Solved - 2010 Creaking Lower Ball Joint | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Solved 2010 Creaking Lower Ball Joint

Prefix for threads that contain problems that have been resolved, and there is an answer within the thread.


Well-Known Member
November 24, 2019
Reaction score
City, State
Rockaway Beach NY
Year, Model & Trim Level
2010 Expr Ltd; 2016 XLT
With 120,000 miles, my 2010 lower ball joint started creaking. Ordered a new Motorcraft one from Rock Auto, $40 and made in Canada. Moog and the rest are now Chinese garbage.

The job took two hours in the driveway. There are enough videos on YouTube to make the job a snap. Have the right tools. A ball joint press and front end part separators. A 32mm socket for the 4WD spindle nut.

Since the knuckle is aluminium it's not good to pound on it. Put your separator on the stud, crank some pressure on it and tap the knuckle with a small hammer. The stud will pop right out.

Contrary to what everyone else says, you don't have to remove the rotor or the brake caliper or bracket. Don't remove the stabilizer link.

Just drop the tie rod end, and remove the nuts on the upper and lower ball joints. Remove the 32mm axle nut and hammer the shaft out of the wheel bearing. Then if you are strong as a bull, you can lift the knuckle, with rotor and caliper on it off the ball joint studs and hang it on a wire from the upper control arm without putting any tension on the brake hose or anti-lock brake cable.

The 2010 had self locking ("prevailing torque") nuts on the suspension parts without cotter pins. I used blue Loctite. Most are reusable though I should have checked the shop manual.

Have your jack under the lower control arm. The lower ball joint hammers right out after removing the snap ring. The new one presses right in. Just be careful to press it straight with some light oil on the bore. If it fights you, it's ****ed and binding. Try again.

That's it. Easiest ball joint I ever changed.