What Does a Tie Rod Cost to Repair?by Mike Schoonveld
Tie rods are a vital link in the process of you turning the steering wheel and your car going where you want it to go. Repairs are made by replacing the worn ends of each tie rod.
Cost of Tie Rod Ends
The cost of tie rod ends vary from vehicle to vehicle and whether you purchase them from a dealer or an after-market auto parts supply retailer. Normally, dealer prices for parts are higher than parts purchased at an auto parts store. Expect to pay $30 to $80 per tie rod end as of December 2010.
Changing both inner or both outer tie rod ends on most vehicles takes about an hour. Shop rates for mechanics at a dealer are as much as $120 per hour. Shop rates at independent repair facilities can be as little as $40 per hour.
If your vehicle is used primarily on highways, assume the wear on each side is nearly equal. If the inner tie rod end on one side goes bad, the one on the other is suspect and should be changed.
Any time you change a tie rod end you should have the front end tire alignment checked and adjusted. This will add another $50 to $100 to the cost.
Mike Schoonveld has been writing since 1989 with magazine credits including "Outdoor Life," "Fur-Fish-Game," "The Rotarian" and numerous regional publications. Schoonveld earned a Master Captain License from the Coast Guard. He holds a Bachelor of Science in wildlife science from Purdue University.