What Are Axles and What Do They Do

Your car's axles quietly carry out a vital role in the seamless functioning of your vehicle. Yet, despite their significance, these unsung heroes often go unnoticed until they encounter trouble. If you're unsure what vehicle axles are, read on to learn more about their importance and how to diagnose and repair common axle problems.

What Are Axles and What Do They Do

Axles are essential components of your vehicle's drivetrain, responsible for transmitting power from the engine to the wheels. Without axles, your car would be stationary, unable to transfer rotational energy from the engine to the wheels required for motion.

The primary purpose of axles is to provide a connection between the wheels and the transmission, ensuring the smooth transfer of torque. Most vehicles have two types of axles:

  1. Drive Axles: These are found in vehicles with front-wheel drive (FWD), rear-wheel drive (RWD), and all-wheel drive (AWD). Drive axles power the wheels and rotate according to the engine's RPMs.
  2. Non-Drive Axles: In FWD vehicles, the non-drive axles are in the rear, while RWD have them in the front. These axles support the vehicle's weight and provide stability but do not contribute to propulsion.

Common Axle Problems and How to Diagnose Them

  • CV Joint Failure: Constant Velocity (CV) joints are critical components of front-wheel drive axles. Symptoms of CV joint problems include clicking or popping sounds during turns and vibrations.  Leaking CV boots can also lead to CV joint failure, resulting in replacement.
  • Bent Axle: Impact from potholes or accidents can lead to bent axles, causing vibrations and uneven tire wear. A visual inspection by our professional team at Grand Garage in Escondido, CA, can help you identify whether you have bent axles.
  • Leaking Axle Seal: Axle seals prevent fluid from leaking from the differential. Leaking seals can lead to low fluid levels and damage to the differential.
  • Worn Wheel Bearings: Faulty wheel bearings can cause noise while driving, and excessive wear can lead to unsafe driving conditions.
  • Axle Shaft Damage: The axle shaft can be susceptible to damage from collisions or excessive stress. 

While some minor axle issues can be resolved with basic maintenance, it is crucial to seek professional help for major axle problems. Axle failure will leave you stranded so you will want to make sure they are not neglected.  Regular inspections by skilled technicians can help catch axle issues early on, preventing extensive damage to your vehicle and ensuring your safety on the road.

We believe that understanding the role of axles and recognizing common problems is essential for every car owner. So, the next time you hit the road, remember to appreciate the hard work of your car's axles. If you're looking for axle repairs, turn to the local auto repair experts at Grand Garage in Escondido, CA!

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