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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I finally got around to doing my last wheel bearing, the left front. Here's a link to the DIY post I did for the rear bearing, which also explains the symptoms I was experiencing:

http://www.toyotanation.com/forum/showthread.php?t=235838

So here's how to do the fronts. The spindle has to come out, as the bearing is press fit into it. Also, the hub that carries the lug bolts is press fit into the bearing.

First, pop off the hubcap, pull the cotter pin (red arrow), remove the thing covering the nut, and crack the center nut loose. You'll need a 30 mm socket and a breaker bar; that baby's on TIGHT! Also break loose the lug bolts. Then set the parking brake, block the tires, jack it up, and finish removing the wheel.


Unscrew the axle nut most of the way off, and use a hammer to drive the axle in until the nut bottoms. It might not be easy, depending on how rusty things are. Mine was easy. In the picture, the nut is bottomed. It's normally sticking out about a half inch farther.


Now remove the tie rod nut's cotter pin, and use a 17 mm socket to loosen (but don't remove) the tie rod nut. Then, while lifting where shown, rap upward on the nut and where indicated in an alternating fashion. If you're lucky, the tie rod will pop free. If you can't get it out, you might have to get the other attachment points free and then spin the entire spindle to unscrew it. I'll mention this later. That's what I had to do on mine's right-hand side, after destroying the rubber boot trying to use a "pickle fork" to break it loose.


Here's mine after getting it out. Note there's a taper on the shaft and also on the mating hole. That's why it can be a bear to remove.


Now remove the brake caliper using a 17 mm socket. There are two bolts, one on the top...


...and one on the bottom. This view is from the front, down low.


Remove the caliper being careful not to kink the brake line, and hang it from the suspension spring. I used an old piece of electrical wire. Then the brake rotor (disk) should pull right off. Yes, those are oil spots on the floor. I have leaky valve covers that are getting attention next!


Now remove the two bolts holding the strut to the spindle using a 22 mm socket and breaker bar. Yes, these are very tight also. There is downward pressure from the struts on the bolts, so you'll need to unscrew them out. Try to be careful not to bung up the threads by beating the bolts out with a hammer. If you have ABS brakes, the clip holding the sensor cable pops off. Lift the cable above the spindle top so the cable isn't damaged when the spindle comes out.


Now, from underneath, remove the two nuts and one bolt holding the ball joint to the suspension lower control arm using a 17 mm socket and breaker bar. Yep, these are on REALLY tight also.


If you have ABS brakes, you need to disconnect the wheel speed sensor somehow, as the sensor is attached to the spindle. I'd recommend you disconnect the connector and remove the sensor and its cable along with the spindle to avoid damaging the sensor. The sensor on mine is bad already, so I removed the bolt shown below and pulled the sensor (what's left of it) from the spindle.


Almost home!... Remove the axle nut, pull the upper part of the spindle outward, and tap the splined-axle out the rest of the way. Then with some jockying, remove the spindle while tugging the upper section outward while lifting the ball joint bolts free of their holes. It would help to have an assistant for this. Be careful not to tear the outer CV joint boot. The strut wants to rub it hard while you're doing this. After a little cursing, voila!!!


If you couldn't get your tie rod loose, now's the time to spin the whole assembly to unscrew it. Now would be a great time to replace your ball joint if its marginally bad. Or your tie rod end for that matter. Mine didn't have any perceptible play, so I didn't replace them.


With the spindle out, clean all the caked-on crud off it and take it to an automotive machine shop to have them press out the old and press in the new bearing. My local Carquest did it for me for $35. The bearing (ordered and acquired before starting the job) cost about $65.

I went on the replace my CV shafts, as the boot on the right-hand side is torn and I'm hearing a clicking noise when I make a sharp right turn, so I'm replacing both sides. I didn't take any pix of that cuz it's been done before.

Re-assembly is the reverse. Getting the spindle back in is no picnic. Again, be careful not to tear the CV boot. When it's all put back together, most would recommend getting an alignment job. The bolts and nuts all fit precisely, so things go back together pretty much exactly as they were. So it's up to you.

Here are the torque values for re-assembly. All values are in ft-lbs

Drive axle hub nut - 217
Balljoint to control arm bolt & nuts - 94
Balljoint to steering knuckle nut - 90 (Just in case you replace it; I didn't)
Tie rod end to steering knuckle nut - 36
Strut to steering knuckle bolts/nuts - 156

Those are for '92 thru '95 Camrys per my Haynes manual, which was published in 1995. So they may be good for later years, but they also may be out of date if Toyota has changed their specs since then. Use them at your risk.

My results?... after replacing all four wheel bearings, she rides vibration-free at any speed. It's VERY nice to have a smooth ride back after all this time!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
It was about $400 for the parts & press-fitting. That's buying the rear cartridges on eBay. I have no idea what it would cost to have a shop do it. I wouldn't be surprised if it was double or triple that amount. It took me about 3 hours to do each front, not including the time to drive to town to get the press fitting done. The rears took me a bit less than an hour each.
 

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thanks for all the help

thanks for the excellent help you have went out of your way to do this and it really helped me. thank you very much you save a ton of grief.
paul:D:chug:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Glad to hear that falmutt! What symptoms were you experiencing?
 

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thanks

i am hearing a growling from what appears to be comming from the rear of the car. but i feel a vibration in my foot. which makes me believe there is something with the front end also. i have replaced all tires replaced the right (passanger)cv halfshaft. but the sound seems to be louder at the rear of the car.
 

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BMR and others who have done this. Is it possible to use a slide hammer puller to remove the bearing from the hub? I'm thinking on doing this but without the use of a press. Thanks.

kamrhee
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I didn't even try to get it out, so I have no idea how tight it's in there. It might work. If you look closely at the last pic, you can see an internal OD snap ring holding the bearing in. Be sure to remove that.

I suspect the hub (the part with the lug bolts in it) is in there tighter than the hubs of hell. But that's just a guess.
 
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i just did this and i tried but you risk damaging the hub. it cost only 25 dollars to have it pressed out and it took them 10 min. i would suggest pressing them out and in to avoid any other problems
 

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BMR and others who have done this. Is it possible to use a slide hammer puller to remove the bearing from the hub? I'm thinking on doing this but without the use of a press. Thanks.

kamrhee
A slide hammer will definitely not work. It requires literally 'tons' of pressure to get the bearing out. The only other thing that can work besides an external hydraulic press is a high quality portable bearing press to do it on the car such as this: http://www.ntxtools.com/network-tool-warehouse/OLF-7325.html (I have one of these). Even with that though, with the size of the camry bearings, it is a bear. You will sleep VERY well that nite. ;)

dmcd
 

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Thanks for all the response and suggestion. I will try to do this tomorrow and see if I can use a bearing puller and not the slide hammer as I initially intended to do. Will try to take some pics to if possible of the disassembly and removal. Thanks BMR for creating this thread.

kamrhee
 

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Well, I just did it this morning. I only went as far as trying to remove the axle nut. That nut it REALLY tight. Even the 18" breaker with pipe wouldn't budge it. I've soaked it with loosening fluid (don't remember the name, it has a yellow cap) and will try again tomorrow. Since I haven't really done anything, might as well ask a few more questions.

Davemac2,
I've seen pictures of that tool elsewhere. How do you use it? Can you extract the bearing from the front side? I thought when pressing out the bearing, it goes in from the front and exits at the back of the hub. If you press out, then you need to remove c clip, seal, etc. Please explain.

Others,
I've often read that one must mark the location of something when removing the whole hub assembly? Suspension unit only has fixed holes so there is no other way to install it. What about the tie rod? If I do remove the hub assemble as BMR did, I should not have to mark anything right?

Breaker bar question. Would a longer bar work on this lazy nut or do I have to do something different to remove the axle nut? Anybody tried the 25" breaker bar from Harbor Freight? Looking at the option of buying this if the loosening fluid doesn't work. My wife had this car since it was new back in 98 and the first few years she had always send it to the mechanic for maintenance and repairs. I started to do my own maintenance and repairs in 03 and assume this is the first time the wheel bearing is being replaced. So 10 years worth of rust and whatever is there. Any input is appreciated.

kamrhee
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
I've often read that one must mark the location of something when removing the whole hub assembly? Suspension unit only has fixed holes so there is no other way to install it. What about the tie rod? If I do remove the hub assemble as BMR did, I should not have to mark anything right?
Right. But if you can't get the tie rod end to pop loose, and wind up unscrewing it from the tie rod, then you should mark the jamb nut so you can get it put back in the same position.

Breaker bar question. Would a longer bar work on this lazy nut or do I have to do something different to remove the axle nut? Anybody tried the 25" breaker bar from Harbor Freight? Looking at the option of buying this if the loosening fluid doesn't work. My wife had this car since it was new back in 98 and the first few years she had always send it to the mechanic for maintenance and repairs. I started to do my own maintenance and repairs in 03 and assume this is the first time the wheel bearing is being replaced. So 10 years worth of rust and whatever is there. Any input is appreciated.
FWIW, I had to stand and bounce on my breaker bar to crack that one loose. And I'm 220 lbs on a 14 inch long breaker bar, so somewhere north of 300 ft-lbs is what it took.

Have the CV shafts ever been replaced? That nut has to be removed to do that. If so, perhaps someone used an air wrench on it and overtightened it. Soooo many shops do that, which is really annoying. Or like you said, 10 years worth of rust... Anyhoo, if you can't crack it loose, maybe you could take it to a shop with an air wrench and pay 'em a few bucks just to break it loose for ya. By the way, if your CV axles have never been replaced, and you're at around 100k miles, you might want to consider doing them at the same time, even if they're OK now. In my experience, they're good for ~120K.
 
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After fiddling it for 3 days, its finally done. Let me break it down and add a few items that I did.

Followed BMR's DIY throughout but without turning the whole knuckle assembly. There is an arm (control?) that connects to the front sway bar that needs to be disassembled. The axle nut is a bear to remove. The one thing I noticed that helped, aside from buying H.F. 18" breaker bar, is to put the wheel back and use the weight of the car to counter the axle nut. That did the trick.

I asked before why a "marking is needed" to keep alignment. I noticed there is only one part that needs that. The arm that connects to the tie rod. The rest (ball joint, shocks) are mounted in a fixed position.

I also changed out my shocks (whole unit). The front KYB GR-2 are about 6 years old. It was getting to a point of sloppy when going over road bumps. I ordered 2 Monroe Quick Struts at Kragen for about $400 after tax. If you call in the order the day before, they will give a 10% off the order. I was looking for the "Save the Squirrel" rebate but it had already expired. Changing the shock unit was a no brainer.

As for the knuckle assembly, had it done at Pep Boys for about $35 per hub. That's decent since other shops I called wanted 45. I thought about the tool that DaveMac2 used and I purchased one at Harbor Freight for this job, never really used it. Its a neat tool and could have work but you still need to pull the axle out of the knuckle and hub to gain access from the back. I will return this tool back and get a refund.

Putting back is the reverse of the DIY. Same thing goes to tightening the axle nut. Put wheel back and use the car's weight as leverage. Remove wheel and finish with the nut cap and cotter pin.

Additional parts that you REALLY need before you start this project is a deep 30 MM Axle nut socket, good and long breaker bar, cotter pins (you can get a set at Kragen for about 1.99 - 144 pcs.).

BMR - the car is about 155K miles. CV is still original and still good. I will keep her as it is until the need arises for the CV to be replaced. As for the bearing, one was getting rusted and dry hence the grinding noise but the other one was still good. I had it replace anyway because of age.

Thanks for the advices and tips. Couldn't have done it without your input.

kamrhee
 

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Hi BMR,

Once again, Very good DIY for the front end. Do you have the torque for the front axle nuts. Also, where I can get the torque for most of the nuts. Any specific books?

Thanks,
Dom
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I think I can get the torque values for you from my Haynes manual. I'll post 'em tonite probably.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
Here ya go. All values are in ft-lbs

Drive axle hub nut - 217
Balljoint to control arm bolt & nuts - 94
Balljoint to steering knuckle nut - 90 (Just in case you replace it; I didn't)
Tie rod end to steering knuckle nut - 36
Strut to steering knuckle bolts/nuts - 156

Those are for '92 thru '95 Camrys per my Haynes manual, which was published in 1995. So they may be good for later years, but they also may be out of date if Toyota has changed their specs since then.

I'll add those to my original post as well.
 

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Superb guide. It also applies to a '98 Sienna. One useful tip for separating the tie rod from the steering knuckle that I have used over the years in trucks all the way up to ex-German army M.A.N.s is to unscrew the castellated nut until it is flush with the end of the threaded portion, then apply pressure with a jack (a lot) and tap the knuckle with a heavy hammer. It has always worked for me, although on occasions I have had to increase the lift on the jack until the vehicle is just coming off the axle stand. Keep your fingers away from the assembly because when it does separate, it does so very quickly with a loud crack! I have never damaged a tie rod end by this method, and it has always worked.
 
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