Q: Ball joint boots are cracked.

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I have just had a regular service done on my truck by an independent mechanic (in business many years) that included numerous items being inspected. I was told that the ball joint boots are cracked (the lower ones apparently cracked open), and that there is, therefore, risk of grease coming out and ultimately the wheel coming off. I was told that the only way to fix the problem is major replacement work that costs hundreds of dollars. However, (as a chemist) I do not find it plausible that something which is apparently rubber cannot simply be sealed with rubber adhesive or some other liquid sealant - and, if nothing else, slow down the process of grease escaping/ dirt getting in. I do not find the advice I got from the mechanic to just leave it and periodically check whether play has developed in the ball joint before doing anything to be sensible. Is there ANY history in the car mechanic industry of doing something about this kind of problem other than leave it or expensively replace?

My car has 186600 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hello, thanks for writing in about your Toyota Tacoma. You will not find any glue to repair ball joint boots. The boots are sealed on most ball joints and any break in the boot allows dirt, debris, and water to enter the joint. There is no way for the mechanic to completely know how long it has been cracked and exposed. I would also recommend replacing ball joints as required. If you’d like a fresh pair of eyes on this, consider YourMechanic, as one of our certified technicians can diagnose your suspension system firsthand for a second opinion and help you make an accurate repair.

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