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Replacing a Front Wheel Bearing

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Wheel Bearing Replacement: Removing the Old Wheel Bearing
Wheel Bearing Replacement

These are the components involved in replacing your front wheel bearings.

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In most cases you will need to remove your disc brake calipers and caliper bridge to remove the rotor. See Replacing Your Disc Brake Pads for more information on this. If your car has drum brakes, ignore this step.

  1. First remove the bearing cap. This is a press fit and to remove it grab it with your Channelocks and work it back and forth until it pops off. Be careful not to crush it as you remove it.
  2. Once the cap is off you will see a cotter pin, Remove the cotter pin and remove the retainer ring. If your vehicle has a castellated nut, you will not have a retaining ring.
  3. Using your Channelocks or adjustable wrench, remove the nut from the spindle.
  4. Now remove the outer wheel bearing and washer and lay it aside.
  5. Slide the rotor or drum off the spindle. This may be difficult, but it will come off. Don't worry about hurting the grease seal; we're going to replace it anyway.
  6. Now that the rotor or drum is off, use a suitable tool to remove the grease seal and take out the inner wheel bearing.
  7. Using some of the rags wipe all the old grease from inside the hub.
  8. Now we need to remove the bearing races from the hub. Take a punch with a flat narrow tip and place it on the back of the race. Most hubs have gaps in them to expose the back of the race to make removal easier. Tap the race out, alternating from side to side so it comes out evenly and doesn't get cocked in the hub. Once it's out, flip the rotor or drum over and do the same for the other race.

When both races are out, clean the inside of the hub with some rags. Also make sure the spindle is clean as well. You can even use some carburetor cleaner to do a really good job of cleaning. From this point on cleanliness is important. You do not want any dirt, sand or metal chips inside the hub.

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  5. DIY Wheel Bearing Replacement: Removing the Old Wheel Bearing

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