Check your front end....

Daimyo68

Tremor Fanatic
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Location
South Florida
Current Ride
2020 F250 Tremor, 7.3
Current Ride #2
2023 RT/Daytona Charger
I've had my 2020 Tremor for about 2 months now. Purchased it with 24k on it, and I just broke 26k a few days ago.

I felt since day one, that the truck wandered a little more than usual, but basically figured it was the tires. I've driven trucks in the past with "off road tires", "dubs", "oversized tires", etc etc and they always felt like they picked up every little deformity in the road, so I wrote it off as the tires.

Yesterday I decided to have a look at the steering components. I had my girl get in the truck, start it, and move the steering wheel back and forth between 10 and 2 while a crawled under to inspect the steering components....

Drag Link
Drag Link end
Left tie rod
All shot....

Wow... A truck that is a little over a year old with 26k miles and all 3 of these parts had play... not just a little... the drag link end was the worst, with the socket moving between 1/4 and 1/2 inch up the knuckle.. Just a note, a 1/2" up upward movement is on the verge of popping out of the socket.

I would have never thought a truck that is so young with so little mileage would have play in the steering components... Maybe a tiny bit if that at all

I also feel like an idiot for writing the "wander" off to the tires, as I've worked on cars/trucks for a better part of my life. I never got any vibration, death wobble, anything that would have made me look at anything related to the steering.

This made me recall a saying I always used "New doesn't mean good", and it's never been more correct.

SO just a note for everyone, check your front end, even if you don't feel anything is wrong. It takes 2 minutes to do so with the aid of an assistant.
 
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I will get some video tomorrow of the spots to be checking.

I replaced those parts this evening so I can't show you exactly what it does, but...

This video gives you an idea of what to look for, starting at 5:40.
Video

Pivot is normal and how it works, but any up/down side to side movement in a ball/socket type of joint is bad (In Red).
joint.jpg


Think of your hip or wrist, it can move/twist, but should never have any side movement, or in and out movement. (That's about the best I can do to describe it)


Just an FYI as well, these parts would have been covered under the manufacturer 3yr/36k mile warranty (even though I am the 2nd owner), but I couldn't leave my truck for days at the dealership as I am heading out of town tomorrow with the boat behind me. Luckily, my old boss hooked me up and I only paid cost for the parts.
 
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Didn't think about it last night, but I said I would post a video today... well, I'm heading out shortly, as mentioned . I apologize.

This webpage has some great info on the Tremor suspension. The steering linkage is what I was mentioning when I posted "Check your Front End".
Tremor Suspension

Will get a video when I come back, if it's still requested. I'll also show you an easy way to check the ball joints using a larger pry bar or pipe.
 
It wears out fast. Just a tiny amount of wear will cause problems including the dreaded "death wobble". There are heavy duty upgrades for the parts and I would also recommend once you replace the worn parts to get a dual steering stabilizer to help them. The stabilizer won't solve any problems but will help your new parts last longer.
 
Didn't think about it last night, but I said I would post a video today... well, I'm heading out shortly, as mentioned . I apologize.

This webpage has some great info on the Tremor suspension. The steering linkage is what I was mentioning when I posted "Check your Front End".
Tremor Suspension

Will get a video when I come back, if it's still requested. I'll also show you an easy way to check the ball joints using a larger pry bar or pipe.
I’d be interested in a tutorial. I’m not real mechanical but want to learn.
 
You mentioned buying the truck used. That leaves assuming to explain the premature wear. That would be, the truck once had a "Lift Kit" with Large Tires and Wheel offset. This additional weight and Wheel offsets play hell on Steering Linkage, Wheel Bearings and Ball Joints.
 
You mentioned buying the truck used. That leaves assuming to explain the premature wear. That would be, the truck once had a "Lift Kit" with Large Tires and Wheel offset. This additional weight and Wheel offsets play hell on Steering Linkage, Wheel Bearings and Ball Joints.
I would think the same thing. Spacer lifts on the front end are notorious for causing rapid wear of these components. Wheel offset can also greatly change the scrub angle and cause significant wear on steering components.

I also wouldn't rule out that someone just beat the hell out of the truck.
 
You mentioned buying the truck used. That leaves assuming to explain the premature wear. That would be, the truck once had a "Lift Kit" with Large Tires and Wheel offset. This additional weight and Wheel offsets play hell on Steering Linkage, Wheel Bearings and Ball Joints.
Who knows. Maybe the previous owner had 2 trucks and swapped the good steering components over to the truck he was keeping? Wouldn’t be the first time someone has done something similar
 
Not going to try and pinpoint why my parts were bad. No signs of a previous lift kit, if anything, I would say the previous owner was a mason, as there was small debris in the bed seams, and signs of concrete on the undercarriage.

Anyways, the only non stock items when I purchased the truck, were the wheels and tires: 35x1250r20 on fuel wheels with an offset. While this can cause premature wear, it can't be pinned on them.

I haven't installed any other suspension mods, so I guess I will see if they are bad again in another 26k miles.

I was in a time pinch when I discovered the bad parts, so I installed oem since they were readily available, but in the future, if needed, I will be replacing with upgraded parts.
 
Great information and a timely thread to keep us all on our toes. The technical info shared is the beauty of the forum and us working together to look out for each other. Well done!

We should all be diligent to monitor the condition of our rides. Wear and durability depend on many factors so it's up to each of us to not assume "it's just the cheap ford parts". As illustrated symptoms can lead you the wrong direction when you make assumptions.

Also keep in mind Ford designed each part for these trucks to work well within a set of parameters. Every component you change out to improve the function, or more so, the appearance of your truck can have a major effect on function and durability. Weigh very heavily your decisions to just change parts out for "better" parts without considering all design aspects and how you use your truck.

Thanks for sharing! ? ??
 
Anyone have suggestions on the best parts to use when/if the OE ones need to be replaced. I helped a friend with his truck decades ago and I think we used Moog parts. I don't know who has the best stuff now, which is why I am asking...
Can't speak for this product line first hand but their web site indicates a robust product line - American made.

 
Anyone have suggestions on the best parts to use when/if the OE ones need to be replaced. I helped a friend with his truck decades ago and I think we used Moog parts. I don't know who has the best stuff now, which is why I am asking...
Moog has been around for a long time, and their parts are quality without a doubt.

And, while Moog parts are quality made, you would find even better quality parts made by companies that "specialize", like Carli, Fox, PMF, etc etc. Companies like these focus on specific parts/systems of vehicles (ie: Carli focuses on truck suspensions, Fox focuses on dampening products, etc etc).
 
Eh... pretty much 2 months to the day almost, and the drag link is bad again...
Could have just been a faulty part from the get go

Looks like Carli will be getting a sale from me today.
 
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