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Old 09-03-2019, 02:25 PM   #1
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Hub Bearing Replacement

Started noticing a tick, tick tick sound in the front hub area a few hundred miles back. Did a visual inspection and no rocks or debris in the brake, no loose parts found. Just completed my house battery upgrade and wanted to get back to diagnosing the ticking noise. so One more quick test drive and the ticking turned into a very bad grinding sound. Now we know for sure that my left front hub bearings are self-destructing. The whole front end was serviced less than 10,000 miles ago, new axle seals, new bearings, and some other odds and ends. (work was done by a small shop in Montana on root to Canada). This stop was prompted by lots of oil coming out of the axle tube. I did not have the tools to do this in a parking lot. The shop asks if I wanted to do the bearing since It would only be another $200, so I said let's do it. (73,000 on the original Timkens).

What went wrong, left front bearing seized up.

Why

1- Bearing was under greased,
2- Cheap grease was used (Just my opinion, no proof)
3- Chinese Bearings were installed, its stamped on the bearing.

Never assume you will get OEM parts or brand name parts, this was my fault I assumed a 10,000lb van would get Timken bearings.

amazingly all of the races were in perfect shape. I cleaned both hubs up and installed new Timken bearings, heavily packed with synthetic Valvoline grease and fresh wheel seals.
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Old 09-03-2019, 03:12 PM   #2
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You have my attention now HK33FAN - completed the same service you did, mine about 5K miles ago. Brought in because the rear passenger side suddenly began to leak fluid. They did all 4, but the rear passenger one began to leak again a week later. Brought it back a second and 3rd time (about a week apart for each instance). 3 months now on it and no issues...BUT now I'm concerned about the manufacture of the bearings installed. Guess I'll be making a call. Thanks for the post!
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Old 09-03-2019, 04:14 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Twoxentrix View Post
You have my attention now HK33FAN - completed the same service you did, mine about 5K miles ago. Brought in because the rear passenger side suddenly began to leak fluid. They did all 4, but the rear passenger one began to leak again a week later. Brought it back a second and 3rd time (about a week apart for each instance). 3 months now on it and no issues...BUT now I'm concerned about the manufacture of the bearings installed. Guess I'll be making a call. Thanks for the post!

I would ask about the parts manufacture, but IMHO I think lack of packing grease was a bigger culprit than manufacture. I don't think a lot of shops know just how heavy these vans are and how much heat is going into the rotors and hubs. My first set of front rotors were cracked in 3 places on the break face, that's a lot of heat. I am not as concerned about the rear bearings because they are being soaked by the differential oil. good or bad the rear bearings will be changed at 100k

Just an FFY on the front oil seals (axle tube), the crew at Drive Line Sevices here in Reno NV said try not to park with your wheels turned hard to one side. I guess this pulls the axle shaft and causes premature oil seal failer
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Old 09-03-2019, 04:46 PM   #4
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I HAD TICK, TICK, TICK, front right hub of my 2003 Ford SMB Van Quigley conversion (2001 F350 front end)......I have had issues in the past with the right front hub, which can only be replaced with a Quigley as a result of their resizing the the lugs. That being said this time I had the hub checked and a front retainer was only half seated in it's seat, thus tick, tick, tick.
Reseated before any damage.
I also had to replace front brake rotors. This has was not the first time (267,000 miles).
I try to use low gears as much as possible but they must carry a lot of heat created from the van weight.
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Old 09-03-2019, 04:52 PM   #5
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QUESTION:
2003 E350, 7.3 QUIGLEY 4X4
I have never been able to adjust the emergency brake so that it actually holds the van in position. Break mechanic looked and said it would not adjust tight enough to grab the rotor.
Anyone have similar issue?
Any possible remedy??????????????????
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Old 09-03-2019, 10:04 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HIGHCOUNTRYMIKE View Post
QUESTION:
2003 E350, 7.3 QUIGLEY 4X4
I have never been able to adjust the emergency brake so that it actually holds the van in position. Break mechanic looked and said it would not adjust tight enough to grab the rotor.
Anyone have similar issue?
Any possible remedy??????????????????
My experience as well.
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Old 09-03-2019, 10:27 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HIGHCOUNTRYMIKE View Post
QUESTION:
2003 E350, 7.3 QUIGLEY 4X4
Break mechanic looked and said it would not adjust tight enough to grab the rotor.?
There are lots of threads about this, but anyway, the e brake shoes are adjusted with a star wheel just like the ones in most drum brake systems. If the adjuster can't be adjusted far enough out to put the shoes in contact with the drum, either the shoes are worn out, the drum is worn oversize, or both. I replaced both more than once. It's pretty easy to get the ebrake adjusted so it works reasonably well, but the first time you forget to take it off and drive away you will likely, smoke the shoes and glaze the drum. Then they don't grab nearly as well and eventually they almost don't work at all. Pulling the rotor is simple (if the drum is worn much you probably will have to back off the adjuster first or the shoes will hang up and prevent pulling the rotor) Once it's off, you can inspect the shoes, if there is adequate lining, scuff them up with a wire brush or some sandpaper, and the same for the drum. Put it all back together and adjust the shoes till they contact the drum, back off very slightly and you should have a semi working brake, at least until the next time you forget to release it again.
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Old 09-15-2019, 12:35 PM   #8
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I have a 2003 E-350 Quigley SMB that weighs in at 10,600# that I have owned since new. Over the years I have replaced the rear axle with a 1 ton full-float (not semi-float) axle at 65,000 miles. At 85,000 miles the unit bearings on the front bit the dust and I upgraded them to Dyna trac Spindles and hubs. Last, but not least I upgraded all the rotors and pads the to TBM's Sportsmobile's economy package (they have a much more expensive system). The van now has 150,000 miles and I have been very please with how the components have been holding up (knock on wood). I also added a Hellwig anti-sway bar in the rear, changed out the original adjustable Rancho shocks to Bilstein custom tuned shocks. I have also installed Mag-hytec covers.
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Old 09-15-2019, 02:49 PM   #9
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Another possible cause of bearing failure could be due to over tightening the spindle nut. As for grease, I've always packed as much grease as possible into the bearing and the hub, so far so good.
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