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1999 Honda CR-V EX 208,xxx miles
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12 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I recently replaced both outer tie rod ends due to excessive play. After doing that I took it to a wheel alignment shop for adjustment. The technician inspected the car and reported that the front ball joints were too loose to do an alignment--ball joints would have to be replaced before alignment.

So I took my car home and found extreme side-to-side looseness in the left upper ball joint. The upper control arm/ball joint assembly is relatively easy to replace so I replaced it with the Moog part. The right upper control arm/ball joint assembly had already been replaced with the Moog part about 50,000 miles ago.

I checked the lower ball joints by first lifting each lower control arm with a jack under it. I then inserted a pry bar between the lower control arm and steering knuckle. In the right lower ball joint I saw no perceptible movement. In the left lower ball joint I saw a very small vertical movement (1/32"-1/16" ? I have no dial indicator).

I searched the FSM (section 2) for a spec on allowable lower ball joint vertical play but cannot find any such spec.

The closest such thing I found was in the FSM in the diagram on p.18-9 where an arrow points to the lower ball joint and has the text "Inspect for faulty movement and wear." Not real helpful.

Does anyone know where I could find such a specification?

Thanks.
 

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Premium Member
2005 and 2006 EX AWD
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448 Posts
on the gen1 design I have found putting a pry bar between the spring and the upper control arm pulling up will check lower ball joint play and above the control arm pulling down will show the play in the upper ball joint really any play it should be replaced I looked through the service manual and couldnt find and play specs but any play and I try to sell them,also when I check them this way both front wheels off the ground no load on anything ,I know they say jack under the lower but I found this way much easier and works every time so your only prying on the upper control arm up shows the lower and down shows the upper play wheel on or off
 

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Registered
1999 Honda CR-V EX 208,xxx miles
Joined
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12 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Hey, thanks for the tip. I will try that next weekend (when temps here should be above freezing again). That will let me double-check my initial assessment. I don't like working the pry bar between the knuckle and lower control arm for fear of pinching the rubber boot there surrounding the ball joint if I misjudge.
 
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