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Broken Tie Rod or Not?

For the past 9 months or more, I’ve been driving my 1998 Volvo 850 Wagon with a clunking sound occuring just about underneath my feet whenever I drive over bumps at low speeds. There have been no other symptoms and it has not affected the car’s driving ability. I just figured something was loose. I finally brought it in to get it fixed and the garage reported a broken tie rod on both sides. $500 to replace them. However, I still hear the clonking noise going over bumps, and I’m wondering, if I had 2 broken tie rods, wouldn’t I have noticed a difference in my steering???



Thanks in advance for your reply(s)

If you had broken tie rods, you wouldn’t have been able to steer at all. That obviously wasn’t the problem. This sounds more like shocks or anti-sway bar bushings.

I agree; with a broken tie rod there would be no steering.
Badly worn tie rods can cause a thunk sound but if they’re worn this bad then it should be noticeable in the feel of the steering. (excess movement in the steering wheel, wandering on the road, etc.)

We are unanimous in that.

The last time I fixed a “clunking going over bumps” problem (my own) it was simply the sway bar bushings that hold the bar to the chassis. The busings cost me a few bucks each and the labor was minimal (mine). Huge difference in the hole diameters between the old ones and the new ones due to wear and shrinkage.

I should have investigated before I took the car in, but too late now…I’ve learned a lesson. I will, however, talk to the mechanics and see what they say. At least I feel like I know what I’m talking about now.

Thank you all for your very helpful input.