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Front hub and bearings - inspection and renewal
Suspension and steering systems / Front hub and bearings - inspection and renewal


Inspection
1 The front hub bearings are non-adjustable, and are supplied already greased.

2 To check the bearings for excessive wear, apply the handbrake, jack up the front of the vehicle and support it on axle stands.

3 Grip the front wheel at top and bottom, and attempt to rock it. If excessive movement is noted, it may be that the hub bearings are worn. Do not confuse wear in the driveshaft outer joint or front suspension lower arm balljoint with wear in the bearings. Hub bearing wear will show up as roughness or vibration when the wheel is spun; it will also be noticeable as a rumbling or growling noise when driving.

Renewal
4 Remove the steering knuckle and hub assembly as described in Section 2.

5 The hub must now be removed from the bearing inner races. It is preferable to use a press to do this, but it is possible to drive out the hub using a length of metal tube of suitable diameter (see illustration).

3.5 Front hub and bearing
3.5 Front hub and bearing

1 Hub
2 Double-row ball-bearing 3 Circlips
4 Stub axle
5 Steering knuckle
6 ABS sensor

6 Part of the inner race will remain on the hub, and this should be removed using a puller.

7 Note that if this procedure is being used to renew the hub only (ie it is not intended to renew the bearings), then it is important to check the condition of the bearing balls and races, to see if they are fit for re-use. It is difficult to be sure that no damage has occurred, especially if makeshift methods have been used during removal; in practice, it is probably false economy not to renew the bearings in any case, having got this far.

8 Using circlip pliers, extract the inner and outer circlips securing the hub bearing in the steering knuckle (see illustration).

3.8 Front wheel bearing retaining circlips (arrowed)
3.8 Front wheel bearing retaining circlips (arrowed)

9 Press or drive out the bearing, using a length of metal tubing of diameter slightly less than the bearing outer race.

10 Clean the bearing seating faces in the steering knuckle.

11 Locate one of the circlips in the outer groove of the knuckle.

12 Press or drive the new bearing into the knuckle until it contacts the circlip, using a length of metal tube of diameter slightly less than the outer race. Do not apply any pressure to the inner race.

13 Locate the remaining circlip in the inner groove of the knuckle.

14 Support the inner race on a length of metal tube, then press or drive the hub fully into the bearing.

15 Refit the steering knuckle and hub assembly as described in Section 2.


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