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Lubricate Ball Joints Replacement Cost Estimate

Worried you might overpay for your ball joints lubrication service? Use Jerry’s GarageGuard to get fair cost estimate for your ball joints lubrication service.
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John Davis
Expert Automotive Writer
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Reviewed by Kathleen Flear, Director of Content
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Edited by Jessica Barrett, Senior Car & Insurance Editor

How much does it cost to lubricate ball joints?

On average, a ball joint lubrication costs between $95 to $115. 
Keep in mind: Most modern vehicles have sealed ball joints, which means they are pre-greased and will not need to be serviced. To determine which type of ball joint your vehicle has, refer to your owner’s manual.
How long does it take to lubricate ball joints? A ball joint lubrication should only take 1 hour. Time is subject to vary depending on where you have your ball joints serviced. For example, a dealership may have longer delays due to high volume. Automotive shops, on the other hand, may be able to service on a walk-in basis. 
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How did we estimate these prices?

Jerry's experts researched and collected data from 2500+ real repair shops in all 50 states in the US, including everything from the total cost of repair services to the hourly labor cost for mechanic labor in each shop. We combined that data with our expert database of hundreds of real repair jobs, thousands of real cars, millions of real car part prices in order to best estimate the cost of each repair service. Our labor cost estimate is calculated by taking the average hourly labor rate for a certified mechanic in the US, times the number of hours it takes on average to complete a repair. We recommend you compare your local shops with Jerry and contact those shops directly to get final pricing for your vehicle.

What parts do I need to lubricate ball joints and how much do those parts cost?

To successfully lubricate your vehicle’s upper and lower ball joints, you will need the following parts: 
  1. Grease gun: Grease guns are a typical auto shop tool that is used to help lubricate your vehicle’s ball joints. Using an aperture and grease fitting, the grease gun is able to transfer lubricant from the cartridge to your ball joints. Grease guns can be purchased for $15-$180 depending on if it’s corded or battery operated.
  2. Ball joint grease: Every type of ball joint grease serves one purpose—to stop friction and allow your vehicle to continue to operate smoothly. No ball joint lubricant is created the same, meaning no price is the same. This product generally runs anywhere from $15-$40.
You can purchase parts for your car’s ball joint lubrication from auto parts stores like AutoZone, NAPA Auto Parts, and Advance Auto Parts, as well as online retailers such as Amazon and Walmart. Three recommended brands for lubricating ball joints are Permatex, CRC Industries, and WD-40. However, the best parts and brands for your ball joint lubrication will vary depending on your vehicle’s year, make, and model.
If you opt to take your vehicle to a licensed mechanic, it’s possible that these products will already be supplied at the auto repair shop. In that case, no purchase is necessary. 
When lubricating your car’s ball joints, it’s important to go for OEM products. Spicer and Dana products are OEM approved for many manufacturers, meaning they’re designed for an array of vehicles. Both companies come with NLGI products that are multi-purpose, high temperature, and extreme pressure. 
However, as there are
several types of grease
to lubricate ball joints, it’s best to refer to your car’s manual to determine the optimal lube for your vehicle.
Generally, ball joint grease/lubricant can be purchased from auto repair shops like AutoZone, NAPA Auto Parts, and Advance Auto Parts, and dealerships, like Honda. Online stores, such as Amazon, also supply both ball joint grease and grease guns. If you’re searching to buy a grease gun in-person, many retailers, including Home Depot and Walmart carry grease guns for a budget-friendly price. 

Where can I get my ball joints lubricated?

Looking for the perfect place to replace to help lubricate your ball joints might prove to be challenging. But with Jerry's
GarageGuard™
, it’s made simple.
Jerry's GarageGuard™ can conveniently compare prices from over 2,500 authorized repair shops nationwide to determine fair price estimates* using real hourly rates. Additionally, Jerry's GarageGuard™supplies insight into diagnostic fees (and if they’re included in your service price) and real customer reviews, so you can plan your budget—and service options—accordingly. 
Check out some of our vetted shops below and download the app to compare car repair quotes in your area.
142 Reviews
Havoline Xpress Lube - #1324
address
11988 W. Jewell Avenue, Lakewood, CO
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$137
110 Reviews
Bill's Crestmoor Automotive
address
1904 S Holly St, Denver, CO
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$175
119 Reviews
Insta-Quick Fast Oil Change
address
5200 Park Blvd, Pinellas Park, FL
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$0
154 Reviews
RepairSmith - Dallas / Fort Worth

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How did we vet these shops?

Jerry experts researched 2500+ real repair shops across the US. We talked to real shop customers, and analyzed both real shop pricing data and thousands of real customer reviews from each shop to verify them individually. We do not partner with the shops listed above, and our analysis is always unbiased.

How will a mechanic lubricate my ball joints?

Before beginning to lubricate your ball joints, your mechanic will raise your car, using a platform or jack stands, and perform an inspection on your ball joints and suspension system. If all is clear, and it’s confirmed you need a ball joint lubrication, they will most likely use these steps: 
  1. Remove wheels and brake components: As your ball joints are hidden underneath your wheel and brake components, these will generally have to be removed for easy access. 
  2. Fill grease gun: Using a heavy-duty grease, like Lithium Synthetic or Marine grease, your mechanic will fill the grease gun and prep it to pump grease. 
  3. Locate ball joints and grease fittings: Next, your mechanic will locate your ball joints and grease fittings. Your vehicle’s ball joints connect the steering knuckle and control arm, so during this stage, another inspection can be done to ensure that no other damage has occurred. 
  4. Begin greasing: New grease is then pumped into the grease fitting using the grease gun. Your mechanic will be sure to use just enough grease to expand the rubber boot around the joint. Too much excess grease can lead to a tear in the boot, which leaves your ball joint exposed to contaminants, resulting in possible failure. 
  5. Wipe away excess: To finish the ball joint lubrication, your mechanic will then wipe away any excess grease to ensure optimal functioning. If additional ball joints need to be tended to, this process will be repeated on all of them.
  6. Lower vehicle and test: Lastly, your vehicle will be lowered and tested to make sure that the problem has been addressed and no further problems occur. 

What happens if I don’t lubricate my ball joints?

Greasing your ball joints is essential to your vehicle’s overall health and longevity. Without proper lubrication, your ball joints can wear down and eventually fail. Since ball joints are a major suspension part and component of your steering system, other issues will occur, including:
  • Difficulty steering
  • Loss of control
  • Suspension system collapse

What is ball joint lubrication?

Ball joint lubrication is essential to ensuring that your vehicle runs properly. Each vehicle’s ball joints are key suspension components that allow the front wheels to move as needed while turning the steering wheel. Upper ball joints attach to the upper control arm, whereas lower ball joints attach to the lower control arm—however, both keep your wheels aligned to provide a smooth drive. 
Lubricating your ball joints ensures that no friction occurs as the ball joints move, providing added protection.

When should I lubricate the ball joints on my car?

If you experience any of the following common symptoms, it’s likely that you need to have your ball joints greased: 
  • Loud squeaking or clunking: Hearing any noise from your vehicle is concerning, but if it’s a persistent squeaking or clunking sound, it’s possible that your ball joints are causing added friction and need to be greased.
  • Rough steering/suspension: If you ever experience rough suspension or steering, it’s very possible that you need to have your ball joints lubricated. Being a large component of your suspension system, increased friction in your ball joints can lead to wonky operations in both the front end and back end of your car.

How often should ball joints be lubricated?

Most modern vehicles don’t need to have their ball joints lubricated, as newer models have a self-lubricant built in to grease ball joints and it will last for the lifespan of the car. For cars that require ball joints to be greased, lubrication should take place every 5,000-10,000 miles or as the manufacturer suggests. If you’re unsure of when to grease your ball joints, refer to your owner’s manual. 

Can I lubricate ball joints myself?

Yes, ball joint lubrication is an easy fix that can be done by the owner, granted you have the right tools and lubricant available. Like an oil change, ball joint lubrication is a fairly simple process. However, when servicing your own vehicle,
it’s imperative to have a sturdy floor jack
and jack stands to prevent injury, as this is a job completed underneath the car. 
If you’re not confident in your DIY skills, it’s recommended to take your car to a mechanic to help further. 

FAQs

There is no ‘best grease’ for lubricating your vehicle’s ball joints, as the type of lubricant used will depend on your vehicle’s make and model. However, there are a few popular brands on the market: 
  • Lucas Oil Xtra Heavy-Duty Grease
  • Lucas Oil Red ‘n’ Tacky Grease
  • CRC Sta-Lube Moly-Graph Grease
  • Valvoline High-Temperature Read Grease
  • Lucas Oil Products Marine Grease
If you’re leaning more towards the type of grease rather than brand, lithium grease is considered to be the best choice, as it’s high temperature and water resistant. 
No, you can’t use WD-40 on ball joints. WD-40 contains anti-corrosion agents and ingredients for water displacement and soil removal. If you use it on your ball joints, you run the risk of your ball joints not being lubricated and stripping any grease away. It’s best to stick to a ball joint grease for your lubrication needs.
Yes, you can drive with a squeaky ball joint, but it’s recommended that you don’t. Ball joints help run your suspension system and steering—if it’s squeaky, it’s either due to a worn ball joint, or a joint in need of grease. Continuing to drive on it will only increase damage and can increase your risk of an accident due to loosened steering and tire control. 

Meet Our Experts

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John Davis
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Car Expert
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Certified mechanic with 10+ years of experience
John Davis is an expert automotive writer and former automotive mechanic. John's work spans multiple categories, and he relishes the opportunity to research a new subject and expand his area of expertise and industry knowledge. To date, John has written more than 200 articles covering car maintenance and care, car advice, how-to guides, and more.
Prior to joining Jerry’s editorial team, John worked as a mechanic and freelance writer, creating content for clients including HotCars and SetPower.
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Jessica Barrett
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Car Expert
Jessica Barrett is a senior insurance writer and editor with 10 years of experience in the automotive and travel industries. A specialist in car insurance, car loans, and car ownership, Jessica’s mission is to create comprehensive content that car owners can use to manage their costs and improve their lives. As a managing editor for a team of writers and insurance specialists, Jessica has edited over 2,000 articles for Jerry on topics ranging from local insurance shopping tips to refinancing car loans with bad credit.
Before joining Jerry as a senior content editor in 2021, Jessica created visual content for clients such as Expedia, Vivid Seats, Budget Direct Car Insurance, Angie’s List, and HomeAdvisor. Her content was published in Business Insider, Forbes, Apartment Therapy, and the BBC.
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Kathleen Flear
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Car Expert
Kathleen Flear is an expert insurance writer and editor who heads up Jerry’s editorial team as director of content. Kathleen empowers drivers to make smart car ownership decisions through  best-in-class articles on insurance, loans, and maintenance. Prior to joining Jerry in 2021, Kathleen served as managing editor for a team of SEO content marketing professionals at Article-Writing.co and worked as a freelance writer and editor for a range of digital publications, including Chicago Literati magazine and Golden Words. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English language and literature from Queen’s University, and a master’s degree in creative writing and fiction from Sierra Nevada University.
*The price information provided on our car repair webpages is intended for general informational purposes only. Actual prices for car repair services may vary based on various factors, including but not limited to the make and model of your vehicle, the extent of repair required, and the prevailing market conditions. All prices for real repair shops are estimations based on our research only. Therefore, the prices listed on our webpages should not be considered as final quotes or binding offers.