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VIEW SOLUTIONS TO COMMON PROBLEMS
Lower Control Arm
Lower Ball Joint
Outer Tie Rod End
Select a part to view solution for common problems associated with the item.
Operation: The axle nut holds the CV axle to the wheel bearing hub. Advice: Most axle nuts are staked to lock them in place after tightening. Before you can remove the axle nut you must first straighten out the staked area of the old axle nut. If you are working without an air impact gun, loosen the axle nut while the wheel is still on the ground. If possible have an assistant hold their foot on the brake. Most manufacturers recommend not to reuse the old axle nut. Recommendations: New axle nut.(should come with new axle)
Operation: The lower control arm houses the lower ball joint and locates the steering knuckle on the bottom end. The lower control arm pivots on the end that is attached to the frame which allows for the up and down motion of the suspension during driving. Advice: In order to remove the axle shaft you must disconnect the lower ball joint from the steering knuckle and pry down on the lower control arm until the lower ball joint separates from the steering knuckle. On some vehicles this part can be made easier by disconnecting the sway bar from the lower control arm on the opposite side.
Operation: The lower ball joint is mounted between the lower control arm and the steering knuckle. It allows the steering knuckle to turn and pivot up to the limits of the steering and suspension geometry. Advice: Lower ball joints are tested in different ways depending on the type of joint and the year make and model of the vehicle. Some have wear indicators built into them. Check the repair guides for the vehicle that you are working on. If there is any question as to the integrity of the ball joint, now would be a good time to replace it. Recommendations: Repair guides
Operation: The outer tie rod end connects the steering system to the steering knuckle. It uses a ball and socket style joint to allow for the movement of the steering and suspension systems. Advice: To check a tie rod end grasp the tie rod and move it vigorously. There should be no play in the movement of the joint. Some tie rod end joints are spring loaded and will compress to the travel limits of the spring, but should feel firm with no wobble. On most vehicles the CV axle can be removed without having to disconnect the tie rod end. If the tie rod end checks out to be good but must be disconnected to remove the CV axle, use a tie rod end puller. A pickle fork and hammer will destroy the rubber boot on the joint. Recommendations: Tie rod end puller
Operation: Brake pads provide the friction material that when forced against the friction surface of the rotor stops the vehicle. Advice: Removal of the brake pads is generally not needed in the removal of the CV axle. But, any time the wheel is removed is a good time to check the wear of the brake pads and the condition of the rotor.
Operation: The transaxle (and engine) mounts provide the proper alignment for the CV axle, engine and transmission/transaxle, suspension and vehicle frame. Advice: Always inspect all mounts when changing the CV axle. Loose, broken, or missing mounts can cause vibration, misalignment and excessive wear to the CV axle joint and should be replaced. This will prevent premature failure of the replacement axle assembly.