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Do-It-Yourself Projects
CV Joint Axle Replacement - Maintaining Constant Velocity
By Mike Bumbeck/
Printable version
Degree of DifficultyDifficult
Estimated Time120 minutes
120 minutes
Heads Up
While the basic concept of a CV joint axle is the same from vehicle to vehicle, there are a number of different peculiarities that make access to a service manual an important first step before disassembly. Axle pullers and impact wrenches may be required. Pry bars, circlips, and snap rings inside differentials may also be part of the bargain. This knowledge is best gained before getting started, not while 90-weight gear oil is dripping down your sleeve.
Step 1 - This is a rear drive vehicle with two CV axles. Start by disconnecting the battery, jacking up the vehicle, and allowing some penetrating oil to soak into any retaining bolts.
Rear Drive Vehicle with Two CV Axles
Step 2 - In this case, suspension disassembly was not required. Moving brake lines and other obstacles out of the way of wrenches is a good bet before beginning.
Move Brake Lines and Other Obstacles
Step 3 - Loosening but not removing the strut top mounts and sway bar end link bushings can provide a bit more suspension travel for easier axle removal.
Preparing for Easier Axle Removal
Step 4 - Loosen and remove the wheel side axle mounting bolts.
Loosen and Remove Wheel Side Axle Mounting Bolts
Step 5 - Separate the axle from the wheel. Do not allow the axle to hang from the transmission or differential. Oil seals could be damaged.
Separate Axle from Wheel
Step 6 - Gently pull, pry, or otherwise liberate the axle from the transmission or differential. Do not bend axle seals. Be careful not to tear the transmission or differential oil seals.
Liberate Axle from Transmission or Differential
Step 7 - The axle splines on the right show damage. Note the c-clip on both axles.
Damaged Axle Splines
Step 8 - Don't forget to transfer any axle seals, ABS rings, or other parts to the replacement axles.
Transfer any Axle Seals, ABS rings, to Replacement Axle
Step 9 - Guide the replacement axle into place. Depending on the type of retainer, the axle should click firmly in place.
Guide Replacement Axle into Place
Step 10 - Always use the proper torque on the axle bolts. Check axle rotation. Reassemble dismantled components.
Apply Proper Torque on Axle Bolts
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