Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

Suspected Transaxle Problem

In January of 2009 new axles were installed for the first time in my 1993 Toyota Corolla. About a week ago, I started hearing a clunking sound coming from the front end driver’s side when I made a right turn. Afterward, there were a few hard jerks to the left. My Dad put my car up on a jack, then tried to move the left front tire back and forth. I didn’t move, which he said indicated that the noise wasn’t a wheel-bearing problem. We took the car out for a drive, made several hard rights in a parking lot. The clunking and jerking were pronounced. On the way home, I made a right turn and all of a sudden there was a horrible grinding noise, and small parts (which I found out later were wheel bearings) started flying off into the road. I pulled off into a small parking lot, at which point the car wouldn’t engage at all. I called to have the car towed back to my house, and the tow truck driver said that I should avoid trying to roll the car anywhere because the entire driver’s side axle was missing. What I’m wondering is, should the axle have given out less than two years after if was replaced? Or does it sound like there was another problem? any ideas would be appreciated.

So what failed? The wheel bearing or the axle? You said that bearings from the wheel bearing flew out in the road and then that the axle had failed. Both failed? Is the axle actually missing like the tow truck driver said?

I’m guessing that they were the ball bearings from the CV joints.

These days pretty much all CV halfshafts/axles are remanufactured. A lot of them are terrible. I once had one last less than a day before it decided to start coming apart. This was actually one of 3 sets that I had installed in the space of a week. They’re just terrible.

Many of them actually come with lifetime warranties on the parts. You’d have to get in touch with the shop and inquire. I did this once and the shop I had used took this for granted (just a normal part of their sourcing I guess). A different shop looked at me like I had 3 heads.

I do my own axles now and the most recent one I installed does have a lifetime warranty. The labor is what will get you.