Porsche 944 Front Wheel Bearings

I’ve been having a shake in the front end of the Porsche for a little while and have been trying to hunt it down.  I’ve replaced the Tie Rods, looked at the brakes again, and have just been trying to find the issue.  The ball joints were replaced with the tie rods so they weren’t the issue.  I put the car up on jack stands and was shaking the wheel, the passenger side I was able to shake it up and down as well as left to right.  This is a sign that the wheel bearings were bad.

Sure enough, when I took the hub off the spindle, there was no rear wheel bearing left!  The outer ring was still there but there were no actual rollers anywhere to be seen….

The Hub Came Off that Way….

To replace the wheel bearings, jack up the car properly and make sure it is on jack stands.

Remove the wheel.

Remove the brake caliper.  There are 2 19mm bolts that need to be removed for this.  Also, you will want something close by to be able to rest the brake caliper on so that you don’t stretch out the brake lines.

Remove the two screws that are holding the brake rotor in place.  Use a ball peen hammer to remove the brake rotor.  Hit it in the meaty part, not the brake part, with the round side of the hammer….

I actually removed the entire hub assembly with the rotor still attached, thinking that I could so this without removing the rotor.  I probably could have but removing the rotor is easier.

Take off the hub end cap.  This keeps all the grease from the bearings inside the hub.  I found that a regular hammer worked the best to take this off.  I used the end you would remove nails with and just pried the end cap off.

The Porsche 944 is weird.  There is a nut with a hex bolt that tightens the nut around the spindle.  You need to loosen the Hex bolt and then remove the nut.  I guess this works fine but I’m used to the cotter pin….

Take off the washer, which has a groove in it that only goes on one way.

At this point, the hub should slide off the spindle.

Now I get to use my favorite tool!  The slide hammer!!!!  If you don’t have one of these, forget about changing out bearings, just take it somewhere and have them do it.  You’ll spend hours trying to get those bearings out where this thing has them out in minutes.

I used a bearing removal tool to take out the bearings on the side that had them missing.  I just slid it in and used the tool as directed.  The bearings popped right out.

The Black Part is the Bearing Removal tool I used on the broken side.

On the side that was in better shape, I had to use the attachments in the slide hammer case to get them out, but I still had them out in a couple of minutes.  It took more time to assemble the attachments and get that right than to actually take the bearing out. I believe that there is a special Porsche tool, but i did not want to pay for it.

This is the puller attachment that I used, this came with the slide hammer.
Picture of the attachment in use.

I purchased Inner bearings, outer bearings, and the inner seal.  The outer bearings are sealed by the end cap.  I also purchased some wheel bearing grease since I did not have any….

I attempted to remove the outer side of the wheel bearings at first but did not have the tools necessary so I left the outer ring in the hub since they looked ok.  I dropped the bearings into the grease and inserted them.  I did the inside bearings first since you have to install the seal.  Slide the bearing in and then use a rubber mallet, soft hammer, to tap the seal in place.

Dropped those bearings right in there!
Tap the seal in place with a rubber mallet.

Then install the outer bearing the same way and mount the hub on the spindle. 

Everything Up On The Spindle Loaded With Grease!

Get your washer and funky nut and tighten it up.  There are two things to watch out for when installing.  You want the hub to have no play (there is probably a little play but no noticeable play) but be able to spin freely.  Then you want to make sure that the hub is installed straight.  How I did this was to mount the brake caliper, and spin the hub.  You can then see the wobble in the rotor.  I then used the rubber mallet that I have and tapped the rotor at the high point until the drag was uniform.

Washer and Funky Nut
Fully Installed

Once you are satisfied that it is spinning freely and straight, go ahead and button it up.  Take it for a ride and enjoy!

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