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Old 05-31-2024, 09:07 PM #1
Erics4569 Erics4569 is offline
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Should these LCAs be replaced?

Hi everyone,

My 265k 97 TR4 likely has original UCA/LCA's and bushings. A local shop recently mentioned there's significant play in them and that I should replace them.

I understand often it's just bushings that need replacement; however last fall my passenger LBJ gave out (thankfully I was just going about 20mph) and I ended driving ~100ft on the passenger LCA itself (see pics) -- so I'm wondering if this is sufficient cause to replace the LCA's vs just doing bushings?

Some more details: when that happened, I got a tow to a local shop who replaced all 4 ball joints, replaced axle, and reconnected brake line. They didn't mention anything about the LCA's at that point, so I assumed they were ok.

Thanks for any insights
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Should these LCAs be replaced?-img_7490-large-jpg  Should these LCAs be replaced?-img_7492-large-jpg  Should these LCAs be replaced?-img_7494-large-jpg  Should these LCAs be replaced?-img_7495-large-jpg 
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Old 06-01-2024, 05:45 AM #2
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If the previous shop was able to align the front after the event without and problems you are probably fine. If an LCA was bent it would cause issues. But I can understand why you’d want to replace the side that got drug on the ground. If it were my truck I would replace it.
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Old 06-01-2024, 07:29 AM #3
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Not only should you replace it, but I also see this as an opportunity to UPGRADE if you so desire, although it isn't mandatory. Just my suggestion. I'd just be concerned about the overall integrity of the LCA itself after having driven on it.
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Old 06-01-2024, 09:11 AM #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JZiggy View Post
If the previous shop was able to align the front after the event without and problems you are probably fine. If an LCA was bent it would cause issues. But I can understand why youíd want to replace the side that got drug on the ground. If it were my truck I would replace it.
This. If its not bent, there's no cracks or play around the rivets and the welds on the seams aren't split then it's fine.
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Old 06-01-2024, 12:17 PM #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeT4R View Post
Not only should you replace it, but I also see this as an opportunity to UPGRADE if you so desire, although it isn't mandatory. Just my suggestion. I'd just be concerned about the overall integrity of the LCA itself after having driven on it.
Thanks, yeah I was leaning towards full replacement to avoid messing with bushings.

Are there any brands you would recommend for an upgrade? Based on what Iíve read on forums, OEM seem to be the preferred choice? (Avoid cheaper aftermarkets like Dorman, Moog, etc)

Iíll be also replacing UCAís with JBA to get an improved caster angle (previous shops did have a some difficulty getting it into spec).

Thanks
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Old 06-01-2024, 02:04 PM #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erics4569 View Post
Thanks, yeah I was leaning towards full replacement to avoid messing with bushings.

Are there any brands you would recommend for an upgrade? Based on what Iíve read on forums, OEM seem to be the preferred choice? (Avoid cheaper aftermarkets like Dorman, Moog, etc)

Iíll be also replacing UCAís with JBA to get an improved caster angle (previous shops did have a some difficulty getting it into spec).

Thanks
For lowers, I don't have any personal recommendations. All the aftermarket ones I've seen are like heavy duty ones, and expensive. When in doubt, new OEM is never a bad thing, but it's just a good excuse/opportunity to upgrade.
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Old 06-01-2024, 08:15 PM #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JZiggy View Post
If the previous shop was able to align the front after the event without and problems you are probably fine. If an LCA was bent it would cause issues. But I can understand why youíd want to replace the side that got drug on the ground. If it were my truck I would replace it.
The part that drug on the ground is getting replaced (ball joint) and the forces are in-line with a hard braking event... I don't see a reason why it will need to get replaced proactively. Obviously, a visual inspection would be prudent.

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Old 06-02-2024, 08:25 PM #8
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if your alignment went well afterwards....well i might keep it as a battle scar/badge
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Old 06-03-2024, 03:29 PM #9
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I look at it this way:

I have a beloved Volvo 850R that was hit pretty bad while parked. I salvaged as much of it as I could but ended up replacing the subframe, tie rod ends, steering rack, control arms, steering knuckles, struts -- pretty much everything involved in the front suspension.

I patted myself on the back after $6k worth of repair work that, at least, my CV axles miraculously survived.

And they had. For a month. Then they failed. They might have failed anyway. But my rule of thumb these days is:

If you can afford it, "zero out" the system after a catastrophic failure. You'll rest easy going over tricky terrain next time that everything is new. It's piece of mind.

If that's money you'd really be better putting towards rent, food or mortgage -- and the truck can be aligned? then yeah, wing it.
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