Maintenance & Troubleshooting
Signs of Wear & Troubleshooting
- Unexpected noises: popping or creaking noises in the suspension system, or a clunking noise when driving over a bump or pothole may signal the need to replace your vehicle's control arm.
- Difficulty steering: extra play in the steering system, or wobbling in the steering wheel when driving at higher speeds may signal control arm problems.
- Vehicle wandering: if your vehicle pulls to one side while driving, it may indicate the need to replace your control arm.
- Excessive wheel movement: if you place your hands on one of the wheels of your vehicle, and push it, a wobble or play beyond the acceptable level may indicate control arm wear.
- Abnormal tire wear: Uneven tire wear may be a sign of control arm wear.
- Alignment issues: An inability to set the proper alignment for your vehicle may indicate control arm wear.
Good Maintenance Practices
- Inspect or have your control arms inspected for signs of wear. Exposure to harsh driving conditions like potholes or bumpy road surfaces places stress on your vehicle's control arms. Over time, these stresses can cause the bushings of your control arms to wear out or loosen, and cause excessive tire wire, noise in the suspension system, or extra play in the steering system. Accidents or bad tow jobs may also result in a bent control arm, hindering your handling capabilities. Inspect your control arms regularly, following exposure to events that may harm the component, or when you experience signs of control arm wear.
- Avoid replacing your vehicle's control arm without also replacing your control arm bushing. Replacing your vehicle's control arm or control arm bushing instead of replacing the entire control arm assembly often results in additional labor, cost, and trouble, so replacing the assembly as a whole is often the recommended approach.
- Installing a new control arm can interfere with the alignment of your vehicle. Perform a full four-wheel vehicle alignment after any control arm replacement.