Wheel Bearings and Brakes 1st time

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Ok. I've done more reading and watched the video from jonesy, one other guy, and the video series from Me My posted above. I do have a question about the snap ring pre load. What is that? Video 6 of 6 on the Me My series is the only one that mentioned anything about it. All the others just put the old snap ring back on. Also if my bearings look good, should I just clean them and repack them and save the new ones I have for next time? Is it better to go with the new ones? If I clean, do I just clean with degreaser or do I need a parts washer? Sorry if this seems like dumb questions.
 

Trunk Monkey

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I don't know about preload on the snap ring, just checking for tolerance really. If there's much movement along the axis of the CV you may risk it popping off, something that's happened quite a few times here. I've always reused mine, never had an issue. There are different thicknesses, you can get a pack of all the different ones from @cruiseroutfit along with full hub kits.

If you bearings don't look scored, absolutely re-use them. I just spray the crap out of them with brake cleaner and then use the glob of grease in the palm method to repack.
 
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I bought all the snap rings from local dealer. Used what I needed and took the others back... just FYI
 

2001LC

 
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Ok. I've done more reading and watched the video from jonesy, one other guy, and the video series from Me My posted above. I do have a question about the snap ring pre load. What is that? Video 6 of 6 on the Me My series is the only one that mentioned anything about it. All the others just put the old snap ring back on. Also if my bearings look good, should I just clean them and repack them and save the new ones I have for next time? Is it better to go with the new ones? If I clean, do I just clean with degreaser or do I need a parts washer? Sorry if this seems like dumb questions.
They're not dumb questions. It can be confusing your first time.

Breakaway "preload" is the procedure used to determines how tight wheel bearing adjusting nut will be set. We do this with a spring tension gauge (fish scale). It is a key component of the procedure in doing a proper wheel bearing service. It it rarely done by any shop including Dealership. They use Old school method, which is to just "snug" wheel bearing adjusting nut, as in jonesy video. The more seasoned Toyota mechanic knows to tighten more than snug. This "snugging" will absolutely be to loose and lead to damage while driving.

The 100 series wheel bearings like to run tight. The number one indicator wheel bearings have been run loose, is scoring on the claw washer. Loose wheel bearings will chatter (vibrate), causes grooving in the claw washer. Which "grooving" of claw washer leads too further loosening of wheel bearings.
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With Snap Ring, we set "gap". That is to say we measure the gap between the snap ring and wheel hub flange. The FSM (factory service manual) states snap ring gap should be less than 0.20 mm. It also states snap ring is non reusable. I also have reused snap ring, but only if it pass very very close inspection. But even then, what happens is snap ring is stretch open when installing and removing. Then it does not fit snuggle around axle, which is part of a chain of events in the overall wheel bearing service job that may lead too it popping off. So I'll squeegee the snap ring closed with channel-locks before install. But this is never as good as replacing with new, but works in a pinch.

Generally we replace snap ring, as we need to go up one or even two sizes above factory stock thickness of 2.20 mm, to a 2.40 mm or 2.60 mm to get gap below 0.20 mm. The number one component that wears, leading to excessive gap, is the brass bushing in back side of knuckle.

While checking snap ring gap, I've a clamp setup I use to pull axle. This is to settle grease (fresh grease I've just added) in between front drive shaft (FDS) and brass bushing in back of knuckle. This clamp is just what I've laying around the shop. Some "mudders" have built a very simple tool to pull axle, that you'll see in post #92 Front Bearing Replacement. It also possible too just drive (with snap ring on) for awhile to settle grease. Then just come back and set gap, by threading in a 8X1.25mm bolt in axle and pulling with wheels/tires on ground. The goal is to get the gap as tight/narrow as you can.

Solvent is the best cleaner to use and is reusable, but the stuff is pricey. Brake cleaner works, just not as good. Most shop don't clean the bearings, they just pack with new grease pushing out "most" of old grease, as this save time. But it's hard to see if bearings are damaged unless clean. Also cleaning really good and packing with same new grease, and doing the same each service, and breakaway preload procedure will stays constant. Clean bearings will also last much longer IMHO. It possible if bearing done correctly every 30K mile will last a lifetime.

One very important part of procedure that can not be overlooked, is to pack cavity of wheel hub with grease. To little grease here and centrifugal force will force grease out of wheel bearings. This is very very damaging to bearings, races, wheel hub, spindle and axle. They will burn up.
To much grease and bearings will run just a little hot, not a big deal.
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These may help:
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A wheel bearing job can be done very fast; If you don't clean, don't set breakaway preload and don't set gap of snap ring. This is how most shop do the job! It works, just not best practice.

Me, I'm slow as molasses on a cold winters morning, while doing a wheel bearing service. Cleaning, setting Breaking Preload and Gaping is half my time on the job.
 

2001LC

 
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Here is some random pictures of wheel bearing components that have gone bad. These are all due to improper service.
Cone washer.
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Snap ring
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Wheel bearing
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Last edited:
Joined
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Eastern, OR
Thanks for all the help and advice @2001LC I didn't get any new snap rings with the kit I got from Cruiser Outfitters. You think my local parts store wool have what I need or should I call them up and get some coming?
 

2001LC

 
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I'm very surprised you didn't get a bag full with wheel bearing kit from @cruiseroutfit. You may want to give them a call.
Or call your nearest Toyota or Lexus Dealership part department.
 
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1/4" is 6mm, plenty I'd say. Turning rotors three times per their lifetime is simply dangerous: you reduce mass part of heat+mass+transfer equation. Especially in Colorado mountains.

I agree that most 'warping' is a misdiagnosed deposit interaction(s) - can be taken care of easily different ways. A few nice brake application at elevated speed usually takes care of mine. Actually, never had it on these vehicles, my panthers suffer from this though. Another reason to be careful with your choice of brake pads, some of them don't match the rotors and it's a study in Dynamics and Kinematics from the Physics angle on top of material science angle.
 
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I called Cruiser Outfitters for the snap rings. They are currently out of stock. Won't have any for a couple weeks. Probably why they weren't offered to me when I purchased the bearing kit. Called my local Toyota dealer. They said they can get me whatever size I need next day. They are $5.71 a piece. I'd rather have everything I need when I start but at over $60 for all the snap rings I need I think I'll put it back together with the old ones for a day then pull the wheels off to measure my Gap and see which snap rings I should order. Does that seem like a good plan or is there a common needed size I should just order up before hand? Parts guy told me they are non returnable.
 

suprarx7nut

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Just want to throw in my (in)experience to the mix. The 100 wheel bearings are pretty phenomenal in their ability to accept a complete lack of maintenance. My rig has 267k miles and as far as I know, OEM wheel bearings. I haven't serviced them since I bought it at 190k and my inherited service records show no service at least as far back as 150k. I've done multiple water crossings, lots of dusty, dirty off road driving, etc.

I probably deserve for all of them to fail due to my neglect at this point, but I thought it might be a data point to put some folks at ease. If you can manage to stay on top of it, certainly stick to the OEM schedule and regrease. If not.... you may be just fine for many, many abusive miles.

Thanks @2001LC for the awesome info, as always. I'll bookmark this and refer to it if I ever manage to dive in to the job.
 

2001LC

 
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1/4" is 6mm, plenty I'd say. Turning rotors three times per their lifetime is simply dangerous: you reduce mass part of heat+mass+transfer equation. Especially in Colorado mountains.

I agree that most 'warping' is a misdiagnosed deposit interaction(s) - can be taken care of easily different ways. A few nice brake application at elevated speed usually takes care of mine. Actually, never had it on these vehicles, my panthers suffer from this though. Another reason to be careful with your choice of brake pads, some of them don't match the rotors and it's a study in Dynamics and Kinematics from the Physics angle on top of material science angle.
I understand why you say "Especially in Colorado mountains". But that is not the case for proper driving. Nor will the 1 or 2mm reduction in mass make any noticeable difference IMHO.

Worth restating: "If rotors look like new sure you can just pop in new pads. But, I almost always find rotors' grooved by the time pads are down to a few mm. These grooves end up reducing life of new pads. Can also lead to uneven wear and pulling to one side."

I'd add, IMO if you don't "turn" when there is a ridge along outer rim and some grooving in disk itself, both very often found. Then the new pads will form into same shape (high and low spots). This not only reduce life of pads, but may cause the same grooves in disk to deepen further. The amount of materiel removed while turning on a lath will depend on depth of grooves. So it "may" mean removing more material, reduce life of disk, if future turning is required. Possible more than would have been, if turn with each new pads to keep a good surface to start with.

Worth stating: All brake drums and rotors (disk) have a stated minimum thickness. Turning (machining, girding on lathe on or off vehicle) down to minimum is perfectly acceptable and will not reduce safety of braking function.

Notice the difference from standard (new) to minimum is only 2mm (1mm per side of disk).
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I learned to drive in Colorado (Denver stop and go traffic, like any big city) and have driven here all my life. My front brakes last for about 90K miles (City & mountain driving), in my 01 100 series. That's turning disk with every new pad install.

I found after second turning (turning with each new set of pads) I'll not likely get a third based on whats remaining. So that would take me to about 270K miles, on first set of front rotors. I don't drive that much any more. But when I did drive about 10K to 12K miles a year in my 01 LC DD. So that means ~22 to 27 years on one set of rotors turned on every new pad change. Not bad!

As for driving in Colorado Rocky Mountains;
Well, we can always spot a flat lander here, on Colorado mountains HWYs. You'll see them going down with brake lights constantly coming on. Wong driving style and unsafe.

Notice in this video how tachometer drops first as speed then reduces, and brake lights of vehicle ahead come on. This is down hill speed control with braking. This type of driving is so foreign to me, as I use transmission to control down hill speed. In this same vehicle, I did not have any issues with brakes, on test drive on mountain passes of 8% even 20% down hill grade of 1 to 10 mile long. But owner did. The steering wheel vibrated back and forth on it as brakes over heated, during down hill brake speed control. These where newer rotors, that had never been turned (31.9mm thick all mass present). The condition did not show itself, until improper driving on the down hill.

Owner took this 06 LC to Toyota Dealership, which turned disk on vehicle and corrected issue.

I called Cruiser Outfitters for the snap rings. They are currently out of stock. Won't have any for a couple weeks. Probably why they weren't offered to me when I purchased the bearing kit. Called my local Toyota dealer. They said they can get me whatever size I need next day. They are $5.71 a piece. I'd rather have everything I need when I start but at over $60 for all the snap rings I need I think I'll put it back together with the old ones for a day then pull the wheels off to measure my Gap and see which snap rings I should order. Does that seem like a good plan or is there a common needed size I should just order up before hand? Parts guy told me they are non returnable.
Yes, I've done that.

I also will measure gap as I'm dissembling, then get on the phone and order. In fact I almost always take a quick reading of gap, just as exploratory investigation of overall condition going in.

I have a bottle jack under LCA to keep FDS in a neutral position. This one had 0.48mm gap, that's 0.23mm (actually 0.24mm) over limit. The old snap ring measured 2.20mm (factory installed). Snap rings are sold in 0.20mm gradation so I ordered the 2.6mm ("C" 90520-31006). This I estimated would give me a 0.03mm (un-measurable) final gap on assemble. This assume I'm not installing new brass bushing which is rarely need, spindle, large bearing, hub flange or axle. All of which can have effect on gap.
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Got it done today. Thanks everyone for your help especially you @2001LC. Lots of good info, videos and pics. It was that hard once we got into it just kinda follow the directions. Pretty fun actually. Took us most of the day but I bet next time I do it I could shave a couple hours off pretty easy.
 
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