Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: When replacing ball joints can you just replace the ball joints or do you need to just replace the control arm?

asked by on

I live in MA and was told I need new ball joints to pass inspection but they would have to replace the whole control arm because they can't just replace the ball joints.

My car has 68000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Suspension components on modern vehicles ar...

Suspension components on modern vehicles are not as heavy as they used to be. Components like control arms can be lighter and thinner. Ball joints are riveted or pressed into control arms. Sometimes bolted/screwed. Since replacing a ball joint will usually involve removing the control arm from the vehicle to either press or drill rivets out - which is more labor intensive, it can be a time and money saver labor wise to simply replace the entire control arm.

You are removing the old control arm and replacing it with a new one, complete with new ball joint and control arm bushings. Even if the control arm bushings are in good shape at the time the ball joint is replaced, they will eventually require replacement. You then have parts and labor involved again to remove the control arm, replace the bushings, then reinstall it on the vehicle.

Sometimes the ball joint replacement can be more cost effective in the long run, to simply replace the entire control arm. If you'd like to have this done, consider YourMechanic, as one of our mobile technicians can come to your home or office to service your ball joints.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
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・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: What could be causing my steering wheel to jerks from left to right?

Hi there. Check to see that all of the connections are tight. Grease up the ball joints to make sure that they are lubricated. If all of the parts are tight that you installed, then go over to the other...

Q: Control arm bushings going bad

Bad control arm bushings will cause the issues you have described except for the grinding noise. The grinding noise is most likely the brake pads grinding the rotor surface. Look at the rotors and see if there are deep grooves...

Q: FUEL INJECTION CLEANING AND ANTI CORRISION UNDERCARRIAGE TREATMENT

Fuel injectors cannot be completely cleaned, that is restored to like new condition, while they are still installed on the fuel rail on the engine because: 1) each injector has a very fine internal filter basket that MUST be removed...

Related articles

How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.