November 4

2006 Acura MDX, Wheel Bearing, Ball Joint and Tie Rod End Replacement



Mark: Hey it’s Mark from Top Local, we’re here with Bernie Pawlik of Pawlik Automotive in Vancouver, Vancouver’s best auto service experience, 16 time winners of Best in Vancouver as voted by their customers. How’re you doing Bernie?

Bernie: Doing very well.

Mark: So we’re going to talk about a 2006 Acura MDX that you did quite a bit of suspension work on. What’s the story on this vehicle?

Bernie: Yeah, so this vehicle was brought to our shop, the owner had some concerns about the brakes. There were some noises that were happening with his brakes, so we proceeded to do a brake inspection and found something quite completely different. There was quite a few severely worn parts on this vehicle on In the front end on the left side is a left ball joint and tie rod end and it was severely worn. I’m going to share a video in a minute and the right rear wheel bearing severely worn, the wheels were just wobbling back and forth. So that’s what we found

Mark: So is that the full extent of what was happening with this SUV?

Bernie: Pretty much, as I said he brought it in for a brake inspection but the brakes themselves weren’t in too bad condition. There were a couple caliper sliders that were seized a little bit but it clearly wasn’t the highest priority on the vehicle. These other parts were much more urgent. I’ll share these videos right now because they tell a lot, we’re doing this a little

Mark: A quick exclamation folks, we’re having some technical challenges today, we switched computers and we’re going to do the cheap and cheerful version of how we share videos, so bear with us.

Bernie: Yeah, so this is from an iPhone through a webcam so let’s hope it’s good. But just before you look at this video, if you look at the wheel, my technician’s going to grab the wheel and you’ll see a lot of up and back and up and down wobbling, and we put a zoom inside the wheel and you can see the axel shaft moving. On our website, if you look at this post, the video will be much better. So here we go, at the centre if you can see it, there is some wobbling, quite severe wobbling. I’ll just share it one more time. Right in the very centre you can see the axle shaft wobbling back and forth. So that’s our rear wheel bearing, now in and of itself, that’s bad enough. That’s going to create a lot of growling noises when you’re driving downtime road and bangs and clunks, things like that. So if that wasn’t enough, so that was on the right rear of the vehicle on the passenger side, here is what we found on the front left which is even scarier. so if you look at the bottom right, that’s the ball joint you can see that thing jumping back and forth. That should not move at all, I’m going to share this one more time. If you look at that round sort of accordion shape piece, that’s a CV joint boot and if you look up right behind that, you’ll also see another joint like a ball type joint, that’s the tie rod end that that’s jumping around as well. So we had two critically serious, critical parts jumping around, severely worn.

Mark: So that stuff should be tight and just rotate on the vertical axis to keep your tires aligned so you actually pull where you’re pointing the steering wheel

Bernie: Exactly, so when you’re going around, yeah when you’re going down the road, those parts are out of controlling themselves, you hit a bump, the ball joint jumps, it moves and the wheel moves and the tie rod end moves, so it’s a lot of, a little bit of your steering is out of control. That will wear your tires, in and of itself not, I mean the biggest concern with that is if it wears much more, it’ll just pop and break apart and it can happen, so your wheel will just flop out onto the road. Extremely serious issue. So those are what we found, we fixed them and the car is great, much safer. But I think the point of this post is to not only show some interestingly bad parts but you never know what’s wrong with your vehicle unless you have it inspected.

Mark: So I guess that’s why you recommend really highly, routine inspections on a regular basis each year so you can find these sorts of problems in the system before they get bad, is that right?

Bernie: Absolutely and I mean we recommend every year that once a car gets a little older, every year to do a comprehensive inspection so we would look at these parts in detail but also, this speaks to one advantage of our shop doing oil changes, we do all our old changes on a two post hoist, so your wheels are always lifted off the ground and loose and part of every oil service, we talk around and wiggle every wheel. It takes two minutes and provides a lot of peace of mind. Like these kinds of things would be easily found in that inspection, we could look at it further but at least you know that there’s a concern. You go somewhere like a quick lube shop with a pit or even a shop that uses a four post hoist where they just drive the vehicle on, that’s a much more efficient way to change your oil but the extra two minutes that it takes us to wiggle the wheels around, you get a lot more for it. So if you come to our shop, you’re going to get that but if you go somewhere else, see if they use a two post hoist because it’s better value for your money.

Mark: So Acura’s have a really great reputation, I assume MDX’s are not different for reliability and performance?

Bernie: No, they’re fabulous vehicles, really good. This vehicle by the way, had 240,000 kilometres on it, it was a back east vehicle as well so it’s lived a rougher life in salty conditions and it was a bit more work for us to change these parts than say it would be, a little more time consuming, doing rusty bolts and things, but yeah, very good vehicles. They last a long, long time, even 240,000 kilometres is, well it seems a lot but this vehicle has got another 100 easily of life left in it.

Mark: So there you go. If you need service for your MDX, the guys to call in Vancouver are Pawlik Automotive, you have to call to book 604-327-7112 or check out their website, we have years worth of videos on there about car repairs, car maintenance, evaluations of different brands - Thanks Bernie

Bernie: Thanks Mark

About the author 

Bernie Pawlik

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