Wheel Bearing Question....

zamimj222

Original poster
Member
Dec 22, 2011
53
Illinois
I started by replacing the oil in the transmission and front diff. Then I replaced the rear diff and transfer case fluid. After I replaced the trans oil and filter, Purolator, I started to get a noise at start up and during idle. After changing the filter and fluid as I thought it had something to do with using Dexron III, I flushed everything out through the radiator/trans line with Dexron VI. New problem, old one went away, supposedly a sonic weld on the filter was bad, so I replaced it with a WIX off Amazon. I now had a growl and slight vibration from around 30 MPH to at least 55 MPH with it getting the worst at 45 MPH. I replaced the filter again with an ACDelco one as I thought it was again the filter problem. Still having the same problem and my wife not hearing anything in the car, I decided to take it to a trans mechanic to see what he thought.

What the mechanic told me after we took it for a road test and he showed me how to test for wheel bearings that it indeed was my wheel bearing started making a growl about a month and a half ago. It just happened to be a coincidence that it started to make the noise at the same time I was doing all the other PM work. I have an appointment for this to be changed in a little less than 2 weeks from now. I was wondering what would be the consequence of driving without fixing this problem for as long as I have and what is the safety margin before something has to be done? I just realized that it did start making a slight metal grinding when going through drive thrus about 4 months ago but thought it was the dust shield hitting the rotor. I had taken off the tire and bent it away from where it looked like it was hitting. I transport my 18 month old son from daycare home and drive about 25 miles to work each way. I just don't know what will happen now that it is growling and want to be able to drive safely until the repair can be done. Any Help will be greatly appreciated!!
 

The_Roadie

Lifetime VIP Donor
Member
Nov 19, 2011
9,957
Portland, OR
Typically we hear about folks driving on noisy wheel bearings for 500 miles or so, or until the noise gets unbearable or the wheel starts to wobble. I went over 7-800 miles with a noisy one and I regret it now, but I was curious how bad the noise would get before it started wobbling. Would never do it again, but I don't get easily concerned about mere noises when I'm carrying a spare hub with me.

50 miles a day times ten days = 500 miles. I'd recommend getting it to a different mechanic who doesn't have a two week backlog. It's not that hard a job. Have you researched vendors yet, and do you have time for mail order? Just don't use the <$100 Ebay Chinese cheapies.
 

zamimj222

Original poster
Member
Dec 22, 2011
53
Illinois
the roadie said:
Typically we hear about folks driving on noisy wheel bearings for 500 miles or so, or until the noise gets unbearable or the wheel starts to wobble. I went over 7-800 miles with a noisy one and I regret it now, but I was curious how bad the noise would get before it started wobbling. Would never do it again, but I don't get easily concerned about mere noises when I'm carrying a spare hub with me.

50 miles a day times ten days = 500 miles. I'd recommend getting it to a different mechanic who doesn't have a two week backlog. It's not that hard a job. Have you researched vendors yet, and do you have time for mail order? Just don't use the <$100 Ebay Chinese cheapies.

Actually the backlog is my own doing not having time off from work but I am going to work something in this week as this is important and needs taken care of... I have been riding around off and on since the 26th of December.... I don't need the wheel wobble.... Thank you roadie for your knowledge!
 

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
I have had good luck w ebay hubs. 12 month warranty. I had issue w a sensor wire and they gave me a whole hub and wire for nothing. I can do them every year and save money.
 

navigator

Member
Dec 3, 2011
504
I ordered a set from the ebay vendor autoandart for ~$76 that should be here Thursday afternoon. I'll post back if I have any issues.
After pulling my other hub I expect I could change one now in under 30 mins if I didn't run into any issues.
 

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
navigator said:
I ordered a set from the ebay vendor autoandart for ~$76 that should be here Thursday afternoon. I'll post back if I have any issues.
After pulling my other hub I expect I could change one now in under 30 mins if I didn't run into any issues.

As a set, you mean you ordered both sides for that price? I ordered one hub shipped for 40 and according to tracking it should be here wednesday, but likely wont mess with it until this weekend. My tire has an inch of play and sounds like metal crunching if I drive it right now. I am sure the Badlands helped destroy it.
 

navigator

Member
Dec 3, 2011
504
HARDTRAILZ said:
As a set, you mean you ordered both sides for that price? I ordered one hub shipped for 40 and according to tracking it should be here wednesday, but likely wont mess with it until this weekend. My tire has an inch of play and sounds like metal crunching if I drive it right now. I am sure the Badlands helped destroy it.
Yes, both sides for <$80.
The guy had like 91K reviews and only like 50 minor negatives. I figured I would give it a try.
I ordered them on Sat night and they shipped yesterday afternoon.
They show having 3 warehouses with one in VA (I'm in NC) but it ended up shipping from TX.
Mine isn't bad yet, just an annoying roaring that sounds like loud mud tires.
 

Regulator

Member
Nov 20, 2011
2,496
I ordered a pair from Ebay vendor am-autoparts for $74.95 with free shipping. I placed the order late Sunday night and they shipped Monday morning. I agree with Hardtrailz, with a 12 month warranty I can easily justify going this route.
 

zamimj222

Original poster
Member
Dec 22, 2011
53
Illinois
Regulator said:
I ordered a pair from Ebay vendor am-autoparts for $74.95 with free shipping. I placed the order late Sunday night and they shipped Monday morning. I agree with Hardtrailz, with a 12 month warranty I can easily justify going this route.

I'm having a mechanic replace both tomorrow and will do them myself next time. Just can't wait with the snow and all the nice Chicagoland weather we're having
 

zamimj222

Original poster
Member
Dec 22, 2011
53
Illinois
zamimj222 said:
I'm having a mechanic replace both tomorrow and will do them myself next time. Just can't wait with the snow and all the nice Chicagoland weather we're having

I wanted to wait for a few weeks to make sure before posting anything. My truck is all fixed and running smoothly like it did when I first bought it used over a year ago. 1 bad wheel bearing and threw me for a loop and down the wrong road for troubleshooting what was really wrong with my truck... thank you guys for all your help.

One question I do have is, is there a video on how to replace a wheel bearing on one of our vehicles on this site to help when I go to do this myself next time? I don't mind working on my vehicles, but haven't had to go deeper than an oil change every 3000 miles in the last 10 years and pretty rusty on what I'm looking at....
thank you all!!
 

jrSS

Member
Dec 4, 2011
3,950
zamimj222 said:
I wanted to wait for a few weeks to make sure before posting anything. My truck is all fixed and running smoothly like it did when I first bought it used over a year ago. 1 bad wheel bearing and threw me for a loop and down the wrong road for troubleshooting what was really wrong with my truck... thank you guys for all your help.

One question I do have is, is there a video on how to replace a wheel bearing on one of our vehicles on this site to help when I go to do this myself next time? I don't mind working on my vehicles, but haven't had to go deeper than an oil change every 3000 miles in the last 10 years and pretty rusty on what I'm looking at....
thank you all!!

Dude if I can do it u can do it. its simple and just a couple more steps than changing brake pads.......... if I had a how to it'd b up.
 

zamimj222

Original poster
Member
Dec 22, 2011
53
Illinois
silvernclean said:
Dude if I can do it u can do it. its simple and just a couple more steps than changing brake pads.......... if I had a how to it'd b up.

Well I can do the brakes with no problem... just saw an article here that actually can help out..... the first site gives the info and pics, the second is a do it yourselfer's guide from Ghoster, with links and videos to help people with my confidence level.... I feel more confident after reading the article and seeing the pics to do it myself next time.... thanks again!!

Offroadtb.com Front Wheel Bearing Replacement

http://gmtnation.com/f92/faq-under-construction-703/
 

pejeeper

Member
Jan 27, 2012
81
I drove for a good 5k miles on a bad wheel bearing. Didn't display typical wheel bearing symptoms until the very end. I had a dull humming that didn't diminish with turning in either direction. No play with the tire wiggle. Hummed up to about 65 mph. After about 4800miles the sound got REALLY bad. Untolerable.

Then the howling would get really bad on left turns, diminish on right. Replaced both myself in my garage with no air tools. Easy job. The driver's side bearing didn't spin, it would "clunk" about an 1/8th of a turn, then "clunk" again...lol. Pass side spun as free as the new bearings.
 

jrSS

Member
Dec 4, 2011
3,950
A tow truck driver was telling me he towed a truck that had a bad wheel hub bearing. The guy driving the truck with the bad hub drove on it too long and the damn the caught fire due to the friction being too much. Ruined everything including the rim. So I wouldnt suggest anyone driving on a bad wheel bearing for long periods of time. Probably should get it changed asap. MY2CENTS
 

pejeeper

Member
Jan 27, 2012
81
I thought I had bad tires. Thumping, howling, sounded like it was coming from the rear. Could feel it in the floorboards.
 

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