How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask EricFromCT Your Own Question
EricFromCT, Ford Technician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 3803
Experience:  20 years dealership exp., ASE A1-A9 L1 L2, Ford Lincoln Mercury Senior Master, Diesel Certified
Type Your Ford Question Here...
EricFromCT is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I replaced my left and right upper and lower ball joints on

Customer Question

I replaced my left and right upper and lower ball joints on my 1998 E350 V-10 Ford
Club Wagon window van and now the steering wheel does not return to straight after a turn.
Please confirm the correct Duralast part number upper FA2002 lower FA 2001.
Did I use the wrong parts???????????? Please help.. Thank you Michael ****
Colorado Springs
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Ford
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.

Hello. I have checked and those are the correct ball joints for your truck. It sounds like you will need an alignment. It's not uncommon to need an alignment after doing front end work.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The firestone auto mechanic shop in Colo Springs would not start an alignment without the steering issue corrected.
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.

You brought it to firestone after the ball joints were replaced, and they told you that there is a steering issue that still needs to be corrected?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
after replacement of both upper and lower ball joints I drove to firestone, it was there that the right tie rod ball joint was identified as being worn out so I drove back to shop and replaced it by their recommendation. Steering now is not especially stiff however the steering wheel still does not want to return to "straight " as I complete a simple turn. I asked about correct Duralast part numbers because that was one of the Firestone comments that we had been shipped the wrong parts from the local auto part store.
Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.

Ok. I got it. You definitely need an alignment if you replaced the tie rod end. Your toe is off now from the replacement of the tie rod. The duralast parts you installed are definitely the correct parts so no worries there.

Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.

I think what's happening is that they are trying to upsell. Get you to have them install new ball joints. I could be wrong, but that's what it sounds like.

Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.


Expert:  AZTechBrian replied 1 year ago.

If you need anything else please let me know. If they wont align the truck you should find an independent repair shop with the equipment to set your toe so your steering wheel will be straight again.

Expert:  EricFromCT replied 1 year ago.

Even though your tie rod was replaced and the wheel is now off center, that should not effect the wheel returning to center. If you over tightened the nuts on the ball joints it will cause a no return to center. Also if you already has an adjustable upper cam for the alignment and you did not put it back in the same spot, your caster could be way off and that will cause a no return to center.