Ok this is my first time around changing my rear wheel bearings, and being a smart ass i thought it would be the same as the front. (Note i do all my work myself, Hand Tools only, no press etc etc)
My problem it i took the wheel off, and found to my supprise that it was nothing like the front, no dust cover or anything.. My next problem was that i couldnt figure out how to get to them..
So if someone could give me a detailed description on how to get the hubs off, or if i have to take out the rear axels this would be very handy.
Also there is quite a lot of up and down movement with the wheel on, being that the rear bearings are factory to the car, i would also like to know if this could have possiblly damaged my Diff.
firstly, grab a work shop manual :P
anyways here's how to do it without the manual or a press, good old brute force method...
remove the caliper and rotor/disc
dismantle the brake components so you can access the 4 14mm 9/16" nuts and remove them (a socket on an extension will fit thru the big hole in the axle) there should also be 4 split washers, do not lose them!
They probably won't pull out so you'll need a slide hammer or you flip the disc around and put 3 wheel nuts on about 6-10 turns, very important to make sure all 3 are put on the same amount of threads and even.
Push the disc toward the car all the way and pull it out fast and use that as the slide hammer.
now the tricky part....
destroy the cage and remove it and the roller bearings (side cutters or what ever method works for you)
placing the axle in a vice, horizontally is best for this next part.
use an angry grinder to slot the retainer CAREFULLY you don't want to cut all the way thru, just enough to weaken it and never ever cut far enough to hit the axle and never cut the plate
use a cold chisel and a hammer and belt into the slot towards the axle to break the retainer and it'll come off easily ( |V| )
can do the same to the inner race of the bearing, although this has a lip you can get the cold chisel on and hit it towards the splines so may not need to slot it and split it like the retainer.
only reason i slotted the inner race was i hit it on the lip and it chipped, grazed my knuckles.... so i taught it a lesson...
(I cut to far into these but the axle was scrap and only wanted the retainer plate)
remove old seal
ok now you should have it all off and it wasn't as hard and daunting as it first appeared.
Check the seal surface for any rust/deformities and you may need run some emery paper around it to smooth it out.
Place the plate on facing the correct way.
Put new seal on and a small bit of grease to help it seal first up and not run dry until the diff oil eventually splashes out there.
Sit the bearing on and make sure it is facing the right as you only get 1 chance at this.
Find a 2 foot or longer length of clean unrusted pipe (gal water pipe works for this as it has a fair bit of weight, you don't want rust flakes and crap coming out of it into the bearing) that is a lose fit on the axle where the bearing goes, but is the right diameter to only hit the inner bearing race (hitting the cage or bearings will cause damage).
This is your slide hammer, lift it up and slam it down, make sure the studs aren't sitting on a hard surface like concrete, place a bit of wood under it.
May take a few goes to get the bearing on all the way, once it's seated correctly and won't go any further do the same with the retainer.
To remove the old outer shell that is stuck in the housing, you should be able to get your fingers in there and pull it out until it hits a lip (apply even pressure on 2 opposing sides), you may be able to scrape this lip down prior.
WARNING: Take care with the next part, you don't want to slip and graze your knuckles or worse somehow stab yourself in the leg or face with a screwdriver, could be difficult driving to the hospital with your car in pieces.....
Get 2 long flat blade screw drivers (the biggest 2 that are close to each other in size the better) and place them in an X so the tips are under the shell inside the housing.
Put pressure on them inwards and rock left and right while also pulling back towards you the shell should move out, may be slow but this works (damn this part is easier show someone than explain it...)
Replace new shell it should push in easily. (may need to gently persuade it with a piece of wood and a hammer, never hit it with the hammer directly as it may chip)
Make sure there is some grease on the new bearing (most come pre greased)
replace axle in car and put brakes back together. done
Last edited by Jxw; 02-03-2012 at 07:11 PM. Reason: adding/ rectifying info
Excellent write up.
Also note these wheel bearings have a small amount of free play, it can be deceiving when comparing to front wheel bearings.