5 Best Ball Joint Press Kits For Your Car In 2021

Ball joint press kits are a must-have for anyone who wants to work with automobiles. In this guide, you’ll learn which five kits are the best available and what offerings make each of them unique.

What Is a Ball Joint Press Kit?

While each ball joint press kit is different, they all come with multiple adapters of varying sizes that work to remove or install certain car parts.

The kits will often come with additional parts, like receiving tubes/cups, a center rod, C-clamp, and sleeves, all of which can play roles in different tasks.

What Does It Do?

Typically, a ball joint press kit is what people use when they want to remove ball joints from a vehicle. Because some manufacturers press their ball joints into their cars, it is impossible to remove them by hand. So, this is where the ball joint press kit comes into play.

Using one of its many adapters, you can press out any ball joint without causing damage to the vehicle.

Sometimes people will hammer ball joints out, but that is a far less safe and efficient way to get the job done than if one were to use a ball joint press kit.

It’s also worth knowing that ball joint press kits are not only suitable for working on ball joints. They are also good for removing and installing universal joints.

However, some kits have designs that focus more on specialization for specific tasks than others, so you do have to keep this in mind.

How A Ball Joint Press Works

When it comes to removing and installing ball joints with a ball joint press kit, the process can prove challenging if you have never done it before.

If you have a ball joint that you would like to replace, you must first remove the snap ring that sits around the ball joint. For this part, you can use a pair of plyers.

Once you’ve got the snap ring off, it’s time to set up the C-clamp.

To do this, insert the jackscrew into the C-clamp and press the jackscrew down on top of the ball joint. You should have the screw going from the top down because you don’t want to try pushing the ball joint out from the bottom up for numerous reasons.

The greatest one being that you don’t want to damage the ball joint’s stud by putting pressure on it.

Once you have the set up for the C-clamp, you never want to press the ball joint out just yet. First, you need to pick out an adapter with enough width and depth to go around the whole ball joint.

If you don’t do this step and immediately press the ball joint out instead, there will be nothing beneath the ball joint to catch it as it falls out.

After selecting the proper adapter, you can then press out the ball joint.

Make sure you set up the C-clamp so that the center jackscrew is pressing straight down on the top of the ball joint and right in the middle. You don’t want to press at an angle, or this process will not work smoothly.

On the top part of the jackscrew is a spot for a ratchet piece to connect. You can test out multiple ratchet piece sizes to determine what size will work best.

Afterward, you can connect a breaker bar or other type of bar for the turning process. Be sure to turn the bar slowly when pushing out the ball joints, as you do not want to go too fast.

Eventually, the ball joint will fall out into the adapter without leaving any damage to the hole it sat in.

Now, to press in a new ball joint, you do mostly the same process, except you do it in reverse.

To start, get an adapter that touches the shoulder/outermost ring of the ball joint that you want to install but does not touch any other part of the ball joint. You will also need an installation and removal adapter to go on the top and bottom of the primary adapter.

The installation and removal adapters will allow you to press the ball joint from the bottom without pressing on the stud itself. That way, you won’t damage the ball joint during the installation process.

Set up the C-clamp the same way you did the first time but do it in reverse order this time. Also, ensure that the top installation adapter is at the centermost point of the jackscrew before you begin the installation to avoid installing the ball joint at a wrong angle.

Using your bar of choice, turn the jackscrew to install the new ball joint, and stop turning once you feel the screw getting tight. You can then remove the C-clamp and adapters before placing the new snap ring around the ball joint.

Types of Ball Joint Press Kits

In most cases, you will find that ball joint press kits are relatively standard, though some have more specialization to them.

Type 1

The standard ball joint press kits come with most of the parts you would expect to find. These parts include several adapters to fit different size requirements, a jackscrew for installations and removals, sleeves, C-clamps, etc.

The most significant difference that you will usually find in these standard ball joint press kits is the designs of the individual parts.

Type 2

In some cases, ball joint press kits can have parts for more specific tasks that standard ball joint press kits cannot always do.

For example, if you had to install ball joints on a Jeep and needed a larger type of adapter for the job, you would need to find a specific type of ball joint press kit that has the proper adapters, or you might even have to find the adapters as a standalone product.

Who Makes The Best Ball Joint Press Kits?

Here is a list of the five best ball joint press kits.

Table Summary

Kit NameDescriptionRecommended sellerPrice
Orion Motor Tech Master Ball Joint Press Kit A reliable kit, easy-to-use, and versatile in numerous forms of ball joint removal/installation. Amazon $95.99
Orion Motor Tech Master Ball Joint Press KitA reliable kit, easy-to-use, and versatile in numerous forms of ball joint removal/installation. Amazon $95.99
Astro Pneumatic Ball Joint Service Tool A heavy-duty kit that specializes in doing work on more demanding ball joint installation/removal jobs Amazon $73.13
KSP Adjustable Ball Joint Press Kit A good beginner-friendly kit that comes with all the necessary parts, but not an overabundance that will overwhelm. Amazon $54.95
Aurelio Tech 21 PCS Ball Joint Press Kit & U Joint Removal A versatile kit that allows for service on vehicles having the Dana 28, 30, 35, 44, and 60 axle. Amazon $85.99
OEMTOOLS Master Ball Joint and U Press Set A kit with a sleek and lightweight design, as well as a solid variety of tools for work with multiple sizes of ball joints. Amazon $88.00

Orion Motor Tech Master Ball Joint Press Kit

Description

The Orion Motor Tech Master Ball Joint Press Kit is a reliable and easy-to-use ball joint press kit that comes with all the essentials for ball joint removal and installation.

Performance

The universal compatibility of this ball joint press kit makes it among the best. There are only a handful of instances where it may not work with a specific type of vehicle.

However, this kit is not short on offerings with nine different adapters, a center rod, jackscrew, sleeve, C-frame, installation and removal adapters/cups, a receiving cup, and three receiving tubes.

It will get the job done, and with nine adapters at your disposal, you will practically never have to worry about not having an adapter that fits the ball joint.

Durability

From a longevity standpoint, the parts of this ball joint press kit will last you a while thanks to their heavy-duty carbon steel material and anti-rust black-oxide finish. You certainly will not need to worry about any rust or corrosion build-up.

Price

The price of the Orion Motor Tech Master Ball Joint Press Kit is $95.99, which is a fair asking price for its offerings.

Where To Buy It

You can buy this kit on Amazon.

Astro Pneumatic Ball Joint Service Tool

Description

The Astro Pneumatic Ball Joint Service Tool is a heavy-duty ball joint press kit that includes a C-frame, three-receiver tubes of varying sizes, and installation/removal adapters.

Performance

Being a ball joint press kit that focuses on heavy-duty work, the Astro Pneumatic Ball Joint Service Tool is excellent for more demanding projects. It is terrific if you’re working with ball joints that have taken on a lot of tightness from thick layers of rust or corrosion.

While the number of adapters at your disposal with this particular kit is not as numerous as some others, there is still a solid amount of variety.

Durability

Because this is a heavy-duty kit, you will not need to worry about it breaking on you, as the forged steel design will hold up perfectly well.

Price

The Astron Pneumatic Ball Joint Service Tool costs $73.13. It’s a bit cheaper as far as ball joint press kits go. However, you will still get a high-quality product for the price.

Where To Buy It

You can buy this kit on Amazon.

KSP Adjustable Ball Joint Press Kit

Description

The KSP Adjustable Ball Joint Press Kit is a simplistic kit that is among the best for those who are new or lack experience with ball joint press kits. It comes with a wide array of pieces, including three receiving tubes, an installation adapter, removal adapter, jackscrew, installation cup adapter, forcing screw press, receiving cup, and installing cup.

Performance

While you won’t have tons of adapters to choose from as you would with some other ball joint press kits, what you get with this kit is still more than enough if you’re trying to remove or install a ball joint.

This kit also works with most American domestic and imported 2-wheel drive cars and 4-wheel drive cars, and pickup trucks with press-fit type ball joints.

Durability

The KSP Adjustable Ball Joint Press Kit is a well-made kit that will last you for several ball joint installations and removals. And if it goes bad within a year, there is a one-year warranty to cover your purchase.

Price

The KSP Adjustable Ball Joint Press Kit costs $54.95.

Where To Buy It

You can buy this kit on Amazon.

Aurelio Tech 21 PCS Ball Joint Press Kit & U Joint Removal

Description

The Aurelio Tech 21 PCS Ball Joint Press Kit & U Joint Removal is very similar to the Orion Motor Tech Master Ball Joint Press Kit in terms of offerings. It includes the same number of adapters, tubes, and other parts, but it also allows for service on vehicles having the Dana 28, 30, 35, 44, and 60 axle.

Performance

This ball joint press kit has it all, so you should have no fears about whether it will be up for whatever job you’re trying to do. It can remove and install ball joints, universal joints, and brake anchor pins, making it a very versatile kit.

Durability

Being made of carbon steel, the Aurelio Tech 21 PCS Ball Joint Press Kit & U Joint Removal will not break as long as you use it properly.

Price

The Aurelio Tech 21 PCS Ball Joint Press Kit & U Joint Removal price is $85.99.

Where To Buy It

You can buy the kit on Amazon.

OEMTOOLS Master Ball Joint and U Press Set

Description

Unlike any other kit on this list, the OEMTOOLS kit is the lightest in weight. Its case also has a much sleeker design, so those are factors to consider if they matter to you.

In addition to its design, this kit has an elegant assembly of its tools, making it easy to sort through.

Performance

The OEMTOOLS kit supports multiple sizes of ball joints with its deep and shallow receiving tubes and receiving cups. So, it is just as good as its competitors in the flexible repairs department.

If you want to enhance the performance of this kit even further, you can also use it in conjunction with the OEMTOOLS Master Ball Joint Installer/Remover Adapter Set. The adapter set adds on 14 pieces, including eight receiving tubes, two installing tubes, two receiving cups, a plug, and a remover/installer.

Durability

This kit will not break on you during use, nor will it easily rusty, as forged steel is the material of all the parts.

Price

The OEMTOOLS Master Ball Joint and U Press Set costs $88.00.

Where To Buy It

You can buy the kit on Amazon.

The Best Overall Pick

The Orion Motor Tech Master Ball Joint Press Kit is the best overall pick for its variety, durability, effectiveness, and simplicity. It covers all the bases of ball joint installation and removal for a solid price, making it a hard kit to beat.

To Buy Or To Rent a Ball Joint Press Kit?

If you plan on using a ball joint press kit a lot, then buy one. However, if you only need it for a single-use, renting from a local auto parts store is better.

FAQs

Here are answers to a few questions you may still have.

Can You Replace a Ball Joint Without a Press?

Technically, the answer is yes. However, the process is much more complex and less efficient. It can even damage the ball joint, so it is always best to use a ball joint press kit.

Can You Use a Ball Joint Press For Bushing?

Yes, you can use a ball joint press for bushing installation.

Can You Use a Ball Joint Press For U-Joints?

Yes, you can use a ball joint press for u-joints. Some press kits even specialize in u-joints installation/removal.

How Do You Use a Snap On Ball Joint Press?

A snap-on ball joint press works the same as a regular one, except its adapters snap on and can have extensions for on-the-fly versatility.

What Can I Use Instead of a Ball Joint Press?

You can use a hammer to remove and install ball joints, but you must be very careful with this method. Otherwise, you might accidentally damage the ball joints or other parts of your vehicle.

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Author: DJ

Dave Junior is a hands-on automotive technician with experience in performing service, diagnostics, and repairs on domestic and imported vehicles. He enjoys writing and sharing his knowledge far and wide.

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