wheel bearings

wheel bearings on my moms 89 lesabre are starting to growl a bit, is there any way to maybe just grease them up or something, or do i have to replace them completely??

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Front are a hub and bearing assy, sealed.

-
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so thats a no???
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Don't mind Shep, he doesn't like to type; yes that's a no. ;)
Steve

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thanks, what kind of work do i have to look forward to while replacing them? only the front ones
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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 replace the ball joints, CV boots, and tie rod ends. (The rubber parts were cracked, 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 cheater pipe about 4 feet long. ( The socket wrench is not unusual, but is something 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 carries the bearings, and pull it off the axle shaft. (You have to be careful that you do not pull the CV joint apart while you are doing this. The CV joint is full of ball and needle bearings, and if that falls apart, you will have fun trying to find 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 needs to be done.
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 have to check this. If you cant borrow a torque wrench that will go that high, you may 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.
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that
trying
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.

on
but
high,
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 flange. Push on axle while pulling on bearing ass'y, a few taps with a hammer may be necessary. 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 ft-lbs. 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.
Easy.
Steve
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Although this is possible, it's highly unlikely. The outer joint is a

axle.
********Nope, not unlikely at all for a beginner. I managed to do it the first time. What a mess!

would
it's
**********I don't remember exactly what the specification was. It was far higher than the torque wrench I had at the time. My current torque wrench goes to 180 lb-ft. but my old one didnt.

am
for
A beginner will not likely be able to do this entire job in a couple of hours. I've been there, and am definitely not a beginner. Still, it is a job that is within the grasp of a reasonably well equipped and experienced amateur mechanic. You need to allocate more than a couple of hours to do it.
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By the way, my lengthy post on replacing front hubs was based on memory, and on a similar, I hope, application. If I got any of it seriously wrong, some of you guys please chime in.
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well i think i just might take her to a mechanic because as you said, im a beginner in this field and i would rather pay to have it done right. All your help is greatly appreciated. God bless
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