This axle writeup is by legendary MVS Contributor CN90.
Intro and Safety
- This is preventive replacement of CV boots. If you are sending this car far away to your kids in college, then it is a good idea to do this ahead than paying a shop later.
- At 110K, Inner CV boot shows minor cracks but still OK.
- New boots (Inner and Outer) are available at FCPEuro. I used GKN brand, which is OEM.
- Axle Seals: Corteco, search FCPEuro for detail (About $8-$10/each):
—> L side: Volvo 6843112; Corteco 19033885B
—> R side: Volvo 9495018; Corteco 19034067B
- This is advanced level DIY, assuming you already know how to remove the tire, support the car on jack stands properly. I used 2 jack stands on each side (safety first).
How to get the car in the air to do this work, safely:
Volvo Axle & Boot Procedure
… and Lessons Learned
1. You can see I struggle to separate the knuckle from the control arm.
Next time I will loosen the bolts holding the control arm (on the subframe side), as this will allow the control arm to drop down.
2. Minor cracks at INNER CV Boot. NOTE the trick posted by jimmy57 “rotate, tug and pull”.
This trick allows the C-clip open end to point down, allowing the axle to come out.
I also used a cold chisel (wrapped both sides of cold chisel with some cardboard paper) and gently tap the area between Inner CV Joint and Trans Housing, it came right out using jimmy57’s trick.
On installation, I used a bit of grease to prevent rust, which in some cases makes removal very difficult.
3. The struggle using wood b/c I did not loosen the control arm!
5. NOTE the anatomy of a typical seal. Take photos and use your fingernail to feel the EXACT position of the factory seal location w.r.t. to the bore and install EXACTLY like that. In my 1998 S70, I learned it the hard way, I installed the Corteco seal a bit too far in (2 mm further in than factory): it leaked ATF!
- So, for the 2004 V70 2.5T, I forgot which side (R vs L) but the axle seal is about 5 mm from the edge on one side and 13 mm from the edge on the other side. Make note of this. Use a ruler to measure.
- Installation tips: oil the outer lip (where it meets the bore), and use a piece of wood to install it flush with the bore. Now, in order to seat it let’s say 5 mm further, you need to use the Volvo tool but this tool is expensive. I used a PVC coupler (1.5 inch PVC coupler for home plumbing; info in forum), about $2 at Home depot hardware. GENTLY tap the PCV coupler ALL AROUND the edge of the seal. Space is limited and a mistake means new seal! So go VERY SLOW all around, one tap at a time and use fingernail to feel the depth.
- Note the O-ring inside the cup (the cup accepts the axle splines), oil/grease it before inserting the axle.
6. The classic sheet metal screw trick to remove old seal. NOTE that you must drill a hole dead center for the screw.
Do NOT damage either the axle or bore sides!
7. The CV Removal Tool ($17 on ebay) is a must. It makes the job so easy:
8. The OUTER Oetiker Clamp is very stiff, designed for the PLASTIC type OUTER CV Boot.
Unless you are very strong, hand squeeze is not enough.
- They sell a special tool to squeeze it at a specific torque.
- I used the $10 cutter (Husky brand at Home Depot hardware but filed the edges blunt for this job) + hammer to hit the handle for extra squeeze. Or you can use a C-Clamp to squeeze the handle. Once done, you should not be able to rotate the Oetiker clamp (or you can rotate with some stiff resistance): in other words, the Oetiker clamp should not rotate freely.
9. In order to replace the INNER Boot without filing down the dimples (on the INNER Cup itself), I had to remove the round rubber thingy (designed to dampen vibration from the axle, at least in theory!). This was removed using an Angle Grinder: basically a piece of rubber vulcanized to steel, it took 30 minutes to remove this useless thingy. Car runs fine without any vibration whatsoever. In fact, replacement axle now comes without this rubber thingy.
That is all boys/girls, if you have done the Axle and Seal in the older P80 cars (1994-1997 850 or 1998-2000 S70, V70), there is subtle difference but you can do this.
10. The axle bolt, search forum for proper torque. According to abscate, it is
Drive Shaft in Front Wheel Hub (M10)
Step 1 35 Nm
Step 2 Angle Tighten 90°
PS: Bonus: the “Axle Ping Noise”, IMHO is created by dry grease in CV Joint, is gone after new grease and CV boots.
Don’t Miss The Q and A on this DIY
Here’s the original Volvo forum thread and very interesting discussion (followup) by CN90:2004 V70 2.5T Volvo Axle and Seals DIY Fix