Would having bad ball joints make it very rough going over bumps or cracks in the road?

1Blacktj

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
May 29, 2018
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225
Location
Blowing Rock, NC, USA
So I know a few people have probably asked about this but I wanted to describe my problem. I have had the 3.25 lift from RC on for almost a year now. I know most people don't recommend RC but hindsight is 20/20. for the better part of the last year my Jeep has rode great considering it is a Jeep but here recently, It has started to really ride rough. I think the ball joints are going bad because I can hear some clunking when I torn the when and going down the road. Would having bad ball joints make it very rough going over bumps or cracks in the road? I am also looking to invest into a better shock like a FOX Performance shock and I was wondering if anyone has had experience with those vs. the RC shocks that came with the kit.
 
What is your tire pressure? Also, people here seem to like the Rancho RS5000x shocks. Personally I run the Bilstein 5100 and they could be a bit stiff but not terrible. If your tires are set too high then your jeep is going to ride like a dump truck no matter what. Let us know your current pressure and size tire. That way someone can suggest the correct PSI for your application.

https://wranglertjforum.com/threads/my-initial-impressions-of-the-rancho-rs5000x-shocks.10618/
 
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The clunking when turning and driving may be able to be solved by putting grease in some of the zerk fittings. I was having clunks and other sounds in my front end and i made sure they were filled up with grease and the sounds went away.
 
What is your tire pressure? Also, people here seem to like the Rancho RS5000x shocks. Personally I run the Bilstein 5100 and they could be a bit stiff but not terrible. If your tires are set to high then your jeep is going to ride like a dump truck no matter what. Let us know your current pressure and size tire. That way someone can suggest the correct PSI for your application.

https://wranglertjforum.com/threads/my-initial-impressions-of-the-rancho-rs5000x-shocks.10618/

X2 to this.

Tire pressure is SO, SO, SOOOOOO important. My Jeep rode harsh at 28 psi. I dropped it to 26 psi per tire, and it rides completely different, not rough in any way at all. You wouldn't think 2 psi could make a difference, but it does!

Make sure your tire pressure is around 26 psi. It makes all the difference in the world, trust me.
 
I had a clunking from the front end of my tj that I began to notice just after I bought it. My control arm mounts weren't properly torqued and loosened a little causing movement and clunking everytime I came to a stop, the constant movement warped the mounts a little and they had to be replaced. Might be a good idea to check and see if anything has come loose if you haven't looked yet.
 
Ill check the tire pressure and control arm mounts after work and I will regrease the zerk fittings. My tires are 33x12.5 BFG KO2. Im hoping it is that cause I really dont want to have to dive into ball joints.
 
And going through and looking on the forums, if my ball joints are in fact still good, I more than likely will go ahead and get the Ranchos. You cannot beat the price if they are as good as everyone is saying!
 
well no one likes to ride in my tj usually cause of the size so 26 sounds like my number!
That should help. One more suggestion for new shocks would be Rancho's newer gas-charged RS5000x shock (don't confuse that for their older hydraulic RS5000). I was surprised how well it works on my TJ complete with a great highway ride and excellent off-road control. I've had a bunch of (9-10) different shocks on my TJs the last 22 years & I have only three memorable favorites I've installed... the older discontinued OME Nitrocharger (its replacement is stiffer), my previous RS5000x shocks, and my current 9-way adjustable RS9000xl shocks.

Fox makes excellent quality shocks but unless you get them custom valved they're going to ride pretty stiff.
 
That should help. One more suggestion for new shocks would be Rancho's newer gas-charged RS5000x shock (don't confuse that for their older hydraulic RS5000). I was surprised how well it works on my TJ complete with a great highway ride and excellent off-road control. I've had a bunch of (9-10) different shocks on my TJs the last 22 years & I have only three memorable favorites I've installed... the older discontinued OME Nitrocharger (its replacement is stiffer), my previous RS5000x shocks, and my current 9-way adjustable RS9000xl shocks.

Fox makes excellent quality shocks but unless you get them custom valved they're going to ride pretty stiff.
Yea I was looking and for the price and the way people talk about it, I think ill have to at least try them.
 
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Ill check the tire pressure and control arm mounts after work and I will regrease the zerk fittings. My tires are 33x12.5 BFG KO2. Im hoping it is that cause I really dont want to have to dive into ball joints.

When checking my clunk, I had an operator inside driving slowly, starting and stopping while I watched and listened that made it fairly obvious what was going on. While the brakes were being applied I could see the axle shift a little and hear it shift forward and then drop back. I also believe the constant shifting of the driveline angle contributed to a small leak I developed at the driveshaft seal. I'll fix that when I regear.
 
When checking my clunk, I had an operator inside driving slowly, starting and stopping while I watched and listened that made it fairly obvious what was going on. While the brakes were being applied I could see the axle shift a little and hear it shift forward and then drop back. I also believe the constant shifting of the driveline angle contributed ti a small leak I developed at the driveshaft seal. I'll fix that when I regear.
Ill have to take a look at that now lets hope it doesn't rain on the way home so I can stay dry!
 
one more thing, I put up with overinflated tires for awhile on what I believe were stiff springs and my ride would loosen dental fillings not unlike your ride. Id guess the constant harsh vibration was no friend to my lock nuts.
 
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I just wanted to say Thank you! for this old post. Just got a new to me TJ and it was very rough. I was thinking my old YJ was better and I didn't think to check the tire pressure. I aired down from 33 to 28 and it's like night and day. I'll probably go to 26 psi tonight.
 
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