Removing your vehicle’s rear axle bearing is an essential task. Throughout your vehicle’s lifespan, you may experience issues with your vehicle’s axle bearing. The bearings are responsible for the spinning of the axle while it is held to the vehicle. However, there are times when the grease leaks out of the bearing or starts to make noise while in operation. Some other more severe issues, like scouring or gouging, may occur, and this can cause a lot of damage to your vehicle. We shall show you a step-by-step guide on how to remove the rear axle bearing without a puller.
If you want to fix these issues, you should have the right tools box for mechanics, including a work light, because you may have to remove and replace the axle bearings. Doing this task without using pullers may be a daunting task, especially if you have never attempted to do it before.
Steps to take if you want to know how to remove bearing from the shaft without a puller
Select the right surface
Before removing your vehicle’s rear axle bearings, you have to select the right surface. You have to select an appropriate surface because you have to raise your car off the ground before you can attempt to remove the axle bearings. Do not do it on a ground that is not level. You should select a stable or flat surface. An angled driveway may not be suitable for this purpose. A garage floor with an even concrete surface may be great.
Apply the vehicle’s parking brake
As part of the DIY process of removing a bearing without a puller, you will have to apply your vehicle’s parking brake before proceeding. Doing this will help prevent your vehicle’s wheels from moving as you attempt to raise your vehicle. It is also essential to do this, as you will find out when removing the bearings.
Use a car jack to raise your vehicle.
Car jacks come in different types, and each type of car jack has different functionality. Most car jacks are designed to act as a suspension system and convert the force you apply to the handle so that the jack head can be extended. It makes contact with your vehicle and pushes it with the head. One significant thing to consider when using the car jack is to ensure that it is placed correctly. You will find this information in your vehicle’s manual so do endeavor to read it. If you use the jack to apply pressure on the wrong place, it may tear wires. Damage a door or even punch a hole in your car. You may also have to extract the oil in the vehicle using a manual oil-filling pump.
Place jack stands under your vehicle.
If you seek to learn how to remove wheel bearings without a press, you mustn’t skip any of these steps. The use of jack stands is highly recommended, especially if you may have to go under your vehicle. Jack stands are preferable to car jacks because car jacks are unstable and narrow, which makes them more suitable for a quick change of your car tires. However, it may be dangerous to use them to remove the rear axle bearing.
Ensure that you place the jack stand under the frame of the vehicle. Do not place the jack stand under the oil or fuel tank; neither should you place the stand on any weak spot. If you do so, you may risk destroying the stands due to the weight of the vehicle. It is advisable to keep them away from the axles’ area. Ensure that you raise the vehicle’s four wheels to guarantee precision and safety when removing the bearing without a bearing puller. Failure to raise all four car wheels may cause the car to fall since it is not balanced.
Remove the coverings and trays that are in the way.
Before removing bearings without a rear axle puller, you have to remove the coverings or trays that may obstruct your work. First, you have to remove the under or engine tray if the need arises. Not removing the underneath tray may prevent you from accessing the axle. You should note that some vehicles may not come with an engine or undertray, probably because it was removed and was not replaced. Other things you should remove include the transmission tray and the plastic covering located on the suspension wishbone.
Remove the tires
If you wonder how to remove pressed-in bearings, you have to remove the tires first; otherwise, you may not access the axle bearings. You may have to replace both axle bearings at the same time. The reason is that there is a high chance of the other axle bearing getting bad after one has worn out. So you have to take out the right tires to get this done.
At this stage, you can find out if your vehicle is using a brake drum or brake disc; whichever one it’s using, we’ll guide you on how to remove the bearing shaft without a puller. Let’s first see how to remove wheel bearing without a press on vehicles that use both brake rotors and brake linings.
Unbolt the caliper and remove the Brake pads from it
The caliper is responsible for squeezing the brake pads against your vehicle’s disk rotor. They are usually bolted, so you should remove the bolts. The caliper connects to the brake lines, which apply the hydraulic pressure that enables the caliper to work. You do not have to detach the caliper entirely from the brake lines. You only have to get the caliper out of the way temporarily.
Release your vehicle’s parking brake
You have to release the parking brake of your vehicle. Your vehicle’s parking brake is in close contact with other parts, and you have to remove them. You do not need to disassemble it, but all you have to do is to deactivate it.
Remove the vehicle’s disk rotor.
The disk rotor is bolted to the brake pad and should be unbolted. You can make use of an anti-seize or differential oil as a form of lubrication If you are looking for how to press off axle bearings, you must carry out this critical step. You may require an impact driver to help you break loose the rotor if it’s proving difficult to remove, and this can be done without a rear wheel bearing removal tool or a power steering pulley puller to remove the axle bearings.
Lose the bolts or nuts holding your wheel shaft, it is usually four 14mm bolts or nuts. Take your hammer and gently hit the rear axle shaft out.
How to remove Axle bearings on Drum brake vehicles
Remove the wheel/Brake drum
Once you remove the tires, the next thing is to remove your wheel drum by reducing the brake adjustment until your brake drum is turning freely. Take your hammer and hit the brake drum on opposite edges, and gently remove the drum.
Disconnect your brake shoes
Bring your ply and screwdriver close, disconnect the springs holding the brake shoes together, and keep the brake shoes aside, then disconnect the hand brake cable from the plate by removing the clip at the back or by pressing down the hooks holding it. Look at the back of the cam plate; there are four bolts holding your rear shaft – it is mainly 14mm bolts or studs and nut; loosen it, lose the 10mm bolts holding your brake pot, and disconnect the brake fluid pipe that is connected on the wheel pot. Take your hammer and gently hit your axle shaft to pull it off.
Removing the bearing from the axle shaft
Carefully remove the hook holding the ABS cone. Use your screwdriver and gently pull out the ABS cone. The next step is the use light (a welding light or centerline light) to puncture the bearing so you can easily remove the balls in the bearing. Once you have completely removed the balls one after the other, take your chisel and a hammer and carefully pull out the bearing from the axle shaft – this process requires strength but with carefulness. Remove the seal and clean it, or replace it if it has gone bad.
Installing the new axle bearing
Clean the surface of the axle shaft thoroughly with fuel and a washing brush. Also, clean the rear axle case with a clean rag. Apply grease on the new bearing and fix it back on the axle shaft. Install the axle shaft back in the axle case and couple it back.
You can find more about this on YouTube.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: How do you remove a rear wheel bearing without a puller?
The ease at which you can remove a rear wheel bearing without a puller depends mostly on the vehicle’s size. Some vehicles are designed for easy removal of the bearing than others. The first step you have to take is to remove the trays or coverings that may prevent you from accessing the bearings. You will need to find the appropriate surface for you to carry this out. You also have to remove the tires. Another step to take when removing a rear wheel without a puller is to remove the brake pads attached to the caliper. You should not release the parking brakes and soften the caliper bolts. Lastly, remove the disk rotor and use a hammer to remove the axle bearings.
Q: How do you remove a stuck rear axle bearing?
To remove a stuck rear axle bearing, set up the axle in a position that allows you to use a heating or flame touch. Hold the flame on the vehicle’s bearing to allow it to heat the bearing. You can use a hammer that has light or medium taps on the axle’s shaft. If you can access a lathe machine, put the shaft in the lathe machine and turn it as you heat the bearing using the flame touch tip.
Q: How do you remove a pillow block bearing?
To remove a pillow block bearing, you should cut a groove down the bearing, but you have to be careful, so you would not accidentally cut into the shaft. You may use a screwdriver to pry the sides of the groove to be sure you have cut through enough. Once you have done this, the next step is to separate the two sides and remove the pillow block bearing.
Q: Can I change a wheel bearing myself?
Changing your vehicle’s wheel bearings is regarded as an intermediate job that you can do at home. However, you may need to have some essential mechanical tools to do this. Wheel bearings are those parts that allow your vehicle wheels to spin freely with less friction. To know how to remove a bearing without a puller, you have to follow some basic steps. First of all, prepare your vehicle for the process. Preparing your vehicle involves putting chocks behind your vehicle wheels, loosening the lug nuts, lifting the vehicle, and removing the lug nuts. Install the new wheel bearings and reassemble the loose parts.
Q: How do you remove a stuck spindle bearing?
To remove a stuck spindle bearing, you will require a press and an oxy/acetylene torch. However, this process may not be suitable for lower inches due to less expansion space. In this case, you may have to press out the spindle towards the chuck.
Rear-axle bearings play an essential part in ensuring that your vehicle moves smoothly. They must remain in good shape at all times. However, if you have issues with your rear axle bearings, you can remove and replace them. We have discussed how to remove the rear axle bearing without the puller, and this approach is very useful if you carefully follow the highlighted steps. Although there are different ways to do this, you need to have some necessary information about the vehicle before proceeding. You should find out the vehicle model and other important information before you begin the process.