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<2005 2.5i 5MT, 137k miles>

I've had a mildly torn CV boot for about 5000 miles, and while recently driving on a rough trail road, it completely split open dumping grease all over my exhaust. I cleaned it up, and drove a couple hundred miles to get home.

I understand from read the forums, that rebooting is sometimes sufficient instead of replacing the axles.
In my case, I know that I drove with the boot entirely torn open for about 50 miles on a rough, dusty road, and 200 miles on highway. I don't have a frame of reference for how much this would effect the bearings. In my simple understanding, dust+bearings=bad.

Before this incident, I could hear some clicking when I had the wheel entirely turned for parking, but nothing noticeable during ordinary driving. This indicated some amount of CV joint wear, but I don't know how much.

So the questions are:

1) Should I reboot the axle or replace it with an OEM reman?
2) If I reboot, should I remove the axle to slip the boot on? Or is a wrap-around boot sufficient?
3) While I'm all up in there, what other maintenance/inspections would you recommend?
Inspections on inner brake pad, wheel bearing, ball joint, and suspension bushings are recommended in this thread: forums/99-do-yourself-illustrated-guides/21119-diy-front-cv-axle-boot-replacement.html



It'd be a bit cheaper to do the reboot and drive out the axle for maybe 5-10k miles (just a guess) more before replacement. But I'm concerned that riding out the axle could cause undue vibrations on the transmission side and contribute to wear and tear there.

What do you think?
 

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2017 Outback Premium 2.5 with Eyesight. 19mm Rear Sway Bar. Steering Dampener Lock Down. HID upgrade from retrofit source.
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I elected to reboot an axle on my 2008 2.5. I had similar mileage to yours with the boot torn. Mine didn’t blow out completely, but it was open to the elements for a small bit. I cleaned it and regreased it, rebooted it. 1.5k miles later it started the clicking during turns. Maybe I didn’t do well enough cleaning it or maybe the small amount of time exposed was enough but I had to replace it anyway. Got a reman from RAxles out of Florida. Came with the axle but if I remember right. I purchased the seal that the axle slides through into the xmsn. I heard it is a commonly damaged part during removal and install of the axle. I didn’t end up needing to replace it but it was cheap enough and nice to know I had one on hand I case I damaged it.
If I could do it all over again, or would have saved myself the time of removal, rebooting and replacing only to have to do it again with just getting a reman. A few people had told me that much anyway. With your axle starting to click, if it were me, I would just order a reman now and save yourself the cost of rebooting and only getting minimal mileage out of it. After I bought the new boots, grease, boot rings and pliers to tighten the boot rings and what ever other small supplies I needed, it wouldn’t have been much more to just gets new axle.

I would stay away from wrap around boots. I don’t think you will get much mileage out of them. To do it properly on my 2008, I had to remove the axle to reboot because only one end of the axle is able to be disassembled. I’m not sure if the 2005 is the same way. To do the outer boot on the 2008, I had to remove the inner end and boot. Ended up having to replace both inner and outer boots.
 

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Just replace the axle. Cheaper and easier in the long run. Also, since you are doing one, might as well do the other side while your at it. As the other side already has wear and tear and I hate to say will most likely go out soon.

One thing I learned the hard way, don't buy rebuilt CV axels. Just buy new ones. Trying to save a couple dollars on rebuilt ones, just isn't worth it. As they just don't last as long as new ones.

Something I learned from another mechanic to help make the boots last longer (or any other rubber components). Get a bottle or two of "ATP AT-205 Re-seal, Stop Leaks" and an old spray bottle. Put the AT-205 in the spray bottle, spray the boots and other rubber components. Oddly it rejuvenates the rubber and helps to prevent splitting from rot.

I usually spray stuff with AT-205 when I do an oil change, when I also rotate the tires for easier access to the boots and suspension bushings. Just don't get the over spray on the brake components.
 

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OBW H6 VDC, Tribeca, XT6
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Get an axle from Subaru. They're less than $200 and rebooting is $50 in OEM boots, grease, towels, cleaner...and time.

You can reboot them. They'll never fail. But the risk of possible future noise is unacceptable to most so a new axle is a great option. Which is a comical statement considering how many anecdotal people will recommend and listen to advice to buy aftermarket axles.

If you reboot it clean it out good and use Subaru boots. But there's no way to guarantee or know if they'll be noisy down the road. Rebooting is probably only an option for a select bandwith of DIY folks, but replacement is the best fit for most. If you like trying to save a few bucks with no risk of failure - reboot it. If you end up with noise then get a new axle and save your boots for the axle on the other side and you've lost little cash and learned something for a little time.

Whatever you do don't use any aftermarket axle. They all have high percentage of issues. Rebooting a used Subaru axle is the best option if you want to save down time, don't trust your axle, and don't want to buy a new Subaru axle. I've bought countless used OEM axles for $15-$30 from yards.
 

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2006 Subaru Outback
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I have an 06 Outback with 130k miles and have clicking when turning right. I've also heard some clicking while going straight, but much more subtle than when turning. I also have a subtle binding when turning hard left (not sure if that is axle related or something else). My right outer right CV boot is torn and grease is leaking out. I've read many posts about rebooting vs replacing and thinking with the clicking I am hearing I should replace but have several questions:

1) I purchased this vehicle used with over 100k miles, how do I know if my front axles are original/OEM? I've seen posts about the inner cup being green. Are OEM axles cups green for the 2006 Outback? When I inspected mine, I do not recall seeing green cups on the inner CV joints.
2) What is the best source for replacement axles, Raxles, reman through dealer, other?
3) If I have OEM axles, should I just replace the bad axle?
4) If my axles are not OEM, should I replace both?

I appreciate your feedback.
 

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Outback 2011 3.6R Premium
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I have an 06 Outback with 130k miles and have clicking when turning right. I've also heard some clicking while going straight, but much more subtle than when turning. I also have a subtle binding when turning hard left (not sure if that is axle related or something else). My right outer right CV boot is torn and grease is leaking out. I've read many posts about rebooting vs replacing and thinking with the clicking I am hearing I should replace but have several questions:

1) I purchased this vehicle used with over 100k miles, how do I know if my front axles are original/OEM? I've seen posts about the inner cup being green. Are OEM axles cups green for the 2006 Outback? When I inspected mine, I do not recall seeing green cups on the inner CV joints.
2) What is the best source for replacement axles, Raxles, reman through dealer, other?
3) If I have OEM axles, should I just replace the bad axle?
4) If my axles are not OEM, should I replace both?

I appreciate your feedback.
On your 2006 model the inner part of the CV should be green if it is an OEM axle.

Seagrass
 

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2008 Outback 2.5
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My story
That was 5 years ago and the $65 A1 Cardones are still holding up fine. I still have the $12 reboot kit and the original axles "just in case" I have a failure but it's probably time I dump them.
 
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