Replacing driveshaft CV boots
The rubber covering (or “boot”) around a CV joint in a driveshaft does a very important job. Not only does it keep the joint inside clean and protected from road dirt and moisture, but it helps keep the sticky grease used for lubrication in.
Because of the very nature of a CV joint, the boot can be expected to perform a variety of movements, all whilst twisting and rotating. Over time, as countless twists and turns and goodness knows how much road spray, salt and ice take their toll the rubber compound perishes.
Sooner or later it splits, and water gets in to the joint and the lubrication gets out. Left unchecked, the joint loses all its lubricant, runs dry, and starts to wear at a much faster rate. Eventually, the joint collapses – which can lead to all manner of horrors. At best the driveshaft separates whilst you’re moving off. At worst, it parts company at speed, thrashes around and locks – possibly digging down into the road surface and catapulting the car over out of control.
In the UK, especially on front wheel drive cars, the CV joints and their protective rubber boots are subject to close examination and test as part of the annual MOT.
On rear wheel drive cars with open driveshafts, such as the Sierra and Granada, they are subject to visual inspection but its still a good idea to sort them out before they get to be a MOT problem.
So what can you do about a perished boot? Replace it – that’s what. Here's how.
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