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Just wondering the recommendations people who have gone through this would do:
I was crawling under my Element to replace the Rear Differential Damper (it has been making noise for a few weeks) and saw my left inner rear CV boot is torn. I was under the car about 2 weeks ago and don't drive that much so I figure I caught it quick enough to avoid fatal axle damage. The grease looks fresh, etc...
I'm reading differing opinions online about using rebuilt axles (New ones from honda are over $600) and most people seem to think if you catch it in time the original axle is fine. However, most mechanics I call just want to replace the axle with rebuilt to save labor time. So I'm getting $290 to replace axle with rebuilt or $282 to just replace the boots. The element now has 180K on the odometer and she's not looking too pretty these days. What are the community's recommendations? Rebuilt axle or just the boots??
Thanks.
 

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replacing the axle vs replacing the boot question mostly applies only when you're doing your own labor - or when the parts cost is vastly different between the two options

in your case, the shop labor will make the price almost the same, so go for the whole axel... it's cheap insurance ($8 :D )

if the shop has a quick shot tool (that installs the boot on the axle while it's still on the car), then that's an option... but honestly i've been reading about this tool for years and have not yet found a shop that has one :/

[ame]http://www.amazon.com/Norrec-NORREC-1-QUICK-SHOT-TOOL/dp/B0068C5GB2/ref=sr_1_1?s=automotive&ie=UTF8&qid=1373542371&sr=1-1&keywords=quick+shot+tool[/ame]

if you want to do the labor yourself, then by all means just repack the grease and replace the boot - after all, you can always change the whole axle later if you detect damage

another option is to try to fix it yourself with one of the "quick boot" / "fast boot" type things - where you cut the boot off while the axle is still installed and put on a split replacement boot which is then glued together... there are special kits out there for about $20 like this one:
http://www.autozone.com/autozone/parts/Dorman-Quick-Boot-CV/2004-Honda-Element-4WD/_/N-jm659Z6o205?itemIdentifier=525511_0_3550_

hmm... this is a much longer post than i expected :oops:
 
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