1996 Intrepid Front Steering/Suspension

Discussion in 'General Motoring' started by Bob Shuman, Sep 29, 2003.

  1. Bob Shuman

    Bob Shuman Guest

    I have a '96 Eagle Vision TSI (LH same as Intrepid) with 57K miles that
    needs some front end work. Can someone who has done these jobs let me know:

    How difficult is it to replace the inner tie rod bushings? What is involved
    and roughly how much time?

    How difficult to replace a front wheel bearing?

    Are the above common points of failure on the 1st generation LH body style?
    I believe the tie rod bushings are indeed bad given the high amount of
    torque steer that I experience upon acceleration and sloppy steering. But, I
    am surprised that the wheel bearing is bad since I have not heard much about
    this defect in this newsgroup for this type of vehicle.

    Thanks in advance.

    Bob Shuman, Sep 29, 2003
  2. Bob Shuman

    Steve Guest

    its an easy job, IF you buy the "two piece" style replacement bushings.
    Also, make extra room for yourself by removing the windshield wiper
    assembly (the whole thing comes out as a unit) and the air intake
    plumbing (if you have a 3.5L). You can have a helper swing the steering
    wheel side-to-side while you look at the inner tie rod area and visibly
    see the play if the bushings are bad.
    Well, my wife's 93 has 207,000 miles on the original wheel bearings, so
    I can't tell you.
    The inner tie-rod bushings are, as are the big bushings that mount the
    steering rack to the chassis (in fact, you'd do well to check THOSE
    before you waste time on the inner tie rod ends!). So are stablilizer
    bar end-links, but those are a very easy bolt-in replacement. Wheel
    bearings are not a common problem, but that doesn't mean yours didn't
    fail early for some reason.
    Steve, Sep 29, 2003
  3. Bob Shuman

    Bill D Guest

    Hi Bob,

    I also have a '95 Eagle Vision and I tried to do the inner tie rod bushings
    myself but then I discovered that I had a failed steering rack. I therefore
    had the job completed at the repair shop. Look in www.dodgeintrepid.net for
    additional discussions about this common repair.


    Bill D
    Bill D, Sep 29, 2003
  4. Bob Shuman

    Bob Shuman Guest

    Steve and Bill,

    Thanks to you both for your thoughts. The sway bar bushings were done once
    before about 2-3 years back. I see that the replacement tie rod bushings
    come in both single and two piece designs. The labor to install is the same
    in the book and the two piece parts are about double the price ($33 vs $16).
    Why are the two piece superior?

    Bob Shuman, Sep 29, 2003
  5. Bob Shuman

    Bill Putney Guest

    My understanding is that the two piece bushing is easier to install.
    The single piece requires removal of the rack - that's what I remember
    reading. If this is incorrect, someone will no doubt correct me. If
    correct, they probably cost more because people will be willing to pay
    the extra for the part to save labor - not because they cost that much
    more to make.

    Bill Putney
    (to reply by e-mail, replace the last letter of the alphabet in my
    address with "x")
    Bill Putney, Sep 30, 2003
  6. Bob Shuman

    Bill Putney Guest

    The left front wheel bearing went out on my '99 Concorde (2nd gen LH -
    same chassis parts as 1st gen LH) - not a major failure - just started
    making vibration/noise which I am very sensitive to. Mine went out at
    about 67k miles IIRC. The process and degree of difficulty is identical
    to every other FWD front wheel bearing replacement I have ever done on
    my own vehicles - everything from a Subaru to a Cadillac - pretty
    standard designs with minor variations.

    Basically, unbolt and hang caliper, remove brake rotor, remove axle stub
    nut (maybe loosen with someone holding the brake before removing the
    caliper), remove hub-to-knuckle bolts (3), disengage lower control arm
    ball joint from knuckle (remove keeper bolt first, ball joint stud comes
    out easily because it's not even tapered), press axle out of bearing ID
    with a proper puller, pry/knock hub out of knuckle (if you're careful to
    coordinate the last two steps, you might even preclude having to
    separate ball joint from knuckle). Reverse procedure to install.

    Be careful not to damage CVJ boots. When putting ball joint stud keeper
    bolt back in, be careful to vertically line the groove on the stud with
    the bolt holes in the knuckle - bolt should slide in - do not force in
    with a hammer (I learned that the hard when when I recently ruined the
    knuckle by not following that advice).

    The inner tie rod bushing are a fairly common failure item according to
    what I read on various Chrysler forums, though mine are still original
    with no play whatsoever at 100k miles. Someone mentioned in this ng
    that if the outer tie rods are not oriented vertically before the lock
    nuts are tightened when alignments are done, they can cause the inner
    tie rod bushings to wear out - it is easy to see how that could be when
    you look at the steering system, and I wonder how many of the failures
    that I read about are due to that oversight on the part of the

    Bill Putney
    (to reply by e-mail, replace the last letter of the alphabet in my
    address with "x")
    Bill Putney, Sep 30, 2003
  7. Bob Shuman

    Bob Shuman Guest

    Thanks for the great detail on the bearing removal procedure.

    Bob Shuman, Sep 30, 2003
  8. Bob Shuman

    Bill Putney Guest

    You're welcome!

    Bill Putney
    (to reply by e-mail, replace the last letter of the alphabet in my
    address with "x")
    Bill Putney, Sep 30, 2003
  9. Bob Shuman

    Steve Guest

    Because "the book" lies. The two-piece type can be installed with the
    tie-rods in the car just by reaching down behind the engine and working.
    The one-piece type have to be pressed in with the tie-rods removed from
    the car, unless you have vice-grip fingers of steel.
    Steve, Sep 30, 2003
  10. Bob Shuman

    Bob Shuman Guest

    Ended up having to replace one of the tie rods as it was damaged as well as
    the bushings. Went with two piece. Thanks again to you both.

    Bob Shuman, Sep 30, 2003
  11. Bob Shuman

    GUNBUNNY31 Guest

    Visit the following link
    this is a very detailed site at the bushing replacement.
    The rack doesn't need to come out in any case, there is a special tool
    required to install the one piece bushing. the two piece doesn't
    require the tool.
    Having said that, I have very succesfuly installed a ton of the
    bushings without the special tool. Also look at the K frame bushing if
    you have a clunk sound. That is the usual suspect not a wheel brg.
    GUNBUNNY31, Sep 30, 2003
  12. Bob Shuman

    Bill Putney Guest

    Apparently the tie rods have to come out for the one-piece bushings, not
    the rack as I incorrectly stated. FWIW, I don't think the OP related a
    wheel bearing failure to clunk sound - he was just asking how to replace
    the bearing as he suspected it was bad for some unstated reason.

    Bill Putney
    (to reply by e-mail, replace the last letter of the alphabet in my
    address with "x")
    Bill Putney, Oct 1, 2003
  13. Bob Shuman

    Bob Shuman Guest


    You are correct that the steering problem was not related to the wheel
    bearing issue. While looking at the steering problem, I noticed that the
    front passenger wheel made a slight "growling" sound when it was rotated.
    My guess is that the wheel bearing was just starting to go bad so I replaced
    it. (I probably could have let it go till it got worse, but I would rather
    make sure the vehicle was safe and everything was operating as designed.)


    FWIW, I don't think the OP related a
    Bob Shuman, Oct 1, 2003
  14. Bob Shuman

    JNaysayer Guest

    The link to the allpar steering fix has alot of detail. One thing the
    author mentions (in photo 4) is that he found his rack clamps to be loose.
    I believe I have this problem. Is the fix as simple as he says: remove,
    clean, locktite, and re-install with correct torque? Or is this a symptom
    of some other problem?
    JNaysayer, Oct 6, 2003
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