Join Date: Oct 2001
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Re: front wheel bearings
Fullsizebronco has a writeup on doing the wheel bearings. Lots of past posts here, but basically...oh, let me first mention, my manual also states that, but it makes it clear 5 qts for motor, plus another quart IF you have changed the filter as well. I guess there are still people out there that change the oil but not the filter every time? Anyway on to bearings:
I am assuming manual hubs.
take out screws holding manual hub dials on.
First tool you need is a small steel hook (like a dental probe basically), and small screwdriver to pull the outer snapring that holds the hub innards inside the hub. let us know if you need a pic of any of this.
next tool is snapring pliers to pull the axleshaft end snapring, also holding the hub innards.
Now pull the hub innards out. It is often helpful to take two of the hub dial screws and thread them back in here, and pull straight out holding onto those screws.
now you can see down into the hub. Next three items to come out are the outer spindle nut, washer/retainer, and inner spindle nut (bearing retainer). These nuts require a Spindle Nut tool, which is basically a very large socket with 4 "teeth" on the end, Powerbuilt part number 648473 (4 lug x 2-3/8" outer). The outer one is generally torqued down to between 160-200lbft of torque. Inner one is more critical. When you reassemble, the inner one also is used to properly seat the bearings. so when you reverse this procedure to reassemble, you will put the entire hub back on the spindle, then put the inner nut on, and tighten to 70lbft, while rotating the hub back and forth (also make sure everything is seated properly). This seats the bearings. then, back off the nut 90 degrees, retighten to 15lbft. This is dependent on the washer, which goes on next, as one of the washer holes must align with the dowel that is in the inner spindle nut.
That's it, as mentioned, install in reverse order of removal. It is wise until you really see/know these parts to line them up as you pull them out. The two spindle nuts are different, for example.
get a can of brake cleaner and a coffee can so you can clean the bearings real good. Inspect the races, if they look good, do not attempt to remove them. Clean out the whole inner hub as well. You should also purchase an inner hub/bearing seal. As I recall, in order to get the inner bearing out, you will need to pull this seal. Napa will have it as well, Chicago Rawhide, don't know part number.
I would recommend a synthetic grease for this service. If you end up replacing the bearings, you must do the races as well, and don't skimp on these, buy the best. We have debated how much grease to use, so whatever your preference is. I only use enough to pack the bearings well, and then put some around them for pickup. I don't use a ton of grease. Don't use a bunch of grease out at the hub dials either. One other suggestion is to inspect/regrease the spindle bearing as well since you have it this torn down. If you want the further procedure/tools for that, let us know.