I have a 1998 Dodge Stratus, 77,000, 4 cylinder. I recently had the tires replaced on the front end, and when I got it back it eventually started making this grinding noise when I turn right (it also happens when I turn left but not as bad). A light turn at low speeds creates a light grind; a tight turn at high speed creates a grind that makes me wish I wasn't driving it. It seems the more the car leans when I turn the louder the grind. After taking off the wheel to inspect the problem, I noticed the bottom support(pivot point) for the front driver side rotor is digging into the tire rim. I assumed it was the rim and switched over to my full size spare. This helped as it doesn't grind as bad, but it still scares me to think that it could grind right trough the rim. All I need it to be driving down the highway and loose my front wheel @ 80 MPH. I thought it may be the shocks/struts, but I could be wrong. Also my assuption is the rotor is fixed to the rim and the support is fixed to the rotor; so why would the support grind into the rim? I do live in Hawaii and there is a thick layer of brake dust and road grim on the supports, could this be a factor? Any help would be appreciated.
Jack the front end up and turn the steering all the wayy from one side to the other, Whan at the extremes, spin the wheel and see where it is making contact.
August, 6, 2007 AT 12:45 PM
The rim is rubbing against the bottom control arm. It looks as if the bottom ball joint that allows the wheel assembly to turn has slipped out. The boot is completely gone. Any idea of the cost it would take to replace the ball joint and boot?
August, 6, 2007 AT 1:38 PM
Prices will vary depending on the part, the mark up, the labor rate, time to do the job, unanticipated problems and so on. You may end up getting into a control arm on that one. Obviously don't drive it like that.
August, 7, 2007 AT 6:39 PM
Thanks, I just had two different techs look at it. Total cost from both averaged out to 1,600.00. Dodge doesn't sell the bottom ball joints seperate; instead you have to buy the entire control arm. Oh well, looks like I need a new car. Thanks for all your help.
August, 8, 2007 AT 5:15 AM
The list price at the dealer is about $300, the labor is 1.9 hrs, . What all is included in that?
You can get the ball joints aftermarket.
There is somthing very wrong here.
August, 9, 2007 AT 3:46 PM
You aren't kidding somethings wrong. I paid the guy the 35.00 it took to have him look at it and got my car right outta there!
Lower Ball Joint/Control Arm = 281.61 x2
Upper ball joint = 64.61 x2
Tie Rod = 98.00
Parts = 790.00
Labor = 810.00
I thought it was a little steep as well. I was able to find new control arms for 150.00 each, vs. The shops cost of 281.61 each. After looking through the Haynes repair manual, it seems to be a pretty easy fix. Just gotta take some time and care to get it right. So I think I will try and tackle it with the help of my gear-head friend (he's got a lift and all the tools I will need). Thanks for all your help.
August, 12, 2007 AT 7:49 PM
That isn't a bad mark-up on the control arms, I didn't add in the other labor on the uppers or alignment costs however. Regardless, I applaud you for going after this instead of dumpoing the car. I believe you are making a wise financial decison. Please follow up as to how the job went for you.
May, 13, 2014 AT 1:31 PM
I know this is a very far fetch but I have the same problem and the same car, just its 7 years later and a lot more miles. Im hoping you still stay connected with this site and figured out the problem so I could fix mine without thousands of dollars in repairs. Please, and thank you very much