How difficult is it to change out the front wheel bearings in 2004 Ranger? - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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  #1  
Old 10-09-2009
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How difficult is it to change out the front wheel bearings in 2004 Ranger?

I've got a used front axle housing on the front of my truck, so I'm not sure of what kind of abuse it has taken. Recently, a strong shake has come about when going 60+ mph. I was told at a shop where my clutch was recently replaced that it is most likely my wheel bearings. There is very little play in the wheel, so I am thinking it's not the ball joints.

Does anybody know how difficult it is to change these out? And can anybody list the steps to removing these? If it's anything like changing out the wheel bearings on my TTB 89 Bronco with locking hubs, I may not have the patience.
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Old 10-09-2009
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Remove hubcap
Loosen axle nut
Remove wheel
Remove brake caliper and zip-tie out of the way
Remove upper balljoint pinch bolt and separate from knuckle
Remove outer tie-rod castle nut and separate from knuckle
Pull knuckle out and remove outer CV joint from knuckle
Remove 3 or 4 bolts on the back of the hub assembly and remove

I think that's it...? Search I'm sure there is a write up. Should be able to do it in an hour or two on your own.
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Old 10-09-2009
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^^yup! Can't forget removing the caliper bracket too. But I'm just giving Brian a hard time.


Only need a 14mm, 15mm, and whatever your lugs and CV shaft nut takes.
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Old 10-09-2009
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If you need torq specs and can't find them, let me know. I have a haynes manual floating around here somewhere.
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Old 10-09-2009
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torque specs = red locktite + tight as *****.


lol



I can get 'em too if needed, straight from the Ford service manual.
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Old 10-09-2009
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Old 10-10-2009
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Thanks guys. I'll probably be tearing them apart soon.

I guess I'll be needing a slide tool to pull the bearings out? It doesn't state anything in that thread.

Last edited by winks; 10-10-2009 at 08:31 AM.
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Old 10-10-2009
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I don't think so. The hub/bearing is one complete assembly.
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Old 10-10-2009
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Oh, that sucks. With the money I threw out for the clutch, I'll deal with the vibrations for now. At least I won't have to change out the axle seals when I do the bearing, those are a ***** to get in and out.
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Old 10-15-2009
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I just did my hub assembly last weekend. It was a *****. The bolts were a pain in the ***. Be prepared they red locktited tthem at teh factory, so get some MAPP gas and heat them up before you try and turn them. NAPA has a "lifetime" Hub assembly for 4x4 with 4 wheel ABS for 217.00. It seemed like a quailty part, I had to order new bolts from ford since mine were torn up from trying to get them off.

Make sure that you torque the hub nut correctly. It is to be torqued to 162 ft/lb on my 2005, so yours should be the same. The Hub assembly mounting bolts are around 85 ft/lb+ red loctite. the caliper mounting bolts are around 85 ft/lb+ red loctite. The caliper slide bolts are around 26 ft/lb I believe.

Make sure you clean up the area for where the new hub goes in, use some PB Blaster, or parts cleaner. Use as well some Anti-Sieze on the shaft as well where the flange mounts into the stearing knuckle just incase you ever need to take it apart again. Then you just need to plug in the ABS sensor. If you get the one from NAPA it comes with all new ABS sensor wire mounts. It's really easy to put in ... the old ones just a c*** to get out.

PS: have a cold chisel to seperate the wheel hub from the steering knuckle, just rap on it a few times. You may want to grab a gear puller to pull the hub off the cv shaft, I found it easiest becuase I had it laying around. Any questions PM me, and I will help you the best I can.
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Old 10-15-2009
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PS if its the vibration I had, ford kept saying it was the tires out of balance. but the whole center console was shaking, I really felt like the truck was falling apart, but it was this little mysterious part. When it gets worse it will make a churping noise that you can hear when you are driving next to those concrete devider walls... kind of sounds like a brake clip dragging.
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Old 10-16-2009
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If the wheel has very little play in it i doubt its the bearings at the wheel. When mine have gone bad they did not shake but growled.

I would look at your half shafts or warped brake rotors.
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Old 10-16-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blhde View Post
If the wheel has very little play in it i doubt its the bearings at the wheel. When mine have gone bad they did not shake but growled.

I would look at your half shafts or warped brake rotors.
x2 they growl mine never shook and as for the bolts go we didn't have a to many issues we only broke 3 sockets and basically make sure you have a pipe to put on a wrench and your set lol
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Old 10-16-2009
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Well, maybe it's not shaking, it basically makes a bass noise so loud that I could benefit from wearing hearing protection from 65mph on, would that be what you call growling?
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Old 10-16-2009
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Quote:
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Well, maybe it's not shaking, it basically makes a bass noise so loud that I could benefit from wearing hearing protection from 65mph on, would that be what you call growling?
ya sounds like you need new wheel bearings
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Old 10-21-2009
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There is no need to remove the knuckle when doing a hub. You can get to the bolts with the knuckle and the axle shaft in. It is very tight but it can be done. Have you checked you tires for irregular wear like chopping the edges? That will make a similar noise as wheel bearings. You might want to check that first because hub/bearing assembly's are not cheap for 98+ trucks.
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Old 10-21-2009
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mine were about 400 for both. that was just parts Lol
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Old 03-23-2010
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I finally ordered the hub/wheel bearing assembly from Rock Auto. I was originally going to get it done at a shop, but my passenger side one decided to burn up literally on the ride there, so that one got fixed instead. I'm doing the driver's side myself hopefully this weekend.

From everything you guys have said as symptoms of wheel bearings, I am sure that the mechanics was correct in his assumption that it was going. I can't wait to get this done and get my truck back on the road, the F250's just too big, too slow, and too much of a gas hog to keep using as my daily driver.
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Old 03-24-2010
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Here Winks....mine went ( .Y. )'s up a few weeks back... Only rumbled and growled for an after noon and this is what it looked like...



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Old 03-24-2010
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Ha, when I heard Old Time Rock and Roll in the background, I thought you were going to shake it to the beat!

That's crazy Shane... and exactly why my truck has not moved from my driveway in over a week.
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Old 03-25-2010
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I luckily planned ahead knowing I had 120k on the stock bearings and half that with oversize tires, so I scored some 22k used ones off Cory's '07 when he was torching the front end off the truck. lol. Went ahead and did CV's at the same time too.
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Old 03-25-2010
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Nice... I've now paid $450 into this. I paid 300 for a shop to do the passenger side - probably looked just like your video, and I paid about $150 for the Timken at Rock Auto for the driver side. I jacked up the truck yesterday and there's hardly any play in the tire, but better safe then sorry... I'm still changing it out on Saturday.
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Old 03-27-2010
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I can't easily free the hub assembly from the spline of the CV shaft. Anybody know how I can do this before I take a hammer and punch to it?
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Old 03-27-2010
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Well, I got it all apart and back together again. A 3 lb sledge is definitely a good tool to have for this job.

The truck is so much quieter now on the road, I can hear my exhaust again.
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Old 03-27-2010
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yup! just a little tap tap of the hammer free's it if it's semi-rusted together. Glad you got it all fingered out!
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