Q: How long before a squeaky ball joint gives away?

asked by on January 18, 2017

I JUST got my car out of the shop after $1,500 in repairs. I started hearing squeaking maybe around three days ago, at first only going over bumps or turns. Now it's pretty much the whole time I'm driving. I have no doubt it's coming from the suspension. My question is how long do I have before it gives way? The place I get my repairs is on the other side of town, past brick roads. Also in my town being without a vehicle basically means being without transportation, public transport has really weird hours. I'd need to get some things in order before taking it in and don't know whether to take it back to the dealership (I have a basic warranty) or just a local shop.

My car has 95783 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Car is making a noise Inspection $79.99 - $89.99 Get a Quote

How long it’s safe to drive the car with the noise you have described just depends on exactly what part(s) is causing the noise. Some noises, while annoying, are essentially meaningless in terms of vehicle reliability or safety. But, admittedly, if there is a noise you do have to get it checked out and, if it isn’t serious, then you can simply decide if it’s a priority fix or not. If you request a vehicle noise diagnostic, the responding certified mechanic will definitely find the origin of the noise. You did not indicate that a specific diagnostic was performed on the ball joint(s) so that might not be the problem area. There are many, many components in the suspension that could account for the noise, some are not expensive to repair and all can be repaired right at your location. Thus, I encourage you to seek out the diagnostic and then with the mechanic’s advice and explanation, you can decide how best to handle it. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic as we are always here to help you.

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

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

What others are asking

Need a diagnostic.

Most shops charge an hour of labor for a diagnostic. The price for this hour of labor can range anywhere from $90.00 up to $120.00. If you have your diagnostic performed by a technician from YourMechanic you can get this...

Kia Rio infrequently and at different temps/speeds, sputters and has engine hesitation; Several parts already replaced but still has problem

In order to diagnose this problem, a mechanic would need to duplicate the problem happening. The most common problem would be the fuel pump is losing pressure, or one of the sensors (like the throttle position sensor) is intermittently causing...

Can I get my oil changed by another oil change location other than the dealer?

Absolutely. You do not need to go to the dealer for most services other than possibly some types of repairs to the computer or factory theft control devices for your vehicle. You could have your vehicle's oil changed elsewhere, change...

Brake booster modification

Hi there. Anything is possible in regards to modifying your vehicle's brake booster to a universal brake booster. It would require fabrication and a lot of knowledge about the original brake booster's specifications. No easy task. I would not recommend...

Loud grinding and stuck feeling at front tire on driver's side

Hello. There are a few things that this can be. Most of the time it is due to a failing front bearing. When a bearing fails this noise will occur. I typically get the vehicle in the air and spin...

Engine noise when cranking. P0011 and P0021 codes

Hi there. The P0011 OBD-II error code indicates that you have an over advanced timing issue, which might be the reason why your engine stumbles for a brief moment when it's cold and first starts. Ignition timing is typically monitored...

I need the torque specs for my motor mounts

Hi, thanks for writing in about your 2005 Nissan Altima. The front motor mounts on your Nissan Altima should be torqued to ~65-77ft lbs. As you know, this can be a bit of a tough job in some cases. In...

What is an ECM-relay and where is it located?

Hey there. The ECM relay on this vehicle is called an auto shutdown relay and is located in the engine compartment integrated power module control box. The P0052 code you are getting is for the passenger side O2 sensor closest...

Check Engine Light is on - codes P0016 and P0017

Hi there. These codes lead me to believe that the cam/crank timing is out. However, there are possible underlying problems that can set the same codes and give you the symptoms you're describing. You could have a wiring/connector issue...

Related articles

The Best Used Cars to Buy If You’re a Wedding Planner
As As a wedding planner, the demands placed on your time are going to be significant, even if you’re only dealing with one or two couples. You need to be a master juggler when it comes to your time and...
The Top 5 Selling Cars in Kansas in 2012
Kansas Kansas sees a varied climate with all four seasons, which means drivers in the area choose a variety of vehicles. In years past, some of the front-runners have included the Ford F-150, Buick and Toyota Camry. 2012’s top five...
A Buyer’s Guide to the 2012 Kia Optima
Kia Kia hasn’t always had the best reputation. In fact, for years the Korean automaker was known for making cheap vehicles that didn’t last. Today, though, that reputation has drastically changed, thanks in large part to the 2012 Kia Optima....