Question related to Camry 90, V6 wagon 194K. Recently, I had to replace left front axle because I broke it while tightening LOCK NUT. I am not extremely strong, at least three times older than my car and did it with just torque wrench. After the new (rebuilt ) axle was installed, I had a feeling that something was wrong . There was rythmical noise, bouncing and pure handling. First I inspected brakes and replaced front pads and rotors, which I was planning to do anyway although not so soon. Than I rotated tires (tires are no more than 10k old). Took the car back to the mechanic and he told me that car is tired and both bearings, left lower arm bushings and rear shocks needs to be done. The noise could be from many sources but it was the same whether turning right, left or straight. Also the same when switching to neutral. I knew about shocks , but I was reluctant to put more money before solving source of noise from the front wheels. I raised the wheels from the ground, turn the engine on and put on drive. There was very distinctive noise, low in tone and grinding, from the inner joint of the left/replaced axle ONLY. Checked with stethoscope , there was no any noise coming from the hub/bearing . I was able to touch stethoscope to the rotating inner boot and clicking noise was coming exactly from there. It is much more pronounced while putting on REVERSE and with small revs. I took it to the garage again, left for checking overnight and was told the same, which is struts and bearings. During the last weekend I replaced struts. Took for the ride and as I expected it was much better in terms handling and bouncing but the noise was still there. I jacked up the car and sneaked under again. I was looking for any difference in loose and playing of the right and left axle. At that time I put close to thousand miles since replacement. I found that all six bolts on the replaced axle were loose. I could tighten them with my fingers!!! I tighten them using pipe as the extension. And took for a ride again. The rhythmic noise was still there. Tested with wheels above the ground noise was still coming from the inner boot. Talk to the mechanic he still claims that the noise is coming from the bearings and the reason that I don’t hear it from the hub is that by raising car I took all the load. And finally he is not going to test it again. He can replace the axle but it will cost me another $200. I just took the car to other garage and they confirmed that there is some problem with inner joint, they didn’t find any problems with hubs bearings. They suspected some problem with differential which I am afraid most, but they said that axle must be done first
Have the following questions: 1. if this is inner joint how serious problem it is to drive. 2. what else it can be? 3. How I can have the mechanic to cooperate with me?