How Much Does Ball Joint Replacement Cost?
Ball joints, the necessary connectors between the steering linkage and axle assembly in your car, may degrade after years of use. This can be due to lack of lubrication and some dirt that accumulate in the vehicle’s joints. Ball joints are the most essential part of a vehicle’s suspension system; has a they are made of a round ball-like head that swivels inside a cup-like socket. There are usually four ball joints in a car’s front suspension, with an upper and lower one on each front wheel.
How much does ball joint replacement cost?
- The cost of the replacement may vary depending on the model of your car. It will also depend which ball joint will have to be replaced. Depending on your vehicle, you have ball joints located in the front and back of your vehicle. There are also two joints per each wheel.
- If you want the basic parts for a do-it-yourself ball joint replacement, it may cost around $35 -$75 per ball joint, or $130 -$300 for four. If you own a high-end or luxury vehicles, it can cost you more. This isn’t for the professional installation.
- To have these ball joints professionally installed, the price can be anywhere between $400 and $1,000. It will greatly depend on the condition of the car and the mechanic performing the job. Four-wheel drive cars will be near the higher end, while a front wheel drive car will be near the lower price range.
- Luxury vehicles can cost higher than the average car. The cost can be anywhere from $400 to $1200.
- Some ball joints are connected to the control arm, and therefore the whole unit must be replacement. The charge for this can even be higher, sometimes amounting to $450 -$750 for the entire replacement kit.
- According to a forum thread on the website Topix, many users claimed to have paid anywhere from $400 to $800 for professional labor. Many also noted that the parts shouldn’t cost no more than $250 for the complete set. Again, it all comes down to the make and model.
What are the extra costs?
- During the ball joint replacement, the mechanic may find other defects which need immediate attention. Fixing these extra things will not be included in the original quoted price.
- Some vehicles may require a wheel alignment after replacing the ball joints This can be an additional $70 -$200, depending on the shop. See: “How much does wheel alignment cost?“
- For those that are considering the job themselves, additional tools may be required such as a pickle fork, torque wrench and more. Most of these tools can be rented out, but will result in additional fees.
- The type of vehicle can greatly influence the price. A four-wheel drive car can cost a lot more than a four-door sedan with front wheel drive.
What is going to be included?
- The labor cost is already included in the ball joint replacement package. However, if there is a need to use some equipment that generally isn’t used, some shops may add that cost onto the originally quote. On average, the typical job for a professional can take more than three hours to perform.
- Ball joints can wear out over time and because of this, it’s important to look at reviews online to ensure that you’re purchasing a brand that is going to be durable.
Tips to know:
- You will usually know if you need a new ball joint if you hear a clunking noise when you make turns or even hit a bump. With ball joints, though, it’s often hard to tell when the part is becoming weak. Always trust your gut, and try to get it inspected as soon as possible.
- By bringing a car in early, a mechanic may be able to perform the repair before things get out of hand. If you wait too long, suspension parts could be required, costing even more money.
How can I save money?
- Make sure to choose from the wide selections of repair shops in your area. It is best to check with 3 shops in your area. If you have a warranty with your car, check with the manufacture to see what is covered.
- If you are a regular customer, you can potentially get a discount. Most shops offer discounts to their loyal customers.
- Always take time for regular check ups and maintenance of your car for the parts to last longer. To avoid further damages, repair the problem right away. Failing to do so may result in further damage.
- Some mechanics will allow you to bring the parts in. If they allow you to bring them the parts, this is a great way to just pay on labor. Call ahead to see what you can take advantage of.
- Ask friends and family to suggest a reliable mechanic so that you do not get ripped off.
- Consider doing the job yourself if you have worked on cars before. There are a handful of guides online that can assist with the process. Keep in mind that you need powerful tools such as a spring compressor to hep successfully complete the job. By doing it yourself, it can save a few hundred dollars. Remember, this is a job for the professionals. If you have no idea what you’re doing, it’s best to spend a few extra dollars. Failing to do so can lead to great problems down the road.