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Lex2007 07-13-2015 03:43 PM

How-To: Tie Rods
I changed out both complete tie rods (inner and outer) with MOOG parts this weekend and took some pics for you crazy kids.

You'll need an immediate alignment after this, as this is where the actual alignment adjustment for TOE is made.


Inner tie rod ends:

Moog EV800024 Steering Tie Rod End x 2

Outer tie rod ends:

Moog ES800026 Steering Tie Rod End x 1
Moog ES800025 Steering Tie Rod End x 1

If you haven't done it before, don't be scared. Its not at all hard. But you you will need at least one specialty tool (which is cheap at Harbor Freight) or rent for free at local parts chain if you want to tighten the new inner tie rods to spec; an inner Tie Rod Removal Tool.

Inner Tie Rod Removal Set

You can do without it but you'll be guessing on "final torque tightness". That's not so cool. You could use a crows's foot and torque wrench but that's gonna be a huge crow's foot and I don't know if they make them that big.

Mine is a Lisle brand but the same Chinese factory makes these and they re-box them for a dozen brands. Its a super simple and kinda junky tool frankly. Get the Harbor Freight Pittsburgh Brand...same crap, 1/2 the price with coupon.

If you do just the outer ends you wont need the above tool, but I think its stupid to waste your time on this project and only do the outers since the inner tie rods are cheap.

Yes the inners don't fail nearly as often, but just get it over with and move on. You'll never revisit this shit again.

My 2007 has 96k miles. My tie rods were actually still perfectly ok, but I'm hunting down a vibration in the front end and this could be a cause, plus I like my steering and front end tight tight tight.


1st jack up car, even if only onto front jack stands, take off the front wheels.

Release the small metal clip at the outside of the tie rod end plastic boot. (Sorry no pic)

Reach in and open up the metal band holding the rubber boot to the inner tie rod end (see the boot, and sway bar and the totally overrated Whiteline anti-lift bushings and the screwdriver prying open the metal band?):

Now decouple the outer tie rod end from the hub. OEM is a 14 mm bolt with cotter pin. Moog uses 15 mm. Straighten and take out the cotter pin with pliers and remove the nut. (I used an impact wrench, hopefully with hand tools the end will not spin around in place).

You can use a sledge to smack on the hub until the outer end falls out. Don't be shy. Smack it. It works like a champ.

...or you can use a tie rod end or ball joint tool to push it out. See it pushed out and dangling?:

Next, pull the boot towards you to expose the base/joint of the inner tie rod end where it screws into the steering rack. This is where you put your wrench to loosen the end. (Note: You're gonna reuse the boot. Treat it kindly.)

Now get a piece of paper and measuring tape and measure from the CENTER OF THE BOLT of the outer tie rod end to the part of the inner tie rod end that touches the steering rack.

Make sure its all straight when you make the measurement.

Write that shit down.

You're going to set the new tie rod end at the exact same total length when you put the two new halves together, so that you don't destroy your front tires driving to the alignment shop. The MOOG and OEM parts are not exactly the same configuration so you need the complete length from the rack to the center of the bolt on the outer tie rod end.

Dont measure from anywhere else.


Now you have 3 choices. You can use one of these cheap tools to get the entire rod off.

There's kind of enough space to use it. I did so on the passenger side first. Kinda clumsy and annoying doing it this way because access is difficult.

or a 32 mm wrench just fits:

Or you can use the Inner Tie Rod Removal Tool mentioned above. HOWEVER you'll need to take the outer tie rod end off FIRST to use the tool because the tool wont fit around the outer rod end.

If your inner and outer are fused together from corrosion you can cut the outer end off with a hacksaw or cutting wheel. WARNING: If you don't have the correct replacement parts you'll be without a car because the old rod is now destroyed.

I've received parts that looked identical but the threads on the inner tie rod were incorrect. When I did this job this weekend I took the first one off as a complete unit and verified I had the correct replacement parts, and then cut the other one in half and used the inner tie rod removal tool because it was easier to use the tool and an impact wrench.

How to use the Removal Tool:

If your inner and outer aren't fused together from rust then unscrew them apart with 2 wrenches (along the shaft) while still mounted to the car and remove the boot. Sorry I don't have pics. I also dont recall the size wrenches you need for OEM tie rods. I think its a 25 mm and and an 18 mm open ended wrench.

If they are fused together, use some MAP gas to heat the threads and then try. If that doesn't work, cut it apart with a saw or cutting wheel.

With the removal tool you then slip the correct size c-shaped bit into the end of the long metal tube after the tube is inserted past the end of the tie rod end. It wont fit over the end if you have the c-thing inserted before hand.

I used this one (1 and 3/16) to take off one of the OEM ends after I cut the outer tie rod end off with a cutting wheel. Remember: You need to get the boot off and reuse it. Some kits come with a new boot. Its a 32 mm end but my "Master" Inner Tie Rod Removal Tool kit didn't have a 32 mm. 1 3/16 was tight but worked.

So you slip the tool over the end and unscrew the end with the tool and a 1/2 inch drive or an impact gun. (SORRY, no pics of that)

If you didn't cut the outer end off already to get the inner end off, you can put the entire tie rod in a vice and unscrew the outer tie rod and remove the boot. SAVE THE BOOT. You're gonna reuse it.


NEXT start the new INNER tie rod end by hand and then use the inner tie rod end removal tool to envelope the new inner end and tighten to spec with a torque wrench. The Moog part is a 29 mm inner tie rod end. Not 32 mm like OEM.

Next, PUT THE BOOT ON, THE SMALL METAL CLIP FOR THE BOOT AND SCREW ON THE NEW JAM NUT onto the threaded end of the inner tie rod.

Then screw the outer tie rod end (USE ANTI SEIZE LIKE CRAZY ON THE THREADS) and match the length you measured previously.

Moog's rod requires 24 mm and 17 mm open ended wrenches.

Now use a zip tie and fasten the large side of the rubber boot over the end of the steering rack and put the small metal OEM clip over small side of rubber boot.

Then push the bolt at the end of the outer tie rod up into the hub and tighten to spec and put the new cotter pin in and fold the ends. When you torque it down you'll notice that the hole in the threaded section of the outer tie rod end is nearer to the top of the shaft. You want the hole in the shaft and the cotter pin to be with in the spaces of the castle nut. You don't want to keep tightening the castle nut and drawing the end up tight to the hub ear or the cotter pin / hole will be above the castle nut.

Now repeat same procedure for the other side.

For MOOG replacement parts: Now screw the zirc grease fitting into bottom of outer tie rod end and grease that bad boy up. You'll need a grease gun. Side note: the fittings Moog sent me didn't have enough thread to stay put, so I had to substitute some other grease fittings I had handy.

GET AN ALIGNMENT or try and do your own as an interim measure if your alignment shop is more than 30 miles away:.

See here:

Torque specs:

MSMS3 07-13-2015 05:29 PM

Thank you. The post of today should be a separate "How To" sticky. Well done.

Lex2007 07-14-2015 10:29 AM

Thanks hommie.

Who is in charge of creating stickies?

monkey.bones.007 07-14-2015 10:53 AM

@Raider; would create the sticky.

Lex2007 07-14-2015 01:29 PM

Thanks Raider

Mauro_Penguin 07-14-2015 02:00 PM


Time for us to get gay on your inner tie rod

Gary-L 01-16-2016 02:54 PM

This is a good write-up except for the part where the OP states "tighten to spec". It would have been a tremendous help if the torque specifications were included.

I have dug through the Mazda 3 repair manual that I downloaded, and there is nothing in there that I can find that specifies the torque values for the inner tie rod. The same is for the outer tie rod ends.

Meanwhile, my car is stuck on jack stands until I can resolve this mystery.

Lex2007 01-16-2016 04:13 PM

Dude the specs are in the parts explosion.

turbskies 07-17-2017 05:03 PM

Does anyone know if the Moog inner will work with oem outer?

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