sprucegoose

Leaking grease from CV boots?

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This one has me puzzled... I went to rotate my tires today on my '03 SLS and I immediately saw the line around where the grease was being slung out out, apparently from under the inside edge of the CV boot. :wacko: This on both sides even! There are no apparent cuts or tears in the rubber and the factory clamp holding it in place seems to be ok... This is on the inner CV joint, the large end closest to the trans.

Has anyone else ever seen a condition like this? It is actually piling up on the subframe and surrounding area, up to ¾" thick in places!  I'm concerned that there may not be much grease actually left in there at all! No noise or vibration coming from up front. Vehicle has 158K mi. on it, and I'm pretty sure all original drivetrain up there...  I'm thinking if the bearings in those CV joints had excessive wear, that there may be some potential for the joints to wobble... perhaps creating a bellows-like affect blowing out the grease?

There isn't any other way that pressure could be forming from inside the transaxle to blow that out there, is there? :unsure:

Attaching a file here for reference... If anyone has any ideas feel free to share! 

Thanks! Dave

CV_Boot.jpg


'03 Cadillac SLS 4.6 Northstar, 159K mi.
'06 Saab 9-7X, 5.3i V8, 177K mi
'70 Firebird Formula 400, Bored+.04, RAIII heads, M21 4spd., in-process restoration!

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You may have just caught the problem and it hasnt been happening too long.  

I have an axle rebuilding shop near me, if I had this happening, I would pull the axles and have them clean and inspect the tripod joint and replace the boots.  Inspect the outer boots and replace also. While you are at it the transaxle seals can be replaced while you are at it.

Do some research here, if I recall @Logan told us that replacement axles can be inferior to the OEM units, but that is just from memory


Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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On the original shafts.....the boots are a almost plastic like material. 

Aftermarket ones use a rubbery style replacement boot. The rubbery ones seem to fail pretty quick....maybe in a year or two.

Aftermarket axles can have a huge difference in weight depending on the CV bearing design being used.....up to 15 lbs per axle....enough to actually feel the difference while driving.

Hence my recommendation that you are likely better off with a good used axle vs. a aftermarket one. 

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Pretty common on the 2000 -2003 cv axles. They started using a redesigned cv clamp that doesn't apply the force like the older clamps.

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Thanks for the input guys!  I know it hasn't been happening long as it wasn't there the last time I rotated tires back in Sept... on the other hand, I've probably put on close to 20K miles since then though... My commute really spins up the odometer quick!

If the clamps are the issue (seeing no play there or feeling vibration) I wonder if out would be possible to just pull old clamps off, pump some more grease back in there and put new clamps on?  May be difficult to do without removing though I guess...

Only experience I ever had with something like this was a torn boot, where I was forced to replace the whole unit...


'03 Cadillac SLS 4.6 Northstar, 159K mi.
'06 Saab 9-7X, 5.3i V8, 177K mi
'70 Firebird Formula 400, Bored+.04, RAIII heads, M21 4spd., in-process restoration!

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I don't even think you would have to pump more grease in.....there is typically plenty in there. 

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Clamp replacement is possible without removal.

With the right tool anyway. 

They make a clamp tool that works on the side and the top. Therefore able to get into tighter access.

They are called cv axle clamp pliers


GM FAN FOREVER

Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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Well, I had some time on Sat. so I dug into this problem. Napa had some replacement clamps for $2.30 ea. and I bought a packet of CV grease ($4) and put Betty White up on the ramps!;) The hardest part of this whole thing was getting the old clamps off without damaging the boots! The just were tough to unhook from the tabs on the strips, even after twisting the crimped area loose.  These clamps had definitely loosened over time though, I could actually spin them with my hand quite easily!:o

I pulled back the boot far enough to poke the corner of the grease pouch into the joint and squeezed aprox. half the bag in each one. I you do this, make sure you wipe the boot area nice and clean with a rag with brake clean to have a nice, dry surface for the clamp to grip on.

One other tip, put a jack under the control arm and lift till the axle is fairly level. (but still have safe, sufficient weight on the jack stands) You don't want to try and put the new clamp on with the axle hanging down at an angle, stretching the boot... Getting the new clamp on was a breeze and I used this small nipper plier to snug the clamp up, following with a bigger nippers to really tighten them down.  All seems to be holding fine!B)


'03 Cadillac SLS 4.6 Northstar, 159K mi.
'06 Saab 9-7X, 5.3i V8, 177K mi
'70 Firebird Formula 400, Bored+.04, RAIII heads, M21 4spd., in-process restoration!

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Clamps_grease.jpg.c763278bfa331611aa16ed9949ae0e7d.jpg

cv_clamp.jpg


'03 Cadillac SLS 4.6 Northstar, 159K mi.
'06 Saab 9-7X, 5.3i V8, 177K mi
'70 Firebird Formula 400, Bored+.04, RAIII heads, M21 4spd., in-process restoration!

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Thanks for the update, hope you solved your problem (it appears by your description you did).  

Good info here.


Chuck

'17 XT5, '04 Bravada........but still lusting for that '69 Z-28

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Nice job!


Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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excellent. 

way better than axle replacement


GM FAN FOREVER

Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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