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Steering Knuckle Damage Due to Overtightening


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    • By Advance Auto Parts
      Advance’s “Check Your Battery, Not Your Bag” campaign offers free gift cards for road trip essentials and curbside services beginning National Road Trip Day – Friday, May 24
      RALEIGH, N.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Americans seem to be hitting a breaking point with air travel, with 67 percent saying they’ve had a trip negatively impacted or ruined because of problems with air travel during the last 12 months,* according to new data from Atomik Research, released today by Advance Auto Parts (NYSE: AAP), a leading automotive aftermarket parts provider.
      Advance Auto Parts offers free curbside services including battery testing and installation, wiper blade installation and check engine light scanning, to ensure motorists are ready to roll for their summer road trips. (Photo: Business Wire)
      From losing precious time – 44 percent citing that delays and other problems traveling by air has cost them vacation time – to safety concerns – 32 percent feeling less safe flying compared to a year ago, Americans are saying “enough!” This summer they’re trading wings for wheels: An astounding 70 percent say they are more likely compared to a year ago to choose traveling by automobile over flying due to the current state of air travel.
      The “baggage” that comes with air travel continues to stack up and now outweighs the benefit of faster travel time for many Americans, according to the survey. Sixty-six percent say the number of hours they’re willing to drive before choosing to fly has increased in the past 12 months and 24 percent say they would drive 10 or more hours for summer vacation before choosing to fly.
      Heeding consumers’ preference for summer vacation by automobile, Advance is encouraging travelers to “Check Your Battery, Not Your Bag” so they can achieve what matters most – enjoying their well-deserved summer vacation.
      Beginning National Road Trip Day this Friday, May 24 through Monday, May 27, participating Advance stores nationwide will surprise randomly selected customers with free Advance gift cards to purchase DieHard® batteries, wiper blades or other road trip essentials, no previous purchase necessary. Complimentary curbside services are available every day throughout the year to customers at all participating Advance stores, including battery checks and installation, wiper blade installation and check engine light scanning.
      “With all the concern about air travel and more people planning to travel by automobile – including willing to drive longer for their summer vacations – it’s critical they prepare their vehicles, and we want to make that as easy as possible,” said Junior Word, Advance’s executive vice president, U.S. stores. “Safety and reliability are at the center of ease, so our team of automotive experts are offering travelers a one-stop preparation shop – from car care essentials to curbside battery checks and installs on us.”
      The great majority (85 percent) of survey respondents indicate they will prepare a pre-road trip checklist for their vacation. To further support motorists, Advance is providing “Rules of the Road (Trip)” – a free checklist outlining car preparation basics designed to help both light DIYers and gearheads alike – available on 
      link hidden, please login to view. Check out 
      link hidden, please login to view or visit an  link hidden, please login to view to shop for all of the auto parts and products needed to get vehicles road trip ready. About Advance Auto Parts
      Advance Auto Parts, Inc. is a leading automotive aftermarket parts provider that serves both professional installer and do-it-yourself customers. As of December 30, 2023, Advance operated 4,786 stores and 321 Worldpac branches primarily within the United States, with additional locations in Canada, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The company also served 1,245 independently owned Carquest branded stores across these locations in addition to Mexico and various Caribbean islands. Additional information about Advance, including employment opportunities, customer services, and online shopping for parts, accessories and other offerings can be found at 
      link hidden, please login to view. * Atomik Research conducted an online survey of 1,002 adult drivers who are considering traveling to their summer-travel destination via air travel or automobile. The margin of error for the overall sample of respondents is +/- 3 percentage points with a confidence level of 95 percent. Fieldwork took place between April 18 and April 19, 2024.


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    • By Dorman Products
      Steering and Suspension Knuckles | Counterperson Training from Dorman Training Center
    • By Dorman Products
      Steering Components | Counterperson Training from Dorman Training Center
    • By Counterman
      Bryan Miller, vice president of product and category management at Arnold Motor Supply, has been elected chairman of the Alliance Commercial Vehicle and Heavy Duty (CVHD) steering committee for 2024.
      The CVHD steering committee is a collection of Alliance CVHD membership with the purpose of providing guidance on vendor relationships, exclusive national branding and the developing national truck service program.
      The Alliance CVHD program prides itself on industry-leading IT solutions to facilitate ease of business; expansive interchange and product lookups; B2B and B2C solutions; and ensuring truck-part suppliers and repair facilities are found online. The Alliance CVHD steering committee will offer guidance and new ideas that will steer the future of the program.
      Miller will begin serving as chairman of the Alliance CVHD steering committee effective Jan. 1.
      “This is a great opportunity for myself and the Alliance as a whole,” Miller said. “To be a part of something from the beginning is a privilege. The Alliance CVHD team has done a great job of starting this program and we at Arnold Motor Supply look forward to being a part of its growth and future success. We are just getting started, our goal is to make this the strongest CVHD program in the industry.”
      Miller will work directly with other members of the steering committee, as well as the Alliance CVHD headquarters personnel led by Justin Hebert and Mario Gonzalez.
      “We are delighted to have Bryan Miller taking the helm as chairman of the CVHD steering committee,” said Mario Gonzalez, Alliance CVHD program manager. “Bryan’s incredible success in growing the heavy-duty business at Arnold Motor Supply speaks volumes about his expertise. What sets Bryan apart is not just his professional achievements, but his genuine commitment to the Alliance’s CVHD program. His eagerness to share ideas, showcases a leader who not only believes in growth but actively nurtures it. With Bryan steering our committee, we are confident in the continued success of our CVHD program.”
      Those interested in more information or specific program details and membership should contact Mario Gonzalez at [email protected] or visit
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    • A-premium Auto Parts:5% OFF with Code GM5.
    • By Counterman
      Rack-and-pinion steering is the predominant type of steering system on vehicles today.
      Simplicity is one of the reasons for their popularity. On these systems, an inner and outer tie-rod end on each side connects the steering rack to the steering knuckle. The inner tie-rod ends tend to last longer than the outers because they have a smaller range of motion, and they simply don’t get the same abuse as the outers on these systems.
      Throughout the life of a vehicle with rack-and-pinion steering, it’s not uncommon to replace outer tie-rod ends multiple times, and rarely or never replace the inners – as long as the boot (also known as bellows) that protects them from dirt and moisture isn’t damaged.
      Before rack-and-pinion steering became popular, a parallelogram steering linkage was the predominant setup on most cars and trucks, consisting of a pitman arm, idler arm, center link and inner and outer tie-rod ends on each side. The tie rods are connected by a tie-rod sleeve. Even after rack-and-pinion systems became popular and virtually standard on all cars, parallelogram steering remained in use on trucks, vans and heavy-duty vehicles for many years, but today rack-and-pinion is becoming more common on them too.
      There’s another type of steering system you may run across, also common on some trucks and heavy-duty vehicles, and it consists of a drag link and tie rods. The difference is there’s no idler arm. A drag link goes from the pitman arm to a tie rod that connects to the steering knuckle, and second tie rod runs from the first to the other steering knuckle.
      Terminology can vary, but don’t let that throw you. In this illustration, No. 4 is the drag link, No. 2 and No. 1 are tie rods. Some people may refer to the drag link as an inner and outer tie rod. Also note No. 6, a steering damper, is a common feature on heavy-duty vehicles.
      When selling steering components, it can be useful to look at a diagram, in case your customer is unsure of the name of the component they need. You also can use it as an aid in pointing out additional items they may need.
      The Quality Question
      It’s not uncommon to be asked about quality, especially with the different lines and varying cost of the steering components you sell. The “economy” or “value” line is designed to make it affordable to repair a vehicle. There’s nothing wrong with these components. I’ve used them many times, and they’re as safe as any other. Will they last as long? Most likely not, but many people choose to go this way because it’s simply all they can afford, and we all can respect that.
      On heavy-duty or vehicles that the owner plans to keep long-term, it’s best to recommend a higher-end line of components. They’ll last longer, and you also can remind your customer that every time you replace a steering component, an alignment must be performed. That’s an additional cost, and worn components also will cause abnormal tire wear. A less expensive component that doesn’t last as long actually might cost more in the long run.
      Where’s the Grease Fitting?
      Fewer steering components come with grease fittings than in the past. Many people perceive this as a sign of “cheap” or low quality. This is far from the case. Many high-quality steering components today are constructed with better materials and higher-quality lubricants. Lack of a grease fitting doesn’t mean low quality. But it does mean there’s no way a poor-quality lubricant can be added to the joint, it can’t be over-greased, and there’s no way for moisture or contaminants to find their way in either.
      Here’s the kicker: Is your customer going to personally grease the fittings themselves? As a professional technician, if I had a nickel for every greaseable joint I’ve seen that was completely worn out, with not even a remote sign of grease ever having touched the zerk fitting … you know the rest. This is reality. Blame it on whomever. If the greaseable joints aren’t going to be greased, I’d rather have those not designed for it.
      Extras
      There are a few good suggestions to keep in mind when selling steering components. If it’s a rack-and-pinion vehicle, rack boots are a good suggestion since the outer tie-rod ends must be removed to replace them. On parallelogram steering, when tie rods are replaced, tie-rod adjusting sleeves are a huge benefit. These are almost always rusted in place and difficult to loosen and turn. New sleeves make the installation much quicker, as well as the alignment. If the vehicle has a steering damper, it’s always a great recommendation. These tend to get ignored, but are commonly worn out. And finally, don’t forget grease for the grease gun, and shop rags to clean up the mess.
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