocks)... they would charge way less if you don't have the time or tools to DIY
 

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Discussion Starter #4
BLACK SE said:
www.everythingnissan.com and pm socmonki, he replaced his tie rods. How did they get loose? Did you go over something?????
I didn't do anything specific to make them loose, the roads here aren't that great, but nothing i can think of besides that. Thats why i was surprised when he said all 4 were loose.
 

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I keep em comin back.....
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to have one of them loose is understandable, but all four??? How does the steering feel? Does a wheel feel sort of "loose" when you drive, have a lot of uneeded torque steer?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
BLACK SE said:
to have one of them loose is understandable, but all four??? How does the steering feel? Does a wheel feel sort of "loose" when you drive, have a lot of uneeded torque steer?
the car seems mostly fine while driving, its veering slightly left but not much. only thing else is there is a small vibrating feeling coming from the two front wheels. only happens while cruising and at high speeds (not applying accelerator) and a little bit more when braking at high speeds. other than that, cant see much else of a difference.
 

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I keep em comin back.....
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Doesn't really sound like a tie rod problem, that mech may have been taking you for a ride. My suggestion to you is to get the wheels balanced, and if you got rims purchase some hub centric rings, and get an alignment while you are at it. If it continues, check your wheel bearings
 

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missing El Polo Loco...
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let's see.....

outer tie rod runs for 40 a piece
inner tie rod runs for 40 a piece

it's easy enough to DIY... I've replaced mine as well, and then left the allignment to the allignment ppl...

what i don't get is... how come yours were blown at such an early age...when mine needed replacement at 200k+ miles with rough roads as well..plus track abuse.

anyways, before proceeding to buying new parts, do yourself a favor and test the inner/outer tie rods/ends yourself, see if they're excessively loose..

basically pop the rod ends off the steering knuckle and see how loose the ball joint is, and then the tug/pull test for the ball/socket style joint on the inner tie rod.

a pair of needle nose pliers, some socket and rachet, a 5lbs hammer, an adjustable 12" wrench, a 14 or 17mm wrench, and a torque wrench... that's about all the tools needed. and some Zip-ties to secure the boots back to the rack and rod if they're still usable.

if working on driver side, crank steering wheel all the way to the right, and vice versa.
 

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Stringz of Death
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listen to Ashura, he knows his shit ;)

yes, you can replace them much easier by yourself and cheaper...and my car is a 99 and both my inner rods were bad (the passenger side was literally flopping around, the driver side was just starting to go bad...dont ask me how!!!) i replace all inner and outer rods and ends...outer were about 25 a piece, inner about 40...so 130 or so for parts, rented some tools (all this stuff came from Napa, i got a friend that works there). i even have a write up on how to do the inner rods if you need it...or search for it here! :) its quite simple to do. i used hose clamps for the boots though, and zip ties will work as well. i had a friend help for the passenger side, to see how it was done, and he did almost all of it from under the car, i did the driver side and did it all from the side...:)

just jack the car up and play with the wheels (9 and 3 o'clock) and if you hear cluncking or feel play, the tie rods are bad. i dont know what causes them to go bad, but mine did early on. knock on wood, hopefully theyll be good for a while!
 

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missing El Polo Loco...
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the 25 one is the beck&arnley ones I presume.. the 40 I'm quoting were the NPC ones...supposedly better quality... anyhoo, the last 1 (NPC) I installed uses locknuts with nylon inserts instead of cotter pin/crown nut deal. works just as well...but may need impact wrench to drive in nylon part..

soc_monki said:
listen to Ashura, he knows his shit ;)
lol, if it smells like me, then it's probably mine...LOL
 

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Stringz of Death
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mine ends came with the nylon lock nut...?? maybe they both do! LOL but i didnt have to use the cotter pin deal.
either ones work, mine have held up fine...so im satisfied with the 25 buck ones ;)

just giving out another option, as always ;) and i think the 25 dollar ones are MasterRide or something like that...in any case, they work, thats all i ask of them :) and no impact wrench needed...they are tight, but thats a good thing! just need a long ratchet (ive got a 1/2 inch drive one with about a foot and a half long handle...great for stuff like that, and good to use with a cheater bar!)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks to all for your help! I am going to try and figure out if they actually need replacement this weekend, and if so, I'll try to do it myself.

Thanks!
 
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