How to Replace a Broken Stud Bolt on a PT Cruiserby Allen Teal
Replacing a stud bolt on a PT Cruiser is not a particularly dirty job, but it does require a lot of bending and stooping. Broken stud bolts can cause the tire and wheel to fall off of the car as you are driving. Proper access to the stud bolts will require removing the wheel from the car. On some PT Cruiser models, you may also have to remove the brake caliper and possibly the rotor.
Break the lug nuts loose with a lug wrench on the wheel that needs the replacement stud bolt. Raise the car with a jack and secure it on jack stands. Finish removing the lug nuts with the lug wrench then set them aside. If you have access to the stud bolt with adequate clearance to remove it from the rear side, you will not have to remove any other equipment from the car. If this is not the case, loosen the bolts that hold the caliper in place and lift the caliper up and out of the way. The brake rotor should just pull off at this point, if needed, to make it easier to access the rear of the hub while replacing the stud bolt.
Spin the hub with the stud bolts until the one requiring removal is lined up with the slot that will allow you to remove the bolt. If the stud bolt has not been ruined completely or broken off at the surface of the mounting area, screw an old lug nut onto the stud bolt a few threads. Use a hammer and tap the nut until the stud bolt releases. You may need to use a product to dissolve the rust to help loosen the stud bolt. If the stud does not have enough threads to use an old nut, use a punch that is smaller than the stud to knock it out of the hub.
Slip the new stud bolt into the opening. Try to line up the small splines with the notches inside the hole as you slide the stud bolt into it. Push the stud bolt as far into the opening as possible. Slide spacers over the stud bolt. A few large washers will work for the spacer, but anything that is large enough to go over the stud and lets you tighten the nut against it will work. Put the lug nut onto the stud bolt. Tighten the nut slowly with a lug wrench or ratchet and socket until the stud is completely in place. Remove the nut and spacers. Replace any parts that had to be removed to access the stud bolt.
Remount the wheel onto the hub and tighten up the lug nuts with the lug wrench as much as possible. Remove the jack stands and lower the car with the jack. Finish tightening the lug nuts with the lug wrench.
Things You'll Need
- Jack stands
- Stud bolt and nut
- Lug wrench
- Ratchet and socket
- Washers (5)
- Spray can of rust remover
- Do not hammer on the stud bolt too hard or you might risk doing other damage to your car.
Allen Teal was first published in 2002 in the "Adult Teacher" and "Adult Student" books for the Assemblies of God Sunday School department. He has also been published on various websites. He received an Associate of Arts in business from Mineral Area College in Park Hills, Mo.