How to Replace a Car's Axle Boot
Replacing a car axle boot is not a very difficult task, and with some spare time and a few tools, can be accomplished by any car or truck owner. Having an axle boot installed by a mechanic can be a very expensive proposition because of the time that it involves, but in this case a mechanic is really not necessary. Save yourself some money by gathering up your tools, rolling up your sleeves, and getting to work.
Step 1: Remove the Tire
Begin this repair by jacking the car up with a hydraulic jack and placing the frame securely onto jack stands. Before doing this, it may be necessary to remove the hubcap or center piece and loosen the lug nuts slightly, depending upon how tight they are on the wheel.
After the car is secured onto the jack stands, remove the lug nuts and pull the tire off.
Step 2: Remove Necessary Suspension Parts
Some vehicles may be equiped with suspension parts, such as shocks and struts, that may block access to the axle boot. Remove these by using the proper procedures and tools and place them to the side out of the way. As always when working on a car, if you take a bolt or nut off, place it in the order that it was removed so that it can be replaced in the exact same position.
Step 3: Remove the Axle Boot
Remove the clamps that hold the axle boot in place, using either a screwdriver or a boot removal tool depending on the vehicle and the required tools. Place the oil drain pan under the transmission in case the movement in the CV shaft causes a leak, and slide the boot off. Make sure that the axle is supported so that it does not drop to the ground.
Step 4: Install the New Axle Boot
While the boot is off, it is a good idea to check the condition of the CV joint. If it appears to be damaged, or if the grease has completely dried up, or if there is any debris within it, then it should be replaced before installing the new boot. It makes no sense to install a new boot onto a broken joint.
If needed, pack the inner CV joint with grease and then slip the new axle boot into place. Clamp it into place with new clamps that came with the kit.
Step 5: Reassemble
Reattach any suspension parts that you had to remove and tighten the tire back on with the lug nuts. Replace any hubcaps or covers and lower the car to the ground by jacking it back up with the hydraulic jack, removing the jack stands, and then lowering it down slowly until the jack releases from the frame.