An Overview of Axle Shaft and its Functions

For wheeled vehicles to function properly and efficiently, they require an axle shaft assembly in order to rotate wheels and gears. For a typical wheeled automobile, the axle may be attached to the wheels to rotate alongside them, or they may be implemented so that the wheels revolve around the axle. With an Axle Shaft Wheel Assembly, torque can be transmitted to the wheels for movement while ensuring that their positioning is maintained. In this blog, we will discuss what axle shafts are, as well as how they provide functionality to wheeled vehicles.

Also known as a halfshaft, a typical axle shaft assembly comes in the form of a steel rod that features teeth at its ends. When installed in a vehicle, the axle shaft outer housing extends from the differential to each connected wheel, allowing for torque to be transmitted from the transmission and Axle Shaft Gear to the wheels. The differential of the assembly is an apparatus that splits the torque provided by the engine, transmitting it to each wheel separately. Additionally, axle shafts are placed in pairs so that each axle shaft wheel can move independently from one another. As a result, axle shaft wheels can be turned through rotating motions provided by the drive assembly.

Alongside transmitting torque for rotation, the axle shaft also assists in maintaining the position of wheels and helps bear loads caused by stressors. With an axle shaft and joints called “constant velocity joints”, vibrations and shock can be absorbed from the wheels while passing over obstructions such as potholes or bumps, protecting systems and components from damage. As the Axle Shaft and Joints help protect the vehicle, it is always important to ensure that such parts are well maintained and lubricated with grease for their proper functionality.

Across most vehicle types, axle shafts tout a service life of around 100,000 miles, and regular replacement is highly recommended to avoid the adverse effects of continued operation past their replacement date. If a vehicle is driven with a bad axle, damage can be inflicted upon surrounding components, possibly resulting in a breakdown. Furthermore, a bad axle shaft gear or rod can be dangerous as it can cause an inability to steer, posing a risk to the safety of the operator and their surroundings. When there are issues, the most affected component is typically the Axle Shaft Outer joints as they can tear and leak their lubricants when damaged. Generally, damage is caused by conditions such as aging, adverse operating conditions, and extreme temperatures.

To maintain a long service life for the components of a vehicle and its axle shaft, regular maintenance and inspection is always recommended. In general, there are also common telltale signs of a faulty axle shaft that, if noticed, may warrant a need for repair. One of the main ways of detecting an axle shaft issue is the presence of odd noises, such as popping, when turning the vehicle as this could indicate that the Axle Shaft Front joints are damaged or worn. If popping noises occur, you can further test the vehicle by reversing in a circle as louder popping may warrant a need for a replacement shaft or joint. Furthermore, vibration, wobbly tires, and difficulty steering are also an indicator of a faulty joint or shaft. Lastly, if there is grease leaking from the axle shaft, then a boot is most likely damaged. In the last case, repair should be made as soon as possible to not further issues and cause a risk to safety.

Altogether, axle shafts serve as critical components for wheeled vehicles, allowing for the functionality of wheels and their protection from various stressors. When it comes time to begin sourcing the various automobile components that you need for your operations, such as a Washer Axle Shaft or an adjuster axle shaft, let the experts at ASAP 3Sixty help you procure all that you are searching for with ease. ASAP 3Sixty is a leading online distributor of aviation parts and more, providing customers access to over 2 billion new, used, and obsolete items across our robust part catalogues. Get started on the purchasing process today and receive a personalized quote in 15 minutes or less.


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March 9, 2021

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