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How to Replace Front Outer Tie Rods 00-05 Ford Focus

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How to Replace Front Outer Tie Rods 00-05 Ford Focus

Created on: 2018-07-23

How to repair, install, fix, change or replace a broken, busted, bad, loose, or damaged outer tie rod on 00, 01, 02, 03, 04, 05 Ford Focus

  1. Have your alignment checked or performed after this repair

    step 1 :Removing the Wheel
    • Remove the lug nut covers with a 19mm socket
    • Loosen the 18mm lug nuts with the vehicle on the ground
    • Raise the vehicle with a floor jack
    • Secure the vehicle on jack stands
    • Remove the 18mm lug nuts
    • Pull off the wheel
  2. step 2 :Removing the Outer Tie Rod
    • Soak the tie rod lock nut and the other tie rod nut in rust penetrant
    • Loosen the inner lock nut with a 22mm wrench
    • Remove the nut from the outer tie rod with a T30 Torx bit and 15mm wrench
    • Strike the wheel spindle with a hammer to release the outer tie rod
    • Pull the tie rod down out of the wheel spindle
    • Twist off the tie rod, counting how many turns it takes to remove
  3. step 3 :Installing the Outer Tie Rod
    • Twist on the outer tie rod the same number of turns it took to remove the old one
    • Insert the outer tie rod stud into the wheel spindle
    • Fasten the nut onto the outer tie rod with a 16mm socket and ratchet
    • Tighten the nut to 35 foot-pounds of torque
    • Tighten the end lock nut with a 22mm wrench
  4. step 4 :Reattaching the Wheel
    • Slide the wheel into place
    • Start the lug nuts by hand
    • Tighten the lug nuts preliminarily
    • Lower the vehicle to the ground
    • Tighten the lug nuts to 98 foot-pounds in a crossing or star pattern
    • Tighten the lug nut covers

Tools needed for replacement

  • General Tools

    Jack Stands

    Floor Jack

  • Materials, Fluids, and Supplies

    Marker / Writing Utensil

  • Ratchets & Related

    Socket Extensions

    Torque Wrench


    1/2 Inch Breaker Bar

  • Sockets - Metric

    18mm Socket

    19mm Socket

  • Star Drivers & Sockets

    T30 Bit

Installation Video
Watch video

Hi, I’m Mike from 1A Auto. We’ve been selling auto parts for over 30 years!

We're going to be working on this 2001 Ford Focus. The first thing we're going to do is we're going to take the tire off. One thing to note, this has these little caps that go over the lug nuts. There's two that are missing on this vehicle, regular ones are 19 millimeter, but because the caps are missing, we're going to have to use an 18 millimeter socket to get those off.

So we'll use a 19 millimeter socket and a breaker bar. Just crack these free before we put the vehicle up. Now I'll switch to the 18. These are really tight, normally they shouldn't be this tight. We're using a two post lift to raise and support the vehicle. You can use a jack and jack stands. Now we'll take these lug nuts off, use a little ratchet and an 18 millimeter socket. Take this last lug nut off, take the tire off. Just hit it a couple times.

This one's kind of tight so we're going to hit it off with a hammer. So I put one lug nut on, that's to prevent the wheel from going falling off when I hammer it off with a dead blow. And I'm going to hit right here really hard on the tire and it will pop right off. Now we'll take this lug nut off and pull the wheel off.
Keep in mind that whenever you're doing any front end repair or replacing any front end components, you're going to want to go to a local shop and have your alignment performed, or at least checked. That way, that'll keep your tires from wearing prematurely.

Before we go to take the tire rod off, we want to use some rust penetrant on the nut right here, and also back here. They've been on there for a while, so it'll be pretty rusty. I'm going to loosen this nut up on the back here, I just want to crack it free. This is the nut for the adjuster that keeps the adjustment for the alignment on the front toe of the vehicle. We'll use a 22mm wrench. We could use a 7/8 wrench, but 22 fits a little bit better. We'll just crack it free just like that. We're going to take this nut off up here. We're going to use a 15mm wrench, and there's a little spot on the top that I can put a torque spit, a T30. I'll use that to hold the stud from spinning. If you had an impact gun, you could take it off with that. Put our wrench on first. Then we're going to put this on tighten and that's just going to hold the stud. Then we'll loosen the nut.

Okay, now that that nut's loose, take that off. I'm going to take a hammer and separate the stud from the front knuckle. Just tap it down, just like that.

Next thing you're going to want to do when you take this outer tire rod off, you're going to want to count how many threads there are, so every time you go around, that's one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10, 11, 12, 12 and a half. What I'm going to do is I'm just going to take a marker, write down 12.5. That way when I go to put the new one on, I'll tighten it as many turns, and that'll bring the alignment closer to where it needs to be, so that you may not actually need an alignment when they go check it. It may be right on target.

Here's our old part. Here's our new part from As you can see, this shape is the same. It comes with a new nut. The bottom is the same. Get yours at and you'll be ready to rock and roll.
Now we're going to put the new one on. We're going to count our turns: One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10, 11, 12 and a half. Then we'll twist this like that. Then we'll line the stud up here. Spin that in there. Take the nut and spin this one. Now we're going to tighten this nut down. I'm going to use a 16mm socket and a ratchet. If the stud was spinning on you, and this nut would not go down, what you can do is take a pry bar, go underneath the stud right here, and just tighten it up that way, or you could even put a little jack and jack up the car right there, just lightly, just to get stat stud to stop spinning. We're going to tighten this nut up.

We're going to use a torque wrench and a 16mm socket. We sell these torque wrenches at We're going to torque it to 35 foot pounds. We're going to tighten this tie rod end lock nut. We're going to use a 22mm wrench. The torque spec on this is 46 foot-pounds, but I don't have the ability to torque it with a torque wrench, so just do the best you can. Snug it up. It's good.

So this wheel and tire when coming off the vehicle actually took a lot of effort to get it off. One of the reasons why is because of the two dissimilar metals corroding. You had the metal from the hub and also the aluminum from the wheel corroding together. So we're going to take a wire brush, just lightly on the wheel go around and clean that up a little bit. You don't want to do too much. You really don't want to sand down the wheel and cause any damage to the wheel but just get a little bit of that off. Just like that and then over on the hub we can go all around the hub, clean all this corrosion off of here, and this will help getting the wheel on and off. One of the things to help prevent this from happening is using a little bit of anti-seize lubricant. I don't like to use a whole lot of this, just a little bit, and only on instances where it's really bad so we'll just put a little bit on there then next time we take the wheel off it will be easier.

Now we're going to throw the wheel up and it went right on. Put our lug nuts on, just tighten these lug nuts. I'm going to torque these lug nuts with a 19 millimeter socket and a torque wrench to 98 foot pounds. We sell these torque wrenches at You're going to do it in a cross pattern so that it tightens the wheel properly. And I'll switch to my 18 millimeter socket for these other lug nuts.

Thanks for watching. Visit us at for quality auto parts, fast and free shipping, and the best customer service in the industry.

Tools needed for replacement:

    General Tools

  • Jack Stands
  • Floor Jack

  • Materials, Fluids, and Supplies

  • Marker / Writing Utensil

  • Ratchets & Related

  • Socket Extensions
  • Torque Wrench
  • Ratchet
  • 1/2 Inch Breaker Bar

  • Sockets - Metric

  • 18mm Socket
  • 19mm Socket

  • Star Drivers & Sockets

  • T30 Bit

2006 - 2006  Ford  Focus
2000 - 2005  Ford  Focus

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Part Details:

  • 2 Piece
  • Improved ride comfort and longer life
  • Direct fit - easy install, pre-greased, no maintenance required
  • No modifications, all the parts needed in one kit
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