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Sway Bar End Link. | Repair Repairing excessive roll.

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The term "pattern failure" literally means a failure along a pattern, that is, similar and repeatable failures both in time and nature.

Many of the typical auto parts failures discussed in my car care articles are of a design specific nature. That is, certain parts designs tend to fail along a pattern irrespective of vehicle make and model. All air filters regardless of vehicle make and model will eventually get clogged with dirt and need replacement at more or less specific intervals. All vulcanized rubber engine mounts will eventually compress to the point of failure, due to the constant forces being exerted on them-again, at more or less an approximate time.

Purpose.

This goal of this series of "Pattern Failure" articles is to show parts pattern failures, which I'm personally familiar with in my own shop, that seem to follow along make and model specific lines. This approach is solely for your own information, and is not intended as a criticism on any particular auto manufacturer. Most importantly, it is an attempt to help you troubleshoot and repair a particular problem you might have with your own vehicle.

This goal of this series of "Pattern Failure" articles is to show parts pattern failures, which I'm personally familiar with in my own shop, that seem to follow along make and model specific lines. This approach is solely for your own information, and is not intended as a criticism on any particular auto manufacturer. Most importantly, it is an attempt to help you troubleshoot and repair a particular problem you might have with your own vehicle.

Another design employs a form of ball joint at the contact points. This design has proven, in general, to be more reliable than the rubber bushing type, even in examples that have plastic component parts. However, failures still can occur with regularity on certain specific models.

Symptoms.

Typical symptoms signaling this failure would be a metallic clanking or rattling when encountering an uneven, potholed, or rutted road surface. Another, more serious one, might be noticeable excessive body roll while cornering, accompanied by a feeling of instability at the rear of the car. This should be considered a dangerous condition, as loss of vehicle control is likely if emergency evasive maneuvers are attempted, which could lead to an accident.

An under-car inspection can quickly uncover the culprit: an end link broken at the point where the shaft would connect to the joint. The owner of the Acura pictured did not actually complain of any handling problems, although they were immediately apparent to the technician during the initial road test.

The repair is straightforward, although care must be used when removing and installing the mounting locknuts, so as not to damage the joint. Upgraded and updated replacement links are presently available at the dealer. As always, follow all manufacture service guidelines for all aspects of the repair, including safe lifting of the car.



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