Why do I have to replace tie rods every year?

In the last two years I have had to replace the tie rods three times and the front tires twice. Can anyone tell me why this keeps happening?

Do you use the steering wheel a lot while not moving? This tends to wear tie rod ends prematurely. I don’t see it being outright Fast and Furious abuse issue. If it was that, you wouldn’t be asking the question. You would already know. Anyway, if that’s the case, just assure that there is the slightest of motion while turning the wheel …like in tight parking situations …etc.

You need to clarify this a bit. You state tie rods 3 times.
Your car has 2 tie rods and 2 tie rod ends, which means a total of 4 individual parts.
The same symptoms can apply to any one those four that wear.

If you’re stating the same one is being replaced you have a valid question. If each episode is for a different part then this is a lack of understanding on your part and possibly a failure by the shop to explain this to you.

Sorry. To clarify, I have had to replace both the tie rods and both the tie rod ends a total of three different times in two years. Anyone have any idea why this is happening? Thanks. :slight_smile:

This is still a bit fuzzy to me. Surely you’re not saying that all four of these have been replaced 3 times in 2 years! (total of 12 parts)

If you are then I can only think of the following:
You’re putting a 100k miles a year on your car.
You’re living pretty much out in the boondocks and driving in a lot of mud and muck.
You’re being gouged for unnecessary work and the parts are not being replaced or good parts are being replaced with new parts.

Symptoms of worn tie rods and tie rod ends include tire wear (often featheredging it’s called), wandering on the road, etc. In extreme cases, the front end may clunk slightly.

All of the above would only be releveant if ALL 4 items were replaced repeatedly.
If this is a matter of tie rod end one month, tie rod 4 months later, another tie rod end 5 months after that, etc. then I could understand some of this.

This may not be a popular answer…

But You may need to change mechanics. This is an easy way for the shop to make a quick buck.

The only thing about your question is that you mention tire wear. That is a huge indicator of something amiss with the front end. but to have all the tierods needing replacement should be a warning sign that there is something else amiss. Maybe another shop would find the full problem and be able to fix it!?

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I agree with both OK and cappy.
Unless you live at the end of the classic “40 miles of bad road”, there is no logical way that the same front end parts would have to be replaced as often as you report. However, I suspect that there is some miscommunication taking place–either between the mechanic and you or between you and us.

In any event, you do need a new mechanic. By any chance, has all of this work been done by a “chain” maintenance shop like Midas, Meineke, Monro, Sears, etc?

Let me agree with Cappy. I’m thoroughly familiar with driving too fast on bad roads (everybody around here does it). It does bust up suspensions. But three sets of tie rods in two years is pretty excessive unless you are driving 10,000 miles a month.

My suspicion is that either you have a suspension problem – maybe a bad ball joint – or that the suspension components your mechanic has been installing are really inferior. The latter is not necessarily the mechanic’s fault. Parts don’t come with stickers that say “mediocre”, “junk”, “even worse”. Tie rod ends for other vehicles from the same vendor might be fine. In general, the parts all look much the same when they come out of the box.

Anyway, I’d find a different mechanic with a different parts supplier.

How many Miles on this vehicle? How do you use it? “Star” mail route, 100 of washboard dirt road every day??

How old and rusty is this minivan, how many miles and has it been badly wrecked? Some vehicles get so structurally weak that they won’t stay aligned.