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Grant

CV boots on 1998 Outback

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How difficult are these to replace? when I was under my Outback to get at the starter, I had the pleasure of noticing that the inboard front CV boots are torn. there isn't any noticible play in the u-joints no matter how hard I yank on them. to me it seems that the joints themselves are fine.

I've been calling around, and the going rate that I've been finding is about 180 to 190 per side to replace, counting all parts and labor. reasoning quoted is that they want to replace the axles and U-joints with the boots whether or not they need it to be safe after a boot's been torn apart...

what thoughts do you folks have on this deal? any and all opinions are welcome and appreciated.

thanks~

Grant

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You'll need an impact socket big enough to remove the axle nut, you'll need to separate the lower ball joint from the knuckle, and theres a roll pin that secures the inboard tulip to the output shaft of the transmission.

Once its out you'll have to remove the old boot and then separate the joint, Sometimes there are internal clips which you secure the axle in a vice and hit the joint with a hammer and sometimes there is an external clip, which you remove and then slide the joint off the shaft.

Then you'll have to disassemble the joint itself to remove all of the old grease/dirt. There are specialty tools that make this easier but it can be done with a brass punch and a hammer. Make sure you keep the cage orientation correct because they usually only go back together one way!

Once everything is cleaned up you slide the boot and clamp on the shaft. Then grease the joint and reinstall onto the shaft. tighten the clamps, again there are tools that make this a lot easier! Then simply reinstall the assembly back into the car making sure to torque the axle nut to spec so you don't end up ruining the wheel bearings.

Personally I love to do them and whenever they are just barely leaking or cracked bad I will recommend the boots. If there wide open with grease slinging everywhere I recommend the shafts.

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sounds like quite an undertaking *yikes*

I'm an OK hand at some of the simpler tasks under the hood.. this seems like it'd be a bit of a stretch for my skills.

airjer, would I be able to ask you some questions off-forum?

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Grant the job isnt all that bad to do, but if you never done one it can be! For $180, I think that is a fair deal. Just remember it it your car, if you only want a boot replaced, tell them that! Tell them you dont want the joint replaced, and you wont hold them resbonsible if the joint goes bad in a week, they shouldnt have any problem with that.

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Grant,

If you do it your self, I would price out getting the whole reman c/v shaft. This comes with both new boots, reconditioned joints and a freshly balanced shaft. Most times you can price out a shaft for between $75-$100 now-a-days (or even a little less). The boots run ya $20-$30 for a good one. Since you just bought the rig, this is what I would do. Plus it saves time and the headache of taking apart the C/V joint. Make it a lot easier for the first timer.

I have been burned before by buying just the boot, replacing and having either the other boot crack with in months or the joint fail that the replaced boot was on. You end up doing the whole job over again in a short period of time.

What every you do, make sure not to use a split (glue together) boot. Takes minutes to replace but splits apart just as fast.

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Yes if you can find a shaft that cheap, go that route, its easy to rnr the shaft.

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looked again, and there was slung grease on adjacent parts. seems as though full replacement is warranted.

I've found complete CV shafts for $51 / core $63 plus or minus a few places.

from the look of it, as long as I remember to take in my cores, that would be the best deal.

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Thats what I would do! Removing the shaft is pretty easy, airjer gave some basic direction, if you follow them then as you are doing it, it will be fairly simple

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The roll pin on the passenger side can be a real treat. It usually involves a couple of extensions and a socket that fits the size of punch needed. When the above setup is achieved you'll be able to gain access to the roll pin from the top side towards the rear of the engine. I can't remeber what models specifically requires this inginuity but there you have it in case you need to do it.

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hehehe hiring it done... found a deal with a local fellow who works for one of the big name shops during the week, and does some extra work on the side.

methinks that this is one of those times where I need to pay another to do it~

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