Rear wheel bearing. - Nissan 350Z Forum : 350Z / 370Z Tech Forums

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Old 09-18-2009, 06:10 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Damn! Driving home today, I hear this faint oscillating sound coming from the rear axel area. For a few fleeting seconds I considered ignoring it, hoping it would fix itself, even though that strategy has never worked for me in the past.

A few years back when my car was still covered by the warranty, I had the axle-clicking problem repaired. A few weeks after the gorillas in the Nissan service department performed the TSB for the axle clicking fix, the car burned out a rear wheel bearing (scraped and screamed and howled like a banshee). I kinda suspected the bearing problem was related to the workmanship of the first repair, but it got fixed and life was good again.

Since today's noise was a miniature rendition of the howling banshee version. I jacked up the rear left corner and gave the wheel a shake. Yikes, there was a huge amount of free play at the hub. I took the wheel off and saw that the big 32mm nut (holding the axel half shaft to the hub was loose) double yikes! I went to where I store my dad's old toolboxes and with a little measuring discovered that the giant 1&1/4 inch box end wrench was the same as a 32mm. I tightened up the big nut, but the bearing play is still there.

Taking a wheel off and tightening up the odd bolt is the extent of my mechanical ability. The nice old man from down the block who is handy with this kind of thing, is out of the country for the next month. How am I going to get this fixed? Why does everything bad happen to me? It's coming on the weekend and the next two weeks are super busy for me. Why is every man in my life even more ditzy than me on car stuff?

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Old 09-18-2009, 06:40 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Jen, you should look at the technical service manuals in the wiki, they should show you how to replace it. Pretty sure you're in luck from this place it looks like they bolt on. Just make sure you get them torqued right and everything.

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Old 09-18-2009, 08:32 AM   #3 (permalink)
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it is a little involved as the hub and bearing are pressed on the axle so you have to remove the axle
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Old 09-18-2009, 06:37 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Well that's a pain in the ass. Ever do a Miata? I've read its doable without a press and it's on the list of stuff I need to do. Does this have to go in the 20T press at work?

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Old 09-18-2009, 08:52 PM   #5 (permalink)
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it says you need a drift and puller so it may not be too tough
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Old 09-19-2009, 02:28 AM   #6 (permalink)
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An update:

Yesterday when I tightened up the wayward axel nut, it turned quite stiffly, as if it was pulling the axel splines deeper into the hub. I turned it as tight as I could using the giant box end wrench (because there was no 32mm socket available). That took only about half of the wobble and free play out of the hub so I was thinking that the bearing was ruined. Today I drove the car a few blocks to pick up my dog from her play date. The oscillating sound was gone. I think it was caused by the play in the hub allowing the rotor to wobble, clipping the edge of the brake pads.

This was encouraging so I took the wheel off again when I got home. I put the wrench back on the nut and found that I was able to get another 1/3 of a turn out of it and now all the wobble and free play is gone from the hub and everything seems tight and spins normally.

Iím now wondering if I should go buy a 32mm socket (thereís a big torque wrench in the tool box) and just torque the nut to spec and be done with it, or take it in to a repair shop for a proper tear down and inspection. Any advice?

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Old 09-19-2009, 08:31 AM   #7 (permalink)
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QUOTE (jennifer @ Sep 19 2009, 12:28 AM)
Quote:
An update:

Yesterday when I tightened up the wayward axel nut, it turned quite stiffly, as if it was pulling the axel splines deeper into the hub. I turned it as tight as I could using the giant box end wrench (because there was no 32mm socket available). That took only about half of the wobble and free play out of the hub so I was thinking that the bearing was ruined. Today I drove the car a few blocks to pick up my dog from her play date. The oscillating sound was gone. I think it was caused by the play in the hub allowing the rotor to wobble, clipping the edge of the brake pads.

This was encouraging so I took the wheel off again when I got home. I put the wrench back on the nut and found that I was able to get another 1/3 of a turn out of it and now all the wobble and free play is gone from the hub and everything seems tight and spins normally.

Iím now wondering if I should go buy a 32mm socket (thereís a big torque wrench in the tool box) and just torque the nut to spec and be done with it, or take it in to a repair shop for a proper tear down and inspection. Any advice?
It sounds like it might just be the nut, and it's probably worth trying that. Don't just torque it down, replace it. There's a reason it came loose in the first place, if the nut is bad, you don't want to find out the hard way.

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Old 09-20-2009, 01:47 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Aloha,
Jennifer, get the socket and torque it down. Great DYI repair! Just pay attention to make sure the noise doesn't come back, or the nut comes loose again,try using loctite. If you take it in to the shop, the bearing "will have to be replaced". At the very least, the rack charge and time will be way more than a socket! Again, great job!

BTW Pat, great research and help on that bearing! Looks like since it comes as a "module", a press may not be needed, as long as the studs are long enough to engage the nuts. Then it would be just a matter of carefully and progressively tightening the nuts.

A Hui Hou

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