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Old 03-21-2011, 08:45 PM   #1 (permalink)
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4th Generation what can one expect when driving with bad sway bar link?

recently discovered that bottom boot on passenger side front sway bar link is torn on 5s-fe. car still drives not bad, but I noticed it wanders a little bit more on highways.

should I replace both sway bar links (will be going with MOOG) immediately or it is rather not time sensitive? I mean it can cause some dangerous car behavior, right? anything bad can happen to an end link when there is no grease left in boot?

thanks for suggestions.
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Old 03-21-2011, 08:59 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Only impact cornering. Straight line driving they do nothing. Thats not to say if you yank it lose and fly down the freeway it will drive normal it wont if you have to swerve. That could be dangerous as body roll will be ecxessive.

It should be fine. with a torn boot for a while. . . but get it replaced. Torn or cracked? Cracked = age. Torn is another source of injury. . . You by chance run anything over?
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Old 03-21-2011, 09:04 PM   #3 (permalink)
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ok thanks. I think there was side wind included when I drove tested it so some body roll might have been in play too because of that.

it was actually cracked (rubber split open).
Jersey Winter (and road salt) is harsh on such rubber parts. both sway bar links on that car at 80k miles (11 years) look MUCH worse and older than on 02 V6 with 125k miles.

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Only impact cornering. Straight line driving they do nothing. Thats not to say if you yank it lose and fly down the freeway it will drive normal it wont if you have to swerve. That could be dangerous as body roll will be ecxessive.

It should be fine. with a torn boot for a while. . . but get it replaced. Torn or cracked? Cracked = age. Torn is another source of injury. . . You by chance run anything over?
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Old 03-21-2011, 09:04 PM   #4 (permalink)
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After a while, the end-links will wear a bit more and begin to clunk on bumps. The joint can pop out if worn excessively and body roll will increase. I remember driving around with bad end links with family’s Quest. I took it off but didn’t have the correct parts. It rolled like a boat to the auto parts store for an exchange. Of course that's on a tall van. It shouldn’t be bad on a Solara as it also have a rear sway bar. Might as well replace both side.
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Old 03-21-2011, 09:07 PM   #5 (permalink)
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yeah I want to do both front sides at same time, they are worn seriously, probably just a matter of (short) time before other one cracks open too after taking some sharp corner.
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Old 03-21-2011, 09:17 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I wonder if the "Rare Parts" brand is actually made by MOOG? Need to ask Swagger.
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Old 03-21-2011, 09:55 PM   #7 (permalink)
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have no idea. they may be owned by MOOG but it doen't mean the same factory makes them or even that all parts quality is same. it might be some cheap knock off.

MOOGs are about $50 each from rockauto.com or Advance Auto (with proper codes). not so bad.

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I wonder if the "Rare Parts" brand is actually made by MOOG? Need to ask Swagger.
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:13 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Have you looked at the ones made by Deeza, made in Turkey? I bought a set from Rock as well, about $19 each plus S&H. Well made, re-greasable with a grease relief port so the boot is over stretched and old grease can come out.

Mevotech looks similar.

I also got a set of re greasable Moogs for the rear, paid $90 locally each, not impressed with the boots, they are loose fitting cups at the ball joint housing.
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:21 AM   #9 (permalink)
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hmmm, I haven't looked into it yet. I am actually not a fan of re-greasable joints ... I'd rather get sealed ones (oem style). are all Moogs or Deezas re-greasable?
How often is one supposed to re-grease them? I don't want to have another item I need to remember about checking on.

So far I looked at those Moogs, I can get them cheaper from Advance Auto locally (with codes) than from rockauto.com:
Moog K90312 front RH
Moog K90311 front LH

are those re-greasable type? do they come pre-greased or I need to buy a grease gun with grease to fill 'em up first?

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Have you looked at the ones made by Deeza, made in Turkey? I bought a set from Rock as well, about $19 each plus S&H. Well made, re-greasable with a grease relief port so the boot is over stretched and old grease can come out.

Mevotech looks similar.

I also got a set of re greasable Moogs for the rear, paid $90 locally each, not impressed with the boots, they are loose fitting cups at the ball joint housing.
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Last edited by fenixus; 03-24-2011 at 11:27 AM.
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Old 03-24-2011, 05:49 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Fenixus, I've had two encounters with cars that had disabled front sway bars or links. First was my 71' Duster. I bought it with front end damage a no front sway bar, fixed it a bit at a time. It leaned over like a big whale around any corners (scary, actually got me a ticket for do nother partic. crazy), bump steered all over the place on the highway. Second was my Mazda 626,Turbo (snapped off an end link under power one day, dynoed at 287ft-lbs at 3600rpm) . It had tons of torque steer under any kind of power, was wobbly around sweeping corners, darted around while under braking on bumpy surfaces, and while managable until I fixed it, it banged and bonked around and felt like a real piece of ... you know. You probably have lots of time to fix it before it does anything so drastic as actually break, but I would fix it.
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Old 03-24-2011, 06:24 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Thanks Silent Runner, this helps. I will not rush the sway end links replacement on this car if it can wait a bit longer. don't want to spend another $100 for something that still works (more or less).
nothing is broken yet, just one boot cracked, car feels more wandering on highway, but it's still minimal, nothing like driving with no sway bar in front at all

I will give it some time and either do when things go worse (e.g. clunking) or in Summer.

do you know if all those aftermarket sway end links are greasable? I'd rather go with a sealed product (like OEM). I don't want another maintenance interval for extra stuff.


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Fenixus, I've had two encounters with cars that had disabled front sway bars or links. First was my 71' Duster. I bought it with front end damage a no front sway bar, fixed it a bit at a time. It leaned over like a big whale around any corners (scary, actually got me a ticket for do nother partic. crazy), bump steered all over the place on the highway. Second was my Mazda 626,Turbo (snapped off an end link under power one day, dynoed at 287ft-lbs at 3600rpm) . It had tons of torque steer under any kind of power, was wobbly around sweeping corners, darted around while under braking on bumpy surfaces, and while managable until I fixed it, it banged and bonked around and felt like a real piece of ... you know. You probably have lots of time to fix it before it does anything so drastic as actually break, but I would fix it.
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Old 03-24-2011, 08:18 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Nowadays. I doubt any of the aftermarket stuff is greasable, although I've never looked into it. If you can, I'd take your time, order some OEM stuff from one of these sources that sell Toyota or OEM online at huge discounts. A cracked boot on that part is not going to make it actually break immediately, like a CV or something. First thing you might note is some clunking as one tire or another hits a sharp bump. About that time you will want to get a little more serious about it.
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Old 03-24-2011, 08:58 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Silent Runner you wouldn't believe, but all decent aftermarket brands make ONLY greasable sway end links LOL

i'm not 100% sure but the Moog parts I wanted to buy for this car *may* be actually greasable (which I don't want) just like the ball joints I installed on V6 (shop greased them for me), at least all google research on Moog sway end links brings up greasable types, not sure though about those specific ones I listed

I need someone to confirm if that's the case (part numbers above, should be same for camry & avalon in similar year ranges).

since i do not want them with grease fittings, I may get the OEM ones from online dealer after all, however on suspension I prefer Moog hehehe (gen4 Toyota Camry weakest link is suspension IMO).

I already hear some faint clunking over bumps from wheels, thought it was new Monroe mounts not settled in, but no, it's the sway bar (clunking by wheels, so it's end links, no squeaking which would point to bushings, besides they looked good).

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Nowadays. I doubt any of the aftermarket stuff is greasable, although I've never looked into it. If you can, I'd take your time, order some OEM stuff from one of these sources that sell Toyota or OEM online at huge discounts. A cracked boot on that part is not going to make it actually break immediately, like a CV or something. First thing you might note is some clunking as one tire or another hits a sharp bump. About that time you will want to get a little more serious about it.
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Old 03-24-2011, 09:03 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Didn't I post this link before...? I feel like it helps.

http://www.moogproblemsolver.com/videos.php

I should also say... I've got a TRD RSB stashed away. Guess what's stuck on it? An OEM endlink.
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Old 03-24-2011, 09:16 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Thanks Lynch, those are good videos, I will watch them some time. for now I know where the problem is, I just don't know if Moog parts are greasable (that I don't want) or not (that I want)
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