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I wanted to ask everyone what sort of lifespan they get or expect to get out of cv axles. Just put my Loyale in for replacement of driver axle due to blown outer boot. This is the second replacement of this one which makes it number three. The initial factory axle lasted 101,000 miles. The second one is at 46,000 miles and 7 years of use.  Is this normal lifespan for an aftermarket axle? 

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I wanted to ask everyone what sort of lifespan they get or expect to get out of cv axles. Just put my Loyale in for replacement of driver axle due to blown outer boot. This is the second replacement of this one which makes it number three. The initial factory axle lasted 101,000 miles. The second one is at 46,000 miles and 7 years of use.  Is this normal lifespan for an aftermarket axle? 

 

Not all aftermarket axles are alike. For a brand-new one, I could see that being normal-ish, if not a little low. For a remanufactured one, that sounds impossibly high. I've had a 100% failure rate within one year on remanufactured CV axles (note: I've never used a genuine Subaru remanufactured axle). 

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Not all aftermarket axles are alike. For a brand-new one, I could see that being normal-ish, if not a little low. For a remanufactured one, that sounds impossibly high. I've had a 100% failure rate within one year on remanufactured CV axles (note: I've never used a genuine Subaru remanufactured axle). 

Really? Reman axles blow in a year? I guess I cannot complain. I had a chance to get a new Subie oem axle but at over twice the cost. The other side has reman that is also at 46k but looks good. If I went new oem, I would want both done and that would be over $1200. :o

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Aftermarket boots don't last as long as Subaru OEM boots, and an aftermarket axle probably doesn't have OEM Subaru boots.

I just checked my daily driver maintenance records and I had one aftermarket boot blow after 30,000 miles.  Subaru boots last longer.

 

Use Subaru boots if you want longer CV boot life.  Also, higher axle angles don't last as long either.  My Outbacks (lifted) break boots fairly often relatively speaking.  My FWD legacy that sits really low to the ground has 190,000 and i've never put new boots on it yet, got it with 125,00 miles on it so they have more than 65,000.

 

You have a secondary issue you didn't ask about.  You should never replace Subaru axles to begin with.  If a boot breaks you should replace the boots, not the axle.  Mechanics do it because it's easier not because it's what's best for you.  Subaru axles are very robust and simply don't fail before 200,000 miles.  Aftermarket axles are awful and fail all the time, they fail so often (see Chux comments above) that they're not worth my time at all.  I've seen gobs of issues, you can search any Subaru forum and find issue after issue...vibrating at idle, vibrating on acceleration, exploding the first day of installation, leaking grease, clicking, lasting only a year or two...and on and on, they're awful.  Of course that doesn't mean they're all bad - but they are inferior and have lots of issues.  %50 failure rate is atrocious and makes me puke, my time is too valuable for that - but that also means %50 are good - so plenty of people squeak by.

 

The best axle replacement procedure is this:

1.  Always reboot

2.  If the axle is clicking (outer joint failure) or vibrating on acceleration (inner joint failure) replace with MWE or reboot a used Subaru axle.

 

I get Subaru axles for $25-$33 each all the time and reboot them - %100 success rate. Extra effort - but it's a net time and money and effort saved since i've avoided all the failed axles, returns, doing jobs twice like aftermarkets.

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Not all aftermarket axles are alike. For a brand-new one, I could see that being normal-ish, if not a little low. For a remanufactured one, that sounds impossibly high. I've had a 100% failure rate within one year on remanufactured CV axles (note: I've never used a genuine Subaru remanufactured axle). 

 

Is that on stock cars or on lifted ones or EJ swaps?  kinda could make a difference.

 

I'll take a remaned subaru axle over chinese "new" ones any day.

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Do you guys replace whole axles?!  Why not just replace the joints that fail?  That's what we do here and it works great.  I can do a CV joint replacement in about 35 minutes.  I don't understand why you would replace the whole axle...  let alone a cheap aftermarket whole axle....

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We don't rebuild axles ourselves in North America because it is hard or impossible to find the parts.  We can get rebuilt axles just about anywhere,  also boots, but new CV joints are not available.

 

Too bad.

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Because labor wise it is easier to replace the entire axle.  I had a 89 GL that would eat CV joints, turned out the front "frame" was giving way and pulling them apart.

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I was always told by most mechanics that the older subarus eat up cv's becade they have a tight turn radious... am I uninformed? I've put 2 full sets of front axels... and just relaced them again befor I lifted it... but I hsve yet to do the rears... 86 gl10 5mt full time 4wd... is what I'm reading fact or opinion?

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That's what CV joints do, that is their job, that is what they are designed for. It can be just worn out parts for the rebuilds. It can be a bad parts supplier. 

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I was always told by most mechanics that the older subarus eat up cv's becade they have a tight turn radious... am I uninformed? I've put 2 full sets of front axels... and just relaced them again befor I lifted it... but I hsve yet to do the rears... 86 gl10 5mt full time 4wd... is what I'm reading fact or opinion?

Old subarus do have a very tight maximum steering angle....

 

 

 

But, they don't have to eat CVs. OEM ones can easily last 200k miles if the grease/boots are cared-for

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O

But, they don't have to eat CVs. OEM ones can easily last 200k miles if the grease/boots are cared-for

+1

if you have axle problems then you need a set of known good Subaru OEM axles and reboot them.  you'll never replace them again, fact.  unless of course you're in a lifted rig and really working them hard...in that case you gotta pay to play or get better drop blocks for your lift kit.  MWE is a good alternative if you can't source OEM Subaru axles.

 

the older CV *boots* do tear more often than newer ones, probably better material compounds available today and for over 10 years Subaru has been using new style boots with a lot more convolutions, those last really well and routinely exceed 100,000 miles. i'm not atuned to steering but if the wheels turn at a higher angle that may add more wear too.  but it's not the joints/axles that are any problem on older generation axles.  it's simply the boots that tear more often, but the boots should be replaced, not the axles.  a lot of mechanics just replace axles and not boots.

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well the axles are lifetime warrenty so i dont have to pay to play anymore unless you count time to install witch i am getting very fast at btw... but thank you for the info...

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I had terrible luck with the GCK brand new axles. So bad that the manager of the Autozone warned me that I was pushing my luck with the lifetime replacement warranty and would likely get flagged.

 

Those joints were junk out of the box. I had the needle bearings from the tripod joint poking out through the boot while it was still full of grease, and had 3 of the outer CV cages bust. Loud bang and instant neutral. I'd just chuck it in 4wd and keep going. I'd build axles by swapping the remaining joints around to have one complete one and return the trashed one for the next break.

 

Genuine subaru axles have a distinctive shade of green paint on the CV cups. If you use high temp sillicone boots on the inner joints, they won't fail from being cooked by the catalytic converter. It's always better to re-boot a subaru axle than to play the aftermarket roulette. If you put the axle back on the opposite side of the car from where it came, you double it's wear surface life.

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I had terrible luck with the GCK brand new axles. So bad that the manager of the Autozone warned me that I was pushing my luck with the lifetime replacement warranty and would likely get flagged.

 

Those joints were junk out of the box. I had the needle bearings from the tripod joint poking out through the boot while it was still full of grease, and had 3 of the outer CV cages bust. Loud bang and instant neutral. I'd just chuck it in 4wd and keep going. I'd build axles by swapping the remaining joints around to have one complete one and return the trashed one for the next break.

 

Genuine subaru axles have a distinctive shade of green paint on the CV cups. If you use high temp sillicone boots on the inner joints, they won't fail from being cooked by the catalytic converter. It's always better to re-boot a subaru axle than to play the aftermarket roulette. If you put the axle back on the opposite side of the car from where it came, you double it's wear surface life.

I've seen some generic-fit silicone boots for sale at Amazon, but the few reviews were negative.

 

Have they been durable for you? got any part numbers or sources?

 

thanx

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well the axles are lifetime warrenty so i dont have to pay to play anymore unless you count time to install witch i am getting very fast at btw... but thank you for the info...

 

What brand do you have that are lifetime warranty?

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Um duralast gold I think... I kept blowing and going through remans while the car was bone stock!... went and bought new ones just befor the lift... not many miles yet... but I will see

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What brand do you have that are lifetime warranty?

Empi comes with a lifetime warranty, but it doesn't mean much since empi got absorbed by another business so they'll warranty it until they run out of stock.

On another note napa now carries "new" c.v's, I can't say how good they are. the quality looked good, but their is no way to tell until someone on her buys them and gives them a review.

Edited by mikaleda

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Here in the UK you're lucky to find any parts at all for an L-series (Leone) so I got a couple of whole replacement refurbished axles (we call them drive shafts here) from a specialist drive shaft firm - they were the last ones he had. They seem to be trouble free. But when I had my woodland management business I used to get through boots and axles really quickly because I was often driving through brush - but one could still get refurbished Subaru ones then.

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I've tried a bunch of boots. The silicone ones work well near high heat for inner boots, like on a turbo motor. Stock boots aren't bad for the outers.

 

I just put on a set of Rockford boots. They're pricey at $40 an axle, and a lot for shipping, but they're the toughest boots I've ever felt. Anyone else run these? I think they will last a long time.

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"lifetime warranty" can mean lower quality.  they crank out high volume of low quality stuff with bear minimum investment into checking, rebuilding, parts, labor, etc. often going into older cars that won't last long or stay in the same hands.  the offroad guys with trucks know this - they get alternators in water/mud and buy lifetime alternators or starters - they're low quality and tend to fail often - but they don't care since they're submerging and abusing them anyway, replacements are free, and they're relatively inexpensive.  it's entirely a business model for companies and no indication of quality.

 

if you have premium on your time, then don't get them.  if you don't care to replace them they may be a good fit. 

and yet for about the same price you can avoid any replacement...so seems odd to me that anyone wouldn't do the 100% solution but to each his own and if one has already bought them or doesn't yet know the strong correlation with aftermarket axles then have to work with what you got.

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All Cardone Remanufactured parts have a lifetime warranty. In that case, they're relying on you selling the car before they have to replace it more than a couple times.

 

The Duralast Gold CVs are NOT Cardone, or Remanufactured at all. They are definitely a much better quality. I'm very tempted to use them the next time I need axles.

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