Constant velocity axles, commonly referred to as CV axles, transfer power from your engine’s transmission to the wheels and propel the vehicle forward. The flexible joint in a CV axle, which accommodates wheel movement, is covered in a rubber boot that is referred to as the CV Boot.
This boot serves as a simple dust cover for the CV joint meant to keep out dust and dirt, and keep in the grease that lubricates the CV joint. This may seem like an obscure part, one that you don’t have to worry about. But CV boots serve a simple but important purpose and allow the CV axles and joints to stay clean and enjoy a long service life. When a CV boot leaks, it can cause the attached joint to become damaged posing a serious safety hazard.
Usually, a problematic CV boot will produce a few symptoms, alerting the driver that service is required:
A grease leak is probably the most common sign of a failing CV boot. Over time, the rubber CV boot can become dry or brittle, creating cracks or tears. When this happens the boot will leak grease onto the inside of the wheel. Often times the grease can also be flung onto the chassis or other parts on the underside of the vehicle as the axle turns.
Another symptom of a bad CV boot is vibrating coming from the axle area. A torn boot can also allow dirt, debris, and moisture to enter the CV joint, which will damage the joint and cause vibration. A vibrating CV axle will usually need to be replaced.
One of the more serious symptoms of a torn CV boot is clicking noises from the axle, especially during turns. This indicates that the joint has become loose to the point where play has developed, causing it to click during turns. A clicking CV joint will need to be replaced, as this level of damage is usually not serviceable.
If you notice or suspect that your CV boot may be damaged, have one of our professional technicians inspect the vehicle to determine if a replacement is appropriate, or if the entire joint should be replaced. All of our auto repair services are backed by an industry-leading 3 year / 36,000 mile warranty on parts and labor. Call us today at (413) 314-2280 or schedule an appointment online.