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Need multiple repairs or not?

Vehicle shakes at 65 MPH. One mechanic said two tires missing weights and two tires had unbalanced weights. Said only needed balancing. I told him I didn’t think that was all that was wrong with it. Mechanic took a second look and said it also needed rack and pinion. 2nd mechanic said needs axle assemblies left and right, control arms front left and right lower with ball joints, rack and pinion, and strut assemblies front left and right. Showed me the damage while vehicle was up on rack. Didn’t say anything about unbalanced tires. Now I don’t know what and who to trust. Any help?

Without adjectives it is unknown what the second mechanic found.

There could be torn CV boots and worn axle joints, torn lower control arm bushings and worn ball joints, a leaking rack and pinion steering gear and leaking struts.

Was he supposed to balance the tires? That would be a simple request.


That is part of the problem I don’t know enough about the van other than the CV boots are cracked.

Pay to have the wheels rebalanced, and see if that fixes the problem.

Try the simplest, cheapest solution first, and then go from there.

Good luck.

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That, to me, deserves your trust.
“Show me” is a question that anybody trying to screw you avoids.

That does not mean balancing the tires shouldn’t also be done.


Since the CV boots are split one should assume there is likely a problem there; especially if they appear to have been split for a long time.

If the weights are missing then why not balance the tires first and see what happens?

You have not stated the year or miles but it’s entirely possible that the vehicle needs all of those repairs. There’s not enough info provided (steering rack leaking???) and so on for me to judge one way or the other.

Once age and miles accrue it’s quite common for multiple repairs to be needed. Wear is not confined to one component only.


I’d say wheel balance is a definite possibility, but not the only one. The shake could be exacerbated by worn out front-end components (struts, joints, rack, bushings, etcetera). It could be loosey-goosey to begin with.

How old are the tires? Aged tires will start to deform, too

How old and worn is the whole rig (“Honda Odyssey”) ?
Model-Year ?
Approximate miles on vehicle?


Tires are newer. No wear despite the unbalanced part of it. 2005 130,000 miles Honda Odyssey.

If the CV boots are split, then they need to be replaced - and it’s probably easier just to replace the whole axle because they’ve probably been split for awhile, and the CV joint now has grit and dirt and all sorts of other gunk in there that’s gonna destroy it and create a dangerous situation.

That’s most likely not going to fix your vibration problem, but in a way you’re lucky that the vibration problem exposed this danger before it became dangerous enough to hurt you or someone else.

So have the CV axles done, and while they’re doing that, have the wheels balanced and see if the shaking goes away. If not, we can move on from there.


Rebalancing the tires at the average cost of $65 in my part of town is probably your best bet and is a usual suspect for shaking. As with any old car, I am sure you could look it over and say it needs a rack and pinion, shocks, control arm, paint job, etc…but those are probably not the issues causing the shaking. 1. tire balance, 2. bad tires, 3. worn steering part such as a tie rod are my guess. I think my top 3’s are the most economically viable option for an old vehicle.

Cracked boots will not cause your issue, however if they click while driving, then that is another serious issue aside from the shaking that would need to be addressed.

Tires were balanced before I left the shop and I was told it was driving smoothly. Got it on the highway for the first time today. As soon as I hit 60 mph, the left front started shaking like crazy. Tire balance did not correct the issue.