I have never done this before on any car so it was all new to me. I knew several methods of removing them and didn’t think it would be difficult at all. Overall it was not difficult but I had some issues.
I have my complete control arm and strut rod off the car in one piece with the ball joint still attached.
I first attempted to use the hammer method. I removed the cotter pin and loosened the castle nut up to the top. I then placed a washer on top of the nut and started smacking it with a medium sized ball-pein hammer… didn’t come out.
So I figured I would try it on my newly purchased press. The press is more than enough to push it out but getting the item in there properly so it sits level and is resting on the area between the boot and control arm was not easy. I ended up getting some metal that was laying around and I had it all setup so it should push it straight out. After beginning to apply pressure the angle iron I had (1/4″ thick) started to bend… ball joint still not out.
After this I figured I would look for a price on the SST to do this. Partznet showed nothing so I searched on Google a bit to find it or others similar and didn’t come across anything except a pivot type separator.
I went back into the garage and figured I would try the pickle fork. I am not a fan of these because they can easily tear the boots and my ball joints were not showing signs of needing to be replaced. Infact they were showing signs of being replaced recently.
I got the pickle fork out, and then I thought about using a 2 jaw puller instead. Put the pickle fork back and found the 2 jaw puller.
I set it up so the two jaws of the puller were inbetween the boot of the ball joint and the control arm. The push rod of the puller was then directly on top of the ball joint stud. I started to tighten it down and before you knew it the ball joint was out.
Here is a picture of how I setup the puller on the second control arm. Once in this position all you do is crank the puller down with a wrench and in seconds the ball joint is out.
I will be calling Toyota one of these days to price the SST for this, if it is too expensive for me I will just continune to do it in this manner.