How do you know which cv joint is causing the noise

When I turn the car it clicks .sometimes on the right and sometimes on the left.

My car has 150000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Experienced mechanics share their insights in answering this question :
The noise could be from both sides and you might not need to decide, left versus right, if the rubber boots on the outer CV joints happen to be broken on both sides. The CV joint boots look like 4 inch long bellows and are on the outer ends of each CV axle. You can manipulate each boot to see if it is intact but if they are leaking usually you will see grease in the vicinity as well, that has flown out of the joint as the axle spins at high speed. If the boots are broken, and have been broken for a while, usually the grease gets out and water gets in and wears the joint, so basically if the boots are broken on both axles you just replace both axles. If the boots are still intact but you believe one or more joints are making noise, the mechanic can either listen for the noise and try to distinguish left from right or simple affix wireless mini microphones to each steering knuckle and drive the car around while switching channels between left and right. That makes pinpointing the noise easy.

If you request a front axle noise diagnostic, a certified mechanic from YourMechanic will investigate the noise you are hearing and pinpoint the origin. If one or both CV axles are defective, YourMechanic does remove and replace CV axles on a mobile basis. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic as we are always here to help you.

How to Identify and Fix Common car Problems ?

Our sources include academic articles, blog posts, and personal essays from experienced mechanics :

A worn outer CV joint will produce loud clicking noises when you turn sharply. Usually, this noise will increase with acceleration. A worn inner CV joint can cause loud clunking noises when switching between drive and reverse.
When your CV joints are not well-lubricated, the friction increases, preventing your CV axle from freely rotating. If your CV joints are not adequately lubricated, they may make noise when the axle begins to turn.
To tell the difference between a bad wheel bearing and a bad CV joint, listen to the noise. If you hear a grinding, growling, or rumbling noise coming from the affected wheel, it`s a bad wheel bearing. If you hear a clicking noise coming from the affected wheel when turning, it`s a bad CV joint.
A telltale sign that your vibration may be caused by a faulty CV joint is if you also hear a clicking or clunking noise when turning. Also known as engine mounts, motor mounts hold your car`s engine in place.
Often, the right (passenger side) shaft fails first because right turns are at a sharper angle than left turns, and right turns are more common than left turns. Consequently, the right outer CV joint and boot are the first to go.
A humming or growling noise.

This can be due to inadequate lubrication in either the inner or outer CV joint caused by a damaged or split boot.

If you drive a car with a damaged CV, the joint will deteriorate more, making driving impossible. You`ll be at risk of getting into an accident. In summary, it is advisable to neve drive a vehicle with faulty CV joints.
If It remember correctly, it is usually the inside wheel – i.e. if the noise is louder on sharp right turns, it`s the right hand joint and vice versa. The best way to tell is to jack up the car and support it on stands.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

Will a bad wheel bearing damage the CV joints, or will bad CV joints damage the wheel bearing? Honda Accord lax 2006
ANSWER : Any bad part in the drive train can put additional stress on other parts. I could probably draw a line from a bad wheel bearing to a bad CV joint. Not so much the other way. However, it might seem that way because the parts have a similar life span. Once one part fails, the others may come soon after. If your car really only has 45000 miles it seems a little soon for either one to be failing unless you are living and driving in bad northern winters. If your car is making sounds in either the CV or the wheel bearings, you can have it checked out at your convenience by contacting Your Mechanic. They can send a technician to your home or office to check out your Honda and tell you what it may need.

I’ve replaced everything from tie rods, upper and lower ball joints, the whole cv axle including cv joints and boots, and I’m stil
ANSWER : Hello, thank you for writing in. The noise you are hearing may be a result of a wheel bearing or a shock issue. There are several tests that can be done while the vehicle is parked, and some while it is lifted off of the ground. The goal is to manipulate the wheels and suspension to replicate the noise. Try a simple bounce test for example to test out the shock on each tire. This is done by simply pressing down on the corner of the vehicle forcing it to bounce up and down. If you hear the noise, focus on your shocks. If not, you can move on to the wheel assembly. For more help with diagnostics or repairs, contact our service department to schedule an appointment.

Replaced subframe. Vibration and noise during acceleration. Could it be the inner CV joint / axle?
ANSWER : Hi there. The vibration and noise upon acceleration could possibly be an inner CV wobble, as the result of excessive play in the inner CV joint. A broken subframe may have caused the wear. Replacing the subframe and having the engine and transmission out of alignment could have the same vibration and noise result. If you would like to have this done, a certified professional from YourMechanic can come to your car’s location to diagnose the vibration and noise in person and follow through with repairs.

Car is vibrating and making a clicking noise; should I replace the CV joints?
ANSWER : If you are hearing a clicking noise, this may very well be related to the CV joints. Generally, when it gets to this point, the CV joint has already completely failed and will need to be replaced. In severe cases, it may also cause an intense vibration, such as the one you described. As you may know, the CV joint is what connects the drive shafts from the transmission to the wheels, and so there is a tremendous amount of stress and torque put on these joints. When they fail, the damage can range from minimal to severe in terms of other components that will also fail as a result. I would recommend having an expert technician, such as one from YourMechanic, diagnose and repair your noise and vibration issues.

CV boot or full replacement of CV axle ?
ANSWER : This is a common sign of a failing CV joint. A CV (Constant Velocity) joint is a shaft that connects the transmission to the wheels, essentially transferring the power from the drive train directly to the wheels. The CV joint is packed with a special grease and sealed tight with the rubber or plastic boot, that is held in place with two clamps. The most common problem with the CV joints is when the protective boot cracks or gets damaged. Once this happens, the grease comes out and moisture and dirt get in, causing the CV joint to wear faster and eventually fail due to lack of lubrication and corrosion. When the CV joint becomes damaged or worn, you may hear a clicking or popping sound coming from this area. I would recommend having an expert from YourMechanic come to your location to diagnose and inspect your CV joints.

A whining noise starting at 20 m/ph as well as oscillating noise which speeds up and slows down – coming from drivers side.
ANSWER : Hello, thank you for writing in. Due to having the tires replaced recently, you may have a balance issue. Tires are "balanced" in a process where they spin the wheel on a machine and make sure they turn evenly. Any issues are corrected by adding weights to certain parts of the tire. The tires may have been improperly balanced, or may not have been balanced at all. You should start there, and see if the issues is resolved. When they have the wheels off, have a technician check the brakes. Make sure the pads were properly installed and are in place. Between the two inspections and any possible corrections, the issue would go away. If the noises continue, you will want to have the wheel assemblies inspected.

Torn cv joint boot
ANSWER : There is no single recommended brand to use since you can get manufactured new or rebuild by many brands out there. You might not have much choice with what is available in your area unless you went with a new from the dealer. You don’t have to replace both sides at the same time unless the other one is also proven to be bad. If you need some help with getting this fixed, consider YourMechanic, as one of our certified technicians can replace your CV boot using quality parts.

Clicking noise while turning. Possibly the CV joints?
ANSWER : Yes, a clicking noise on turns is a classic symptom of a failed outer CV joint. If there are visible loose parts, this will be easier to diagnose. CV axle replacement is a very straightforward and is a common repair. To verify the cause of the noise, or proceed with the CV repair, you could enlist the help of a certified technician, like one from YourMechanic to have this taken care of.