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I'm a newbie so please bear with me. In the past six months, I have had 5 wheel studs break. My E is an 05 EX with alloys wheels and 173 k miles on it . Is something wrong or are they just old and worn? Should I just replace them all or could there another problem. Thanks for your help.
 

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One reason wheel studs break or pull out is because some tire places like to put anti-seize on them. Lug nuts are not supposed to have anti-seize and the torque spec is for dry threads. When you take them to the same torque with anti-seize on the threads, you end up with about 2x the load on your studs.
 

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2003 Honda Element Sunset Orange Pearl 2WD Automatic 135K Miles I Love It!
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When I lived up North (Chicago area) I always at least put some oil (never anti-seize) on the wheel stud threads; as a way to fight off the road salt!

Now that I live in FL, it's really not necessary. But I'm still in the habit of putting a drop of oil on the wheel stud threads anyway, just before I put on the lug nuts.

Is it possible that someone in the past seriously over-did it with a high torque air impact driver? Too much torque can stretch the studs, and you notice the problem later.
 

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After 14 years and 173 k miles, I'm sure they were probably over torqued more than once. I'm beginning to wonder if I should ever get the tires rotated again. Thanks for your thoughts. Ted
 

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Yeah, I'm tracking with you tedstory. Even my most trusted local repair shop had some rookie on their staff screw up the wheel studs on my Caravan (our work horse, so I wasn't too upset!). But, if they did that to my Element.............. I would have gone off on them!

Thank you for another reminder as to why I keep on doing as many repairs as possible myself!

I would like to be able to just toss the keys to a shop and have them do it all, but unfortunately it's always the least experienced guys in the shop that do the simple things like oil changes and tire rotations. : - (

Out of the last 6 used cars that I bought (including my Element), 5 of them had issues with the oil plug or the oil pan threads! What does that tell you?! : - (

So I'll just keep on doing my own repairs & maintenance wherever possible; until I just plain get too old to do it (which isn't far off!). : - )

That old saying is still true: "If you want it done right, you must.................."
 

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Thank you for another reminder as to why I keep on doing as many repairs as possible myself!
Agree. For those with the ability to do so, doing work yourself usually means that more care will be taken.

I usually re-torque my wheels after anytime the wheels are mounted by a "mechanic". I do this because I once tried to rotate a wheel after state inspection and my impact wrench couldn't break a nut loose. I had to stand on a cross wrench to break it loose. I can only imagine the actual torque that had been applied by the "mechanic". If I had a flat away from home with that nut so tight, I'd have been stuck. That fact that broken studs are relatively rare is a tribute to their strength.
 
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I'm a newbie so please bear with me. In the past six months, I have had 5 wheel studs break. My E is an 05 EX with alloys wheels and 173 k miles on it . Is something wrong or are they just old and worn? Should I just replace them all or could there another problem. Thanks for your help.
Here's something to consider.
  • Differential clutches binding in the AWD model (if those are the lugs that are breaking). When you make hard left or right turns does you hear or feel something not right?
Like a wheel may be skipping or hopping during that hard turn?
This happens when the differential lubrication has begun breaking down. Going around corners effect each wheels revolution. Both wheels don't turn simutaneously. Outside wheel spins more than the inside depending on if it's a left or right turn. Its an easy fix. Did mine in an hour. Including driving it to a large parking lot and turning my 2004 Element sharp left and right from a stand still in front of our local police. Lol!
Probably realized before turning the lights on that I was checking out my suspension after going straight a few feet forward and back a few times with my head out the window.
Helped for a good portion of about 5 years before I started hearing it again. By then with 217k miles on it, I bit the bullet and bought a Pilot.
Changing the limited slip fluid in the rear yourself can help recondition the clutch plates so the axle can move freely. I had 4 of 5 lugs break off doing 40mph in a 1979 Chevy Nova that had a posi traction in it. It would do burns out real easy turning left or right. Almost lost a new paint job on that one.
 
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