Author Topic: Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement  (Read 6601 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

ColoradoB5

  • Global Moderator
  • Supercar
  • *****
  • Posts: 3,311
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« on: June 09, 2004, 03:31:07 AM »
So my tie rods ends (TRE) were shot and needed to be replaced.  Being the DIY guy that I like to be, I decided I wanted to change the stock ones out and not have to worry about doing this again.  

With that in mind, the obvious choice was to go with the heavy duty version manufactured by Meyle.

I researched the part and found that ECS Tuning offered them for $104 plus shipping, so I checked my bank account and ordered the parts.

Before I launch into the replacement proper, let me show you what I was dealing with at the time of the decision.

Full upper suspension shot:

Notice the tie rod end boot around the joint (to the right of the picture).  The boot had separated from the sleeve above and exposed the ball joint to the elements.  Ever ridden in a wheel well?  I didn't think so, but I can't imagine it's the place you mom would feel safe storing during a drive to the grocery store so suffice it to say, there was a lot of gime in it.

In this picture I had cleaned it out and spayed it with a lithium (howdy Kurt) lubricant to temporarily keep from bothering the neighbors, small children and animals with the noise.


Here is another shot with the boot exposed:


Disclaimer: Neither I nor RMCB5.com is responsible for damage or injury resulting from this procedure.  Please observe all saftey requirements when working on an automobile.

Procedures:

In this picture, you can see the tie rod end going from right to left:


Here is the same shot with the parts you will be working with:


1. In the image above, the first step is to remove the upper bolt at the top of the tie rod end.  Next comes the restraining nut and bolt.

2. With these two out of the way, use a rubber mallet to hammer the tie rod out of the large suspension component arm in the foreground.

Here is the pre-removed end from the side:



3. After the outer connection is separated, use some WD-40 or other lubricant to soak into the threaded part of the existing tie rod end.  

4. Loosen locking nut from tie rod.  Measure the distance up the thread that the stock TRE goes into the tie rod.  You will want to screw the new one in exactly this far.

5. I ended up using two vise-grips to get this started and let the one fastened around the tie rod to rotate until it wedged up against the wheel well to resist.  You will need to loosen the lock nut to get this started.



6. Difference between the stock TRE (left) and the Meyle one (right).  Notice the difference in the boot alone!


7. Here is the tie rod with the TRE removed.

You will want to now install the new tie rod end.  Take care to get it in as far as the old one was so your alignment will be useable until you can get your car aligned professionally.

8. The vertical bolt receiver has a grooved side that should go on the side that the restraining bolt slodes along to keep the whoel assembly from rotating (which could separate the boot).

9. Fasten the new top bolt (supplied) into the receiver and check all of your connections to make sure they are tight.  Tighten the TRE lock nut back up to the tie rod to keep that from moving.

The finished product:
You can't rehabilitate a fire ant.

SweetVW

  • Heavily Modded
  • ****
  • Posts: 1,677
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2004, 10:29:34 AM »
Very nice write up, better than I would have done!
If it ain't broke, take it apart and fix it!

Rocky Mountain Club B5

Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2004, 10:29:34 AM »

GTIguy

  • Stock
  • *
  • Posts: 84
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2004, 10:35:09 AM »
Nice write up Winston  :cool:

You're a better man than me, I hate working on Passat front suspensions... :cry:
itrous is like a really hot chick with STD's, you really want to hit it , but you're worried about the aftermath.

ColoradoB5

  • Global Moderator
  • Supercar
  • *****
  • Posts: 3,311
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2004, 11:51:17 AM »
Thanks Dave!  Thanks for the help with that, by the way.

Pat, they do have an abnormally high level of suckage...epspecially for a car that shouldn't have a part like that wear out anyway.  All for a rubber boot too. :(
You can't rehabilitate a fire ant.

shummer

  • Modded
  • ***
  • Posts: 925
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2004, 12:57:59 PM »
Hey Winston,

Were you getting a squeak or clunk or some wandering like Dave? My boot looks ok, but I'm wondering if my steering response (or maybe it's all in my head) is getting worse.

ColoradoB5

  • Global Moderator
  • Supercar
  • *****
  • Posts: 3,311
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2004, 01:09:59 PM »
Hey Andrew, mine was a creak that I could hear with the windows up or down and could feel in the steering wheel.

If the boot is still good, most likely it is not the tie rod ends.  Maybe David will chime in on what the control arm failure was like.  What are you seeing?
You can't rehabilitate a fire ant.

shummer

  • Modded
  • ***
  • Posts: 925
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #6 on: June 09, 2004, 01:33:52 PM »
It may just be me getting re-adjusted to the wide summer tires, but the car seems to be tossed around too easily by the deep ruts (worn down roads, not necessarily grooved). I really have to grip my steering wheel in order to keep it where I want to go.

For example, just driving down S. Broadway anywhere between I-25 to C-470 where the road is worn so that the tire tracks are in pretty severe ruts. Sometimes the road is severely sloped too from side-to-side. The car goes where I point it, but it just seems like the road really throws my car around. It's become more of a task (feels unstable to drive with one hand) to switch lanes or even move around in the lane I'm in.

Probably a non-issue, but I'm just worried I have a steering or suspension problem.

ColoradoB5

  • Global Moderator
  • Supercar
  • *****
  • Posts: 3,311
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #7 on: June 09, 2004, 01:48:11 PM »
Andew, mine does that too, even now more than before with the 245 tires.  Ruts throw me all over the place!
You can't rehabilitate a fire ant.

SweetVW

  • Heavily Modded
  • ****
  • Posts: 1,677
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #8 on: June 09, 2004, 08:37:45 PM »
Andrew, I had a floaty feeling even of flat roads especially during braking.  But I agree with Winston, my tires keep me awake all the time with grabbing and I only have 235's.

Wow, 245's Winston?  I was not sure that would fit.  What is your wheel size?
If it ain't broke, take it apart and fix it!

ColoradoB5

  • Global Moderator
  • Supercar
  • *****
  • Posts: 3,311
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2004, 11:05:31 AM »
Yeah, 245!  I knew Boris already went with that size last fall, so I knew it would fit.  

The wheels size is 18x8.
You can't rehabilitate a fire ant.

SweetVW

  • Heavily Modded
  • ****
  • Posts: 1,677
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2004, 11:28:38 AM »
Quote from: "ColoradoB5"
Yeah, 245!  I knew Boris already went with that size last fall, so I knew it would fit.  

The wheels size is 18x8.


So how wide could you go with 18x8.5 wheels?
If it ain't broke, take it apart and fix it!

ColoradoB5

  • Global Moderator
  • Supercar
  • *****
  • Posts: 3,311
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #11 on: June 10, 2004, 11:40:39 AM »
Well the wheels size is not as important as the tire size with regards to this.  The 245s barely clear the tie rod ends by about 2-3 mm and the tires are flush with the fenders, so I would say that is about as far as you could go in the front.  For the rears you could probably fit 256s on 9 inch wheels no problem.
You can't rehabilitate a fire ant.

DenverPat

  • Heavily Modded
  • ****
  • Posts: 1,560
    • http://www.stonefieldinvestments.com
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #12 on: June 10, 2004, 11:47:43 AM »
Andrew, when was the last time you had an alignment?  I know that usually helps me.  Although, since I've put on tires with more stick, I've noticed the same thing you're describing, and my car was just aligned a couple months ago.
"Of all the extreme sports I've ever participated in- windsurfing, kite boarding, wake boarding, tow-in surfing and snowboarding- skiing, for me, made everything else easy."
-Chuck Patterson

shummer

  • Modded
  • ***
  • Posts: 925
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #13 on: June 10, 2004, 01:14:17 PM »
I've only had one alignment and that was when my springs and shocks were installed (35K+ miles ago). I did not have the 17" wheels then so the alignment was done with the stock 15" alloys. The 235/45/17 are a tad bigger in diameter/circumference than the 195/65/15.

92UrS4

  • Administrator
  • Supercar
  • *****
  • Posts: 5,934
    • Rocky Mountain Club B5
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #14 on: June 10, 2004, 01:16:33 PM »
Last spring when I put on those 17's with Z rates Potenzas I was all over the place, but my alignment seemed to be okay.  Every little imperfection in the road moved me.

When i went to my soft winter tires, huge difference, none of that stuff moved me around.

DenverPat

  • Heavily Modded
  • ****
  • Posts: 1,560
    • http://www.stonefieldinvestments.com
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #15 on: June 10, 2004, 01:17:22 PM »
I think that would solve your problem.  You'll still have it a little bit if you have fat, sticky tires, but an alignment should certainly help.  Many places recommend an alignment annually, which is what I do.
"Of all the extreme sports I've ever participated in- windsurfing, kite boarding, wake boarding, tow-in surfing and snowboarding- skiing, for me, made everything else easy."
-Chuck Patterson

Chas

  • Modded
  • ***
  • Posts: 633
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #16 on: June 12, 2004, 03:39:45 AM »
The easy check for worn TRE's is simply to lift one front wheel and try to twist the front tire back and forth form left to right. Small motions here mind you. There should be no play at all. You should feel a very solid connection between the wheel and the rest of the front suspension/steering system. Any deviation from this and you have issues.

I too will be replacing my TRE's soon. I had been noticing a wandering feeling right before I got my BBS wheels (17 x 8.5 with 235 rubber). And now that these wheels are on the car the feeling is exagerated greatly. I can't wait for Sunday and the return of a tight handling car. :)

Nice write up Winston! You Da MAN!
2003 Audi A6 2.7T
Some Sedans haul families,
this one hauls ASS!

mghunt

  • n00balicious
  • Posts: 20
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #17 on: July 07, 2004, 09:33:56 PM »
I just changed my brakes the other day and noticed that my second set of TRE's are shot.  I had the first set replaced under recall and now that I'm over 100k I think its on my dime...

Good to know its not a bank breaker.  Thanks for the writeup and parts info Winston!!  

-Mark

Flacke

  • n00balicious
  • Posts: 1
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #18 on: September 19, 2004, 06:41:27 PM »
Thanks for the great Photos and info. This post of yours may save me and others a lot of money on the replacement of our TRE.

Is the procedure for the lower TRE's similar or is there anything that we should look out for on the lowers?

DenverPat

  • Heavily Modded
  • ****
  • Posts: 1,560
    • http://www.stonefieldinvestments.com
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #19 on: September 19, 2004, 07:05:25 PM »
Glad to see it helped out.   :wink:
"Of all the extreme sports I've ever participated in- windsurfing, kite boarding, wake boarding, tow-in surfing and snowboarding- skiing, for me, made everything else easy."
-Chuck Patterson

scott

  • Lightly Modded
  • **
  • Posts: 499
    • http://www.edition719.com
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #20 on: September 20, 2004, 01:13:16 AM »
LOL... another reason I have a Mk2 and not a B5!

rock on fellas!

92UrS4

  • Administrator
  • Supercar
  • *****
  • Posts: 5,934
    • Rocky Mountain Club B5
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #21 on: September 20, 2004, 01:39:13 AM »
YEah but at least we have something bult within the last 10 years ;)

scott

  • Lightly Modded
  • **
  • Posts: 499
    • http://www.edition719.com
Tech: Tie Rod End (TRE) Replacement
« Reply #22 on: September 20, 2004, 02:14:07 AM »
ahem.... I only have two words for that one...


NO PAYMENTS!!