Control Arm May Separate from the Steering Knuckle
Suspension & Steering, August 25, 2004
RepairPal Expert Overview
Our Quick Take:
The control arm may separate from the steering knuckle, causing the vehicle to drop at that corner. In extreme situations, the wheel may separate completely from the vehicle. Either condition would impair handling and increase the chances of a crash.
What Should You Do?
Please contact your Cadillac or Chevrolet dealer. They will check to see if your specific vehicle is affected and advise you on what to do next. Always have your vehicle identification number (VIN) handy when you call.
The washer for the control arm ball stud may have been made of the wrong material, and may fracture and fall out, or become loose. The control arm may separate from the steering knuckle due to disengagement of the tapered stud, causing the vehicle to drop at that corner. In extreme situations, the wheel may separate completely from the vehicle. Either condition would impair handling and increase the chances of a crash. Dealers will inspect the torque on the ball stud joints on all front and rear lower control arms. If the torque is not to specification, the ball stud, knuckle, and nut will be replaced. If the torque is to specification, the dealers will replace only the ball stud nut and washer. The recall began August 24, 2004. The GM recall number is 04043.
Mfr's Report Date:
August 25, 2004
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number:
NHTSA Action Number:
Potential Number of Units Affected:
ON CERTAIN PASSENGER VEHICLES INVOLVED IN THIS CAMPAIGN, THE LOWER CONTROL ARM BALL STUD NUT/WASHER ASSEMBLIES WITH WASHERS WERE MADE OF THE WRONG MATERIAL. THE WASHERS MAY FRACTURE AND BECOME LOOSE OR FALL AWAY FROM THE VEHICLE, REDUCING CLAMP LOAD. SEPARATION OF THE CONTROL ARM BALL STUD AND STEERING KNUCKLE, DUE TO DISENGAGEMENT OF THE TAPERED ATTACHMENT AND RETAINING NUT, IS POSSIBLE.
IF THE CONTROL ARM SEPARATES FROM THE KNUCKLE, THE AFFECTED CORNER OF THE VEHICLE WILL DROP AND THE CONTROL ARM WOULD BE FORCED DOWNWARD, CONTACTING THE WHEEL. THE AFFECTED WHEEL COULD TILT OUTWARD AND CREATE A DRAGGING ACTION THAT WOULD TEND TO SLOW THE VEHICLE AND CREATE A TENDENCY FOR THE VEHICLE TO TURN IN THE DIRECTION OF THE AFFECTED WHEEL. IN EXTREME SITUATIONS, THE AFFECTED WHEEL ASSEMBLY COULD SEPARATE FROM THE VEHICLE. SEPARATION OF THE WHEEL ASSEMBLY WOULD ALSO SEVER THAT WHEEL;S HYDRAULIC BRAKE HOSE AND RESULT IN DIMINISHED BRAKING PERFORMANCE OF THE VEHICLE, WHICH COULD RESULT IN A CRASH.
DEALERS WILL INSPECT THE BALL STUD JOINTS AND MEASURE THE TORQUE OF THE NUT FOR ALL FRONT LOWER CONTROL ARMS IN ALL MODELS AFFECTED AS WELL AS THE REAR LOWER CONTROL ARMS ON THE XLR AND CORVETTE. IF THE TORQUE IS NOT AT SPECIFICATION, THE DEALERS WILL REPLACE THE BALL STUD, THE KNUCKLE, AND THE NUT. IF THE TORQUE IS AT SPECIFICATION, THE DEALERS WILL REPLACE THE NUT/WASHER ASSEMBLY ONLY. THE RECALL WILL BEGIN ON AUGUST 25, 2004. OWNERS SHOULD CONTACT CADILLAC AT 1-866-982-2339 OR CHEVROLET AT 1-800-630-2438.
GM RECALL NO. 04043. CUSTOMERS CAN ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION¿S AUTO SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-DASH-2-DOT (1-888-327-4236).
Recall data provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration