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  1. #1
    Senior Member Two Rings
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    Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

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    I just noticed when switching out my winters for my summers that the driver's side axle boot is torn.

    Is it a simple replacement with a new rubber boot or is it more involved than that?

    Any suggestions regarding cost for parts and labor would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Registered Member Four Rings B6JoeS4's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    you need to replace the joint. when the boot tears, the fluid leaks out and the joint gets caked with dirt and shit.

    most people just replace the whole axle because it is easier. i got mine here from raxles. they are much higher quality and more beefed up compared to stock. her is the website;
    www.raxles.com

  3. #3
    Registered Member Two Rings
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    Quote Originally Posted by B6JoeA4 View Post
    you need to replace the joint. when the boot tears, the fluid leaks out and the joint gets caked with dirt and shit.

    most people just replace the whole axle because it is easier. i got mine here from raxles. they are much higher quality and more beefed up compared to stock. her is the website;
    www.raxles.com
    How much are they if you don't mind me asking.

  4. #4
    Registered Member Four Rings B6JoeS4's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    i think it was 325 with shipping. that was almost a year ago though. i will be ordering another one soo

  5. #5
    Senior Member Two Rings
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    Is it recommended to replace two axles at the same time, or just the broken one?

    If they are not matched wouldn't that create a weight ratio differential between the two sides and a subsequent problem?

  6. #6
    Veteran Member Three Rings V8weight's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    No, not an issue. Just replace the faulty axle.
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  7. #7
    Registered Member Four Rings kingofnyc's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    If the boot just broke replace the boot, only if you can do it yourself . Dont spend your money on new axles.

  8. #8
    Veteran Member Four Rings Stampy's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    Quote Originally Posted by B6JoeA4 View Post
    you need to replace the joint. when the boot tears, the fluid leaks out and the joint gets caked with dirt and shit.

    most people just replace the whole axle because it is easier. i got mine here from raxles. they are much higher quality and more beefed up compared to stock. her is the website;
    www.raxles.com
    Please refrain from posting in this section. You are wrong and are trying to cost this man $300+ he doesn't have to spend .


    Now on to a correct answer...
    If it is the outer boot the parts cost $14(ECS/Blau/etc). That includes the new boot/clamps/grease. I forget what motor you have, but if it is a 2.8/4.2 it is very easy. You just loosen the six triple bolts from the trans and the whole axle falls out. This method doesn't work with the 2.7t because of the turbo plumbing. In which case you have to remove the dreaded pinch bolt.

    If you were getting clicking then you would need a new joint. Since you probably caught it in time, you can simply replace the needed parts. Pretty simple.

    Here is a link to the AW tech section
    In that section you will find two write ups. One labeled CV BOOT REPLACEMENT, and the other named CV JOINT/BOOT REPAIR. They are both pretty good. If you have any other questions feel free to PM me of as in this thread. If you were local I would offer to help.

    EDIT: just noticed you have a 4.2. It is an easy job then. Two hours tops if you have never done it before.
    Last edited by Stampy; 04-13-2009 at 10:38 PM.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Two Rings
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    I've not noticed any clicking per se, I just saw a lot of grease around the outer boot (closest to the rotor?) and saw the tear. I didn't see or feel much dirt had gotten inside, so hopefully what you're suggesting will work fine. I'll try to order the CV boot kit online and go from there.

    How did you clean the joint/boot area before re-greasing?

    Thanks for the help.

  10. #10
    Veteran Member Four Rings Stampy's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    once you get the joint off, just spray the hell out of it with brake clean. I used a full can. These things have A LOT of grease in them, so even if some gets out plenty is usually in. I rode with mine ripped in the winter for 2 and a half months before I replaced it. Wasn't the smartest thing to do, but I just never had the time to do it. When I got everything apart, the joint was fine. Hell even if that was bad, I think its only like $90 for the joint. On the other hand I have seen a "bad" joint saved. The guy just cleaned it and re greased it. It worked fine for him after that.

    Inner joint is a little more complicated. That is when you have to mess with that spider joint thing and stuff being set correctly.
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  11. #11
    Senior Member Two Rings marlonuf's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    Please refrain from posting on in this section. You are wrong and are trying to cost this man $300+ he doesn't have to spend .


    Now on to a correct answer...

    lol
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  12. #12
    Veteran Member Four Rings TheBlueMartin's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    Quote Originally Posted by B6JoeA4 View Post
    blah blah blah, wrong answer, blah blah blah

    This, people, is why you should NEVER take blind advice off the internet! You may get some no talent assclown that is wrong, or someone that actually knows what their doing (like me) may not fully understand what your doing/wanting.
    Enter at your own risk...

    Quote Originally Posted by Stampy View Post
    EDIT: just noticed you have a 4.2. It is an easy job then. Two hours tops if you have never done it before.
    I wouldnt say that on here either; for someone that has no idea what they are doing, its far from an 'easy' job. Ive seen green techs take 4 hours to do one, and even a few break things in the process.
    Last edited by TheBlueMartin; 04-14-2009 at 09:37 AM.
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  13. #13
    Veteran Member Four Rings Stampy's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    If he has ever worked on his cars suspension/brakes, then it should take no longer. I'm sorry, but for any of the NA motors it is beyond easy if you do the axle removal method.
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  14. #14
    Veteran Member Four Rings TheBlueMartin's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    I totally agree, but thats ASSUMING he has some technical skills. I dont know the guy from Adam, so Id never say anything like that. Again, thats just imo.
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  15. #15
    Veteran Member Four Rings audirs's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    Quote Originally Posted by B6JoeA4 View Post
    you need to replace the joint. when the boot tears, the fluid leaks out and the joint gets caked with dirt and shit.

    most people just replace the whole axle because it is easier. i got mine here from raxles. they are much higher quality and more beefed up compared to stock. her is the website;
    www.raxles.com

    how is this a wrong answer? ive snapped my joint completely in half because of this, having to have my car towed from work to my mechanic 110kms away because i didnt replace the axle when the boot tore. if the boot hasnt been torn for a while, you could get away not doing the axle. i learned the hard way, my boot was torn for a while and most likely was exposed to elements for months and months before i realized i needed it replaced. went to lunch 1 day, and the car wouldnt move after i left the parking lot.
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  16. #16
    Senior Member Two Rings
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    Is there any visual evidence to look out for once the axle has been removed to know whether or not a new joint/axle is required?

    Simply looking at the threads is enough?

    p.s. I can press <play> and <rec> at the SAME time on my Radio Shack tape recorder. Is that not a showcase of technical skill or what?

    Thanks guys for your concerns regarding my technical abilities (or lack thereof).

    I think Stampy's thread and links about replacing the boot are documented well enough for me to attempt this, so I will give it a try.

  17. #17
    Veteran Member Four Rings
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    ^^^ It depends on how long and how hard you drove with the torn boot, I had both front boots replaced last year, I drove around for a few weeks with them torn. You should be fine, just change the boot and re-grease.
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  18. #18
    Veteran Member Three Rings BostonDriver's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    If you are doing it yourself, just be prepared for a messy job. For me, although I don't like to waste money, I am happy to just give this job to the indy shop. Also, if you are doing it yourself (the AW tech articles are great reference), just make sure you are careful with the brake cleaner spray...it can harm your paint. Mask all areas close to the wheel well before you spray.

  19. #19
    Veteran Member Four Rings TheBlueMartin's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    Sorry, Im not doubting anyone particulars skills, I just dont want someone coming back and bitching after spending a entire weekend doing it and ending up spending more time/money than just taking it a shop.
    More people than just you are likely going to come across this post in the future.

    If it was making noise before you found the boot was torn, the axle will most likely need to be replaced. If it was find, and you just found it ripped, replacing the boot alone should be fine.

    TECH TIP: Get a box of disposable latex gloves before doing this job. CV grease is horrible to work with.
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  20. #20
    Veteran Member Four Rings wofman's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Stampy View Post
    Please refrain from posting in this section. You are wrong and are trying to cost this man $300+ he doesn't have to spend .

    Now on to a correct answer...
    If you were getting clicking then you would need a new joint. Since you probably caught it in time, you can simply replace the needed parts. Pretty simple....

    EDIT: just noticed you have a 4.2. It is an easy job then. Two hours tops if you have never done it before.
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  21. #21
    Veteran Member Four Rings Stampy's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    Most Indy's round here wanted to charge $180 with me bringing them the parts. I normally would have never even asked, but like I said it was winter and I didn't have the time or want to work in the cold. Is that a bad price? No, not at all. It just sucks when you know how easy it is to do. The two write ups on AW are good. I remember I found another one in the archives that describes the axle removal method in detail. I will look for it later when I get back from watching basketball.

    Iodit...I am about 99% sure you just have to replace the boot. This is a far to common problem, and the symptoms/fixes are like clockwork. Only thing you might need to buy is that triple square bit. I found mine at PepBoys for $3.99.

    This is pretty much what you need to do. Remove axle bolt in center of wheel. Remove wheel. You will see this...

    A heat shield sits over the CV boot held on by the bolts that go where the yellow circles are. Remove them and the shield. Then you remove the 6 triple square bolts you see in red. When they are removed, push the axle towards the front of the car and it comes right out. Then just follow the DIY's from AW. Reinstall the same way you took it out. Its butta!

    BD and Wofman are right though.....this can be messy, so wear crappy pants/shirt/gloves.
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  22. #22
    Senior Member Two Rings Longbeach24's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    For 14 bucks and only a couple hours, it's worth it to replace the boot alone.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Two Rings
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    Thanks for all the advice!

    I will do this when I get the boot kit delivered.

    Bought the GKN CV Boot Kit online from EeeeeeBaayyyyy for $22 shipped.

    Says it's direct OEM replacement, so....hope it's good enough.

    Plus $10 for brake cleaner, gloves, etc... and $4 for that square bit tool and about 2 hours time, get to learn more about my car and save $180...

    What's not to like about a little hard work?

  24. #24
    Veteran Member Four Rings G Men 08's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    ha^^ atta boy im the same way... partly because i just dont have the money to take her to a shop for hardly anything, and mainly because i like to know my car and get in there, see what shit does that way there i can make better diagnosis when somthing goes wrong!! i have confidence in you brotha C5 POWA FTW... i need sleep
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  25. #25
    Veteran Member Four Rings G Men 08's Avatar
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    and stampy... that shit was classic lol
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  26. #26
    Registered Member One Ring
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    Dealer replaced mine.....

    Last summer after buying my 04 allroad with 49K from the local Lithia Audi dealer they were doing a factory recall on an engine part. They advise me a CV joint boot was torn on a fron wheel. $320 later it was replaced.

    My local Audi shop SCARGO would have charged about $200 for the same job. Parts are about $50 I believe but labor intensive from what I'm told (wheel removal, breaks, etc.

  27. #27
    Active Member Two Rings
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    The metal circlip which holds the axle to the outer CV joint can not be reused and must be replaced with the new one provided in the kit. The large axle bolt must also be replaced with a new one. If you have a manual transmission and you remove the axle, then you should have new inner CV joint flange gaskets, so that the inner joint doesn't leak grease.
    The 1996 Audi A6 Quattro wagon I bought recently had a broken circlip in the right front axle. A good circlip will make a loud popping noise when the outer CV joint is forced off of the axle with the recomended tool. I disassembled and cleaned the outer CV joint to be sure that all the broken circlip was in the trash. Beware of reassembling the joint with the cage in backwards.
    Also, be sure to torque all bolts as specified in the Audi shop manual CD.

  28. #28
    Senior Member Two Rings
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    Quote Originally Posted by a6hcw View Post
    The metal circlip which holds the axle to the outer CV joint can not be reused and must be replaced with the new one provided in the kit. The large axle bolt must also be replaced with a new one. If you have a manual transmission and you remove the axle, then you should have new inner CV joint flange gaskets, so that the inner joint doesn't leak grease.
    The 1996 Audi A6 Quattro wagon I bought recently had a broken circlip in the right front axle. A good circlip will make a loud popping noise when the outer CV joint is forced off of the axle with the recomended tool. I disassembled and cleaned the outer CV joint to be sure that all the broken circlip was in the trash. Beware of reassembling the joint with the cage in backwards.
    Also, be sure to torque all bolts as specified in the Audi shop manual CD.
    Thanks for the info. Perhaps I'll just let the local Smith's Import Specialists take care of this job this time. I can watch and learn first.

  29. #29
    Active Member Two Rings
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    Re: Torn Axle Boot...what is the best way to handle it?

    You may get the BentleyPublishers.com Audi shop manual CD from http://www.motorbookguy.com.
    AudiWorld has CV boot information at http://www.audiworld.com/tech/ .
    You can get the CV joint band pliers from most auto stores such as Advance Auto. The
    GKN CV boot kit will work, however be sure to open the box and check that you are not missing the circlip or any of the other small parts before beginning.
    Also, be careful when removing the axle not to damage the antilock brake sensor wire or the brake pad wear indicator wire, as they are near the outer CV joint.
    Last edited by a6hcw; 04-16-2009 at 06:28 PM.



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