A worn outer tie rod end can cause uneven tire wear and loose steering on your 2005 Dodge Caravan. If you put off replacing a worn tie rod end it could eventually come apart causing loss steering control of your vehicle. You may hear and feel a clunk when turning if the tie rod end is severely worn.
To check for wear, put a hand on the ball and socket of the tie rod end. Push and pull the tire in and out. If the tie rod is worn, you should be able to see and feel excessive play between the ball and socket. Checking your tie rod ends as part of your routine maintenance should avoid any surprises. You will need to have your vehicle aligned after replacing the tie rod end.
You will need
- Clean rags
- Lug wrench
- Floor jack
- Jack stands
- Combination wrenches
- Tie rod removal tool
- Torque wrench
Park your vehicle on a solid flat surface. Loosen the lug nuts on the wheel where the worn tie rod is. Lift the vehicle with a floor jack and place jack stands under a solid section of frame on both sides of your Caravan to support it. Remove the lug nuts and wheel assembly.
Mark the position of the lock nut on the inner tie rod. Hold the inner tie rod in place with an open end wrench and loosen the lock nut with another.
Remove the cotter pin from the tie rod end stud. Remove the nut from the stud with a ratchet and socket. Separate the tie rod end from the spindle arm with a tie rod removal tool. Hold the inner tie rod in place and remove the outer tie rod end. Count the number of turns needed to remove it.
Screw the replacement tie rod end onto the inner tie rod the same number of turns as it took to remove the original. Insert the tie rod end stud through the hole in the spindle arm. Thread the nut onto the stud and torque it to 62 foot-pounds. Hold against the inner tie rod end and tighten the lock nut.
Install the wheel assembly and lug nuts. Tighten the lug nuts so the rim is flush on the hub. Lift the vehicle off the jack stands, remove them and lower the vehicle to the ground. Torque the lugs to 95 foot-pounds.
Have your vehicle’s wheels aligned by a certified facility with the proper equipment.