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I have a 2006 Honda Accord i4 automatic. I see a broken part in the middle, and on the left (next to the trans?) an unattached and greasy boot. What are their names, exactly? Any estimates on the repair costs?

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  • Thank you for your responses, Scott M and mikes. I took it to a shop I trust. They always try to take care of me. I'll see what's needed and report back. I hope the trans is ok. :/
    – Mo Akashi
    Jul 17, 2023 at 0:49

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You have a broken axle and a broken lower balljoint. Your balljoint is part of the lower control arm assembly, which needs to be replaced. You could also potentially need a steering knuckle if it was damaged when the ball joint broke. An alignment will also need to be added to the cost of the repair. The total cost of the repair will not be inexpensive. The actual cost is difficult to estimate due to differing labor costs and parts availability.

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Looks like what happened was your ball joint broke (the black knob looking thing at the bottom-middle of the picture), and as the control arm fell, the strut (the wishbone looking thing just to the left of the ball joint) ripped your axle (the black greasy boot looking thing on the left side) out of the transmission.

  • Ball joints are not that expensive (something like ~$35)
  • Axles are not too bad relatively speaking, probably something like ~$130 for one
  • Different shops will have different labor rates and the amount of time to do the job, but I think I'd be safe to estimate 3 to 4 hours on a lift for a shop, assume a labor rate of something around $150 per hour, so:

You are probably looking at ~$450 labor (3 hrs x $150 per hour), maybe ~$170 in parts, so roughly $620-ish. This will of course depend on labor rates in your area, parts cost in your area, etc. But that's the ballpark. It's not a $100 fix. But it also shouldn't be a $1000+ fix either.

However.

The above assumes no damage to anything. Personally, I'd be concerned about that axle being ripped out of the transmission. It depends on how it's normally attached (e.g. slip in, bolts, etc.) but there may be damage to the transmission casing. If you are lucky, and it's just a slip-fit, and all it did was slide out, then the above ballpark prices still apply (rough estimate of course).

If, on the other hand, there is damage to the transmission casing then this just got a lot more expensive :( Pulling a transmission is usually pretty labor intensive, not counting the repair cost of the transmission itself - or replacement cost if it can't be repaired. I'm not trying to scare you or anything, just make you aware.

The best advice I can give you is to take it to a shop that you wholeheartedly trust. If you do not have a shop that you trust, then have a friend knowledgeable about these components on a car take a look at it and give their opinion. A broken ball joint usually causes quite a bit of damage, particularly if you are driving the vehicle when it happens. Hopefully you got lucky here!

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  • It's a 2006 Honda Accord i4 automatic. Will that help you in figuring out if the trans will be okay?
    – Mo Akashi
    Jul 17, 2023 at 0:57
  • @MoAkashi Looks like you might be in luck. The Accord uses a slip-fit design, so no bolts or anything holding it in. But as I look closer at the picture, it looks like the axle itself broke - looks like the spider (also called the tripod) separated from the housing. Which means that portion of your axle is still in the transmission. This is really good. It means it's not very likely that any damage occurred to the transmission. The axle will obviously need to be replaced, and the spindle (where the ball joint connects) will need to be inspected for damage. Looks like you may be lucky :)
    – Scott M
    Jul 17, 2023 at 12:57

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