Drive Train

CV Boot/Joint R&R

CV Boot/Joint R&R

I have replaced all my CV boots and 1 CV joint. Having done it twice I can say its not that big a job, though I did approach it with some apprehension initially. (which is normal for me). I used a 3/4 inch drive with a length of water pipe to remove the 32mm axle nut which is really tight (check retorque settings). If you're working on the exhaust side of the car your need to let it hang down by removing the two rear hangers, to allow room to remove the half shaft. After removing the axle nut, undo the 8mm allen screws that attach the half shaft to the diff. If your going to do a good job and wash out/repack the CV's (recomended) then loosen the 8mm screws on the outboard side as well don't remove them yet though. Now you can slide the shaft out. Before you dismantle the CV's take note of the positioning of the circular groove around the outside of the CV ( inside ,outside type of thing) for reference when reassembling. Make sure you get the right size boot, Talk to Mark Anderson (928 international) about it, he is aware of the alternatives.

Good Luck.
Aussie Pete

I just did mine. Kind of fun to do actually. Get a new boot kit from 928 International that has the grease, clamps, and boot included. You might want to disassemble it first to see if you need to replace the CV joints themselves. Mine were still fine after 225k miles, so I just repacked them with new boots.

Main thing is, if you are repacking them, to keep the ball bearings from each joint together with the rest of the joint. They are originally matched, as I understand it.

If you want me to send you the pages from the manual, email me your snail mail address.

Daniel Shapiro
'82 928 5 speed Chiffon/Brown

I would add that if the CV joints are OK, after cleaning and adding new grease, put the left half-shaft on the right and vis-versa. This helps equalize the wear on the joints.

~Merry motoring~

If you're already hearing the clunk, it's too late. Time for a new/rebuilt/used axle. Contact the "usual suspects" for your choice.

Replacing is part finesse, part grunt. The 8mm Allen-head bolts (6/side) which attach the axle flange to the transaxle is the finesse part. If changing the driver's side too, you'll need to drop the exhaust stuff out of the way.

The 32mm axle nut that's behind your center cover on each wheel is the grunt part. Get out the breaker bar and a floor jack handle. Do this with the car on the ground, tires chocked, e-brake on.

After undoing all bolts, withdraw the axle thru the hub, toward the center of the car. Give the outer end a whack with a plastic hammer to get it moving thru the hub. Have fun with all the grease that should be present on the transaxle end!

Lubricate the splines on the replacement unit(s) with anti-seize compound. Use some perma-snot on the transaxle flanges to hold the new gaskets in place.

If you want to repack the other one, kits with new boots and proper grease are also available from the big 3. You can get just the grease from most speed shops (I like the Red Line brand).

David Lloyd
Farmington, CT
79 Euro, track car

Thanks to all who responded earlier with advice regarding removing and repacking CV joints. Turned out just fine, no problems. Definitely a DIY job, especially if you like grease. Everybody said one thing though, the fact that I'd have to remove the 32mm axle nut to remove the axle. Nope! Believe it or not, my Chilton's manual (haven't bit the bullet and bought the factory manuals yet) was right. Just remove the 6 bolts on each side, and out comes the entire axle! Am I the exception to the rule? Is this something common to '78s only?

'78 Silver 5 spd.

When I removed the axles, it was not necessary to loosen the axle nut, because both ends of my axles are bolted. Sometime in 1982 there was a change where the wheel end of the axle shaft became welded to the drive shaft to the wheel. Therefor on the earlier models you only have to loosen the six bolts at the CV joints to remove the axles, whereas on the later ones from 1982 on you have to remove the self-locking nut on the wheel end. This is discussed on pages 42-19 and 42-23 of the manual.

My shark was manufactured in July, 1981 so it still has the old setup.

Daniel Shapiro
'82 928 5 speed Chiffon/Brown

Heeding some excellent advice from Wally about the parking brake not holding when trying to remove the axle nut, I put lug nuts on an adjacent pair of studs, placed the curved end of a three foot crowbar in between them and used a 3/4 drive, 1-1/4 inch socket on a breaker bar with a four foot cheater, (the handle from
one of my floor jacks). I had to practically stand on the cheater but they came loose without any damage to the studs. Thanks for your advice-it probably saved several hours of wasted labor.

Don Burrows
87 S4, A/T

I did three boots of my '88 928s4 yesterday. No big deal. It turned out to be a 2 hour job for 3 boots. The fourth? Well: I replaced one last march. All others were in fine condition (then). Only two months later I find two others cracked and torn completely. That's why I would advise to replace both boots when taking an axle apart!

You don't need to unscrew the big wheel nut!

The procedure is as follows:

When working on the exhaust side... lower the exhaust a few
inches by unscrewing the 13mm bolts. Don't remove the exhaust.
Unscrew the allen bolts carefully.
Lower the axle on the transmission side.
I'ts possible to lower it so that you can access the cap on the first joint.
Open the clamp's that hold the boot. Use a knife to remove the boot.
Take off the Cap with a screw driver. (a new one is with the new boot)
Take off the 'C' clip that holds the joint. (a new one is with the new boot)
Take off the joint. Apply some force with a rubber hammer if needed.
Take off the wheel (don't touch the nut) to get some space to work on the boot at the wheel side. Attach the transmission-side boot on the joint part and repack with the new grease that came with the boot. Clean out if required. Move the new wheel-side boot in the correct direction on the axle.

An easy way to get the boots on the axle is to cut a piece of metal from a tin and wrap it as a cone. Insert in the boot. Move the cone with the boot over the axle, and then move it far enough. Hold the metal cone, and move the boot back until it's in position. Remove the metal cone. Easy... no more struggling.

Next attach the new clamps around the boot and secure tightly. Then screw everything back together and: job done.

'88 928s4 Cherry Red
The Netherlands

I replaced all four boots on my '87 S4. Some tips I'd like to pass along-

1. Be prepared for some serious nut breaking work. The rear axle nuts are torqued to 336 ft-lbs. It's a real bear to get them broke free. Consider spraying with WD-40 the night before.

2. When you take out the axle shafts - keep in mind that it may be easier to get to the Drivers side by dropping the exhaust (definately a plus).

3. Be sure to chock both the front wheels as you will find it easier to do this with the entire rear end up in the air.

4. Since you plan on replacing all the boots - I take it at least one is intact - I purchased a pair of heavy duty ace bandage/adhesive tape type cutting scissors - they work very well for cutting through the old boots (not to mention carpet, cord, etc./etc.)

5. Since you'll back end up already - what about those parking brake shoes? A good WYAIT item.

6. For inspecting the CVJ's - I cleaned mine in Kerosene - and reassembled them per the Tech Manual. Note which way they go back together - don't assemble in the lock up mode. Also, keep in mind that the CVJ next to the wheel (i.e. Outboard) do not diassemble! This portion must be purchased as a whole unit including shaft (ouch!). In order to clean and inspect, I suspended mine from my workbench, and used a spray bottle with Kerosene to flush the CVJ. It works - just takes a bit of time - about 30 minutes for a good job. When I did this, I looked for obvious signs of pitting, discoloration (blue), cracks, etc.


'87 S4 Auto

Just wanted to thank all who answered my questions and offered advice regarding my CV boot replacement, especially David Lloyd and Wally. Did the job over the weekend and it went real well. Took the car to a local truck/bus mechanic and borrowed his big torque wrench this morning to properly torque the axle nuts - I was actually real close.

Only real problem I ran into was that lowering the exhaust required cutting a few frozen bolts with my dremel.

Few things I found that weren't documented on the OC tips:

- I needed to lower the exhaust on both sides. I was not expecting
to on the right side, which I did first, so did not drop the
exhaust until it came time to get the shaft out and it didn't fit.
Would have been a lot easier to drop the exhaust first for
clearance getting to the inner bolts.

- I can see how you could do this leaving the shaft on the car and
only unbolting the inner CV, but I'm definitely glad I removed the
shafts. Could not have cleaned them out otherwise, and it would
have been hard to change the boots, especially not being able to
see what I was doing well and never having done it before.

- Found a good way to get the new grease packed into the outer CV
bearings on later cars where it is not removable. Holding the
shaft vertically from the inner end and with the fixed CV below and
resting on the ground/table, cover the top (inner) hole in the
shaft and pull up on the shaft, then repeat. This sucks the grease
into the joint from the top (open) side.

88 S4

On the early cars (pre- 82 or 83) the half shaft was bolted with 6 allen head bolts on both ends, and you did not have to remove the axle nut. On our cars, the CV joint is welded to the half shaft and you need to remove the axle nut to remove the half shaft.

That said, depending on what you want to do, you may be able to get away without removing the axle nut on a later car. To simply replace the cv boots, and if you have a lift (so you have good access standing up) you'll be able to do it. But if you want to re-pack new grease, you'll need to take the shafts out, so you'll have to remove the axle bolt. And it's really not as hard as tony's site makes it look. Using the 4-foot breaker I made, and with the wheels chocked on the ground, they came off easily.

Here's a rundown on what I did (or should have done in one case):

- chock wheels, car on ground
- remove wheel center caps
- loosen axle nuts w/ 4 foot breaker (sears 3/4" breaker + 4' pipe)
it's 32mm which is the same as 1-1/4"
- jack back of car and rest wheels on ramps (didn't want to drive up
with axle botls loose, may not actually be a problem)
- remove exhaust from cat back. 2 of my clamp bolts were frozen and
had to be dremeled. the info on the tips site claimed that you
only need to do the driver side, so I didn't do this until later
when i found i needed both removed (i started on the passenger side).
- remove the two axle nuts.
- remove 6 allen head bolts bolting inner cv's to transmission on each
side. inside half shafts now hang loose.
- use a wood dowel and hammer to tap the axle out of the wheel hub.
- half shafts should now come right out.
- cut the old boots off
- with screwdriver and hammer tap the cover plate on the inside side
- use circlip pliers to take off the inner circlip.
- remove inner cv joint from shaft. the outer cv stays on the shaft.
- use kerosene to clean out all the old grease. i decided to keep
the cvs together rather than removing the bearings as i was not
sure how easily i'd be able to get them back together. if you do
take them apart, keep the bearings for each joint with that joint.
if you have a parts washer it'll save a bunch of time. if not
maybe find a garage to do it. there's a lot of grease in there.
- let all the solvent dry.
- pack new grease into the bearings - get it worked well into the
bearing. if you choose not to take the cv apart, i found that on
the inner one, once i put all the grease on top, and
started pushing it down, it wasn't really getting in there. if you
hold the shaft vertically, then push the shaft into the cv, then
cover the hole in the top end of the shaft, then pull up (cv's have
a bunch of play), then repeat, you'll suck the grease into the
- install the new outer joint boot. slide on the inner boot, slide
on the inner cv, replace the circlip. you should have two new
boots, one new circlip, two tubes grease, 4 boot clamps (2 sizes),
and one end cap per side. you'll want circlip pliers ($10 from
autozone) and cv clamp pliers (around $5).
- install new inner end cap. use a bit of high temp rtv silicone or
yamaha yamabond 4 gasket maker (bike shop) on the inside to keep
the grease well sealed in.
- put everything back together. clean the crap from around the speed
sensor for the ABS. use anti seize on the splines that
go into the wheel hub and on the axle nut. use blue lock-tite on
the 6 allen head bolts (60 ft lbs i think). outer axle nut is 340
ft-lbs i think. get it tight, and take it to a truck mechanic with
a 3/4" drive torque wrench and re-torque properly.

Good luck!

Greg Klanderman

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