How To Replace A Subaru Ball Joint

Do you have a bad ball joint on your Subaru? You don't need to bring your car to a shop and pay them hundreds of dollars to replace it. If you have the right tools, you can replace your Subaru's ball joint right at home. We'll show you how.

1. Inspect The Parts Related To The Bad Ball Joint

Subaru Legacy ball joint on car

Image Credit: LegacyGT

If a ball joint fails, it can cause the suspension system to collapse. If your Subaru's suspension system hasn't gotten to that point, it's still a good idea to inspect it anyway. Chances are the ball joint failure can mean that related parts are damaged too.

For example, if you hit a pothole hard enough, it impacts the ball joint and the steering knuckle. In this case, the steering knuckle may be bad too. You would need to replace the steering knuckle with the ball joint.

Grab a flashlight. Next, inspect the steering knuckle and other parts related to the ball joint for damage.

2. Order The Replacement Part(s) You Need

Subaru Steering knuckle and ball joint

Before you can replace the ball joint (and anything else), you need to get the replacement part(s). If you want your new ball joint to last as long as possible, get an OEM replacement. We have an extensive catalog of genuine OEM Subaru ball joints and related components. If you need help finding the right part for your Subaru model, please contact us. We'll be happy to help you!

3. Make Sure You Have All The Tools You Need For The Job

To make sure the replacement process goes smoothly, get all the tools you need first.

  • Lift: you need a way to lift your vehicle. You can either use a full lift or a floor jack and jack stands.
  • Lug wrench or impact wrench: you will need this tool to remove the lug nuts on the wheel(s).
  • Hammer or air hammer: you will need this tool to disconnect the ball joint from the spindle.
  • Subaru ball joint removal tool: also called a Subaru ball joint puller, this tool presses the ball joint to make it easy to remove or install.

4. Replace The Ball Joint

Each Subaru model has its own ball joint replacement process. But here's the general overview of the process is pretty much the same across all Subaru models:

  1. Lift one end of your vehicle (with the bad ball joint), or lift the entire vehicle. If using a floor jack, be sure to support the weight of the vehicle with jack stands.
  2. Remove the wheel in front of the bad ball joint.
  3. Turn the steering wheel to grant better access to the ball joint(s). You want the rotor, caliper, and upper control arm out of the way as much as possible.
  4. Disconnect the ball joint from the spindle.
  5. Remove the ball joint with the Subaru ball joint tool.
  6. Us the ball joint tool to install the new ball joint. (Be sure that the new ball joint is put in straight. You don't want it to be crooked.)
  7. Connect the new ball joint to the spindle.
  8. Put the wheel back on.
  9. Lower the vehicle.

Please contact us if you have any questions about replacing your ball joint(s).