Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

Should i put new tires on if my ball joints need replacement?

I have a 99 Ford Expedition with 4 wheel drive. It has 134,500 miles.

I drove on a rough road and now my car is “bouncy”. I have not been able to upkeep the car on a regular basis. A reputable tire/mechanic did a free full inspection. Aside from ochg + tune up he said the following needed work/replacement:

Ball Joints, manifold has a broken stud, new airbags, sway bar link, and it does need replacement of the broken rt front passenger window (all gone-friend tried to pull window up with pliers. I also need 4 tires. Should I put on new tires if I can’t afford to have all of the other work done?

Any idea what the cost of all of these repairs might be?

“Bouncy” means it may need new shocks as well. If you buy new tires with bad shocks and bad ball joints, your new tires may quickly be ruined due to uneven and irregular wear. It sounds like you’ve neglected the vehicle to a point were it is going to cost a lot of money to make it nice again. You may want to consider cutting your loses, buying a newer car and maintaining it this time.

I am not sure, but I believe a few of those items are safety related. Xebadaih is correct, don’t do the tyres before you get the suspension corrected or you will likely need new tyres.

What is “ochg” ?

Please explain “new airbags”; does the airbag light stay on or flash? I agree with the other posters observation that you may need new balljoints and shocks if you want your tires to last.

The airbag question may decide whether you want to keep the vehicle. You can’t buy used airbags legally or install them. They come only new at a very steep price. I would make sure that you do NOT need new airbags before doing any more work. The $4000 or so for new airbags may make any repairs uneconimc, and you are better off with a newer vehicle.

If your state has an annual inspection and you need airbags, I would get rid of the vehicle.

Ochg is my attempt at the “kid’s” shorthand…oil change. The air bags are not functional/damaged and need to be replaced to pass inspection. I was quoted $997.48. There’s a number of things that need to be done to pass inspection.

They are willing to take it as a trade-in (lots of work to make it salable and they do need to make a profit). The manager who I’ve known a long time gave me an example: He has a Toyota Camry with about the same mileage (forgot which year…98 or 99 would be a guess)and he is asking $4725.He would accept $1600 down and $137 a month for 24 months (at a 25% interest) which would bring it to a final cost to me of $4888. It’s difficult to decide what to do considering to repair mine would be about $4200 with everything including oil change, tune up and tires with other problems I listed above included in the estimate.

You can get new tires now…but I wouldn’t wait more then a couple of weeks before you get the ball-joints fixed.

By ‘airbags’ are you referring to the collision restraints which work in conjunction with your seat belts to protect you in an accident, or the air springs in the back of the truck? Some Expeditions came with air springs in the back instead of metal coil springs. If those go bad, it will make the back end of the truck sag and cause a jarring, bouncy ride because it is riding on the jounce bumpers. Those will be cheaper to fix than the restraint system, but is also very important to fix as well. It is not safe to drive with either ‘airbags’ not working.

Back to the previous question, how do you know the airbags are “not functional/damaged”. Was the vehicle in a wreck? Is the airbag light on? Are you just taking the mechanics word?

Ball joints don’t make your car “bouncy”. It would be hard to keep pointed in the right direction, but “bouncy” is usually shock absorbers, not ball joints. I broken sway bar link could cause excessive leaning on turns. Are you getting that too?