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The Various Types of Axles- Drive Axles, Trailer Axles and Much More

An axle is an important feature to any vehicle. It is the central shaft for a rotating wheel or gear and is responsible for maintaining the position of the wheels in relation to each other and to the body of the vehicle. The axle is responsible for maintaining control of the car, the carís cargo and the pressure from acceleration and braking. Needless to say, if an axle is broken, or if an axle is out, the car can perform poorly and end up driving lop sided.

There are several different types of axles on the road depending on what you are driving and what the condition of the axle is in. Below are a few of the names of the different axles.

The Drive Axle-this is the main axle in a car system and is part of the powertrain or drivetrain of the car. The motor will exert a rotational force on the axle, which is then transferred to the wheel to make the vehicles moves. This can also be used when braking but with the opposite effect.

The Steering Axle- the steering axle is also called the front axle of most cars and trucks. The steering axle must be aligned properly in order to control the direction of the front wheels in regards to the body and the rear wheels.

Airlift axles- airlift axles are used in dump truck and trailer axles which can be mechanically lowered or raised depending on the cargo.

Dead axles-dead axles are also known as lazy axles and are free rotating instead of being a part of the drivetrain system. Dead axles could be the rear axles in the front wheel drives (they are not controlled by the drivetrain) or trailer axles are often dead axles as well.

Straight Axle-axles are a single rigid shaft that connects a wheel on the left side of the vehicle to the wheel on the right side. This is mostly used for heavy stress situations such as with trains, commercial trucks or off road trucks.

Tandem axle-semi trailer axles are often tandem axles which are a group of two more axles situated close together for more support and weight capacity.

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