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Wheel Bearing Replacement Shortcuts?

 
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Old 28 Nov 2012, 07:36 pm
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Default Wheel Bearing Replacement Shortcuts?

Is there a quicker way to replace front wheel bearings than shown in the TSM? The LF bearing on my 2004 is starting to grumble. I'd like to avoid the complete disemboweling that it shows--if I can.

Thanks.
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Old 28 Nov 2012, 08:23 pm
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Default Re: Wheel Bearing Replacement Shortcuts?

There's 4 pages of discussion on this thread. Maybe something can help.

Wheel Bearing Replacement
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Old 28 Nov 2012, 08:48 pm
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Default Re: Wheel Bearing Replacement Shortcuts?

It's pretty much what it is, unless you have one of these:

OTC 6575 Hub Grabber Kit : Amazon.com : Automotive

In that case, you can do the job in less than an hour with very little disassembly (LCA ball joint, axle nut).

One word of caution: Local Chrysler dealer says axle nuts are on eternal backorder, and even my Autozone couldn't get any Dorman versions. Rockauto has them in stock. The Dorman cap doesn't fit worth a crap, however, so make sure you save your old ones.
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Old 28 Nov 2012, 09:08 pm
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Default Re: Wheel Bearing Replacement Shortcuts?

a decent parts store can press press in a new bearing for a small fee, usually around $40. taking the hub off is the easy part. if you can do that, i recommend calling a few parts stores in the morning. the carquest by me presses bearings, cuts flywheels, changes u-joints, etc.

all you have to do is take off the axle nut, pop the tie rod off, pop the balljoint off, remove 2 bolts for the brake caliper, and remove 2 bolts for the strut. with a decent impact gun and a hammer, you'll have this off in under 20 minutes.
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Last edited by rob342; 28 Nov 2012 at 09:11 pm.
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Old 30 Nov 2012, 03:36 pm
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Default Re: Wheel Bearing Replacement Shortcuts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CREWZIN View Post
There's 4 pages of discussion on this thread. Maybe something can help.

Wheel Bearing Replacement
I think it will. I have the bearings, just not the time right now. Work is in the way. I'll watch the video tonight. I have a shop press and have been looking for an excuse to buy a bearing separator.
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Old 30 Nov 2012, 03:40 pm
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Default Re: Wheel Bearing Replacement Shortcuts?

As the article says, you really don't need a bearing splitter. You need a Dremel with a cutoff wheel and a cold chisel and a hammer. Slit the bearing race as deeply as possible, and thwack it once with the chisel. It will split and fall off. On the PT, using a bearing splitter properly requires removing the wheel studs, which isn't much fun.
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Old 30 Nov 2012, 05:05 pm
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Default Re: Wheel Bearing Replacement Shortcuts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt42 View Post
I think it will. I have the bearings, just not the time right now. Work is in the way. I'll watch the video tonight. I have a shop press and have been looking for an excuse to buy a bearing separator.
Yes the separator is the way to go if you have a press. A Lot less work than the splitting thing. And you still have to press the new one on anyway.
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Old 01 Dec 2012, 02:01 pm
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Default Re: Wheel Bearing Replacement Shortcuts?

I watched the videos last night. Removing the steering knuckle does not appear to be as big a job as I had feared. So that is the way I'll go, I think. I wish the bad bearing was on the other PT, the 2001. It needs new control arms. I have them in boxes ready to install. Of course.

Thanks everybody. I've been away from the list for a while due to work issues. I moved into a new job which figured was going to take more of my time. I way underestimated how much of my time it would take. It's a great job, but it is a mother bear for time and stress. I'm packing for another must-be-there trip right now.

Downside: I am actually paying the dealer to do some work. The upside is that what we thought be on our nickel turned out to be on an extended warranty.
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Old 01 Dec 2012, 06:25 pm
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Default Re: Wheel Bearing Replacement Shortcuts?

That's good!

Removing a knuckle is pretty EZ, after you do one it'll be a cinch
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Old 24 Dec 2012, 05:15 pm
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Default Re: Wheel Bearing Replacement Shortcuts?

It's done!

I managed to make an immense job of it, just like I do with almost everything. The car had spent its first two years in Connecticut, so the parts were pretty rusty. So I needed to clean them up. And because I had the brakes off, I figured I might as well replace them also. The OEM rotor had worn pretty badly, and had actually worn a circular trough on both sides. The pads were OK, but a new rotor calls for new pads, so . . . I figured that if the left side was really bad (it was horrible), the right side was going to be on its way out. (It was, just not as bad as the left.)

So the parts list included:
-- A set of NSK bearings reboxed by Timken.
-- A new set of MoPar ball joint grease seals.
-- A pair of ATE rotors.
-- A set of EBC Street and Track Yellow Stuff brake pads.

The bearing replacement video in the "How To" section was really useful. I have the same model of press and had to fabricate a weird set of supports. I bought a set of bearing press shims/cups for the press work.

The worst aspect was cleaning the rust to keep flakes from falling into the important moving parts. Then I painted up the cleaned parts to prevent further rust.

While I had the steering knuckle off, I removed the OEM grease seal from the ball joints. One of them had been damaged and some grease had oozed out, anyway. I cleaned out all the old grease on both sides and after putting on the new MoPar grease seals, I refilled them with really good grease. I was able to pull the tie rod end boots down onto the stud far enough to push a needle fitting up into the boot so I could refill the tie rod end's grease reservoir. The ball joints and tie rod ends on both sides were in good shape, though.

Both the new brake pads and the rotors had a break-in coating that made them slightly thicker than OEM. That made installation a little difficult. But once they went on, all was well.

Car drives like I imagine it did when new. Clunk and rattle are gone.
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