Universal joints, often referred to as u-joints, are flexible couplings that serve an important role on your vehicle. One of the primary duties of a u-joint is to transmit the rotational force between the transmission, the driveshaft, and the differentials, which are responsible for turning your vehicle’s drive wheels. As a critical linking component, a u-joint should be flexible enough to compensate for angle and alignment changes between the driveshaft and differentials. U-joints consist of four legs, or trunnions, that extend from the center cross, or body. The legs are covered with bearing caps and are housed within the yoke, which is designed to pivot and spin as they rotate with the driveshaft. Although many original equipment u-joints are sealed, some aftermarket u-joints are greasable and should be lubricated periodically. Understanding the type of u-joints on your vehicle will help you determine the proper maintenance intervals and decide when a u-joint should be replaced.
Clicking, squeaking, and grinding noises while driving are warning signs that your u-joints may require replacement. The cost of replacing your u-joint can be cheaper than the major repairs you may face if a worn u-joint is left untreated. Vibrations and rattling noises are key indicators of a faulty u-joint. Grinding noises may be an indication of metal on metal, which will cause u-joints to wear out quickly. Because they are subject to torque and force from the engine, u-joints may bend. On older vehicles, u-joints will rust, adding surface resistance onto the joints, making them less able to turn as they once did. Routine inspections of your u-joints have been known to prevent more expensive repairs. Replacing your u-joints at the first sign of trouble will also help prevent failure in your vehicle’s driveline. When you need new u-joints, give us a call.
We proudly service the U-Joint Replacement needs of customers in Kigali and surrounding areas.