What does a CV boot do? To answer this question, you need to look at the drive shaft of your car. The drive shaft connects the transmission to the wheels and its most important part is the constant velocity (CV) axles. They have joints that allow them to move according to the road conditions. The joints are covered in grease and a drive shaft joint constant velocity boot, or CV boot for short.
The drive shaft boot is made from rubber and is in charge of keeping the all-important grease in and any dirt out. If it wasn’t for the CV boot protecting the joint, it would wear out quickly and lead to problems with the axle.
CV boots are quite durable and usually don’t need to be replaced regularly. But since they are made from rubber and have quite a tough job, they can wear out or even tear. Therefore it is important to have them inspected at least once a year.
If your car has a lot of mileage or you are driving in more severe conditions, like off-roading, it is advisable to check them more regularly. While you can drive with a cracked CV boot, there is a high chance that your joint or axle will be damaged due to a lack of lubrication - that is dangerous and can lead to a very costly repair.
Here are some signs to look out for that might indicate a torn CV boot:
If your drive shaft joint constant velocity boot has severely deteriorated then it needs to be replaced as soon as possible. You can only do a CV boot repair if the tear is small. For a repair you can buy a boot kit, which includes new CV boots, CV boot clips, clamps, and grease. While those parts are inexpensive, you will still need to disassemble the joints and take out the axles. This can be time-consuming and tricky if you are not a seasoned mechanic.
When in doubt, we recommend taking your car to a quality garage. Your mechanic can also advise whether it will be enough to replace the CV boots or if you should replace the entire axle, something most experts recommend - often there is more damage than meets the eye when the CV boots have leaked.
Either way, you should have your car checked as soon as you notice an issue with the CV boots in order to avoid more expensive repairs in the future. Also, note that you cannot pass an MOT with a cracked or torn CV boot.
On autobutler.co.uk you can request quotes for a CV boot repair or replacement from garages in your vicinity.
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