A friend and I bought trucks the same day at the same dealership.
He bought the 2002 Dodge 2500 with a Cummins Diesel Engine. He asked me to take his truck in and have a front-end alignment done for him. The truck had only 48k mileage. The alignment specialist called me into the shop and showed me the ball joints. They were gone. Worn out completely on one side.
The Alignment specialist said that it was a common problem with almost all makes of trucks in that size range with diesel engines.
The warranty had expired on the ball joints at 36,000 miles. To the credit of the dealership they still stood good for the problem.
All dealerships may not be as accommodating though. So to avoid a serious problem, I suggest that owners of trucks in this size range with Cummins diesel engines keep a close watch on the front end wear.
An early sign to watch for is a feather wear pattern on front tires. If you see this pattern get your truck to an alignment specialist as soon as possible.
Dodge owners should be aware that the warranty range on most of these trucks is only 36,000 miles on ball joints.
Ball joints are a safety hazard and wear should not be ignored.
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