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rico
Dodge Dakota
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10/08/2006
23:45:47

Subject: Squeaking Front end
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2001 v8 4wd Dak XLT

Anyone have their nice clean Dak start sounding like a 100 year old buggy on the slightest bumps, or even when turning corners? Simple answer.

Dried torsion bar bushings at the steering arms. I couldn't even budge the frame mount brackets, but removed the clamps on the steering arms and pushed down on the torsion bar. Removed the rubber bushings, cleaned them completely, then reassembled with tons of bearing grease on the torsion bar and inside the bushings. Six months and going quietly.

I paid a mechanic $ 150 to diagnose and treat, and their fix only lasted 3 months. Since the bushings are exposed to dirt/moisture, this is a good spring fixer item.




.boB
Dodge Dakota
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10/09/2006
11:54:39

RE: Squeaking Front end
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Torsion bar? Or sway bar? It's usually the sway bar. That's the one you can remove without special tools.



ky_man
Dodge Dakota
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10/10/2006
02:14:08

RE: Squeaking Front end
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whatever you do, don't ever ever ever ever ever ever ever ever ever
ever ever ever....take it to freakin' Sears to get it done. Because
they'll "forget" to lubricate them!



Kevin
Dodge Dakota
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10/10/2006
15:08:02

RE: Squeaking Front end
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Silicone lube works well, as does synthetic grease.
Don't use petroleum-based anything on rubber or poly bushings.



rico
Dodge Dakota
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10/30/2006
23:03:25

RE: Squeaking Front end
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Actually neither - its a Stabilizer bar. Duh,sorry.
Anyhow, my mechanic is pretty good but even their fix only lasted a couple months.
I'd never take anything to Sears. Except an ax, maybe.
I cleaned the bushings completely - don't know if they're rubber or synthetic - they're hard as friggin rocks and I used gobs of grease inside and on the bar. No worries. If the squeak starts again, I know what to replace.



01QC
Dodge Dakota
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11/01/2006
02:53:11

RE: Squeaking Front end
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I'm encountering this noise right now and about to go insane....people look at me and i feel embarrassed. Cant wait to get home and get those damn things off and cleaned up....up at school and all my tools are at home. Just wondering if the stabilizer bar is the one you can take off without taking off a bunch of other $hit



mopar4u
Dodge Dakota
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11/01/2006
09:40:44

RE: Squeaking Front end
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I just greased mine with silicone based grease because it was squeeking.



Josh
Dodge Dakota
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11/01/2006
16:23:10

RE: Squeaking Front end
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One thing I did that helped was to move the bushings aside on the bar and remove the factory paint from the bar at the bushing contact area.
Silicone lube treatment has lasted a year and a half so far.



rico
Dodge Dakota
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11/05/2006
00:45:41

RE: Squeaking Front end
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I couldn't remove the bar, but didn't need to. The brackets at either steering arm came off easily. The center is torqued to like 120 pounds and I can't get a wrench on the bolt.
But take off the end brackets, then grab the bar and pull it down and it'll rotate away from the steering arms enough to slide the bushings off.



knifemaker
Dodge Dakota
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11/05/2006
13:01:04

RE: Squeaking Front end
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I had the same terrible squeaking, only 2 weeks
after the stealership replaced lower balls joints.
I kept getting worse and worse until I took it to
a local shop that said it was the same ball joints
the stealship replaced. Said they tried greasing
them and "they wouldn't accept grease", so
replaced them...again.



Rico
Dodge Dakota
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11/14/2006
23:57:37

RE: Squeaking Front end
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Bad ball joints make a popping noise when turning. On '01 Daks (and probably others) they are a recall item. Your guy was right, they can't be lubed. Did the 2nd replacement cure the squeak? Probably because they had to pull the traction bar off to replace the ball joints.

But the traction bar bushings tend to dry out, then squeak bad over the smallest bumps. Like I said, I pulled the bushings off, cleaned them completely, then totally coated the inside of the bushings and the ends of the bar with regular bearing grease before replacing them. I'm going on a year of nice quiet suspension.



01QC
Dodge Dakota
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11/15/2006
12:14:21

RE: Squeaking Front end
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hey rico....so i dont really understand recalls....i have 2001 and if the ball joints go bad they will replace them free or am i way off? ....they are fine now but jsut for the future



rico
Dodge Dakota
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11/15/2006
22:54:52

RE: Squeaking Front end
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There's guys on this site more knowledgeable than me by far, but yeah, they'll fail. Might as well have em replaced now. I've seen many pix of Daks totaled when lower balljoint failure occurs at freeway speed. Occupants die sometimes.

The funny part is, the replacements are still non-lube-able. So they'll fail too. Look around and you'll see posts talking about aftermarket kits that can be bought. It's a trouble spot for these Daks. Like the brakes on my wife's Cherokee.





Kowalski
GenIII
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11/16/2006
07:24:23

RE: Squeaking Front end
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The part you are talking about a couple posts back isn't called a traction bar; that's bars that are commonly added to rear suspensions. You may have been a bit misleading when you said it wasn't the sway bar earlier - technically it's called an anti sway bar; but many commonly call this piece a sway bar.

Lead, follow, or get out of the way

Polly
Dodge Dakota
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10/19/2010
22:01:48

RE: Squeaking Front end
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Yall way too high tech for me. I noticed that after a week's worth of rain, my 97 dakota squeak temporarily went away. Hmmmm. After squeak returned, I went to carwash & washed front end as best I could. Lasted a good week. Next time I used wax setting; Gone. But I have been back every so often for wax job in front suspension area. At a $ a pop, I'll probably keep waxing occassionally.




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