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  1. #1

    Front axle replacement?

    I had the GP in for it's inspection today, to a "trusted" shop that I know wouldn't be out to screw me over. They found two things:

    1. Brakes are low (I already knew that)
    2. Front axle is "not good"
    He said the boot on the axle is cracked and filling with road grit... I could run it for a little while but its going to need to get replaced soon, once I start hearing noise. Anyone ever heard of this? Whats involved?

    Current: 2004 BMW 330xi
    Past:
    1992 Grand Prix Richard Petty Edition | 1992 Grand Prix GTP | 1995 Grand Prix GT Sedan

  2. #2
    mihela816's Avatar
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    Re: Front axle replacement?

    The boots crack with age and dirt and water get in and contaminate the grease. That eats up the bearings on the cv joint. It's farly easy to replace with the right tools. Get a new axle from the parts store. You will need an axle nut socket (36mm) and a breaker bar, something to pop the ball joint loose like a seperator or a pickle fork and a prybar to pop the axle out of the transmission, and a drain pan. jack up the car on that side and remove the wheel. Use the axle socket to remove the nut on outer end of the axle, they are usually very tight so some PB blaster and maybe a pipe for a little extra leverage might be needed. After you get the nut off, you'll need to seperate the ball joint. Be careful not to tear the boot on the ball joint. Remove the cotter pin on the stud and take off the castle nut with a 17mm wrench. Seperate the ball joint from the knuckle with the ball joint seperator. Pry the inner end of the axle out of the trans being careful not to damage the seal. Use the drain pad underneath to catch any fluid that leaks out. Tap the outer end of the axle out of the knuckle and remove the old axle for a core. Install the new axle by pushing the inner end into the trans until it seats and line up the splines on the outer end with the splines in the knuckle. Reinstall the ball joint and tighten the castle nut to 45 lb/ft and an additional partial turn until the slots line up with the hole in the ball joint stud. Install a new cotter pin. Thread the new axle nut onto the axle and tighten it to 180 lb/ft. Put the wheel back on, check the fluid in the trans and top it off if it needs it, and You should be set. Make sure to take the old axle back to the store for core credit.
    1997 Ford Probe GTS 1995 Chevrolet Silverado Z71 2006 Pontiac Solstice 1991 3.1 Lumina (no longer owned, see it at its prime here http://www.cardomain.com/memberpage/596470

  3. #3

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    Re: Front axle replacement?

    there are a couple ways to do this job. we are talking a gen 1 GP. right?

    you must remove the axle nut, I find this easiest to do with a breaker bar though a steel rim or spare tire if you have alloys.

    then there are three methods you could use.

    ball joint removal: this is hard and sometimes destroys the ball joint.

    removal of the wheel bearing: remove tire, brake hardware, and pull the four 15 mm bolts that hold the wheel bearing to the hub. I use a secondary jack (or a block or some sort) to raise the strut so the axle is nearly a straight line. so when it is pulled the axle in linear and easy to come out.

    frame-control arm separation: I like this method most now. You must break loose the nuts(18mm) and bolts(15mm) that go though the control arm -to-frame bushings. make sure the bolts are not frozen in the bushing. If either bolt will not come out because it is frozen, reassemble and try a different method. and coat the bolt shaft/threads with plenty of grease, so you don't risk it freezing up. you must also remove the two bolts (13mm) that hold the endlink on the sway bar. hope you are on jackstands... and push the strut out and the cv joint will come free.


    BUILDER AND DESTROYER OF FINE(?) AMERICAN CARS.

  4. #4

    Re: Front axle replacement?

    Thanks for all of the tips!

    I don't know how much longer I can run it like I am before the brakes and/or axle need fixing; I'm starting a new full time job next week and will be relying on the car every day... I don't want to put it off and get stuck, but I don't have the time now to do it (wont be home this weekend)

    The joys of old cars!

    Current: 2004 BMW 330xi
    Past:
    1992 Grand Prix Richard Petty Edition | 1992 Grand Prix GTP | 1995 Grand Prix GT Sedan

  5. #5
    Andrew's Avatar
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    Re: Front axle replacement?

    you'll know when the axle needs replaced. you will hear a clicking noise when you turn. and they usually last awhile in clicky mode.
    00 GTP - mine | 05 Mariner - hers | 95 F150 - ours?

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    Re: Front axle replacement?

    I pushed it with my axle. It was clicking for months, not that many miles cause I drive my GP 3000 mi a year, but then I drove from Cleveland to Long Island, and I was trucking. If it's not making any noise, you're probably ok for a bit. I personally go for the hub method. I've had mine off many times, and I can literally have the whole thing apart in 20 minutes. It's not a bad job. Hardest part for me was getting the correct axle. No one had 282 axles around, and then the ones that said they did, had wrong numbers in the computer, so they really didn't. Overall, not a bad job 1-2 beers tops
    88 SE with a cammed 2.8 hybrid, Getrag 282 and GT3271. Intrax/FAF drop, 34mm/Addco bars, kybs, self-made f/r stbs.
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  7. #7

    Re: Front axle replacement?

    What kind of clicking should I be listening for? The car has always made a very light click sound when coasting, it has for years, but it is very faint and doesn't do it all the time either. I have a 15 minute drive to the train station every day, and thats it, so I'm wondering how long I can put this off.

    Current: 2004 BMW 330xi
    Past:
    1992 Grand Prix Richard Petty Edition | 1992 Grand Prix GTP | 1995 Grand Prix GT Sedan

  8. #8
    Andrew's Avatar
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    Re: Front axle replacement?

    with a bad axle, the clicking would be very noticeable while accelerating when taking a turn from a stop. clicking while coasting is probably just rocks in your tread.
    honestly, you can put this off for quite sometime if you can live with the noise. my sister ran her car like that for months!
    00 GTP - mine | 05 Mariner - hers | 95 F150 - ours?

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    rockfangd's Avatar
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    Re: Front axle replacement?

    i have done the bearing way many times i think it makes things so much easier. you dont have to mess with much of anything to do it lol.
    rockfangd

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    intern8tion9l's Avatar
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    Re: Front axle replacement?

    bearing removal ftw

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