axin' bout an axle


Old 07-09-10, 01:55 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Portland, OR
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axin' bout an axle

i need to change both c.v. joints on my 90 subaru loyale. down by the auto parts store the feller told me that it might be easier to change the entire front axle. "fine by me" i'm thinking but is it within my ability?

is one easier than the other?

do either involve getting any special tools that i won't need for another 200,000 miles?

on a scale from 1-10 (1 being a tire change. 10 being an engine rebuild) where does this lie?
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Old 07-09-10, 02:08 PM
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As I understand from researching my cars and spending time here...replacing an axle or half shaft with a rebuilt unit is normally easier than just a CV..and it eliminates other possible problems.

Yours may be tougher cause of the 4wd and the pancake engine...

I DO know that in my case last time it needed done on one of my was only about $200-225 to have someone else do it. $125 or so for the labor...I'll take it...
Old 07-10-10, 08:46 AM
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yeah, since my wife and i drive subarus i don't have a mechanic so i called around. i got the best price from a subaru specialist who quoted me at around $350 total. i can get the parts myself for $55 as opposed to the $100 he's selling them to me for. my thought is that i'd like to give the extra $240 to my banker. i might just put 'er up on jack stands and take a gander.

no special tools needed?
Old 07-10-10, 01:34 PM
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Seems like you might need a big socket... but it's not that hard of a job, at least not with the few that I've done.
Old 07-11-10, 05:32 PM
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my mistake. legacy not loyale

my wife and i both graduated to legacy from loyale a few years ago. i'm not sure if it makes a difference but. . .
Old 07-11-10, 09:01 PM
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1. drive to a nearest tire shop and ask them to loosen axle nuts. just enough for you to undo it at home with a large socket and cheat pipe, but safe enough to drive from shop to back home
2. you will need to rent axle tool kit. it's a set of large sockets, usually around 32-36mm. of course, 1/2 inch long swivel extension and cheat pipe. 3/4 pipe from home depot, about 2 feet long, serves well.
3. you will need ATF, as it will leak fluid out.
4. you will need some sort of pan to collect fluid; normally, i simply plug it with a rag, holds fluid well.
5. i use a chisel, but you may need a fork tool. use it to pry axle out of differential. like i said, i used chisel very successfully every time. or a pry bar.
6. while you are there, replace axle seals same time. it's like 6 bucks a pop, and p.o.c to do. don't let them sell you a funky seal removal tool, regular screwdriver or even bent coat hanger work well.
7. you will need jackstands, not ramps. wheels must be free in the air.
8 i use hammer and whack on a knuckle to remove tie rod ends, but you may go fancy and rent special tool for this. btw, check for tie rod end play and replace them same time, truly, like 20 bucks each. alignment, of course.
10. replacing the whole driveaxle is very wise decision. at what you pay for it, you get a WARRANTED item. boots themselves cost almost as much as axle and are total pain in too-too to replace.
11. axles will need a good whack to get back in place, past the locking ring. i used to take a swing and just whack it in, but lately align is straight with the receptacle, have helper hold it for me there, parallel to the floor, place a solid piece of wood on the hub end, and give it a good shot with sledge hammer. that shoots axle in fine!
12. in general, be aware of the outside CV joint. it needs to be manipulated, bent, etc, so do NOT separate joint. i have done it once, it was fun to drive, and more fun to do over.
13. after you got it all in place, snug up nut with cheat pipe and go back to the tire shop; let them torque it again. you MUST torque that nut TIGHT.
Old 07-12-10, 04:44 AM
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UK has it right, couple of points, inner joint will pop out but I always need A LONG PRY BAR, be sure inner joint is lined up and in as far as it can go before hitting end of shaft. USE BLOCK OF WOOD ON END OF SHAFT BEFORE HITTING IT
Old 07-15-10, 06:14 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Portland, OR
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thanks, uk and pgl, this looks like it will be a challenge but if it were too easy than it wouldn't be too rewarding to have done it. worse case scenario, if i can't get the wheels back on than i will just have to use the pancake motor to build up that airplane i've always wanted
Old 07-28-10, 05:48 PM
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Connecticut
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little late here ..... but subaru axles have a roll pin that holds them to splined stubs that come out of the transmission. no need to try and pop the axle out of the trans. knock the roll pin out with a roll pin punch and with the axle out of the knuckle it will slide right off the stub. wont even leak any fluid

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