Dealer says it needs repairs, independent mechanic says no (2016 CX-5)

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CX-5
Each time I change the oil, the dealer makes a big deal out of this. Independent mechanic (several of them) say the car is fine, I don't have to replace the tie rods at this time. Who is right?
 

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The dealer is correct that there is something broken that needs to be fixed. Their job is to report broken components and bring them to your attention in an honest manner. I’d be more concerned if they failed to report damage and it caused problems later down the road.

Cracked boots won’t disable your car and make it undriveable overnight, t’s just that water and crud will get inside and make the joints lose their lube and wear down over time.

I would honestly shop around for Moog branded tie rods and have your mechanic or yourself install them at some point.
 

CarpeDiem

Under Pressure
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Superstitions
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2021 CE Turbo
…I don't have to replace the tie rods at this time…

I believe this is the main point here. The tie rod ends may not be failing now, but does the OP want to wait until they are bad enough to cause a stranding or even an accident? How long should he wait until he does replace them? Six months? Two years? Until the steering feels funny? Responsible vehicle owners take care of their vehicles to help ensure the safety of themselves and of others. Some of the folks below waited a bit too long.

 
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Southwest Ohio
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'19 CX-5 diesel
As others have said, the boot being cracked and split open let's moisture in and it will eventually cause the joint to fail.

Steering components are pretty important. Yeah, you could pack some grease in there from time to time and get by for awhile. If it were my car, I would replace them soon.
 

Digbicks1234

16.5 CX-5 Touring/2023 CX-9 Touring
Each time I change the oil, the dealer makes a big deal out of this. Independent mechanic (several of them) say the car is fine, I don't have to replace the tie rods at this time. Who is right?
I would recommend replacing the outer tie rod as it's a relatively inexpensive component (with the exception of an alignment and tools). I did a write up on this a few months back and I replaced most of my front suspension components due to wear and tear.

The outer tie rod was a tad more annoying since I live in an area where there's a lot of road salt and I had to bring out a torch. However, if you do not have to deal with Winter then it shouldn't be too bad. It's around $40-60/outer tie rod depending on where you shop but definitely get some quotes for labor if you are planning to bring it to an independent mechanic.

https://mazdas247.com/forum/r/2013-2016-cx-5-outer-tie-rod-end-replacement.142/

A. OEM Parts Required
  1. (x2) KD31-32-280: Outer Tie Rod End
  2. (x2) T060-26-169A: Tie Rod Cotter Pin
  3. (x2) 9YB0-41-208: Outer Tie Rod Nut
 
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CX-5
I would recommend replacing the outer tie rod as it's a relatively inexpensive component (with the exception of an alignment and tools). I did a write up on this a few months back and I replaced most of my front suspension components due to wear and tear.

The outer tie rod was a tad more annoying since I live in an area where there's a lot of road salt and I had to bring out a torch. However, if you do not have to deal with Winter then it shouldn't be too bad. It's around $40-60/outer tie rod depending on where you shop but definitely get some quotes for labor if you are planning to bring it to an independent mechanic.

https://mazdas247.com/forum/r/2013-2016-cx-5-outer-tie-rod-end-replacement.142/
Thanks, I will ask the independent mechanic to order the parts and replace the tie rods.
 
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2014 mazda cx-5 touring FWD
A few months ago I had new tie rod ends installed. Since OEM Mazda were on national back order, I went with a quality aftermarket part made in Japan. I chose this brand because of the decline in quality of Moog components in recent years. Beck Arnley was a trusted name but still don't always know what's going to be in the box(could be a Moog part). Checking Rockauto as well as Partsgeek (linked here) showed some pretty cheap but questionable others.
These are nice quality parts and come with the nut and cotter pin. Be aware that the shipping cost about $20 but I had them in 2 days. So a bit over $60 altogether.


Here's pictures of what I received. Nicely machined and finished.
Edited to add : that this is one alternative if Mazda OEM not available. The online Mazda dealers will list parts as if they are in stock, but then after ordering, notify you that there is a lead time involved because they must be sourced from Mazda distribution center.

~


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Each time I change the oil, the dealer makes a big deal out of this. Independent mechanic (several of them) say the car is fine, I don't have to replace the tie rods at this time. Who is right?
My 2016 Cx-5 had the same issue, Tie rod cracks and minor ball joints boots cracked. I never changed them Never had an issue and we are talking 2 years with that issue and put on like 40,000 miles after discovering the issue. The vehicle got totaled last year I still miss it. I live FL where it doesn't snow so maybe that's why I didn't have any further issue.

I have a red Mazda 6 2016 GT that thing is beauty with no issues. I think it looks way nicer then the newer Mazda 6.
 
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2014 mazda cx-5 touring FWD
I had better check mine the next time I'm under the CX.
That's what mine looked like and I sealed them with Permatex Adhesive Sealant (really good stuff -- better than regular silicone) and after it dried gave each boot 5 or 6 shots of grease. This includes ball joints also. There was no play in any of the joints. It steered easier than before, really nice actually (I've noticed this on a previous car doing the same thing)
I actually could have left them this way but since there was about 60k miles on them, decided to get new tie rod ends since the new control arms replacement required an alignment. The final result then was new control arms with new bushings, ball joints, tie rod ends, stabilizer bar bushings and stabilizer bar end links (done 6 months earlier). Followed by alignment, rear brake pads, rotors and new tires. All around the 60K mileage mark. Kind of like a 60K mile/ mid-life 'refresh'.
Not ready for struts/shocks yet but know it would further improve things.
 
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2016.5 CX-5 GT AWD titanium/black 2016 Miata Club ST MT white
That's what mine looked like and I sealed them with Permatex Adhesive Sealant (really good stuff -- better than regular silicone) and after it dried gave each boot 5 or 6 shots of grease. This includes ball joints also. There was no play in any of the joints. It steered easier than before, really nice actually (I've noticed this on a previous car doing the same thing)
I actually could have left them this way but since there was about 60k miles on them, decided to get new tie rod ends since the new control arms replacement required an alignment. The final result then was new control arms with new bushings, ball joints, tie rod ends, stabilizer bar bushings and stabilizer bar end links (done 6 months earlier). Followed by alignment, rear brake pads, rotors and new tires. All around the 60K mileage mark. Kind of like a 60K mile/ mid-life 'refresh'.
Not ready for struts/shocks yet but know it would further improve things.

5 or 6 shots of grease? There aren't zerks on those are there?
 
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2014 mazda cx-5 touring FWD
5 or 6 shots of grease? There aren't zerks on those are there?
Zerks? What century are you living in? LOL. No, they are all sealed joints as has been the trend for years. And on that note, I don't want zerks, greasing front end and driveline joints is a PITA.
 

yrwei52

2016 Mazda CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech Pkg
Contributor
:
Plano, Texas, USA
I would recommend replacing the outer tie rod as it's a relatively inexpensive component (with the exception of an alignment and tools). I did a write up on this a few months back and I replaced most of my front suspension components due to wear and tear.

The outer tie rod was a tad more annoying since I live in an area where there's a lot of road salt and I had to bring out a torch. However, if you do not have to deal with Winter then it shouldn't be too bad. It's around $40-60/outer tie rod depending on where you shop but definitely get some quotes for labor if you are planning to bring it to an independent mechanic.

https://mazdas247.com/forum/r/2013-2016-cx-5-outer-tie-rod-end-replacement.142/
Back in 2018 I decided to do something to all of the rubber boots on tie rod ends and ball joints on the front suspension of my 1998 Honda CR-V with 180K miles. All boots had minor cracks but didn’t split-open like the OP’s. Surprisingly I could get all of these OEM rubber boots from a Honda online dealer including 2 rack-and-pinion bellows. I don’t think you can get such parts from Mazda.
 
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2014 mazda cx-5 touring FWD
I considered replacing just the boots. Wasn't finding much so took measurements as best as possible and ordered silicone tie rod and ball joint boots from ebay vendor in Bulgaria who offered many sizes and provided dimensions (a rarity when researching this item). It took weeks to get them.
In the interim upon closer inspection I decided to replace the lower control arms due to torn large end bushings, with boots being a secondary reason. Then decided (as mentioned in preceding post) to replace the outer tie rod ends. Since all of those came with new boots installed--- end of boot problem. Also found out that wouldn't have been able to replace ball joint boots anyway as I couldn't remove the pinch bolts. Glad it's all finished and am proud possessor of 4 pretty blue silicone boots for my spare parts/junk collection.
On this subject of replacing boots, my impression is that a person is lucky to obtain a boot that actually fits well and seals well. I could see the need to periodically shooting a little grease under the lip using a grease needle. The polyurethane boots I saw shown online looked pretty stiff and have a tendency to 'pucker open' when compressed in normal duty. Hence my decision to order softer silicone boots. It ended up being a real chore with trying to get good measurements from my car and then finding and choosing what looked like would fit good and seal well. And that's assuming the joints will separate to make installation possible. But it sounded easy when I got the idea. HA!
 

yrwei52

2016 Mazda CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech Pkg
Contributor
:
Plano, Texas, USA
I considered replacing just the boots. Wasn't finding much so took measurements as best as possible and ordered silicone tie rod and ball joint boots from ebay vendor in Bulgaria who offered many sizes and provided dimensions (a rarity when researching this item). It took weeks to get them.
In the interim upon closer inspection I decided to replace the lower control arms due to torn large end bushings, with boots being a secondary reason. Then decided (as mentioned in preceding post) to replace the outer tie rod ends. Since all of those came with new boots installed--- end of boot problem. Also found out that wouldn't have been able to replace ball joint boots anyway as I couldn't remove the pinch bolts. Glad it's all finished and am proud possessor of 4 pretty blue silicone boots for my spare parts/junk collection.
On this subject of replacing boots, my impression is that a person is lucky to obtain a boot that actually fits well and seals well. I could see the need to periodically shooting a little grease under the lip using a grease needle. The polyurethane boots I saw shown online looked pretty stiff and have a tendency to 'pucker open' when compressed in normal duty. Hence my decision to order softer silicone boots. It ended up being a real chore with trying to get good measurements from my car and then finding and choosing what looked like would fit good and seal well. And that's assuming the joints will separate to make installation possible. But it sounded easy when I got the idea. HA!
I guess I got lucky deciding to only replace the rubber boots on my CR-V as all boots and clips were available on OEM parts which guarantees they’ll fit. And the service manual also offers steps how to replace them.
 
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2016.5 CX-5 GT AWD titanium/black 2016 Miata Club ST MT white
Zerks? What century are you living in? LOL. No, they are all sealed joints as has been the trend for years. And on that note, I don't want zerks, greasing front end and driveline joints is a PITA.

What to and where exactly are you applying 5 or 6 shots of grease?

What century am I living in? My Chevy pick-up has a total of 16 zerks that need attention every so often. If I'm not mistaken, I believe that it was built during the current century.

I'll agree that greasing those zerks is a PITA but they ain't gonna grease themselves, are they?

Playing Scrabble with my wife the other day, she didn't believe that zerk was a real word. I scored big with that Z and K. Oh yeah.