Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

How to Buy a Good Quality Control Arm Assembly

Control Arm Assembly

Did you ever wonder how your car’s tires can stay on the road when you go over potholes and other rough areas? Control arms are the answer. These pivot points in your car’s suspension system allow the wheels to move in proper relation to the body, and connect to the car between the suspension and the frame.

There are two different kinds of control arms. Double-wishbone utilizes A-shaped arms, typically two on each side of the vehicle – upper and lower. This is a more complex system than MacPherson struts, which use one, more rounded control arm in conjunction with an upper spring and telescoping strut.

Assemblies come in three different types

  • Unitized: this assembly has an integrated ball joint, so when one part goes, the whole thing gets replaced.

  • Bolt-in: MacPherson struts use these control arms, which typically come in the form a stamped body.

  • Press-in: these are usually used in larger vehicles and feature a larger ball joint than unitized.

When control arms go bad you’re going to know it. The car may squeak or make a knocking sound, or pull to one side or the other. You also may notice the tires wearing unevenly. This could happen due to normal wear and tear, or the bushing on the control arm may become compromised.

When shopping for your new control arm assembly you’ll want to look for sturdy enough materials at a price within your budget. This part endures quite a bit of stress so you want a durable product.

How to make sure you’re getting a good quality control arm assembly

  • Decide on materials. Cast aluminum control arm assemblies are lightweight and corrosion-resistant, however they tend to buckle more easily over rough potholes. Cast iron are exceptionally strong and are typically wishbone-shaped. Stamped steel were typically used on older cars. They’re more inexpensive but can easily fall prey to rust.

  • Look for OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) -comparable pieces if you’re going with aftermarket parts. High quality aftermarket parts can perform to the same level as OEM parts, just make sure to buy from a reputable seller.

  • Choose a control arm assembly that is powder coated or otherwise treated for corrosion resistance.

If you're still unsure of what to purchase, YourMechanic supplies top-quality control arm assemblies to our certified mobile technicians. Our mechanics can provide and install a new control arm assembly, or install one that you've purchased. Click here to get a quote for a control arm assembly replacement.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the P0052 code means This code is seen when the Engine Control Module (ECM) tries to control the...
P2159 OBD-II Trouble Code: Vehicle Speed Sensor B Range/Performance
Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC): P2159 P2159 code definition Vehicle Speed Sensor B Range/Performance Related Trouble Codes: P2158: Vehicle Speed Sensor B P2160: Vehicle Speed Sensor B Circuit Low P2161:...
P2422 OBD-II Trouble Code: Evaporative Emissions Control System (EVAP) Vent Valve Stuck Closed
Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC): P2422 P2422 code definition Evaporative Emissions Control System (EVAP) Vent Valve Stuck Closed Related Trouble Codes: P2441: EVAP Vent Valve Stuck Open EVAP trouble...


Related questions

Q: Need new rear suspension arms and oil pan.

Hey there. Depending on the severity of the crash and the impact, there may be additional parts needed to repair the rear suspension arms, such as new bushings and ball joints. As you may know, the ball joints and bushings...

Q: Is there another car i can use bushings off of? Can't find my cars bushing for lower control arms 1999 Mitsubishi Diamante

Hi there - on this specific model, the bushing is pre-installed in the control arm by suppliers. For aluminum control arms such as this one, it is generally not a good idea to field-repair the control arm. The act of...

Q: Suspension improvements, maybe problems.

Hi, thanks for writing in. If your vehicle is swaying side to side during turns, it is possible that your sway bar links or sway bar bushings are bad. I would recommend having those checked out by a qualified mechanic...