W208 Front Wheel Bearing Replacement DIY - Mercedes-Benz Forum
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#1 (permalink) Old 01-06-2011, 01:13 PM
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W208 Front Wheel Bearing Replacement DIY

Months ago I said I would post this - so here it is

First and foremost --

This should be titled "What I did when I replaced my front wheel bearing" as I do not even pretend to have enough experience to tell you what to do. I looked up how to do this, took some pictures along the way and thought I would share with you.

I didn't even do everything you are supposed to because I hated doing this.

Thanks to benzworld, we have some people smarter than me that will chime in and critique what I did and what is advised - you should listen to them.

Cross reference this thread too - highly relevant : http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w210...placement.html

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ ++++++++++

Having said that --

Autohausaz has a great kit for this and pretty cheap:

Your Parts Search Returned 2 Part(s)

You also need a tube of green Benz wheel sAUSe :



1. Jack up the car, secure with jack stands.

2. Remove wheel

I really hate how ugly and rusty this part of my car is



3. We need to remove the caliper, which is a 18mm bolt. Make sure you have this 18mm socket as it is a weird size and probably not included in your set. Get a good one.

Mine was on pretty tight so I had to apply some WD-40 or similar sauce to loosen up (embarassingly dirty I know)


After you unbolt both 18mm bolts that hold it on, take it off the wheel and rest it on a jack stand or tie it up so it is out of the way.

4. You need to take the dust cap off and get to here:



This was a nightmare for me. It took forever.
I read places to use a screw driver and a hammer. That didn't work.

I got on my bike and went to get some locking pliers and some thing like these 4 Piece Tongue and Groove Joint Pliers Set - Pliers - Hand Tools

I don't know what to tell you here other than it sucked trying to get this som'bitch off and it took so long I almost gave up. But finally it came off. Since you have a new dust cap in the kit you don't have to worry about screwing it up to get it off.

5. Take the rotor off by unscrewing the alan screw that can be seen to the right. The kit has another one included if you want to replace. After that it slides right off.



6. In the above image you can see the clamping nut, which you remove by loosening the alan bolt. This is what you use to adjust the play in it by the way - this is what you will tighten and then back off a bit so that you have a little bit of play. You don't want it tightened all the way.

7. Now you can remove the hub:



8. As you have probably guessed - I am of rather feeble mind. The next step was another nightmare / hour long point of frustration - removing the outer seal of the bearing:



That took. So. Long.

I used a screwdriver and a hammer to do whatever I could to get that out and it took forever.

9. Now you can remove the old bearing. ((Mine happen to look perfectly fine - so I either diagnosed the wrong wheel - or more likely I need to change the center support bearing on my drive shaft which is what is ACTUALLY making that rotational wow-wow-wow sound.))



Clean all the old grease out you can. There is a lot and you will need a lot of shop towels, rags, etc.

10. Apply the wheel bearing grease sAUSe to the new bearing. You need to pack as much of this as possible. I put gobs on my hand then pressed it in the bearing until you can see it from the other side.



There are all kinds of tools and hints out there for how to do it, just make sure whatever you use it is in there.

Anywhere there was grease, take it out and reapply adequately.

11. There is actually another seal inside the hub that was included in my kit. I did not replace it because it did not seem to want to come out and it appeared fine as well. This is what I mean when I say I didn't do everything you are supposed to and to not do what I do

12. Insert the new bearing in the hub and insert the new outer seal that came with the kit. You can put this in place using a hammer and a soft object or a piece of wood like in the 210 thread.



13. Place the hub back on the car and put the clamping nut back on. Tighten it and then back off a little bit so that there is a little play in the wheel. You can use this method to approximate it adequately.

Benz says to use a Magnetic Dial Indicator to get this exact. If you are technically inclined to do so and look up the specs - this is the way to go.

14. Place the new dust cap on and put the rotor back on with the new alan bolt that comes with the kit (usually.)



15. Lastly - if you don't use this tool to put your wheels back on - you are doing yourself a disservice:



Since we use lug bolts on our cars, its annoying to get the wheel on quickly and alligned with the holes.

Benz provides this tool in your tool kit in the trunk to screw in as an alignment guide and palce the wheel on. Then you remove it to place the last one in. Very convenient.

------

There about 100 things to add to this, so please all critiques welcome! The beauty of this site is the knowledge it provides externally by so many people who just read the dialogue set out to do something on their own

Cheers !




Last edited by StigHelmer; 01-06-2011 at 02:29 PM.
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#2 (permalink) Old 01-06-2011, 04:07 PM
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I didn't see where you replaced the outer race? They are matched, so that should also be changed. I don't know about longevity if you don't change it, I've never risked it.

You might want to buy yourself a nice little hammer that has the hard plastic head on one end and hard rubber on the other. That's a perfect tool to tap in new wheel seals without damaging them. A seal puller also makes removing them a snap. You can probably get both at Harbor Freight for under ten bucks if you're up for a drive to Pleasant Hill. Do it on a Sunday and we can have coffee before or after.

Other than that, the trick is getting the bearing adjusted. G-AMG did a great DIY on that and it's in the 210 stickies.

Good job, I hope it works out for you.

For everyone else, repacking the FWB is part of maintenance. I did mine at about 110,000 miles and that suggested to me it should be done as part of the 100K laundry list. There wasn't a whole lot of grease left, but still some, and no visible damage to the bearings or races. $20 for the seals and grease and you're good for another 100K. That said, for the DIYers, I'd suggest doing this with front brakes since the rotor has to come off; anytime between 80K and 120K should be okay. For the non-DIYers, when you have brakes done around 100K, ask them to do the FWB repack/adjustment as well. The additional labor isn't much at that point.

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Last edited by Check Codes; 01-06-2011 at 04:11 PM.
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#3 (permalink) Old 01-06-2011, 05:02 PM
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Thanks Greg!

The outer race is what I couldn't get out - shame I know, but after the nightmare of the outer seal I didn't have the patience or brains to figure out how to get the outer race out. Any tips would be appreciated.

I'll definitely make it out to Pleasant Hill soon and we can meet after all these years - you need to change this so we can though:

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#4 (permalink) Old 01-06-2011, 05:27 PM
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For the outer dustcap, usually a big pair of chanel locks will do the job. You'll need them to adjust the lock nut anyway. My guess is you got it cocked in there with the hammer and thats why u were killing yourself. As for the inner seal, a seal puller is the way to go but since you were swapping the bearings out anyway, there is another way. After you remove the outer bearing, just spin the lock nut back on and pull the hub against it like a slide hammer. The inner bearing will pop the seal right out. Ive never damaged a bearing this way but if your concerned just use the seal puller. Im more used to the castle nut and cotter key set up, but the principle is the same. As for the races... play it safe and use a race driver or have a shop press them out and in. Very important you get them to seat fully so they run true to the hub and spindle. Like Greg said, if you swap out the bearings, you really should do the races also as they are a matched set.
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#5 (permalink) Old 01-06-2011, 11:08 PM
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Originally Posted by bobbyjo9 View Post
For the outer dustcap, usually a big pair of chanel locks will do the job. You'll need them to adjust the lock nut anyway. My guess is you got it cocked in there with the hammer and thats why u were killing yourself. As for the inner seal, a seal puller is the way to go but since you were swapping the bearings out anyway, there is another way. After you remove the outer bearing, just spin the lock nut back on and pull the hub against it like a slide hammer. The inner bearing will pop the seal right out. Ive never damaged a bearing this way but if your concerned just use the seal puller. Im more used to the castle nut and cotter key set up, but the principle is the same. As for the races... play it safe and use a race driver or have a shop press them out and in. Very important you get them to seat fully so they run true to the hub and spindle. Like Greg said, if you swap out the bearings, you really should do the races also as they are a matched set.
I think what he's calling the inner seal is actually the outer race. (His step 11.)

The outer races for the two bearings are pressed into the hubs. (The inner races are part of the caged bearing.) You need a good set of drift punches and a dead blow and good ballpeen hammer (16-20 oz) to pound them out, and then patience and the old race to drive in the new ones. I was thinking about how long it's been since I had to change a wheel bearing, and while I actually enjoy packing the wheel bearings, pounding the races out and in is something I don't miss.

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#6 (permalink) Old 01-07-2011, 11:01 AM
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Correct I was referring to the outer race ! And yes the patience is what I didn't have at that point



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#7 (permalink) Old 01-07-2011, 12:28 PM
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Instead of changing the bearings and races etc.. Wouldn't it be a lot easier to just changed the wheel hub assembly itself? Yes, it costs a lot more. But, it seems like the money would be worth it not to go through all the pain and struggle? All you would have to do is shove MB grease in there and you are all set. It would make the job so much easier instead of trying to pack and drive out bearings etc.. Don't get me wrong attempting this job, I give you guys a lot of ccredit. Beyond my DIY experience. I would of just replaced the hubs. So I bow down to you guys.
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#8 (permalink) Old 01-07-2011, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by gregs210 View Post
I think what he's calling the inner seal is actually the outer race. (His step 11.)

The outer races for the two bearings are pressed into the hubs. (The inner races are part of the caged bearing.) You need a good set of drift punches and a dead blow and good ballpeen hammer (16-20 oz) to pound them out, and then patience and the old race to drive in the new ones. I was thinking about how long it's been since I had to change a wheel bearing, and while I actually enjoy packing the wheel bearings, pounding the races out and in is something I don't miss.
Actually I was refering to step 8 where he was using a hammer and screwdriver for an hour? I actually didnt really understand step 11 as there is no other seal. LOL... didnt think of the race as a seal but I see what you mean now. By inner and outer i was refering to the bearings not the race. Using the inner bearing to remove the seal not the race.
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#9 (permalink) Old 01-07-2011, 01:01 PM
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Instead of changing the bearings and races etc.. Wouldn't it be a lot easier to just changed the wheel hub assembly itself? Yes, it costs a lot more. But, it seems like the money would be worth it not to go through all the pain and struggle? All you would have to do is shove MB grease in there and you are all set. It would make the job so much easier instead of trying to pack and drive out bearings etc.. Don't get me wrong attempting this job, I give you guys a lot of ccredit. Beyond my DIY experience. I would of just replaced the hubs. So I bow down to you guys.
unless that hub comes preassembled with bearings packed, "shove" as much grease as you want in there... it wont work. Bearings need to be packed and do not benefit from gobbs of grease in the hub. Ive never purchased an assembly from MB so this may be the way its shipped. Still, if you just maintain the bearings, grease and the inner seal along with 45 min a side is all you need. Thats WELL below the cost of the hub and if you install the hub wrong.... well you get the idea.
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#10 (permalink) Old 01-07-2011, 02:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobbyjo9 View Post
Actually I was refering to step 8 where he was using a hammer and screwdriver for an hour? I actually didnt really understand step 11 as there is no other seal. LOL... didnt think of the race as a seal but I see what you mean now. By inner and outer i was refering to the bearings not the race. Using the inner bearing to remove the seal not the race.
I saw a video online where a guy used that technique to pop off the seal. I tried it and it didn't work for me. Hopefully if others give it a shot they will have more luck.



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