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Video:How to Replace a Front Wheel Bearing

with Vinny O'Dare

Learn how to change the front wheel bearing on your car in your own garage and without the cost of a car mechanic. With proper instruction, the right parts, and enough rags to clean up the grease, you can replace the front wheel bearing on your car.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Replace a Front Wheel Bearing

Hi, I'm Vinny O'Dare from Yorktown Tire and Auto Care. Today for About.com I'm going to show you how to replace a front wheel bearing.

Gather Materials for Replacing the Wheel Bearing

The tools you're going to need for this job are new bearings and seal and new cotter pin, something to get the tire off, ratchet and the correct socket to get your caliper off with. You're going to need dust cap pliers to get the dust cap off. It has a little hook here to get the inner seal out. You're going to need a pair of wire cutters, a hammer and a punch to take the races out with and a pair of channel locks. You're also going to need a bearing packer and a race installer kit. Don't forget to have a lot of rags with you for this job, cause this job can get very messy with all the grease.

Remove the Original Wheel Bearing

First you want to take your wheel off. You're going to want to take the break caliper off. Place your caliper out of the way. Now we'll need to take the dust cover off. Take the cotter pin out and then your castle nut. It shouldn't be that tight. Once the nut is off you put your finger here and just want to give the rotor a little tap and the outer bearing will come out. Take our rotor off and your inner bearing is right here. We have to take the seal out to take that out. Pop it out like that and that's your inner bearing. Now we're going to have to take the races out. You'll want to clean this out. There'll be a lot of grease in there, so you'll go through quite a few rags.

The racers are set in the rotor and they need to be replaced so the new bearings won't get worn out prematurely. You want to do that with a hammer and a punch. There's usually a lip inside that you could set the punch on to hit it right out. You got to be careful not to hit your hands. Same with the outer race. Again, clean out all the debris, dirt, and old grease from the rotor. And now you're ready to install the new racers. The big race is always on the inside. So take your race, find the right driver. This should go in fairly easy. Now the front race. You always want to make sure the race is bottomed out.

Pack Wheel Bearing with Grease

Again, wipe out any debris now you're ready to pack your wheel bearings. You can do these by hand by putting grease in your hand the old fashioned way, but these bearing packers are fantastic. Put it in there, you push down and the grease will come out. Like I said It's very messy. Always coat the bearing with grease, lay it on the inside. It's always a good idea to take a little extra grease and put it around the bearing. Take your seal and you want to put some grease on that also so that it doesn't tear. You're going to want to gently tap it in all the way around the outside edges until it's flush. Take your other bearing and put that in, coat the outside and that's ready to install.

Always clean the spindle off. And where the seal will sit place your rotor on, give it a little turn and you'll feel the bearing sit on the spindle. Put your outer wheel bearing in. A little wiggle will get it in there.

A Washer Helps Holds the Bearing in Place

All these taper bearings always have an outside washer and a little key way to hold it in position. Put that on and you're ready for your castle nut. Use the channel lock to tighten the bearing, but you don't want to have a lot of force. You want to twist it around to seat the bearings and lightly tighten. It's better to have the bearing a little on the loose side than too tight. You got to find the hole in the spindle to put your cotter pin through.

Take the bottom of the cotter pin and turn it up so it can't come out and push the bottom one down like that. Take our dust cap and clean that out too. Take your hammer and put that into place and lightly tap around the outside edges. You want to clean all the grease with a parts cleaner or just even a rag before you put your caliber and break pads back on. And that's how you change a front wheel bearing.

For About. com, I'm Vinny O'Dare.
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