94-04 Mustang Front Wheel Hub Replacement

The splines in the wheel hub sheared off

The splines in the wheel hub sheared off

When I took the wheels off of my 99 Mustang GT, one of the wheel studs fell out. Looking closer, you can see that the splines are gone. The splines grip the wheel stud and keep it from rotating inside the hub while the lug nuts are torqued. The easiest and best fix for this problem is to simply replace the wheel hub. 94-04 Mustang front wheel hub replacement is a simple and painless process.

Parts Required

New wheel hub and 36mm nut

New wheel hub and 36mm nut

The procedure requires a torque wrench that can go up to 250 lb-ft. You’ll also want a breaker bar and a 36mm socket. The socket can be rented for free at Autozone if you would rather not buy one.

Of course, you’ll also need a new front wheel hub. Note that the link is for a pair; I would recommend replacing both. The FSM states to replace the axle nuts at the same time.

Removing the Caliper

Caliper is in the way

Caliper is in the way

Before the wheel hub can come off, the caliper and rotor must be removed.

First bolt

First bolt

Second bolt

Second bolt

Two bolts that hold the caliper bracket to the wheel assembly. These are the larger of the four bolts behind the caliper, with 15mm heads. The caliper stays attached to the bracket.

Tie the caliper out of the way

Tie the caliper out of the way

When those bolts are removed, the caliper will slide off of the rotor in one shot. There’s no need to retract the pistons or remove the pads, as long as you don’t press the brake pedal during this procedure.

The rotor slides off

The rotor slides off

Ready to move on

Ready to move on

Once the caliper is out of the way, the rotor slides right off.

Removing the Wheel Bearing Dust Cap

Prying cap off

Prying cap off

Removed, axle nut exposed

Removed, axle nut exposed

There is a dust cap covering the wheel bearing and axle nut. If you’ve worked with trailer bearings, the principal is the same. It needs to be gently pried off with a couple of screwdrivers or similar. Note that you have to be extremely gentle. It punctures very easily. Getting these off in one piece is probably the worst part of the job.

Removing the Old Wheel Hub

Breaking the axle nut free

Breaking the axle nut free

A big breaker bar goes a long way on the next part. With the dust cap off, you can reach the axle nut. Bust it loose. I’ll note here that you’re not supposed to use an impact on this nut, although I suspect that’s primarily for tightening and not loosening.

Nut removed

Nut removed

Wheel hub removed

Wheel hub removed

Once the nut is off, the wheel hub slides right off after it.

Lubricate and Install the New Bearing

Axle grease liberally coating the wheel spindle

Axle grease liberally coating the wheel spindle

Shiny new hub bolted on

Shiny new hub bolted on

Before sliding the new hub on, be sure to clean the axle shaft with brake cleaner or similar. It also needs some grease. Generic wheel bearing grease seems to work fine. Once it’s all ready, the new hub slides right on.

Torque to 250lb-ft with a big wrench

Torque to 250lb-ft with a big wrench

Tap the dust cap back on

Tap the dust cap back on

Once the new hub is on, a new axle nut can be installed. Torque it down to 250lb-ft with a big wrench, and the hub is reinstalled. Lastly, gently tap the dust cap back on. Don’t forget to reinstall the rotors and calipers. The larger caliper bracket bolts torque to 85lb-ft, while the smaller ones are 25lb-ft if you removed them.

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