Signs of a failing Front Lower Ball Joint
Steering is slightly off
As your ball joints begin to die, they can become loose in the socket. That will mess up the alignment, and you may notice that your car isn’t steering quite the way that you’ve been asking it to.
The result will usually be your car pulling to the left or the right. This is a bit of a disconcerting feeling, when your car is trying to go in one direction when you’re not asking it to. So listen to your intuition when it tells you that something is wrong.
Tires wearing unevenly
Okay, time for some basic math. If your car is pulling to one direction or another, do you think the tires might wear a little unevenly?
The answer is yes, obviously. If your failing front lower ball joints are causing your car to pull to the left or the right, the tires will wear unevenly. So, even if you don’t notice the pulling, you might notice uneven wear and tear on your tires.
It’s a good idea to give your tires a visual inspection every now and again. Excessive or uneven wear and tear should be taken seriously, at least if you value having tires on your car. Which you should.
Hopefully you know by now that foreign noises from your car are not a good thing. And they should be addressed. Always.
If your front lower ball joint is beginning to wear out, they can make two different noises. The first is a knocking, clanking, or rattling noise, which happens when a failing ball joint is rattling around in the socket. The second is a squeaking noise, similar to an old door in a horror movie, which happens when a busted ball joint is lacking in lubrication.
Vibrating car or steering wheel
If your front lower ball joint is calling out sick, the suspension of your car will be compromised. You’ll feel it in the form of a vibration. You might feel the vibration from the steering wheel, which is a weird sensation. Your entire car might vibrate like you’re driving on a dirt road.