What Happens If Your Axle Breaks While Driving?

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Not everyone pays attention to the components beneath their vehicle; however, these components are crucial, and if they get damaged, your car is likely to stop moving.

The axle is one of the very important components found under every car; it carries the weight of the vehicle and is part of the drivetrain. Now, what happens if your axle breaks while driving? Basically, a damaged or broken axle could cause your car not to move at all.

The primary function of axles is to help transfer power from the engine to the wheels; thus, the axle plays an important role for your car to move and keep moving.

However, there are many things that could cause the axle to fail, break, or get damaged.

Why Does Axles Break?

Axles don’t just break abruptly; a failing axle would give you several signs, and if you are proactive to fix those signs, you may never face a “broken axle” situation.

In contrast, if you ignore the signs, chances are that your car’s axle may break while driving. Now, you may ask, “what are the signs of a bad axle?”

Signs of a Failing Axle

What Happens If Your Axle Breaks While Driving

There are three common signs of a failing/bad axle. When your car’s CV axle is no longer functional, these signs will because to show up.

1. Fluid Leaks

Fluid leak is one of the signs you’re likely to see when the axle is bad. Typically, different fluids are drawn from the engine bay to the wheels; these fluids are what make the wheels function smoothly.

Thus, when the axle is slightly broken or it’s about to fail, chances are that the fluids from the engine bay would leak away.

2. Clunking Noise

When driving with a bad axle, you’d likely hear a loud clunking noise from beneath your car.

This noise may sound for a couple of times while you’re driving, and it’s a clear sign that either your car axle or the driveshaft is about to fail.

3. Wheels Seizure

One of the main functions of the axle is to transfer power and fluids from the engine to the wheel; thus, causing the wheels to move.

When the axle is bad, your wheels are likely not to move at all or you may notice that they are proving difficult to turn.

What Happens If Your Axle Breaks While Driving?

It’s quite obvious that your car would stop moving when the axle is broken. This is because a broken axle won’t pass torque to the wheels; it is the torque passed on from the engine – through the drivetrain – that makes your car wheels move.

Your vehicle’s axle getting damaged while driving is not something you should allow to happen.

The sudden damage of a car’s axle can cause a serious collision or accident, which would definitely attract more repair/damage costs.

More so, it is possible that your car would start shifting to one side when the axle breaks while driving.

This scenario usually happens if the axle is partly broken. Also, one or more of your wheel may lose power and you’d notice a lot of instabilities if you keep driving.


So, what happens if your axle breaks while driving? Simply, the car would stop immediately or gradually come to a halt.

This is because the axle is part of the drivetrain that makes your car wheels move. There are quite many reasons why your axle could break; it could be weak or partly bent for a long time.

Collisions can make your axle weak and if not fixed for a long time, it could break at any time – even when you’re not driving.

Thus, it is advisable to always check every part of your car and always pay attention to unusual signs.

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