How to Tell if a CV Joint Is Bad
#1 – Tire Edge Grease
When you spot grease along the edge of your tire, particular from a tear or tiny crack, it could be a sign you could have a bad CV joint. A significantly damaged CV joint means darker colour grease might be visible on the rim and wheel's interior.
#2 – Turning Causes Loud Noises
When you turn the steering wheel and hear noises such as a clicking sound or popping sound, it's very likely you have a broken or worn CV joint. You can test this by doing the following:
Shift the gear into reverse Turn the wheel all the way to one side, Step on the gas pedal.
You will be going in a circle, so make sure the area around you is clear. As you move backward in a circle, the popping sounds should get louder if you have a bad CV joint. You'll either have to replace the joint or the entire shaft assembly.
#3 – Bouncy Driving
You likely have a faulty CV joint if you're driving on a flat paved road and your vehicle is still bouncing around. You can verify this by going to an auto shop that repairs transmissions.
#4 – Vibrations
A worn or damaged CV joint will vibrate while you're driving. CV joints in this condition will not be able to balance properly during rotation. The more you accelerate, the more intense the vibrations will become.
When vibrations become too excessive, the vehicle will become more difficult to control and your overall riding experience will be impacted. This means the drive will become less comfortable and less safe for everyone in the car. The only solution here is to replace the CV joint.
#5 – Movement Causes Knocking Sounds
A CV joint that has become worn out from being used too much will cause a knocking sound. This noise can come from the inner joint on a front-wheel drive car. For rear-wheel drive, it can come from either the outer or inner joints. Knocking sounds can also come from the differential gears.
To perform a self-diagnosis of the joint problem, put the vehicle in reverse and accelerate, then decelerate. Alternate back and forth between acceleration and deceleration and listen for louder knocking sounds. This is proof of a bad CV joint.