How do you remove and install front axles and drive shafts
Sunday, February 3rd, 2013 AT 1:52 AM
Remove the brake caliper and rotor. Then with the vehicle supported on jack stands, remove the lower control bar as long as the main spring is not attached to it. If it is remove the upper control arm. The goal is to be able to move the steering knuckle without having to deal with compressing the suspension springs. This is usually easy as genrally the lower control arms are not loaded by the spring and loosening and dropping one of the ends of it won't decompress the spring and allow it to come out. That is the only thing you need to look for in some suspensions. Otherwise you may have to get a coil spring compressor, available on loan at any Advane Auto or Auto Zone, and have the spring compressed so there is no danger in removing it and you can then work with the lower control arm without the danger of it shooting out when loosened.
You will then need a large impact and large socket, usually around 32mm or so, to remove the axle nut at the hub. Once this is done the steering knuckle can then be pulled away from the end of the axle. Do not re-use axle nuts or clips as you should be given new ones with the new axles.
Once you have moved the axle out of the steering knuckle, then get a large screwdriver or pry bar and pry the axle out of the transmission on the passenger side or on the drivers side you will be prying it away from the half shaft.
It will then slide out and you can install the new ones. You should get new axle seals but in either case get some axle grease and put it on the sealing surface of the seal to lengthen its service life.
Again, do not re-use the clips off of the old axle.