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axle bearings?

This is a discussion on axle bearings? within the Drivetrain forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; When i'm on the road, i hear a sound that I would think would be bearings gone bad that i ...

  1. #1
    Member 28Marcos's Avatar
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    Question axle bearings?

    When i'm on the road, i hear a sound that I would think would be bearings gone bad that i believe are coming from my rear axle, would those be hard to change out by myself? i have some mechanical knowledge, did my own water pump and tie rod work for example, nothing too hard, and about how much would the bearings cost me? do you know if they are sold by themselves or in a whole assembly per side? thanks

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    Senior Member 01ws6er's Avatar
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    Maybe Sticky This!?!?!?

    I just did them and they were not hard at all. DO NOT buy the bearings/ seals from anyone other than GM!!!! A little pricey, but you won't get screwed twice like me!!! You have to buy 2 bearings and 2 seals.

    I got a "kit" from Autozone (bearings and seals in one piece) and they worked awesome...FOR 2 DAYS!!! and then the seals blew out. Had to rip em out again, and got a set of bearings and set of seals from NAPA, and they must have given me bearings with too big of an inside diameter, cause my rear vibrates like hell now!!! I took it to a rear shop and they looked at it (without tearing it apart) and told me what I had initially thought (inside diameter of bearings are too big) and that I should just go to GM and get the bearings, and now I have to get new axles as well and I'll be doing this for a 3rd time!!!!!

    Now to the process. Get yourself a Haynes manual, or if you want to PM me I can give you the process from the manual.

    1: You have to remove the wheels, calipers, and rotors, and if you have TCS or ABS you have to remove the little reluctor sensors located in the parking brake assembly (or you won't be able to push the axles in far enough to pop out the c-clips).
    2: Take off your rear cover, and let the fluid drain (I took a turkey baster and removed the fluid that wouldn't drain out).
    3: Then remove the pinion bolt, and pinion shaft. Gently push in the axles and the c-clips will fall out (remove them with a magnet or have someone under there to catch them as they fall out). Gently remove the axles. Obviously, inspect bearing surfaces...........
    4: Now get a slide hammer with a bearing puller that pulls from the inside, and get to pullin lol (you can usually rent it form local auto parts store). If I were you I'd try and buy a seal install tool, but a piece of pipe or something the size of the bearing will work, and press in the new bearings and seals (seals should be flush with end of housing). Make sure they are seated correctly.
    5: Install is reverse of removal, and you'll need 1.75 (get 2, duh) quarts of 75W90 gear oil, and some require 4-6oz. of Limited Slip additive. Some guys say don't use it, some do, GM recommends it, so I did. took me like 6 -7 hours the first time, and just under 3 hours the second time around, and now that I'm gonna be doing it for a third time...I'm trying for 1 1/2 hours haha

    For parts you'll need: (2 bearings and 2 seals - get from GM IMO!!!), 1-10 bolt differential cover gasket and some RTV sealant, 2 qt. 75W90 gear lube, 4-6 oz. of Limited slip additive, some grease (for your bearings), and a LOT of patience haha! Good luck!!!

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    Before you do something you don't need to do...verify that the noise is coming from your axle bearings, and not the pinion bearing (more common). If you have access to a lift, raise the car, in neutral, and spin the driveshaft by hand...the most common mistake people make when replacing the pinion bearing is overtightening (pre-loading). There's a crush sleeve in there...don't go more than 35 ft lbs.

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    Senior Member 35thAnniZ28's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 01ws6er View Post
    I just did them and they were not hard at all. DO NOT buy the bearings/ seals from anyone other than GM!!!! A little pricey, but you won't get screwed twice like me!!! You have to buy 2 bearings and 2 seals.

    I got a "kit" from Autozone (bearings and seals in one piece) and they worked awesome...FOR 2 DAYS!!! and then the seals blew out. Had to rip em out again, and got a set of bearings and set of seals from NAPA, and they must have given me bearings with too big of an inside diameter, cause my rear vibrates like hell now!!! I took it to a rear shop and they looked at it (without tearing it apart) and told me what I had initially thought (inside diameter of bearings are too big) and that I should just go to GM and get the bearings, and now I have to get new axles as well and I'll be doing this for a 3rd time!!!!!

    Now to the process. Get yourself a Haynes manual, or if you want to PM me I can give you the process from the manual.

    1: You have to remove the wheels, calipers, and rotors, and if you have TCS or ABS you have to remove the little reluctor sensors located in the parking brake assembly (or you won't be able to push the axles in far enough to pop out the c-clips).
    2: Take off your rear cover, and let the fluid drain (I took a turkey baster and removed the fluid that wouldn't drain out).
    3: Then remove the pinion bolt, and pinion shaft. Gently push in the axles and the c-clips will fall out (remove them with a magnet or have someone under there to catch them as they fall out). Gently remove the axles. Obviously, inspect bearing surfaces...........
    4: Now get a slide hammer with a bearing puller that pulls from the inside, and get to pullin lol (you can usually rent it form local auto parts store). If I were you I'd try and buy a seal install tool, but a piece of pipe or something the size of the bearing will work, and press in the new bearings and seals (seals should be flush with end of housing). Make sure they are seated correctly.
    5: Install is reverse of removal, and you'll need 1.75 (get 2, duh) quarts of 75W90 gear oil, and some require 4-6oz. of Limited Slip additive. Some guys say don't use it, some do, GM recommends it, so I did. took me like 6 -7 hours the first time, and just under 3 hours the second time around, and now that I'm gonna be doing it for a third time...I'm trying for 1 1/2 hours haha

    For parts you'll need: (2 bearings and 2 seals - get from GM IMO!!!), 1-10 bolt differential cover gasket and some RTV sealant, 2 qt. 75W90 gear lube, 4-6 oz. of Limited slip additive, some grease (for your bearings), and a LOT of patience haha! Good luck!!!
    its funny..haha i went through the same shit you went through

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    Senior Member Orcus79's Avatar
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    Thats a second on the pinion bearing, just did mine this summer but had a shop do it, I have no garage, it also took me three tries to get seal that didn't leak, GM ones included. I ahve no Idea why though, I guess there was still bit of metal or something floating about when the pinon bearing let go.

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    Member 28Marcos's Avatar
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    good info guys thanks i'll let you know how it goes when i get around to it, hopefully it'll last me for the next 2 weeks when school is over!

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    Senior Member 01ws6er's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Badd98CamaroSS View Post
    Before you do something you don't need to do...verify that the noise is coming from your axle bearings, and not the pinion bearing (more common). If you have access to a lift, raise the car, in neutral, and spin the driveshaft by hand...the most common mistake people make when replacing the pinion bearing is overtightening (pre-loading). There's a crush sleeve in there...don't go more than 35 ft lbs.
    Very good idea, but I like to do all work I can by myself, so I had a shop look at it to verify the initial problem, and then went out and got parts, that were WRONG haha. Very good idea though, make sure it's not pinion bearing.

    What sound is it making...If it sounds like a flat spot on the tire, then probably wheel bearings. If it sounds liek a humming sound, then probably the pinion bearing (from what I'm told). And you'll probably get vibration from both... Good luck and let us know how it worked out!

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    Member 28Marcos's Avatar
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    the only descripion that comes to mind is the fact that the sound has a deep roll to it, if that helps

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    If I had to guess, it's the pinion bearing...they tend to hum....when axle bearings go out (not often), they will squeal...

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    Senior Member 01ws6er's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Badd98CamaroSS View Post
    If I had to guess, it's the pinion bearing...they tend to hum....when axle bearings go out (not often), they will squeal...
    Dude my axle bearings went out and they did not squeel! More like a constant dud, and the closest thing that represents the sound would have to be something like a flat spot on a tire. Maybe front wheel bearings...on my Ranger the front wheel bearing went out and made a little bit of a screeching sound. It's possible depending how long you let it go, but it's definately not the ONLY sound they make when they go out.

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    Senior Member 35thAnniZ28's Avatar
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    hey when they went out..did you happen to change the fluid before all this shaizta happened?

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    Member Z ROADSTER's Avatar
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    New aftermarket axle bearings. Noise still there. Complete set of A/M bearings including pinion & carrier brgs. Noise still there. All new bearings again for the third time & also new Superior axles. Noise still there. All new brgs. again for the fourth time with new GM ring gear & pinion. Noise still there. Yank out Superior axles & replace with OEM axles. Will let ya'll know but I'm not optimistic.
    This is my last try. After this , if the noise is still there I will sell this fucker . I've had it up to here with this GM product & their lousy dealership net work. Ford's are even worse.
    Last edited by Z ROADSTER; 11-30-2007 at 06:15 PM.

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    Senior Member 35thAnniZ28's Avatar
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    hey z roadster...next time you pull the rear shafts...look closely at the shafts and see if the original bearings have eaten through the axle...if so.you have the same problem im going through right now..unfortanetly im going to have to replace em

    when you pull em look at the area circled[IMG][/IMG]

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    Senior Member 35thAnniZ28's Avatar
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    wait you put new axles in?!?! oh man..well then that means one thing...start saving for the 9''

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    Senior Member 35thAnniZ28's Avatar
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    oh yeah..did you put in 75-90 rear oil?? sarge says thats a good weight....

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    Senior Member 01ws6er's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 35thAnniZ28 View Post
    hey z roadster...next time you pull the rear shafts...look closely at the shafts and see if the original bearings have eaten through the axle...if so.you have the same problem im going through right now..unfortanetly im going to have to replace em

    when you pull em look at the area circledClick for full size[/thumb]
    That's what happened to mine. Bearings scored axles and I just bought new ones. Just need something to get rid of vibration till I'm ready for a 9". And Z roadster is very pessimistic about rears. Reading this, I can understand why he hates the 10 bolt cause I'm having the same problem, but he is complaining about every rear making noise, in other threads. Doesn't make sense other complaining than the 10 bolt being crap...???

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    Stupid question here.. but are wheel bearings and axle bearings the same thing?

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    Senior Member 35thAnniZ28's Avatar
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    you could say front wheel bearings...the rear end has a ring with bearings in it for each shaft..and for the front is "front wheel bearings"...which are called wheel bearing assembly

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    I am getting ready to change my pinion bearings as well. I have that humming sound from the rear. Do you have to do all that backlash stuff if it's just a bearing change?

  20. #20
    Senior Member Orcus79's Avatar
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    I would recomend it, cause to do it properly you have to pull the bearings and races as the the new ones, as far as I know are matched sets, that and it just a good idea becase of possible wear and damage.

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