CV Axle Replacement

Rasplanet Apr 9, 2009 Cars
After many years of replacing CV axles and joints, I've decided to share my knowledge with others. This article will take you step by step through the process. No photos are needed because of the detailed explanations.

I must have been the first person to replace a CV axle because I couldn't find anyone who had done it before, that I could get some tips from. My background in automtive work goes back a long way. I graduated from automotive mechanics vocational technical school in the summer of 1975. One of my greatest achievements was winning third place in the nationwide plymouth troubleshooting contest in 1978. In 1984 I had my own shop with clientele. Enough about me for now, let's get to the problem at hand. The first thing to do is raise up the side of the car with the bad axle. Make sure you use good working jack stands to hold the weight of the car and have a backup to make sure the car doesn't fall on you. I let the weight of the car down on the jack stand and then take a little of the weight off of it by jacking the jack back up a little and leaving it. This will insure that both would have to fail at the same time because the pressure is equal. Then take the wheel off and slide it under the car along with the wheel cover and lug nuts. The next step is to remove the brake caliper and pads. Do this by removing the bolts or pins whichever one your car uses and remove the caliper from the rotor. After removing the caliper(don't remove brake line) tie it back out of your way with a piece of rope or wire. In the center of the rotor you will usually find a cotter pin, which looks like a bobby pin for womens hairdos. Straighten this pin and pull it out with a pair of pliers.(needle nose)Then you will need a big socket that will fit the center nut. The size of the socket depends on the make of the car. Some auto parts stores will rent you a socket for this job, free of charge. All you have to do is put up a deposit that covers replacement. after removing this nut which may be hard to break loose, put it where it won't get lost. The next step will be to take the tie rod loose from the spindle after you have removed the rotor. Do this by turning the wheel(on most cars) in the opposite direction from where you are working. You will see the steering(tie) rod connected to the spindle. there will be a cotter pin which keeps the nut secure. Remove the cotter pin and use a socket or box end wrench to loosen the nut. Don't take the nut all the way off yet because you may have to beat on the tie rod to break it loose and you don't need to take a chance on scarring the threads. After you have taken the tie rod loose, you will have to disconnect the ball joint, which is on the bottom inside also. These usually have a bolt and a nut that goes through a clamp like hole which secures the ball joint and the spindle together. After you have removed the bolt, you will probably have to pry down on the control arm to pop it loose. I have had to use a bottle jack under the spindle to push up on it in order to get leverage. After you have disconnected the ball joint, the spindle should slide off of the splined axle. You may not be able to simply pull the axle out of the transmission because most axles snap in and out because of a ring near the inside end of the axle that holds the axle in the transmission when you go around a sharp curve. So get a heavy duty screwdriver or prybar and go under the car where the axle goes into the transmission and pry it until it snaps out of the transmission. Have a pan ready to catch the fluid that runs out. When installing the new axle be sure it snaps into place inside the transmission before putting everything back together. Re-install everything in reverse from the way you removed it. This article makes it all sound easy but you will discover that things are very tight, or worn in a way that makes the job harder than it should be. Good Luck! I hope you become an expert at this. Please send feedback.

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