How to Replace Front Wheel Bearings & Races on a Ford F150by Don Bowman
The Ford F150 pickup truck has a combination rotor and hub. The bearings are located within the hub. There are two bearings: The inner is the largest tapered roller bearing and the outer bearing is the smallest and is the thrust bearing. The races for both bearings are pressed into the rotor hub. These bearings should be greased every 30,000 miles.
Raise the front of the truck and support it on jack stands. Remove the front wheel and tire assembly. Remove the two slider bolts securing the brake caliper to the mounting bracket, using a socket. Remove the two bolts securing the mounting bracket, using a socket. Remove the grease cup in the center of the rotor, using the removal tool.
Remove the cotter pin using the wire cutter. Remove the large hub nut, using the large adjustable wrench. Rock the rotor by placing your hands on both sides of the rotor and rocking it laterally to force the front outer thrust bearing and spacer out of the hub.
Screw the hub nut on a few threads. Grab the rotor at the top and bottom and, with a small amount of downward pressure, quickly pull the rotor off the spindle. The hub nut will grab the rear bearing and pull it out of the hub along with the rear grease seal.
Hammer the bearing races out by using the chisel against the inside lip of the race and tapping it out with the hammer. Install the new races by pushing them in as far as they will go. Position the old race atop the new race and tap the old race, which will force the new race into the hub. Tap them in until they are seated. Do this for all the bearings races.
Pack the new bearings with grease. Place the large bearing into the hub, followed by the rear grease seal. Tap the seal with the hammer until it is flush with hub.
Install the rotor on the spindle and insert the front bearing followed by the washer and then the large hub nut. Tighten the hub nut until it begins to show a lot of resistance, then back it off a half-turn.
Install the cotter pin and grease cup. Tap the grease cup with the hammer lightly to seat it completely. Install the caliper mounting bracket and caliper in reverse order of removal. Install the tire and wheel assembly and lower the truck.
Things You'll Need
- Floor jack
- Jack stands
- Lug wrench
- Set of sockets
- Tub of bearing grease
- Wire cutter
- Large adjustable wrench
- Grease cup remover
Don Bowman has been writing for various websites and several online magazines since 2008. He has owned an auto service facility since 1982 and has over 45 years of technical experience as a master ASE tech. Bowman has a business degree from Pennsylvania State University and was an officer in the U.S. Army (aircraft maintenance officer, pilot, six Air Medal awards, two tours Vietnam).