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Old 11-04-2012, 08:00 PM   #1 (permalink)
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replace CV boot vs whole axle

Got a torn boot on one side. Seems like it may be cost effective to just change out the whole axle, since they are 65-100 bucks each.
Is this something a non-mercedes mechanic can screw-up? I got a guy who I get to do stuff I don't want to do, but have not used him for this car..
Also, three brands of cheap axles FEQ, and EPMI, and OP. Which to buy. here are links:

02 2002 Mercedes E320 Axle Assembly - Driveshaft & Axle - EMPI, First Equipment Quality, Front Left, Front Right, Rear - PartsGeek

Mercedes Axle Shaft (E320 E430) - OP Parts 40733015 | FCP Euro
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Old 11-04-2012, 08:43 PM   #2 (permalink)
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After paying $1200 for MB front axle few years ago, I have my doubts what exactly the $100 can buy you?
If you still have the CV joint full of grease, replacing the boot is not only cheap, but much easier than replacing whole axle.
Your link show once front axle and once rear axle?
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:21 AM   #3 (permalink)
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if you don't drive a lot, get another 100 dollar made in China axle.

If you do drive a lot, replace the boot, it's kind of hard to replace the boot, 1), the boot is very tight. 2) The assembly is very tight it self to pulling it apart.

Same theory with the lower control arm. I spent the whole day to squeeze the inner rummer bushing out... totally waste of time. But the new lower control arm on the 4MATIC costs 800$..so...
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Old 11-05-2012, 04:55 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Replacing a half axle is the way they fix this on my 1991 Camry and I've been through this 3 times now. I have never understood why a $10 rubber boot can't be replaced!
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Old 11-05-2012, 05:25 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Can you buy a split boot, and do they work?
I read a thread on replacing a boot, and it seems difficult and requires special tools. Also, you need a special tool, and can puncture the boot in the process..
A couple of people just replaced the whole axle. I'm going to send them a Private message to see if the axles held up...
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Old 11-05-2012, 05:37 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I have heard of the split boots but for some reason both the Goodyear store and the Toyota dealer said the proper solution was axle replacement. Each time I spent somewhere over $300 parts + labor. All three times the places used rebuilt axles but the dealer one is still holding grease whereas the first Goodyear job failed and they did the same side again. I suspect the dealer used a better part.

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Old 11-05-2012, 05:41 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I bought a cv drive axle for my car 3 months ago off Ebay for $135 and it's fine. I'm going to need to order another one for the other side soon, it's starting to click when I turn.
I didn't try installing it since my mechanic only charged 80 bucks to replace it, he said it was a piece of cake.

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Old 11-05-2012, 08:06 AM   #8 (permalink)
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bad boot

Here's what my boot looks like.
I can't tell anything is wrong with the axle, but the boot may have been bad for awhile. If I do it myself before winter, all I have time for is a split boot (To extend the life a bit). Anybody know where I can get one?
Attached Thumbnails
replace CV boot vs whole axle-cv1.jpg   replace CV boot vs whole axle-cv2.jpg  

Last edited by Elvis_Presley; 11-05-2012 at 08:14 AM.
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:28 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Looks like your boot is torn for long time as initial leak spits lot of grease.
Make a sharp turns on parking lot and give it some gas. When you hear a noise from CV or some mechanical restriction, you need new CV joint.
It is some work to take the joint out and require big wrench with huge lever to take the nut off, but it is not really that mechanically challenged.
And yes $10 boots can be replaced, but a quote $150 for labor on $10 part doesn't sound as good as $150 labor quote on $1200 part.
Split boots in the past did not have good records, but I wonder if they improved in last years.
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:35 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Thanks Kajtek1. You are always very generous with your advice.
I think I am going to replace the whole axle either way. Even if it is still good, it may not be good for long. I PM'ed another guy who went with a cheap axle, and it seemed to work out. I will save the old one just in case the new one fails, I can rebuild it.
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