How CV Axles Work – Time to Replace?

CV AxlesConstant velocity joints and axles, more commonly referred to as CV joints and CV axles are found on all types of cars, trucks and SUV’s. They are a part of the drivetrain and are responsible for transferring power from the vehicle’s engine, transmission and differential to the wheels of the car. Ultimately, this transfer of power is what allows the car to drive forward. CV axles are constantly used when a car is in motion, so they can begin to wear out over time, which means they may need to be replaced. Here are some common questions about CV axles and replacing them.

What a CV Axle Is and How it Works

A CV axle is an axle that connects the wheel to the drive train. It is made up of many different parts including CV joints, a CV axle shaft, CV boots and various bearings and cages. All of these parts work to ensure the CV axle is flexible and can maneuver in a variety of ways. As the engine and transmission supply power, that power is fed through the CV axle. The CV axle then turns the wheel. However, because roads are not straight or even, the axle has to have some flexibility to it so it doesn’t break or bend as you turn your car, hit a pothole, run over road debris, or encounter other situations that a straight axle would not work with.

Signs and Symptoms CV Axles Need to Be Replaced

The CV axle and all of its parts play an important role in allowing the wheels to properly roll and maneuver when the car is in motion. Due to this constant motion, the axles, joints and bearings can wear out, causing them to need to be replaced. Fortunately, a car will give many signs that the parts are wearing out and may need to be replaced. Some of the most common signs that the CV axle and CV joints are nearing the end of their lifespans include a loud clicking noise that comes from the wheel area when you turn, grease being present on the edge of the tires and excessive vibration from the wheel and undercarriage area as you are driving. If any of these signs are present, the entire CV shaft assembly should be inspected for signs of excessive wear.

The Importance of Replacing Both At the Same Time

Should CV joints and axles need to be replaced, it is important to replace both of the ones on your car at the same time, even if only one is excessively worn. Think about it like tires. It is strongly recommended that you replace all of your tires at the same time to ensure they work efficiently and wear evenly in the future. The same is true of CV axles and joints. If you only replace one, they are going to wear unevenly and they are not going to operate in tandem as they should. Replacing both at the same time helps to ensure they work as they are designed and they wear as close to evenly as possible.

If you are in need of replacement CV axles, be sure to check out the inventory with GSP Automotive Group. We are the leading manufacturers for aftermarket automotive driveline components. Visit our cv axle catalog to see our selection of inventory for your particular application.