There are thousands of parts attached to your vehicles, that you might not be familiar with, but they are significant for a safe drive, and the tire axle is one of them.
There might be a few drivers who have no idea about tire axles, what they do, and where are they in a car. That is why we have written this article to help you identify the importance of tire axles and why you should keep a closer look at them to achieve proper rides.
Tire axles are more important than tires themselves for safer rides, You might be able to complete your journey with a broken or flat tire, but with a broken axle, it won’t be possible.
There is no need to learn everything about cars but some important parts and accessories of tires should be taken care of and maintained for reliable rides.
In this article we will try our best to explain everything about tire axles, why are they important, and how to utilize their full potential for long-running. So keep reading till the end to understand this important part of a car so you can tweak it if something goes wrong in the future.
Table of Contents
What is a tire axle?
Tire axles are attached to your car through steering wheels, with your tie wheel. So it is the coordinator link between your steering movement and your car movement. If something is wrong with your axles, the car might move differently against your steering movement.
The tire wheels are attached to tire axles and tires on wheels, that’s why the misaligned tires and wheels cause an unaligned driving experience. There are two front axles and two rear axles just like tires, and based on your car type, the steering is connected to either front axles or rear axles and sometimes with all four axles in all-wheel drive cars.
How does it work
There are two types of axles, The first one is live axles which are responsible for the movement of the car, depending on the vehicle axle support. If your car is rear-wheel drive, you will have live axles on the rear side of the car.
And then there is a dead axle which is not responsible for moving the car but they are for supporting and carrying the car’s weight. So if your live axles are on the rear side, the dead axles will be on the front side of the car in rear-wheel drive. There will be four live axles in AWD and they all move the car.
How much it cost
The cost of replacing the tire is an axle is somewhere around $500-$1500 depending on the axle quality, type, and vehicle rarity. It is an expensive process however the problems with axles rarely occur after a decade or so. Investing one time in getting the best quality and installing it with professionals will give you peace of life, so don’t think about money when it comes to doing axle work, just get the best quality you find.
Tire axle maintenance
When the axle needs replacement
Usually, axles don’t need a replacement for years however it is never always the case, sometimes a new car axle can also get damaged by heavy bumps or damage. The main determinant of the axle problem will be identified if your car stops moving at all. No matter how much you accelerate, the car won’t move, this will be the reason for faulty axles,
When to replace axle shafts
Unlike axles, the axle shafts require replacement more often. The common signs of shaft replacements are grease dropping, clinking noise when the car moving, and irresponsive handling. It is not always the case of bad shafts sometime, this could be due to other reasons but it is better if you see these signs, and check for axle shafts.
Tire axle alignment
Checking axle alignment while rotating tires can save you from some big troubles. Sometimes out of nowhere, the alignment gets imbalanced which can cause an irresponsive driving experience. Unaligned tires not only ruin the driving experience, but the handling response, wheel damage, tire wear, and many other issues could be the reason for unaligned axles.
Tires and Axles
Different rear axle and front axle tires
As we mentioned, there are two types of axles in a car, which is why it is possible to change tire sizes depending on the axle. Usually with live axles, drivers run wider tires for better performance. And with a dead axle, the OEM size improves the speed, grip, and balance of the car.
2WD axles vs 4WD axles
2WD vehicles have different axles compared to 4WD vehicles. In 2WD there is one dead axle and one live axle, depending on your vehicle, if it is a front-wheel drive, the live axle will be in front, and the dead axle at the back.
Unlikely, in all-wheel drive vehicles all axles are live axles and perform the task of moving the tires contrary to the support one axle provides in 2WD drive vehicles. This is the reason why 4WD vehicles are more strong and responsive when dealing with hard conditions.
Causes of tire axle breakage
Usually overloading happens with light and pickup trucks, as there is a limit of weight to carry on different vehicles, and it will cause big trouble if you go above the limit. Not only car axles will get broken other parts of the vehicle could also get damaged. So make sure you don’t go above your car weight or tire weight limit to avoid any damage in the future.
Hitting bumps hard
Driving in unforeseen and harsh conditions could also create trouble for tire axles and their shafts. As the force directly comes to the tire and suspension when in contact with bumps and potholes, the tire axles can get damaged if the hole is deep. The solution for that is to avoid hitting the potholes in the first place, and if there is no other way, try to properly cross it at a low pace and with proper steering.
Old axle and accidents
There is a life duration for every part even of a human, so if your car is older than 10-20 years then there are chances that the axles might get rotten and weak, which could cause damage anytime. So make sure if you are driving old trucks or cars, check the tire axles and the parts of the tire’s conditions and maintain them as far as you can go with them.
Axles just like tires and wheels also need replacement and maintenance to achieve safer and more reliable rides all year round. Even though this part is not something that requires as frequent replacement as tires, still, you should still keep a check on it as well as other parts of the car to avoid any discomfort in the future.
As tire axles create contact between you and the road, damaged axles could create big trouble and low response can put in big accidents. So do frequent checkups and maintenance of tires, wheels, and axles to achieve proper rides.