Most european cars have at least one flex disc or guibo attaching the driveshaft to the transmission, differential(s) or both.
These discs are made of rubber with metal inserts and provide flexibility to absorb drivetrain impact and provide flexibility for small movements.
Longer driveshafts also have a center support which consists of a bearing mounted in rubber.
Like all things made of rubber that are exposed to heat, the elements, and possibly oil leaks, they deteriorate with age. Even if a car is low mileage, the rubber can still be compromised from age alone.
While the flex discs are very strong, once the rubber becomes cracked it can quickly start to separate. If you are in tune with how your car feels, you may be able to feel an increased vibration as the flex disc(s) or center support starts to fail, but in some cases it can happen suddenly with little warning.
When this happens, depending on the vehicle, it can be an inconvenience requiring a tow and some new parts, or it could spell disaster to parts near the driveshaft when it breaks away.
Since the driveshaft is spinning at high speeds, it can do a lot of damage to the body of the car, any hoses, wires, or even the transmission or transfer case for AWD vehicles when it comes loose.
So how do you prevent this from happening?
The good news is that it is usually easy to visually inspect the components are determine if they are in good condition. If they pass a visual inspection than a physical stress test for play and and cracks that appear under a load will be peformed.
If there is play or cracking then the driveshaft must be removed and the components replaced.
This is usually a cheap to moderately priced job that can be done the same day depending on parts availability and our schedule. Inspections can be performed nearly any time you are free to bring the car by so don’t put it off.
We offer free complete vehicle inspections with our oil changes which includes inspecting the driveshaft components.
Call or message us today and save money on expensive repairs!