The axle is an important part of any vehicle. A faulty axle will always mean a weak wheel system which will turn translate into a safety concern. It is in fact safe to say that the difference between life and death while driving on a highway can sometimes translate to the condition of the axle. It therefore makes sense to always have a functional axle working at its optimum level. Before then though, it is important to know all you can about your Porsche’s axle.
What exactly does the axle do? This is where one should start from. The simple answer is they are used for driving, steering and braking. These three areas cover all the aspects of everyday vehicle use. The axles transfer torque and power from the engine to the wheels. As it does this, the axle should be able to sustain the whole weight of the vehicle as well as that of the passengers and the cargo. It should also be able to withstand without any problems, the accelerated force of driving and braking.
Types Of Axles
Axles fall under two main categories. There is the drive axle, connected to the driveshaft which is a firm rod that extends all the way to the vehicle's transmission before connecting to the engine. Then there is the dead axle which is not connected to the engine. It only turns when the car is in motion. They are designed to support the weight of the car.
Troubleshooting The Axle
Axles are designed to sustain huge loads of weight. They are therefore, robust. This does not mean though that do not often break down. They get weak over time as a result of wear and tear, so there is always the need for replacement as well as repairs.
To get started with troubleshooting your Porsche’s axle, listen to the sound the car emits each time you engage a different gear. A sudden clunking sound means that there is a dead giveaway somewhere in the axle. Vibrations as you drive, brake or take a corner can also a sign that there is a problem with your axle. Do note that when it comes to any axle problem, only an expert can do the repairs or replacement. That’s because Porsche axles are always complex and delicate.
Front Wheel vs Rear Wheel Drive
The axle in a front wheel drive Porsche works a little bit differently from the ones in a read wheel drive. On a motorized, the axle transfers engine torque and power from the transmission all the way to the drive wheels. This does not happen in contemporary front wheel drive vehicles. They combine the front axle and the transmission into what is referred to as a transaxle. The concept is simple in four wheel drive vehicles as the engine connects to a drive shaft. The shaft then turns the drive axle at the rear end of the vehicle.
Nearly all modern Porsche models feature a split axle. This refers to an axle with a universal joint in between two half Porsche axles. It also features a constant velocity commonly referred to as the CV joint. The joint is designed to connect each side of the wheel. Each wheel therefore has independent suspension. This makes turning easy, with each wheel turning at different speeds. The end result is longer tire life as well as improved traction.