I haven't done them on an 89 LeSabre but have on an 89 Regal.
I would assume they are similar. In the case of the Regal, I also had to
the ball joints, CV boots, and tie rod ends. (The rubber parts were
and would not pass EU inspection.)
If so, the work is more than a beginner should probably tackle. The disk
rotors have to come off, and you suspend the calipers by wires to a point
on the frames so that you do not put stress on the hoses.
The front axles pass through the hubs and are held in place by a large nut.
To remove that nut, I needed a special socket, a breakover bar, and a
pipe about 4 feet long. ( The socket wrench is not unusual, but is
like 45-55 mm, as well as I can remember)
When you get that nut off, this will allow you to unbolt the hub which
the bearings, and pull it off the axle shaft. (You have to be careful that
do not pull the CV joint apart while you are doing this. The CV joint is
ball and needle bearings, and if that falls apart, you will have fun trying
all the parts, clean them, and get them back where they need to go.)
It is a good time to replace those other parts I spoke of earlier, if it
When you bolt the new hub in place, you will have to put a lot of torque on
the nut to reach the specifications. I dont remember what the spec was, but
Im thinking it was something like 300 foot pounds, or suchlike. You would
to check this. If you cant borrow a torque wrench that will go that high,
just have to give it everything you have.
A front end mechanic would charge your mom a good bit to do this, and I am
sure you would like to take it on yourself. But unless you have someone
experienced who can help you along, maybe this is not the best project for
you to try to handle.
Although this is possible, it's highly unlikely. The outer joint is a
ball-type and will not come apart without removing the joint from the axle.
The inner however is the tripod-type and simply comes apart by pulling on
it, but you have to pull it a good inch or two before it even pops out. It
takes a bit of force because the boot holds pretty good.
That is way too much torque, we're not working on a Mazda rotary here, it's
an axle. Typically 140-160 ft-lbs. In this case, it's 180 ft-lbs and your
standard, run of the mill, off the shelf 1/2" drive torque wrench does 250
ft-lbs. The cheap ones only go to 150, but half decent ones go to 250.
The whole process should take about an hour to two hours even for the
beginner in the driveway. Be careful of ABS sensors if applicable. Without
any special tools other than a torque wrench, here's how to do it:
Remove hub cap/wheel cover, loosen axle nut and lug nuts.
Jack car, remove wheel.
Back off axle nut close to end.
Beat end of axle with dead blow hammer to loosen spline.
Remove caliper, hang aside, do not hang by brake hose.
Remove rotor and axle nut/washer.
Remove three bolts holding bearing in place, accessable through holes in hub
Push on axle while pulling on bearing ass'y, a few taps with a hammer may be
There should be enough room to now turn knuckle and allow end of axle to
push back through hole.
Tap out dust seal.
Tap in new dust seal, coat internal area of seal with wheel bearing grease.
Put axle back through hole.
Put new bearing over axle splines, align bolt holes, tighten bolts to 70
Put axle nut on, tighten to 100 ft-lbs.
Install rotor and caliper, tighten caliper bolts to 38 ft-lbs.
Install wheel, lower vehicle.
Tighten axle nut to 180 ft-lbs and lug nuts to 100 ft-lbs.
Install hub cap/wheel cover.
Although this is possible, it's highly
unlikely. The outer joint is a
********Nope, not unlikely at all for a beginner. I managed to do it the
first time. What a mess!
**********I don't remember exactly what the specification was. It was far
than the torque wrench I had at the time. My current torque wrench goes to
but my old one didnt.
A beginner will not likely be able to do this entire job in a couple of
been there, and am definitely not a beginner. Still, it is a job that is
grasp of a reasonably well equipped and experienced amateur mechanic. You
allocate more than a couple of hours to do it.
Motorsforum.com is a website by car enthusiasts for car enthusiasts. It is not affiliated with any of the car or spare part manufacturers or car dealers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.