I have searched the web for the phrase "silicon cv boot" and the only site I
found showed a radio-controlled race car model that someone had hand-made.
It featured silicon cv boots.
Now why, on this very critical item, won't the parts manufacturers use
silicon rubber instead of the crappy standard rubber that ages and tears so
easily? I can purchase a silicon oven mitt from Bed Bath & Beyond - and it
is obvious that if this material can tolerate extreme temperatures and not
fail, it would be the perfect material to use for CV boots. It is supple
You would think also that this would be at least an obvious niche that high
performance parts suppliers would fill, if not the standard parts guys. I
can buy all kinds of braided metal hoses, etc. to decorate the engine, but
not a silicon CV boot?
I know the answer... It's like asking why don't the drug companies finally
release a cure for herpes - because they couldn't continue selling the
ultra-expensive topical treatments. But making a silicon CV boot wouldn't
require FDA approval, and some smart parts company could make a mint
providing this part - if they could create demand from the ignorant
[Of course, I have entirely skipped the discussion of why there's so few
rear-wheel drive cars available, which would eliminate the need for CV boots
and joints altogether. ]
Can someone clarify this a bit for me?
They do use a different material now. The boots I've currently got on my
'91 Integra's original CV joints are some sort of plasticky material. They
are OEM for the new Civics, which happen to have the same size CV joints.
This plasticky material is supposed to last much longer than the old-style
ones. I notice the new boots have a very different profile than the old
ones. The new ones have a radius at the bottom of each pleat, and have
sharper points on the pleats as well.
CV joint boots are subject to weather, steering stresses, road impact,
salt, and budgetary constraints. Only the last could be applicable to oven
Since you are not a chemist who understands polymer technology, you have
absoultely NO way of knowing whether what you're calling "silicon" is even
remotely suitable for CV joint boots.
You never looked at the boots and one broke on you, didn't it?
On 5/7/05 1:56 PM, in article Xns964F97DA44E4Btegger@22.214.171.124,
You are correct - that's why I posted the statement here. I am perfectly
fine with being enlightened and shown the error in my thinking or
assumptions. That's how learning takes place. I am quite capable of coming
to terms with the possibility that the material that is currently used is
actually the best possible choice.
But when I hear that some folks have to have the CV boots replaced every
couple years, I wonder...
It's a problem, but not one that conspiracy theories explain.
CV joint boot failure on a Honda and most other Japanese 2WD cars takes a
couple of years from the first sign of cracking to when it splits wide
open. This gives a savvy owner lots of time to occasionally inspect the
boots at each oil change, and deal with it before the CV joint gets exposed
to the weather.
CV joint boots have a tough life, subjecting their polymers to unique
stresses unseen even by the tires. Every time the wheel rotates, the
bellows flex. It's a bit like bending a paper clip back and forth until it
breaks. Cold weather, steering, and drive axle angles all conspire to
destroy the boot through simple, repeated flexion.
Some vehicles, such as AWD Subarus, appear to have shorter CV boot
lifespans than Hondas, probably due to their relatively extreme drive axle
angles relative to the wheel's axis.
Considering the major strides automakers and their suppliers have made in
the longevity of most components -- from engines to shock absorbers to
tires to transmissions to body steel -- over the decades, I suspect the CV
joint boot problem is primarily one of being unable to find a cost-
effective substance that has the characteristics the CV joints need, but
that still resists cracking for the life of the car.
Remember when shocks and tires had to be replaced every 20,000 miles?
Remember when engines and transmissions rarely made it past 100,000 miles
without a rebuild? Remember when body steel would perforate in five years?
I'm not sure it can really be considered a critical item. Brakes are
critical. If they fail it can easily be life threatening. Probably
could consider fuel and ignition critical (could be dangerous to be
stranded somewhere; ie: on the railroad tracks or in an intersection).
Wheel attachment and steering are critical (hate to lose any of them).
But cv boots? I'd guess even when they fail the car will continue
to run for a long time. Of course this will accelerate the failure
of the cv joints but my experience is that cv joints complain
(noise, vibration, etc) long before they fail.
For non-critical parts the manufacture has to balance reliability
against initial cost.
Probably because they don't show when the hood is up. No flash
It's probably a cost issue. I don't generally hear of people needing
to replace the cv boots all that often (at least among people who
buy new cars. And I doubt that manufactures care much about people
who buy used cars ;)
Just out of curiosity: what kind of car (I assume you own it) has the
cv boot issue?
On 5/7/05 6:40 PM, in article
1mcfe.2827$ firstname.lastname@example.org, "Brian Stell"
My daughter's 1995 Civic; however, I have had other cars that needed this
repair. I had a 1992 Lexus ES 300 that went through a CV boot by1999 (but I
had only owned it since 1998 and it was one of those so-called "certified
pre-owned" models; I also had this repair on a 1997 Altima in early 2004.
I have a 2001 Odyssey (with just 35K on it) that doesn't have this problem
(yet). I'd like to know what I can possibly do to make these suckers stay
in top shape and not crack/tear/dry out. Would some kind of silicon spray
help at all?
And when you think about it, why in the world would something like an
Odyssey even HAVE front wheel drive to begin with? A big, heavy car would
do fine with rear wheel drive.
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