How to Replace Ball Joints on the 1999 GMC Yukon

Written by teri stryker
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How to Replace Ball Joints on the 1999 GMC Yukon
Defective ball joints affect how a vehicle drives. (rusted joint image by studio vision 1 from Fotolia.com)

Ball joints are a pivotal part of the suspension system. Ball joints operate like the joint in a hip.It has a round--head part that swivels in a cuplike cavity. Normally four of these ball joints exist in the GMC Yukon's front suspension. Upper and lower ball joints exist on each front wheel. Eventually, the ball joints wear out and do not fit in right in the socket anymore.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • 4 way tire tool
  • Jack
  • Jackstands
  • C-clamp
  • Allen-head/Torx socket
  • Ratchet
  • Socket
  • Ball joint separator
  • Drill
  • Drill bit
  • Backup wrench

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Loosen the lug nuts on the front tire. Lift the front of the Yukon with a jack. Support the Yukon on jackstands. Apply the parking brake. Remove the wheel.

  2. 2

    Remove two-thirds of brake fluid from the master cylinder reservoir.

  3. 3

    Use a c-clamp to push the caliper piston into the bore. Remove the c-clamp.

  4. 4

    Remove the caliper bolts with an Allen-head or Torx socket. Lift the caliper off the disc. Remove the outer brake pad.

  5. 5

    Pull the inner brake pad out of the caliper. Hang the caliper out of the way with a piece of wire.

  1. 1

    Remove the cottar key from the ball joint. Loosen the nut two turns with a ratchet and socket.

  2. 2

    Place a jackstand under the lower control arm. Remove the ball joint from the steering knuckle using a ball joint separator.

  3. 3

    Drill completely through the upper ball joint rivets with a drill and drill bit. Remove the ball joint. Clean the control arm.

  4. 4

    Install the new upper ball joint against the mating surface of the control arm. Tighten the nuts and bolts with a ratchet and socket.

  5. 5

    Connect the ball joint to the steering knuckle. Tighten the nuts to the specified torque. Install the cottar key.

  6. 6

    Install the grease fittings and lubricate the ball joint. Install the brake pads and caliper.

    Install the wheels. Lower the vehicle.

Tips and warnings

  • For lower ball joint replacement take the vehicle to a mechanic's shop.

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