Track rod and knuckle joint removal – Skoda Fabia 2003

Track rod and knuckle joint removal – Skoda Fabia 2003

A bent track rod or a worn inner knuckle joint requires that the rod/joint is removed as a unit and replaced with new. There is usually limited access under there, but using tools designed for the job makes it a very straightforward operation.

In this instance we shall remove the track rod and knuckle joint from a Skoda Fabia 2003 model year. The special tools used are the Ball Joint Remover Set (Laser part no: 4872) and the Track Rod Remover and Installer (Laser part no: 4765 (35mm-45mm) or 5122 (28mm-35mm)).

The process

Step 1: With the vehicle supported safely and the road wheel removed, we gain access to the track rod. Here we can see the track rod end, the track rod itself and the ‘boot’ or gaiter that covers the knuckle joint.

Step 2: Remove the track rod end. The securing nut is removed and then a ball joint remover or separator is used. Here we have chosen the correctly sized example from the Laser 4872 set.

Step 3: The bolt head on the ball joint separator is tightened until the taper breaks. The track rod can then be moved away from the suspension upright.

Care point: to prolong the life and efficiency of your tools, always keep them clean and as in the case of this ball joint separator, adequately greased.

Step 4: To preserve the front wheel tracking, measure the position of the track rod end on the track rod. This can be measured with a rule, or the number of turns can be counted when removing the track rod end. This aids reassembly, but the tracking must be checked and adjusted if necessary when the job has been completed.

Step 5: To remove the track rod end, secure it with a spanner then release the lock nut with another spanner. The track rod end is then turned anticlockwise to release from the track rod.

Step 6: Remove the securing clips from the rack boot/gaiter and then slide the gaiter off the track rod. The knuckle joint is now accessible.

Step 7: The Laser 4765 track rod remover is now placed over the track rod and then over the knuckle joint. By turning the tool anti-clockwise it will grip the knuckle joint tightly. Use a socket on the end of the tool and continue to turn anti-clockwise to undo the track rod and knuckle joint assembly.

Step 8: Then the assembly can be removed from the vehicle and lifted out of the track rod remover tool.

Step 9: The new track rod/knuckle joint assembly is refitted using the same tool. It must be  tightened with a torque wrench to the manufacturer’s specified figure.

Finally: Examine the gaiter before refitting and if there is any sign of damage or rubber perishing then fit a new one. To finish off, refit the track rod end to the previously measured position and don’t forget to have the front wheel tracking checked.

Related posts