how to replace rear hub/bearing and spindle? | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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how to replace rear hub/bearing and spindle?

  • Thread starter Thread starter chrismunn
  • Start date Start date


hey yall.
i have an XLT 4x4, 4.0L v6.

recently the passenger side rear bearing went out. i bought a new hub and bearing assembally to replace it.

when i pulled out the old hub and bearing, the bearing was completely broken, and the outter part of the bearing was siezed inside the spindle.

i cant get it out!

to make things worse, i cant remove the spindle from the rest of the truck.

you'll have to forgive me, i dont know what the names are for most of the parts:D

i dont even know what questions to ask? i took all the bolts off of the spindle that attaches it to all the other moving parts. there were 3 bolts. is there a special tool to pull the moving parts off the spindle?

i dont really want to take the spindle out but the bearing is stuck in it. is there a speacial tool i need to get the broken bearing out?

the only part of the bearing that is left in tact is the outter part that seats in the spindle. i have taken the retaining clip out of the spindle, but with a hammer and chisle i cant even get the bearing to move!

does anyone have any knowledge of this repair, or have a link to a thread where someone has already covered this?

any info would be greatly appreciated! if you have any questions please feel free to ask me. i probabaly didnt elaborate well enough for yall to understand my problem, but again, i dont know what to call all these parts, and i have no idea what im doing!


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i just pulled it all apart again so i could take a bunch of pics to better illistrate what im talking about.

basicall there are just 2 points at which i cannot get the spindle to release. i think one point is where the spindle attaches to the controll arm, thats on the bottom of the spindle. and the other point is at the top of the spindle. i dont know what that part is called? its a big triangular shaped piece that pivots up and down on the frame, and the spindle kinda rotates where its attached to that triangle piece...

ill have the pics in about 10 minutes here...

here are the 3 bolts that i have removed to take off the spindle

the spindle was easily removed from this point when the bolt was removed

this pic shows the bolt holding the spindle onto the "triangular" shaped piece that i dont know what to call? the bolt will be removed...

this pic shows the bolt holding he spindle to the control arm. (i think thats what it is?) this bolt will be removed.

with thoes 3 bolts removed i should be able to completely remove the spindle from the truck. but thats not the case at all!

this pic shows the spindle after having removed the brake rotar, brake caliper, hub, bearing, e-brake, and dust shield. you can see the location of the 3 bolts holding the spindle in place, they are marked with blue masking tape.

this the "triangular" shaped piece that connects to the spindle at the top. the bolt has been removed, but the spindle wont come off.

these 2 pics show where i removed the bolt that holds the spindle to the control arm. after removing the bolt, i still connot get the control arm to release from the spindle.


this pic shows the spindle with all bolts removed, and shows where the spindle wont release from the 2 points.

as i stated earlier, the bearing completely broke into pieces. here is the inside of the bearing pressed onto the hub.

and here is the outside of the bearing stuck inside the spindle...


so at these 2 points, ive been trying to gently tap them with a hammer to get them to release thier death grip on the spindle! is there a better way to do this? i have almost no tools for this. i borrowed a wratchet and some sockets from my neighbor, and i have a hammer. thats about it.
when i can get the spindle out, im going to take it to my friend from work to see if he can cut a 1/4" thick steel disk to weld onto the inside of the outter bearing piece thats stuck into the spindle. after that he can hopefully use a hydrolic press to get the outter bearing piece out of the spindle? will that work? icant think of anythnig else aside from replacing the spindle as well, but at this point i can even get the spindle off the truck. grrr:(

ok, so here is where im at now. instead of trying to remove the control arm from the spindle, ive instead removed the control arm from the frame, and left the control arm attached to the spindle. its the best i can do....

now all i have to do is remove the spindle from the triangle piece. i was going to remove the triangle piece from the frame, but im afraid i wont be able to get it back in when the time comes. so ex that idea! ive tried using a chisle to wedge inbetween the two sections of holding bracket on the spindle to see if that would help loosen some of the tension on the little ball joint piece, but that doesnt seem to be helping much either.

here is the last part i need to get undone. you can see a 2x4 that im using as a wedge to keep the triangle piece from bouncing while i hit the spindle with a hammer...


im afraid that im doing something wrong and might damage something, but im too stubbourn to take it into the shop. im freakin' poor! this is sooo frustating!



im sorry for confusing the readers here, but i had all the part names confused. what i was calling a control arm, is actually a tie rod.

heres what i actually had going on here... i took the bolts out from the upper and lower control arms, and from the tie rod. i was easily able to remove the spindle from the lower control arm, but was not able to remove the spindle from the upper control arm, and the tie rod.

instead of removing the tie rod from the spindle, i removed it from the frame, and left it attached to the spindle. i bought some liquid wrench brand penetrating oil, and a propane torch, and used it to lube and heat the spindle where it attached to the upper controll arms ball joint. i also wedged a chisle into the ball joints pin insert on the spindle. sure enough using enough force, the two pieces seperated. i then repeated the proccess on the tie rod where it attached to the spindle.

here is where i used the chisle as a wedge...


and here is the upper control arms ball joint, and the freed spindle



now i just have to rig something up to push that bearing out of the spindle using the hydrolic press, and again use the press to mount the bearing and hub back onto the spindle.

thanks again for all the help guys:p: yall really came through for me!:D jk

Let us know how you finished the job by getting the bearing out and pressing it back in. More pictures.
I could not get the spindle apart when I was changing my axle seals. I wound up taking the upper control arm off the frame and swing it down.