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Instructions for replacing rear bearings and shoes?

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  • Instructions for replacing rear bearings and shoes?

    The rear end in my 91' is making noise, pulling under braking, and one of the tires doesn't spin freely anymore. A local shop wants ~350$ to replace the bearing and shoes (both sides).

    I'm looking for a how-to for changing the rear wheel bearings to possibly save a little money. Can someone walk me through it or provide a link?


  • #2
    I used the Haynes manual. They used to cost about $25 Canadian and are a good "investment" for people looking to save money on all sorts of maintenance and repairs.. If you do a search of this site (see box top right corner of screen) you're likely to pull up old threads on the subject as it is a poular topic.

    Here is a list of links to phtos I've taken but I believe the photo sharing site went though some corporate restructurings and they amy no longer work....

    Over the years I've taken photos to document the repairs to my Festiva
    and put them in albums at Photobucket ( to share.
    Below are the links to the albums.
    They are all for a 1989 model L (carburetted, 4 speed manaul gearbox).

    Cleaning the EGR valve to reduce NOx emissions.

    Replacing a front axle with a worn CV joint.

    Replacing the bearings on a rear wheel.

    Removing a front fender.

    Rebuildingna pair of rusty front wheels from a junk yard and putting them on the car.

    Taking apart an ignition control module.

    Taking apart a front strut assembly off a Kia Rio.

    Removing tires from 12`inch steel rims, painting the rims, and putting new tires on.

    Making a shift link bushing out of copper pipe to remove looseness in shifting.

    Removing, testing, and lubricating the speedometer and cable.
    Original owner of silver grey carburetted 1989 Festiva. 105k km as of June 2006.


    • #3
      Thanks, unfortunately the link appears to be broken.


      • #4
        Just found this thread that appears to have the correct link with pictures. It looks pretty straightforward.


        • #5
          I did my the back of my Aspire about five years ago- the back ones are easy, I still have the front ones which have to be pressed in- but haven't needed them.

          Putting new rear drums on I think made it easier- they weren't expensive it seemed but I don't recall and I didn't touch the brake hardware.

          Use new cotter pins if you can too-

          One has some very slight play in it I may try to adjust when I change wheels and tires soon.
          Last edited by harpon; 09-13-2020, 11:15 PM.


          • #6
            Thanks for the tips!

            The shaft spindle (not sure what you call it, the axle?) is bent on my car. Is that easy to replace? Any special tools?
            Last edited by CyberEric; 09-14-2020, 10:48 AM.


            • #7
              Those are my photos. Good find. I have never replaced rear spindles but it has been discussed here. Finding replacements may be an issue as I recall.
              Original owner of silver grey carburetted 1989 Festiva. 105k km as of June 2006.


              • #8
                image_21105.jpg image_21104.jpg image_21103.jpg image_21106.jpg Replacing the entire rear axle assembly is actually easier than changing the rear brakes and bearings.
                You will need a long 14mm socket or a short socket with a good extension to remove the 4 nuts on the back of the assembly.
                To make sure you do not strip the brake line compression nut you will also need the special type of wrench shown in the photo (the 10 mm one will fit the brake line).
                I have stripped a lot of brake line nuts in the past before I got one of these tools. Vice grips and open end wrenches just wont do the job right. Be sure to spay PB blaster or wd40 around the nut before you try to remove it (A day before would be nice thing to do).

                I happen to have a complete left side and right side rear axle assemblies. The is one on ebay now that has just the axle without the bearings, back plate brakes or brake drum for over $150. If you backing plate and wheel cylinders are still good and just the axle bent, this is all you would need. Right and left can be made interchangeable by drilling a hole in the axle and using a castle nut and key instead of the one you have to punch in. (Revers thread on the right axle).

                $350 is probably a reasonable charge for a commercial shop for replacing rear bearings and brakes on a Festiva (assuming this includes all the parts .. if you are not to handy mechanically this may be your best bet.) However, if you are a little bit handy, you could probably save $275 or more by doing it yourself).

                The rear bearing are fairly easy to change. You can use a punch to easily remove the races from the brake drum (or just by new brake drum to put the new races in if your old ones are scarred... You can find inexpensive drums at RockAuto I believe.

                Axle drill for castle nut video:
                Last edited by 1990new; 09-15-2020, 07:22 PM.


                • #9
                  Thanks for the very helpful info! Funny, I watched that video years ago!

                  To be honest, I'm not sure if it's just the axle spindle (like the one in the link) or if anything else is bent. I haven't personally looked at it, just the mechanic.

                  I'm going to need to look at it before I proceed.

                  Seems like something I could do pretty easily if I have the right parts..though it doesn't look like Rockauto has the axles, and I think it may be the left side that I need.

                  The only difference is the right is reverse threaded? Why is that? Keep it from working itself off when the wheel turns? I don't recall the front being that way.

                  Anyway, thanks again!


                  • #10
                    I also bought a brake line wrench, just one. It's basically a closed end wrench with a slot cut in it to go over the brake line. Not costly. If there is a pawn shop nearby it should have a container full of wrenches where you might just find one for less.

                    As for the reverse thread I don't understand it but bicycles also have one pedal with reverse thread and one bearing cone for the crank axle reverse thread, except Italian bikes which have regular thread on the cone. Go figure..
                    Last edited by WmWatt; 09-16-2020, 08:23 AM.
                    Original owner of silver grey carburetted 1989 Festiva. 105k km as of June 2006.


                    • #11
                      Actually the theory for the right hand threads is not that it prevents the nut from loosening; its supposed to prevent the nut from tightening and locking up the wheel.
                      In reality the only way I can think of that the nut could tighten from the spinning wheel would be if a washer with no spindle tab was used or some other freak thing happen.

                      This video is pretty much the same as the 88-92 Festiva but has the castle nuts with key instead of the stake nut. This is just brake shoes and not the wheel bearing.

                      No, Rockauto does not carry the axles but they do have everything else you need to do a complete brake job and bearing replace on the rear wheels. Here is a list of parts you could get to do a thorough job on both rear wheels (including new hardware, brake cylinders, brake drums, bearings and axle nuts. (Reduce the total by $4.53 ... I accidentally put 2 left rear axle nuts in the order list). They will add taxes and shipping to your total after you enter the order so your final total will be more once those charges are added. Put this code in the field called "Where did you hear about us and you will get a %5 discount on your total order (good code for SEPT is 147561579132490742) You will also need to get some axle grease to pack the bearings before you install them.

                      Yep you only need the 10mm brake line wrench. I bought a set of those from Harbor Freight Tools too but now cant seem to find the 10mm one. You can get one at Autozone for $6.99.

                      Free Next Day Delivery Duralast 10mm X 12mm Metric Flare Nut Wrench

                      4.6 out of 5 stars. 11 reviews
                      Part # 54-200
                      SKU # 914131

                      Shopping Cart
                      1990 FORD FESTIVA 1.3L L4
                      Brake & Wheel Hub : Spindle Nut
                      BECK/ARNLEY 1030514 Info B
                      Rear; Right Hand Threads; M16 x 1.5mm
                      {#2131301, 2131302, B00126042}
                      $1.91 $1.91
                      Price Quantity Total
                      DORMAN 615104 Info E
                      Rear Left
                      Thread: M16-1.5L; Hex Size: 21mm; Height: 16mm
                      {Click Info Button for Alternate/OEM Part Numbers}
                      ($4.53) x2
                      $4.53 $9.06
                      Price Quantity Total
                      Brake & Wheel Hub : Wheel Bearing
                      TIMKEN SET4 Info D
                      Rear Inner
                      Wheel Bearing and Race Set
                      {Click Info Button for Alternate/OEM Part Numbers}
                      $5.95 $11.90
                      Price Quantity Total
                      TIMKEN SET1 Info D
                      Rear Outer
                      Wheel Bearing and Race Set
                      {Click Info Button for Alternate/OEM Part Numbers}
                      $4.82 $9.64
                      Price Quantity Total
                      Brake & Wheel Hub : Brake Shoe
                      CENTRIC 11105950 Info E
                      $10.30 $10.30
                      Price Quantity Total
                      Brake & Wheel Hub : Drum
                      CENTRIC 12345016 Info E
                      $10.01 $20.02
                      Price Quantity Total
                      Brake & Wheel Hub : Drum Brake Hardware Kit
                      RAYBESTOS H17305 Info A
                      $9.18 $9.18
                      Price Quantity Total
                      Brake & Wheel Hub : Wheel Seal
                      WJB WS1126 Info C
                      Rear Inner
                      $0.62 $1.24
                      Price Quantity Total
                      Brake & Wheel Hub : Wheel Cylinder
                      CENTRIC 13450000 Info E
                      $6.21 $12.42
                      Price Quantity Total
                      Subtotal $85.67
                      Last edited by 1990new; 09-16-2020, 04:40 PM.


                      • #12
                        Thanks! Very helpful.

                        I just remembered there was a Festiva at the local junkyard, so maybe I can get the axle from there for less. If not, I may just have the shop do it as the price difference won't be worth it.
                        Last edited by CyberEric; 09-16-2020, 09:30 PM.


                        • #13
                          1990's post reminded me the rear axle (spindle) nuts are colour coded so you know which one is reverse thread.
                          Original owner of silver grey carburetted 1989 Festiva. 105k km as of June 2006.