Dorman - OE Solutions C.V. Joint Solvent Welded Split Boot Kit Outer experiences?

We have a split outer boot on a 2003 ford windstar. I am thinking $19 worth a shot. Any thoughts or ideas?


Don’t waste your time

Spend a few extra minutes and do it the good way.

Take the axle out and put on the proper boots. Not that big of a deal.

One time I bought a $5 CV boot, the “real” kind, at Pep Boys. It fit perfectly, has held up for a few years and hasn’t leaked a drop of grease.

You’ll find it nearly impossible to keep the grease from contaminating the joint where the solvent is applied.

Use the 20 bucks towards a remanufactured halfshaft.


I have had almost nothing but bad luck with remanned halfshafts

If OP’s halfshaft is leaking, but still quiet, he’s better off throwing new boots on it versus rolling the dice with another halfshaft.

What if he exchanges his halfshaft, only to have the “new” part turn into a POS in a few months?

It’s happened more than a few times.

I’m not a fan of split boots but to each his own I guess.

@db4690 - are you talking about a split boot? Otherwise you have to take the whole thing apart, right?

That would be correct.


I am AGAINST split boots

I am in favor of removing the axleshaft to install 2 “proper” boots, provided the axleshaft is still quiet

I am against cheap remanned axleshafts

Hopefully this answered your question

I throw my vote to replacing the axle. Yes, there are far too many poorly remanufactured half shafts but split boots are a worse proposition and to replace the outer boot with the proper part requires dismantling the shaft and replacing the inner boot also. For the first time DIYer the outer boot can be a pain.

Here’s what I sometimes do

Remove axleshaft
Remove inner boot and joint
Remove outer boot, but leave joint attached to shaft
Clean outer joint as best as possible
Stuff new grease into outer joint
Install new outer boot
Clean inner joint, install new boot and grease
Reinstall axleshaft
Refill atf as needed


Sure saved the work of whacking the outer joint off of the shaft . . . and all the boots got replaced

I tried a split boot once and didn’t work out for me and never could get the steel bands to hold tight enough. I’ve just replaced the axle shaft and never had a problem with the ones from NAPA but times may have changed. Once you take everything apart to put a new boot on, you might as well just pull the axle out, replace it, and be done with it.

Those split-boot kits are a temporary fix at best.
You can buy a bad remanufactured CV shaft but the one time we’ve had that happen the mechanics replaced both shafts under warranty (passenger side was chewing up the seal where it goes into the transaxle about every 800 miles) drove the car another 50,000 miles without the problem returning (donated the car after the new Prius arrived)

I bought and installed a brand new Chinese half shaft from a local car parts store for my old VW in July 2007 and 82,000 miles ago; still works fine and it was only $50 then; I could hardly believe how inexpensive it was. At that price, it is not worth the trouble of disassembling, degreasing and regreasing one or both CV joints of a half shaft. You might ask local car parts stores for a similar deal for your brand of vehicle.

If you were going to buy a replacement axle shaft, where would you go or what brand would you buy to get a reliable unit? comes to mind. Are there others folks have had good luck with?

Split boot never worked for me. Another vote for re manufacturer half shafts.


I also bought a new Chinese axleshaft at Autozone several years back.

It was even worse than the axleshaft I turned in.

When I exchanged it, they gave me another new POS

Every few months I would exchange the axleshaft for free. Of course, the trans fluid wasn’t free…

This went on for years

I finally decided to live with it until I got another car.

It IS worth it do overhaul your own axleshaft if the replacement part is going to be a POS

I believe EMPI axleshafts are pretty good

I have had bad luck getting all sorts of defective parts from NAPA. Electrical, mechanical, etc.

I have also had good luck getting axleshafts rebuilt at those mom and pop shops. I think the reason is that they are personally doing the work, so there is pride of workmanship involved.
Those big box parts stores didn’t actually rebuild the parts, so what do they care if they’re junk?

Thanks for all the insightful comments. No Split boot it is.

Just a few notes about axle replacements. For many years I used remans and never had a problem.
Starting about 5 or so years ago I started running into a few problems with remans.

If you go with a reman shaft do this before you leave the store.Take it out of the box and simulate movment of the car on the joints by moving them in all directions. The feel should be somewhat firm and should be smooth in any direction.
If not, what has likely happened is that the shaft was remanned with new balls and the races are indented from wear. This problem may show up as a very subtle catch in the movement and may mean a shaft problem; reman or not.

A facility in OK City used to reman shafts and they had a machine that would grind out the indentations. This was followed up with oversize balls for the joints. There was some question though about how much of the hardened bearing surface was removed by grinding and the ensuing longevity of the shaft.

I’d avoid the split boot technique. You might consider one time saving shortcut I’ve used before on my Corolla. If it’s an outer boot that is split – the outer one is the one that gets the most abuse so that’s very common — do not remove the entire axel shaft. Leave it connected at the transmission end. Just pop the outer shaft end out of the hub, remove the CV joint, clean and re-lube, replace with a new boot, install the CV joint, pop the outer axel shaft end back into the hub, tighten everything up, and away you go. Saves some time, especially if you’d otherwise have to deal with it being stuck on the xmission side.

An important note about removing the CV joint from the axel shaft: Some CV joints are not at all simple to remove. The ones on my Corolla have a snap ring that holds them on. Very easy to remove those. But some newer (and esp remanufactured) CV joints can’t be removed with the snap ring technique, and have to be cut off with a hack saw or preferably a power metal cutting tool. In that case you’d probably be better removing the entire shaft first. There are u2 vdos showing how this type of CV removal is done. It’s not pretty. That’s the motivation for simply replacing the entire shaft with a rebuilt one I suppose.

Those mom and pop axle shops stock boots and cv joints. I once looked up the cv joint number, and it turns out it had hundreds of applications. So those shops could theoretically rebuild most of the the common axles out there.

They reuse your shaft and install those new boots and joints.

Yeah, the parts are Chinese, but the guys at the shop do take some pride in their work.