September 16, 2009

Rear Wheel Bearing Replacement

Noisy Rear Wheel Bearing Removal And Replacement Volvo 850, S70, V70, XC70 and C70


I have a 96 854 with the 20v engine that has just over 100,600 miles. For the past 10k miles I have had a rattle and a roaring that has been getting louder on the passenger rear side of the car. I have also had pre-mature wearing on the inside of the rear tire that has caused the early replacement of the tires on that side of the car. The roaring would disappear if I were turning to the left (long curves would quiet it the most).
Volvo 850, S70, V70, XC70 and C70 wheel bearing replacement tutorial


The rear wheel bearing comes as an assembly. I priced the bearing assembly at my local dealer and they wanted about $200 (plus shipping) for the part and it would take 3 to 5 days to get it in. I started checking parts houses and the only place that could get it was NAPA for $106 (taxes and shipping included) and it would be in tomorrow. Here are the steps for replacing the wheel bearing:

Wheel Bearing Procedure

  1. Remove wheel (3/4 inch lug on 4-way) and the wheel alignment pin from brake disk (10 mm deep well socket)
  2. Attach brake bleeder drain tube and open bleeder valve (9mm wrench) to compress pads – I also noticed that I needed new pads
  3. Remove brake caliper (two 13mm bolts on the backside of the caliper) and hang on the rear suspension spring
  4. Volvo 850, S70, V70, XC70 and C70 wheel bearing replacement tutorial

  5. Pry off the axel bolt dust cover (I used a chisel and a mallet to get it started and a large flat tip screw driver to prey it off)
  6. Remove axel bolt – The Haynes manual incorrectly states that this will be a 22 or 24 mm nut depending on year model, it is a 36mm nut.
  7. Problem: My metric half-inch drive sockets only go to 26 mm, as that is the largest Craftsman socket for half-inch drive. The local Sears does not have any metric larger than 26 mm (neither does NAPA, Advance Auto, PEP Boys, or Ace Auto). The closest standard size is 1 & 7/16, and it will work.
  8. Volvo 850, S70, V70, XC70 and C70 wheel bearing replacement tutorial

  9. Pull bearing assembly off axle
  10. Volvo 850, S70, V70, XC70 and C70 wheel bearing replacement tutorial

  11. Clean axel and surrounding area with brake cleaner
  12. Install new bearing assembly
  13. Volvo 850, S70, V70, XC70 and C70 wheel bearing replacement tutorial

  14. Grease the threads on the 36mm nut and reinstall (Haynes recommends 88 ft/lbs and then 30 degrees further for the 24mm nut – I used a pointer style torque wrench for removal and it took 110 ft/lbs to remove the nut. I tightened to 88 ft/lbs and then was able to tighten the nut about 15 degrees further to 175 ft/lbs. I could not move the nut any further, I will update if this fails some day)
  15. Volvo 850, S70, V70, XC70 and C70 wheel bearing replacement tutorial

  16. Install axel bolt dust cover
  17. Install brake caliper with 2 bolts (13mm)
  18. Install wheel


After I installed the brake calipoI went ahead and performed a rear brake job. Once everything was back together I took it for a test drive. It is now quiet and my wife thinks it rides smoother. See the Volvo Forum comments on this wheel bearing replacement tutorial here.

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Tags 850, C70, S70, Tutorial, V70, wheel bearing, XC70
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