About twenty years ago, automotive engineers predicted that the ball joints would soon give way to new designs that would become more reliable and safer. However, the miracle did not happen - most modern cars are still equipped with these mechanisms, despite all their shortcomings.
True, now the ball bearings are used exclusively to rotate the wheel, and not to hold all the components of the chassis - even the domestic manufacturers traditionally used it have refused from such an imperfect construction. Nevertheless, experts recommend regularly changing the ball bearings to prevent damage to the car with serious consequences - up to an accident.
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First of all, you need to know about the differences between the upper and lower ball bearings. The first are filler structures that work in compression - they are subjected to small loads, which leads to a long service life. Lower ball bearings are most often created on the basis of metal-ceramic bearings, which allows them to withstand impact and tension. Most experts strongly do not recommend saving on lower ball bearings, as they often fail with very serious consequences.
Lower ball bearing
To understand how to choose a ball bearing, you also need to know about the fundamental differences between the designs of these nodes. Most often there is a sunset pattern of production - it allows you to get a very high strength at a relatively low cost of manufacture. However, it can not withstand very large shock loads - therefore, with frequent driving with a large load on a bad road, you should regularly check the condition of such components of the front suspension.
About a third of the ball joints made in China, Russia, Turkey and Poland use a stamp-welded scheme. It allows you to do the minimum cost and significantly reduces the weight of the part, however, has a sufficiently small strength. Such ball bearings are recommended to be installed only on small cars with minimal loads on the undercarriage, and even in this case, they should be replaced every 25-30 thousand kilometers.
The best option used by American and Western European manufacturers are solid forged ball bearings. They have a very high strength and are able to withstand loads of more than 5 tons without breaking. Despite their high cost, they are popular due to the long service life.
For domestic technology
Number one among the manufacturers of ball bearings for Russian cars is the enterprise “Kedr”, which focused on the manufacture of solid-forged parts. Claimed service life reaches 75 thousand kilometers, depending on the specific model. Customer reviews show that these figures are quite justified. Only a few motorists claim that they changed the ball bearings "Cedar" after 30-45 thousand kilometers. There are also reviews about the service life, approaching 100 thousand kilometers.
If you need to know which ball bearings are better on Chevrolet Niva Discounts for new cars! Profitable loan from 9.9% installments 0% adom.ru, it is better to give preference to the products of the Magnitogorsk concern BelMag. The main feature of such parts is the delivery in pressed form with anti-friction lubricant, which allows installing them without further processing. Ball bearings budget series serve 40-50 thousand kilometers, and hardened products called Champion - up to 70 thousand kilometers. Customer reviews confirm the specified parameters. However, it is worth to beware of fakes - cheap parts that have not undergone basic heat treatment are often sold under the product of BelMag.
For lovers of extreme driving, ball bearings are offered at Track. The “Champion” model is made of the most durable materials and has a unique design that prevents damage to the part under the greatest shock loads. Due to this, the manufacturer indicates the service life of the support 60 thousand kilometers, regardless of the operating conditions. Consumers argue that the high price of such components is fully justified - they really do not create any problems during operation. However, the problem with fakes is relevant for the ball bearings of this manufacturer.
For foreign cars
The most well-known global manufacturers were included in the rating of ball bearings for foreign cars - in this case it is dangerous to contact unknown brands, since the consequences of a breakdown may require repairs costing more than one thousand dollars. The best option for European cars are Febi ball joints, which are made exclusively using solid-forged technology.
You can also hope for a long service life when you purchase products from Delphi and Moog. To save money without losing quality and safety, you should give preference to Mapco products. Experts recommend to pay attention to the ball bearings of the following manufacturers:
Japanese manufacturers recommend purchasing products from other suppliers, although most of the brands mentioned above also produce parts for cars from Asia. The best option for Japanese cars are Nipparts ball bearings. Commendable reviews from consumers deserved and products of the company with a straightforward name 555.
In good standing, experts and ordinary motorists also have ball bearings manufactured by Nipparts or JapanCars. Far Eastern stores offer exclusively high-quality products of the Masuma brand, but it almost never reaches the European part of Russia.
For American cars you need to follow a fundamentally different approach - because Americans prefer large and heavy cars, they are offered reinforced components, including ball bearings. Most manufacturers do not allow the use of parts of other manufacturers in the chassis, but sometimes there is simply no other way out. Experts agree that for American-made cars it is better to purchase products manufactured by Ruville.
On the second place on reliability there was a production of the Hanse company, and only then - details of the firms named above Febi, TRW, Sidem, Delphi. When purchasing ball bearings for a fairly large foreign car with a complex chassis design, remember that using products from the same manufacturer that offers parts for Kalina will not work - in this case, great strength and the ability to withstand enormous loads in any conditions are very important.
Check seven times ...
Unfortunately, Russian sellers are far from always honest with their customers - there are cases of selling frank marriage or fakes in original boxes. Therefore, when buying, you need not only to look at the beautiful packaging with the familiar logo, but also to check how well the ball bearings work.
Get them out of the box and try to spin - they should rotate with appreciable effort, but not stop and not slip in certain areas. If the seller claims that you get one piece forged parts, pay attention to their case. It should not contain welds or carelessly rolled flange - otherwise you will see cheap ball bearings with low strength and short life.