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Discussion Starter #1
Hope this isn’t a stupid question. I have a 2001 xj. Not normally one who is mechanically inclined but love these Jeep’s because they are fun to work on. Mine is totally stock. Enjoy taking it to the mountains for backpacking and not worrying about messing up a nice new car.
In checking out several of my tie rod end fittings and trying to grease, I realized that the pitman arm tie rod rubber boot was shot along with the left drivers side outer one. Read up on the differences between the tie rods, watched some YouTube vids and decided I could do the work.
New Tie rod end for pitman had no grease in it so after fitting it on at the same distance as old one and hand tightening the castle nut, I squirted grease in to fill boot.
Am I right that when I tighten the castle nut down, there are no specs as to how tight? Hand tighten as much as I can? Is there any concern regarding how much grease I’ve put in there? Will any access come out without splitting the rubber boot? Do some manufacturers of tie rod ends have some type of grease vents that allow for expulsion of excess grease and some don’t? Should I remove the zerk fitting and let some out?
Im proceeding with the replacements so any quick responses would be great! :)
 

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I don't have the factual info for you at the moment, but yes there are limits.
There is absolutely a torque spec for that castle nut. Check the FSM or Haines manual. Sometimes the box your new part comes in will supply instructions with a torque spec.
And too much grease will split the boot or unseat it, either way ruins the seal and is bad for you long-term. I haven't seen one myself with a "grease vent" but that doesn't mean they don't exist.

You don't really have to replace as long as the joint is still good and you keep it greased to keep the water/grime out. More frequent greasing than normal is obviously required.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the quick response! I tried googling for any specs and they are all over the place. Finding 35, 36 and even 45. Nether manufacturer’s tie rod ends come with specs ( Moog And ProForged). Sorry to be so clueless but “FSM” ? Will do some more research but may let some grease out, tighten castle nut and see if it needs anymore grease.
Anyone else happens to know, I’d appreciate the info. Searched forum without any luck.
 

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Factory Service Manual=FSM

Pulled from another site....
From the FSM:

DESCRIPTION TORQUE
Pitman Arm
Shaft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 251 N·m (185 ft. lbs.)
Drag Link
Ball Studs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74 N·m (55 ft. lbs.)
Clamp . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49 N·m (36 ft. lbs.)
Tie Rod Ends
Ball Studs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74 N·m (55 ft. lbs.)
Clamp . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 N·m (20 ft. lbs.)
Tie Rod
Ball Stud . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 N·m (35 ft. lbs.)
Steering Damper
Frame . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74 N·m (55 ft. lbs.)
Drag Link . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74 N·m (55 ft. lbs.)

It appears that there is confusion between the 35 and 55 values. I might personally split the difference but I am not necessarily recommending that you do what I do. The rest is up to you, sorry.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for that! I’ll recheck torque. I took off zerk fitting as I tightened down castle nut but not much came out so think I’m good.
now dealing with a new Moog brand outer tie rod end which isn’t fitting up into hole properly! I double checked when ordering part and sure this is the right tie rod. Left hand thread, outer, etc.. Old tie rod end seems to have a slightly tapered solid metal area after threaded part and old one slips right into opening. New Moog one will not slip in so threaded part doesn’t go through so castle nut can be screwed on! Arrrgggh! Call into Moog customer service. Closed for day. I think part was incorrectly turned. Thought they were a great brand. Everything in driveway on hold till I know. 🤬
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Operator issue, not Moog. 😬
Unscrewed tie rod end totally off tie rod and part fits up into hole fine. Realized angle of rod vs how new end had to go in was just enough off that part would not fit. Popped tie rod end off at midway point and fit new part in, screwed castlenut on, then replaced other midway tie rod end with castlenut. Hand tightened both and now can torque both down to above specs. The FSM specs actually show 55 ft. lbs for these castle nuts they call “ball studs” so will use that. I plan on putting some grease in before torquing and will put more in after torquing to fill up. Seems the reasonable way to go. fyi. I counted the number of turns it took to unscrew the old tie rod end and screwed on the new one the same amount of turns so should be close enough on length to make it to place for a front wheel alignment.
Thanks again xjsuperman!
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Learned something very important in replacing my outer left tie rod end on my xj that many people may miss or should be aware of.
The grease boot is very close to the rotor edge and if you over fill will make that boot rub against the rotor edge and will cut it open! The reason I was replacing this tie rod end was because I could see grease coming out of my old tie rod end exactly at the same spot!
On the Moog site I happen to see some guys pics of his leaking boot and a complaint where he was blaming the Moog tie rod end. So I looked carefully at this area when pumping grease in to my new tie rod end. Sure enough, boot was expanding and would have rubbed that rotor edge if I’d pumped anymore in. ( see attached pic) . I stopped and even let some of that extra grease out. I bet right side tie rod end is same way.
Any mechanic doing some normal maintenance on your jeep at grease fittings and not familiar with this issue, would simply pump away and unknowingly create this problem!
Maybe this has been mentioned and warned about elsewhere but decided to warn any stock xj owners in case not. Hope it helps.
229020
 
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