Thread: Bearing Replacement
05-14-2007, 02:25 PM #1
How To: replace trailer bearings
I decided to look at my trailer bearings due to the nice humming sound I was getting. They were bad. Seems like trailer bearings are something everyone forgets about until they break and leave you stranded. You should check your bearings every year. I strongly suggest using Bearing Buddies, or some other equivalent. After I did one side I decided to give something back to the forum and write a how-to while I did the other side. I have gotten so much from the boards here, but have little knowledge to give in return on skis. Hopefully someone will move this to the appropiate forum, I could not open a thread in the how-to section. Feel free to add any hints. For the record, this is a 2003 Yacht Club 2 place trailer. The steps will be the same for all though
Step one: Just crack the lugnuts loose before you jack up the trailer. You won't be able to get any traction if you try to loosen them with the wheel in the air. Any jack will work, I used the spare tire jack from my Sportage. Once they are cracked loose, jack up the trailer, take off the lug nuts and remove the tire.
Last edited by MikeTrin; 04-11-2008 at 12:59 PM. Reason: fixed title
05-14-2007, 02:29 PM #2
Step two: Using a flat head screw drive, work off the dust cap. Keep jamming the screwdriver in an wedging it off. Then spin the hub and jab it back in and pry some more. Keep working your way around until you can pull it off.
05-14-2007, 02:36 PM #3
Step three: Once you get the cap off wipe off the excess grease. You will see a pin that must be pulled out to take of the nut. Pull the pin out anyway you can, you can't reuse it so breaking it doesn't matter. Once you have the pin out, take off the nut. The outer bearing will be there and will fall out when you pull the hub off. Pull off the whole hub leaving just your axle. Wipe the axle off good and clean out some of the grease in the hub so you can see what your doing. If the grease is milky looking you have gotten water in there and it is a good thing your doing this. If water just pours out like mine, thank God your wheel hasn't locked up yet.
05-14-2007, 02:43 PM #4
Step four: Flip the hub over so the back of it is facing the sky. There is a ring that I am pointing to with my pliers. This must be pulled out to get out the back bearings. Wedge a screwdriver under the lip and pry up, working your way around it like a paint can until it breaks loose. Then you can reach in and pull out the bearings with your finger. Clean out the hub the best you can, making sure no sand is in there and wipe out as much excess grease as possible.
05-14-2007, 02:53 PM #5
Step Five: You need the right size bearing kit. One kit will do one side. Bearing Buddies come in a kit that will do both sides. I bought the wrong size bearing first and had to go back. When I did I bought a few sizes to make sure I got the right ones. Mine happened to be 1 1/16". I did not replace the bearing races since mine were good and looked real hard to get out. They will come with your bearing kit if you choose to do them. Grease the bearing before you start putting them in. Work the grease in as much as possible in between them and glob grease all over everything as you go from here on out. I just use marine grease. Grease is grease to me, as long as you aren't buying Wal-Mart brand. You will put the back bearing in first. They will only fit and spin one way, put them in so that they are angled like a funnel. You will then need to put in the seal. It will have to be pounded in. Your kit comes with one seal and it is used on the back bearings. It fits snug. I used a rubber mallet and worked it in like a paint can lid. Make sure you put grease in every hole you can on the back bearings when you are done, like in the seal groove and pack some more on the bearings.
Last edited by antoniodef; 06-15-2010 at 05:18 PM.
05-14-2007, 02:57 PM #6
Step six: Put the hub back on your clean axle. Take the other bearing ring and grease that up like the backs, working it into the ring as best you can. Slide the bearing over the axle into the bearing race. Glop some more grease on it all. You are over halfway there now.
05-14-2007, 03:02 PM #7
Step seven: Then screw on the nut that the pin goes through. The tighter the nut, the harder to turn your wheel. Too loose, and your wheel will rock from side to side and your bearing will go bad faster. This is the rule I use: Tighten the nut until you feel the hub bind slightly when you spin it. Then back the nut off until the next notch lines up with the hole in the threads to put the pin through. Give the hub a spin, if it doesn't move freely or you still feel a slight bind; back the nut off to the next notch. Slide the new pin through that came with your bearing kit and bend the ends back to hold it all in place. There should be no side to side play in your wheel, and it should turn freely with no binding feeling when you spin it. Grease some more!
Last edited by antoniodef; 06-15-2010 at 05:19 PM.
05-14-2007, 03:13 PM #8
Step eight: You can put the dust cover back on and be done, but spend the 16 dollars and get Bearing Buddies. Mine are actually made by MasterLock, but do the same thing. $16 for both sides. They go in place of your dust cap. They are all pretty much the same size, 1.98". The end without the grease fitting goes against the hub. You will see one end on the Buddy smaller than the other. That end slides into the hub. It has to be pounded very hard. Beat the chit out of it. You will think they won't fit, but they will. Once they are on, take your grease gun and fill it up. When it is full, grease will come out of the pin hole on the side of the Buddy. To see how Bearing Buddies work, go to their website, www.bearingbuddies.com I do not want to explain it but they are worth it. There is also a grease fitting on the back of the hub, but if you packed grease into everything like I said and fill up the Buddy, none will fit in the back. Re-check your Buddies grease once you take the trailer out for the first time. They will need a little more as the air works out and grease fills all the holes. Slip the rubber cover over the Buddy.
Last edited by antoniodef; 06-15-2010 at 05:20 PM.
05-14-2007, 03:15 PM #9
Step nine: Put the wheel back on. Finger tighten the lug nuts. Drop your trailer of the jack and tighten the lug nuts the rest of the way. Tighten the lug nuts in a star pattern and re-check them after your first trip when you check your bearing buddies. You are done! Now go do the other side.
05-14-2007, 03:17 PM #10
I'm done! Hope this helps everybody out. Feel free to add anything I forgot and someone can move this to the appropiate section.
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