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Noticed today my passenger side lower ball joint is busted, like a slit through it. Could this cause a vibration noise? Maybe cupping of the tires?
 

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You mean the rubber grease boot is torn? I don't think that would cause the problems unless the ball joint was also worn out which is possible.
 

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The ball joint check is to jack up that wheel off the ground (use jackstands for safety) and grip the tire at 12 oclock and 6 oclock and see if there's any play as you try to wobble the tire in a positive/negative camber direction. Any play means ball joints need to be replaced.
Kevin
 
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