Does your Audi’s steering wheel shake when driving on the highway, hitting bumps, or having loose steering? Learn how to fix it yourself by replacing your Audi tie rod.

Changing the tie rod on your Audi is easy and requires a few tools. Front-wheel alignment is required after you change the Audi tie rod. To replace the tie rod on your Audi, plan on about one to two hours, depending on your experience level.

Symptoms of a bad tie rod

Below are some of the most common symptoms of bad tie rods.

  • Loose steering,
  • Steering wheel shaking when hitting bumps,
  • Steering wheel shaking at highway driving,
  • Excessive steering wheel play,
  • Noise such as clunking or knocking,
  • The car pulls to one side due to an alignment issue,
  • Steering wheel vibrations

What you will need

  • Audi Outer Tie Rod
  • Tie Rod Removal Tool
  • Car Jack
  • Jack stand
  • Ratchet
  • Metric Sockets
  • Open-end wrench
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Follow these instructions to replace the outer tie rod on your Audi.

  1. Park the Audi on a flat surface. Place the shifter in the park and engage the parking brakes.
  2. Before you raise your Audi, you need to break loose the lug nuts. Do not remove them completely. audi loosen lug nuts
  3. Jack up the car and remove the front wheel. Remember to place a wheel chock behind one of the rear wheels.
  4. Next, jack up the car using a floor jack. Place a jack stand to support the vehicle.
  5. Locate the out-tie rod. Here is a picture of the tie rod on an Audi A4. outer tie rod audi
  6. Remove the cotter pin (split pin) from the tie rod end. This will allow you to remove the castle nut. remove cotter pin
  7. Remove the castle nut from the steering knuckle of your Audi. Use a wire brush to clean the threads if the threads are rusted. Apply penetrating oil and allow it to soak. Counter hold the tie rod end, or the castle nut will just sping and refuse to come out.loosening bolt on the tie rod
  8. Use a wrench to loosen up the bolt that secures the outer tie rod to the inner tie rod. loosen outer tie rod
  9. Next, use a marker or chalk to mark the threads at the end of the outer tie rod. This will help with keeping the alignment as close to stock as possible. Remove outer tie rod
  10. Use a tie rod puller or separator to disconnect the tie rod from the steering knuckle. Do not use a fork if you plan on reusing the same tie rod because a fork will damage the boot. pulling outer tie rod
  11. Remove the old tie rod by turning it counterclockwise several times. The inner tie rod has many threads, which can take a while. removing old tie rod
  12. Install the new tie rod in reverse order. Torque the castle and jam nut to specification. installing the new tie rod
  13. Drive to an alignment shop to have the front wheels aligned.

These are general instructions on changing the outer tie rod on Audi A1, A3, A4, A5, A6, A7, Q3, Q5, Q7, and TT.

Torque Specification

  •  Hex jam nut:  30 ft.lbs.
  • Tie rod nut: 74 lb.ft.

Typical values. Verify by calling any Audi dealer.

We hope you found this guide on Audi Tie Rod Replacement helpful. Check these troubleshooting and repair guides for more help on your Audi vehicle.

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One Comment

  1. Anonymous says:

    I cannot be really sure about the prices quoted here in Dollars but In Europe, it is quite true that Audi dealership charges more than 300 Euros for this fix.
    I have personally fixed this myself for less than 50 Euros. So there is a rip-off..
    You can find some great parts from Amazon! You really need just 4 things:
    -19mm socket
    – 19mm wrench
    -Tie Rod puller

    If you have never done this before, the above explanations should be enough. By putting in some time and effort it is possible to save hundreds of Dollars/Euros on potential costs.