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E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 04-17-2013, 05:34 PM
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Opinion on front suspension click

If I'm turning the steering to get out of a park or trying to make a u-turn, I get this click- click-click sound coming from the front driver side suspension. I took the car to my friend's shop and had it looked at. Conclusion is, when the car is in the alignment lift and you mimic the turning motion the clicking is coming from the Outer Tie Rod. And I know this because when I hold the Control arms while someone is turning you don't feel the click, BUT if you hold the tie rod you feel the click.

Has this happen to anyone, or is it the Inner Tie Rod, or can it the Rack?

One mechanic said, even though you don't see it that there is play in the outer tie rod, but the other mechanic said it just could be the rack..... I need opinions.

Thx.
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  #2  
Old 04-17-2013, 06:03 PM
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Probably the tie rod ball joint. Is the boot OK? Did you check for excess play?
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  #3  
Old 04-17-2013, 06:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fudman View Post
Probably the tie rod ball joint. Is the boot OK? Did you check for excess play?
The boot is broken, but no play. Everything looks snug to the eyes.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:28 PM
Aussie528iT Aussie528iT is offline
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Check inner rack hemispherical joint. See the "other" board for more info.

RonR
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  #5  
Old 04-17-2013, 07:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neils528iM5 View Post
The boot is broken, but no play. Everything looks snug to the eyes.
Boot integrity is a visual check, ball joint integrity is not a visual check. You grab it and twist as hard as you can. If the boot is broken, then it is definitely the tie rod ball joint.
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Old 04-17-2013, 07:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fudman View Post
Boot integrity is a visual check, ball joint integrity is not a visual check. You grab it and twist as hard as you can. If the boot is broken, then it is definitely the tie rod ball joint.
To be sure, you're saying it is definitely the outer tie rod since the boot is broken.
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Old 04-18-2013, 06:03 AM
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A torn or compromised rubber boot is virtually a guarantee that your ball joint is toast or about to become toast. The ball joint (like your shoulder joint) moves in 3D unlike hinged joints. This requires extremely tight tolerances and permanent lubrication (grease). Once the boot is compromised, any contamination (road salt, sand, etc.) will rapidly degrade the friction surfaces. The slightest degradation allows excessive movement within the ball joint. Excessive movement creates noises during suspension movement. If you grab your ball joint and it moves easily, it is toast.

If you choose to replace your tie rods (and any other suspension components), please report back if this resolves your problems.
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Old 04-18-2013, 07:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fudman View Post
A torn or compromised rubber boot is virtually a guarantee that your ball joint is toast or about to become toast. The ball joint (like your shoulder joint) moves in 3D unlike hinged joints. This requires extremely tight tolerances and permanent lubrication (grease). Once the boot is compromised, any contamination (road salt, sand, etc.) will rapidly degrade the friction surfaces. The slightest degradation allows excessive movement within the ball joint. Excessive movement creates noises during suspension movement. If you grab your ball joint and it moves easily, it is toast.

If you choose to replace your tie rods (and any other suspension components), please report back if this resolves your problems.
I understand exactly what you're saying, but i'm confused as to exactly which Ball Joint you're talking about? Is it the one the located in the outer Tie Rod or is there another one in the rubber boot or something?
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Old 04-18-2013, 08:01 AM
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There are 2 ball joints on each end of the rack. One at the wheel end and one inside the concertina boot on the end of the rack housing.

RonR
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Old 04-18-2013, 08:52 AM
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If you look at the tie rod (attached), you will see there are two boots. The large inner corrugated boot (#2) covers the inner ball joint and a small (can't really see it in the picture) covers the outer ball joint (#8). If either cover is damaged or compromised, it is an indicator that the ball joints have also been damaged. Most often, suspension related noises (clunking) are most often due to a failed/failing ball joint, most typically the sway bar link.
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  #11  
Old 04-18-2013, 01:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fudman View Post
If you look at the tie rod (attached), you will see there are two boots. The large inner corrugated boot (#2) covers the inner ball joint and a small (can't really see it in the picture) covers the outer ball joint (#8). If either cover is damaged or compromised, it is an indicator that the ball joints have also been damaged. Most often, suspension related noises (clunking) are most often due to a failed/failing ball joint, most typically the sway bar link.
In any case, I ordered the OEM tie rod which comes with the inner and outer ball joints. In my case the inner ball joint should definitely be the culprit since boot #2 is broken.


Do you have to put new grease when you install the new one or just clean and make sure there is no debris?

Is there a DIY for Tie Rods?
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Old 04-18-2013, 02:34 PM
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see: http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...=1#post4536282

Steps 8 & 20
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  #13  
Old 04-18-2013, 04:23 PM
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Thx guys... I'll report back when I get it done in a week or two.
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Old 04-29-2013, 09:11 AM
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Just an update, I changed the tie rod and the clicking noise is now gone...everything is perfect with that so thanks for your help guys.
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