Ball joints are important for the movement and stability of your car.
When they start to wear out, it’s important to replace them as soon as possible to avoid further damage.
Ball joint replacements are relatively inexpensive, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a repair that doesn’t feel burdensome.
We’ll look closely at the cost of ball joint replacement and how to determine when it’s time for a replacement.
What does your car’s ball joint do?
The ball joint connects the control arm to the steering knuckle.
It allows the suspension to move up and down while keeping the wheels in alignment.
As you can imagine, ball joints play a critical role in the safety and performance of your car.
Estimated Cost to Repair or Replace the Ball Joint
Luckily, replacing a ball joint is one of the cheaper auto repairs you could face.
Depending on your car and the type of ball joint that it requires, you could be looking at paying around $80 to $300 for a new ball joint and the related labor.
Symptoms of a Bad Ball Joint
There are a few different symptoms that you might notice if your ball joint is going bad.
Paying attention to these signs can help you avoid further damage and costly repairs down the road.
1. Uneven Tire Wear
If your ball joint is going bad, it will cause your tires to wear unevenly. This is because the ball joint is not keeping the suspension in proper alignment.
2. Popping or Clicking Noises
You might hear popping or clicking noises when you turn the steering wheel if your ball joint is wearing out.
3. Loose Steering
A bad ball joint can cause your steering to feel loose or like it’s wandering. This is because the ball joint is not keeping the suspension in proper alignment.
4. Uneven Ride
You might notice that your car has an uneven ride if the ball joints are going bad. This is because the ball joint is not keeping the suspension in proper alignment.
5. Lowered Vehicle
If your ball joint is wearing out, it can cause your vehicle to sit lower than normal. This is because the ball joint is not keeping the suspension in proper alignment.
If you notice any of these symptoms, it’s important to have your car checked out by a mechanic as soon as possible.
Is it OK to drive on a bad ball joint?
No, it’s not safe to drive on a bad ball joint.
If your car’s ball joint is worn out, it can cause your to lose control since the ball joint will not keep the suspension in proper alignment.
Driving on a bad ball joint can also damage other parts of your suspension, like your tie rods.
Ignoring the problem can lead to the need for much more expensive repairs.