5 Symptoms Of A Bad Driveshaft (& Replacement Cost)

Your car’s driveshaft is responsible for transmitting torque from the engine to the wheels so the vehicle can move. Problems with your driveshaft can lead to problems in operation. You can ensure smooth, safe rides by learning how to identify a defective driveshaft.

Here are some ways to know if your driveshaft needs replacing. Also, we will discuss the cost and function of bad driveshafts. Let’s begin with a quick look at the signs:

Índice de Contenido
  1. 5 Bad Driveshaft Symptoms
    1. Vibrations 
    2. Clunking Noises
    3. You can hear clicking, clicks or knocking sounds
    4. Shuddering during Acceleration
    5. The Turning is tricky
  2. A driveshaft's Function
  3. Driveshaft Location
  4. Driveshaft Replacement Cost
  5. Driveshaft FAQs
    1. Is it possible to hear a bad drive shaft?
    2. Is a bad driveshaft going to cause the car to shake?
    3. It is difficult to replace the driveshaft.
    4. How long can a driveshaft lasts?

5 Bad Driveshaft Symptoms

Vibrations occurring at high speeds and acceleration are the most obvious sign of a damaged drive shaft. Other noises may be heard coming from your driveline.

A bad or failing drivehaft is a sign of trouble.

This is a detailed listing of symptoms that indicate a poor driveshaft.


Car Shakes While Driving E1609778840298

When the driveshaft begins to fail, it’s common to feel some vibration. The vibration may get more severe over time.

Some vibrations are caused by worn U-joints, bushings, or other problems. Sometimes the vibration could also be caused by the driveshaft being out of alignment or not properly bolted. Other vital parts can be damaged if the drivetrain vibrates. 

Clunking Noises

Noise From Car

If you hear clunking noises, it could be a sign that there’s a problem with the driveshaft. It is possible to hear this sound when shifting.

Some cases of clunking can be caused by a damaged U-joint. No matter the cause of your clunking, make sure you have it checked out.

You can hear clicking, clicks or knocking sounds

Other sounds can be made by a damaged drivetrain. The driveshaft can have problems rotating when bearings or bushings become worn. The vehicle can make a multitude of noises due to this. 

For example, squeaking while traveling at low speeds could indicate that the U-joint doesn’t have enough lubrication. You can fix this easily with just a little grease A clicking sound or a click might be heard. This is a sign that your CV joint has worn down and may be about to break. 

Shuddering during Acceleration

We have mentioned vibration but the shuddering problem is even more obvious. If the drivetrain fails, the driver might feel the vibration increase when they accelerate or increase their speed. 

It could also be due to a loose Ujoint, or a worn out center bearing. You might also hear some of our previous sounds. 

The Turning is tricky

The driveshaft converts torque into motion, but it can also impact the vehicle's turning ability. You may be having difficulty taking turns if your driveshaft is damaged.

The wheels will not turn correctly if the driveshaft is damaged. This can cause you to lose control of the vehicle. This is an extremely serious safety issue, so you should have the problem checked immediately. 

A driveshaft's Function


The driveshaft is responsible for converting the engine's torque into the motion that propels your car. It’s a rod-like part that basically drives your car. This part transmits torque between the different parts of the driveline. 

Flexible shaft assemblies allow the axles to move up or down while lateral movement occurs during acceleration and brake. The majority of driveshaft assemblies have yokes and slip splines as well as universal joints. There are also various bearings, such a propeller shaft or other bearings.

Traditional driveshafts are only available on four- and rear-wheel-drive vehicles. Instead, a transaxle can be used with a front-wheel drive vehicle.

Driveshaft Location

Driveshaft Wheel

It is dependent on the type of vehicle that you drive, so your driveshaft location may vary. Rear-wheel-drive cars have a long driveshaft that’s connected to the differential and transmission, while four- and all-wheel-drive cars contain two or more driveshafts.

The rear wheels of rear-wheel-drive vehicles are responsible for power delivery. The long driveshaft is connected to the transmission at one end and attached to it with universal joints at the other. 

Two driveshafts will be found in the four-wheel-drive model. This setup will be found in the back of the car. The front drive shaft is connected to the front transfer case, and front differential with U joints. 

The front-wheel-drive vehicle doesn’t contain a long driveshaft because the front wheels are transmitting the power. This car, unlike the rear-wheel drive setup has all the necessary components to provide torque at the front. The transaxle design doesn’t require the use of universal joints but is instead connected with constant velocity (CV) joints. 

Driveshaft Replacement Cost

Average driveshaft replacement costs range from $300 to $800. This includes parts costs and labor charges of $150-200. You will pay more if your vehicle is four-wheel drive or all-wheel-drive.

Some drivetrain repairs can be done by a common household mechanic. You can do some minor repairs to a joint without any experience, and you will save money. To ensure safety on the road, a skilled mechanic should perform more complex repairs.

Driveshaft FAQs

Is it possible to hear a bad drive shaft?

In many cases, a bad driveshaft can make louder and more raucous sounds as it accelerates. However, it’s more common that a bad driveshaft will cause vibrations to be felt in the car’s steering wheel, floor, or seat.

Is a bad driveshaft going to cause the car to shake?

Your driveshaft may be faulty if the car vibrates, shakes, or shakes when you accelerate. When you release the accelerator pedal, your car may make a clicking or rattling sound.

It is difficult to replace the driveshaft.

Sometimes it can be difficult to replace the driveshaft. However, this all depends on your car. Some cars have the driveshaft located in an accessible spot while others don’t. It also depends on how much work you’re willing to do yourself. If you’re not mechanically inclined, then it might be best to take the car to a mechanic. However, if you’re comfortable working on cars, then you might be able to do it yourself. All you need is the right parts, and the appropriate installation instructions.

How long can a driveshaft lasts?

A car’s driveshaft is made to last the life of the car and there is no set schedule for when to replace it. The make/model of your vehicle, the location you reside in, how often you drive it, and other factors will affect its lifespan. Car driveshafts typically last between 100,000 and 150,000 miles.

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