Sway Bar End Links
If your vehicle is equipped with a sway bar, you know how crucial the job it does for your driving comfort is. It ties your left and right wheels as well as left and right suspension of a specific axle to improve handling and steering. No matter whether it is located at the front or rear of the vehicle, it helps to reduce body lean when the vehicle is going around a turn or over a bump.
A typical sway bar features four mounting points. Two of them are used to attach a sway bar to a vehicle’s body or frame with the help of sway bar bushings, while the other two (one on each side of the sway bar) serve to connect it to the control arms or struts with sway bar end links. The latter is metal bars with ball joints or bushings on their ends. When attached to a vehicle’s suspension, they help the sway bar to connect both sides of the suspension, while allowing it to flex for better driving comfort.
If your sway bar end links eventually fail due to wear and tear or damage, they will affect your steering and driving comfort. Let’s check the most common symptoms of bad sway bar end links:
Any popping or knocking noise coming from the sway bar area or front wheels can be a sign of worn-out or damaged sway bar end links. The noises should be especially noticeable when going over bumps or uneven road surfaces.
A loose or damaged sway bar link can’t hold the sway bar attached to the suspension. This will keep the sway bar from doing its job, resulting in increased body roll and poor handling.
Sway bar end link replacement
Sway bar end links are maintenance-free parts that do not require regular checks. However, we recommend you to inspect your sway bar end links and sway bar bushings for wear and damage each time you work on your brake, steering or suspension system.
Replacing sway bar end links can be tackled by DIYer if he or she has the necessary knowledge and experience. Although, we recommend you to leave this job to a professional for several reasons. Your vehicle must be raised up to access the sway bar and faulty mounting hardware. Besides, your sway bar end links and bushings can get rusted or seized due to the impact of moisture or road salt. That’s why leaving this job to your mechanic will save you lots of headache and time. He or she should tackle this task in less than an hour.