Ball Joint Spins When Tightening Nut (This Is What to Do)

If you see that your ball joint spins, you must not ignore it anyway. Because this may seem something normal to us. But it can actually be problematic and deteriorate the condition very quickly. And it would produce constant noise too.

So, why does the ball joint spins when tightening nut?

If you see your car’s ball joint spin when tightening nuts, there are a few reasons. The first thing would be the absence of pressure on the arm. However, the lower control arm might be bad too for which the problem arrives. And finally, a leaking fuel tank could also be responsible for this!

Here is a brief of what you want to know. Read long managing your time if you to get the details and useful drills. We have all these here.

So, get started now!

Why Does the Ball Joint Spins When Tightening Nut?

Today, a lot of car users have come across this common problem. And that is the ball joint spinning whe tightening the nut.

So, this happens due to reasons hiding behind. And these are in fact the common issues driving this problem. So, why does the ball joint spins when tightening the nut?

Well, the reasons that are responsible for this are covered here. We also got here the solutions that you need to resolve these. So, take a look.

Reason 1: A Low Pressure on the Arm

Whenever you take off or replace the ball joint nut, you need to tighten it. Like, you put it back by trying to tighten it properly.

But that is the main time when this problem arises. Like, you may not have given the proper pressure that it needs.

Say, you started tightening the nuts to the ball joint. But this would keep on rotating. Because the lower control arm is not having the proper pressure that it needs.

When you are tightening the nuts into the lower arm, the pressure needed is significant. And most car users fail to provide that. 

As a result, the nut does not get properly fastened to the joint shaft. And that is when you keep the ball joint nut loose. 

For this reason, the ball joint starts spinning when you are tightening the nut.


To fix this, you do not have to do anything out of the box. Rather, you just have to make sure that you give significant pressure to the lower control arm.

You have to see if the lower control arm is properly placed or not. And it also has to be tightened or fastened properly.

What you can do for this is to use a jack under the arm. Keep it very close to the ball joint as much as you can. 

This helps to get more pressure as the vehicle weight pushes towards the joint. And do not forget to use a jack stand when you use the jack here. 

Or else, this could be risky to operate. So, this is how you may fix the issue.

Reason 2: A Bad Lower Control Arm

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We have already come up with the first reason for this issue. So, we know that there could be issues with its tight or loose connection.

But it is not always the connection of the shaft. And it is neither the pressure on the lower control arm as well. There could be even more than that.

That is, there are a few times that users may find a lower control arm defective. 


So, a defective lower arm control unit is nothing very rare. It can be damaged anytime as it is something internal. 

Like, you would not have control over it at times but may still get affected. In that case, the department has to be looked at by an expert. 

They would surely give it a shot to get fixed or repaired. But it might not work all the time. As a result, it might also be needed to be replaced from time to time.

Reason 3: Fuel Leaking from the Fuel Tank

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When someone sees the ball joint spin when tightening, they always think of the shaft. In addition, some experts may also come up with the idea of lower arm control.

But almost no one can understand that it might also happen for something silly. It is silly in a way because the reason might not seem connected in any way.

So, it is a defective fuel tank. Yes, you read that right! A defective fuel does not mean it is completely damaged. Rather, it may have a few issues that can be fixed shortly.

And due to the issues, fuel from the fuel tank leaks at times. As a result, the fuel comes down all the way to the ball joint. 

That’s why you may see that the ball joint spins when you are tightening out. 

But do not forget that it may also happen due to a faulty filter. However, it is not a very common one to experience.


For a leakage in the fuel tank, you just fix the leakage. To get started, find the leakage properly. See, if there are multiple or only a single leak. 

Remember that finding fuel tank leakage might not be an easy thing to do. Once you locate it, sand it down. After that, clean the surface with a bit of water splash.

Now, take epoxy to put it in the leakages or holes. Prepare the epoxy accordingly and insert it into the hole. If there are multiple holes or leakages, go accordingly.

Once you fill up the holes, you are done. Now, you can refill the fuel tank to check if the issue is resolved.

And if you think your fuel filter is defective too, just replace it. Replacing a fuel filter is actually nothing to think about.

Now, trying to get an epoxy for your car? Here’s an idea.

Hope this helps!

So, these are the issues for your car ball joint spinning when tightening the nut.

Can the Ball Joint Nut Become Too Tight?

Yes, the ball joint nut may become too tight at times. Remember that it is not a good thing to overtighten the ball joint nut. However, it is not you who always overtightens it.

Because the nut may get overtightened by itself too. That is, the nut might be clogged itself at times. This mostly happens for the grease getting clogged around it.

And it may also happen due to dust or debris getting clogged around the nuts. As a result, the ball joint nuts become too tight.

For this, the nuts can get rusted very quickly. And moreover, the tightened nuts are very hard to loosen. So, you would have a hard time loosening it down when needed.

Thus, you must also keep a look at the position of the nuts. Like, the nuts must not be overtightened in any way.


Is there a problem if I overtighten the ball joint nut?

Yes, there would be a problem if you overtighten the ball joint nut of your car. Remember that both overtightening and keeping the nuts of the car loose would be problematic actually. This may damage the nut of the ball joint gradually. The nut could be damaged especially if you are overtightening it.

Do I need to replace the ball joint nut after a few months?

No, there is nothing like that you must replace the ball joint nut in months. Because this can be kept as long as you are able to keep the nuts good. But if the nuts start to get rusted then you may have a consideration. Check out if the nuts are rusted intensely to replace that.

Is it a problem if keep the ball joint nuts a bit loose?

No, it’s not a problem if you keep the ball joint nuts a bit loose. You actually better keep the nuts a bit loose all the time. Because overtightening the nuts may actually affect it negatively. But that does not mean you need to keep the ball joint nuts too loose.

How long does it take to replace a spinning ball joint?

The time required to replace a spinning ball joint depends on the specific vehicle and the extent of the damage. On average, a professional mechanic can replace a ball joint within a few hours. However, the process might take longer if other components need to be inspected or replaced as well.

Can a spinning ball joint cause alignment issues in my vehicle?

Yes, a spinning ball joint can lead to alignment problems. When a ball joint spins, it affects the wheel’s stability, causing irregular tire wear, handling issues, and compromised steering control. It’s crucial to address this problem promptly to prevent further damage to your vehicle.

The Final Words

In conclusion, encountering a spinning ball joint while tightening the nut can be a frustrating situation, but there are effective solutions at hand. By employing techniques such as using a ball joint separator or holding the joint in place with a wrench, mechanics and DIY enthusiasts can successfully secure the ball joint, ensuring a safe and stable vehicle suspension system.

Now you know why the ball joint spins when tightening nut! You must not have any confusion regarding the concern now.

Remember one thing. If you’re troubleshooting and fixing any part of your car, look around the other parts. Because it would be good timing to check the other parts at that time.

All the best!

Read also: Why Is My Brake Pedal Hard Before I Start My Car

Rob Dahm

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