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CV Joints 101: Everything You Need to Know

CV joints, (short for constant velocity joints) are found on all front-wheel drive vehicles any many rear-wheel and four-wheel drive vehicles as well. The CV joint performs an important function in your vehicle: it transfers the torque from your transmission to the driving wheels at a constant speed (hence the name). It’s rare for the CV joint to develop a problem, but it can happen, and when it does it’s important to repair the joint as soon as possible. Learn everything you need to know about constant velocity joints in this week’s blog.

CV Joints


The Function of the Joint

There are two sets of CV joints. Two are located on the ends of the drive shafts that connect to the transmission. These are called the inner joints. The other two connect the drive shaft to the wheels. These are the outer joints. In both cases, there is a boot that covers the joint to protect it and keep it lubricated.

The CV joint performs two functions:

  1. Transferring the torque from the transmission to the drive shaft in order to turn the wheels.
  2. Accommodating for the movement of the suspension.

Potential Problems

CV joints are actually well-known for their durability. Many cars with 200,000+ miles on them still have the original CV joints. The main problem with the joint is if the protective joint boot cracks. This allows the lubricant in the joint to leak out, which will result in the joint wearing out and eventually failing. The outer joint boots are more likely to crack than the inner ones.

Signs of a Damaged Joint

Look for a crack in the inner and outer joint boots. There might also be grease leaking out and located on the inside of the wheel rim and inside the drive wheel.

A worn-out outer CV joint will make a clicking or popping sound when you turn the wheel. This sound will get worse when you accelerate through the turn.

A worn-out inner CV joint will cause the car to shudder or shake from side to side when you accelerate. You might also here a clunking sound when shifting from drive to reverse.

Caring for Your Vehicle’s CV Joints

Every time you bring your vehicle in for maintenance, the mechanic will inspect the CV joints to make sure the boot is intact. This is the best way to ensure your CV joints are still in good working order. If you think your vehicle may have a bad CV joint, bring it in to your local auto repair shop in Baltimore, Auto Stop!


Auto Stop is your local auto repair shop, serving the Baltimore metro area. We are A+ accredited by the Better Business Bureau. We are also an ARI Fleet repair center for all Fleet Repairs.

Our mechanics are highly trained and use state-of-the-art Automotive diagnostic equipment to pinpoint your particular issues, repair it, and get you back on the road as quickly as possible. We promise to diagnose your auto repair problems in an honest and professional manner and all of our work is 100% guaranteed!

This entry was posted on Friday, February 13th, 2015 at 8:35 pm. Both comments and pings are currently closed.