Easy Peasy Guide On How To Check Wheel Bearings
Worn wheel bearings are anything but a laughing matter. While the clunking sounds could well be the reason for all the honking in busy traffic prolonged use of your vehicle in this condition could be fatal.
Wheel bearings serve the same purpose as bearings attached to any mechanical component/device – reduce friction and facilitate smooth rotation around an axis.
This is exactly why you need to know when and how to check wheel bearings on your vehicle. Some of the pointers you need to have an eye out for include grinding sounds when in motion; clunking or knocking noise around the wheel; wobbly or vibrating wheels; uneven brake pad wear and the most dangerous abnormal pull when braking.
When a bearing wears out the motion of the wheel is bound to become uneven; the wobbling contributes to uneven tire wear with a negative effect on the performance of brake pads. Any professional auto technician will tell you, driving with worn bearings is very unsafe.
1. Reliable Jack
This will be used to either raise the front or rear wheel 6 inches off the ground.
2. Jack Stands
Once the front or rear is raised place the stand on the opposite wheel so both wheels (front or rear) are raised and the vehicle is secured.
3. Ownership Manual
Single Wheel driven (2WD – front or rear) could have packed wheel bearings. In case they are sealed, wheel bearings can’t be replaced singly – you need to replace the pack
The ownership manual will help you identify the category of bearing for your vehicle.
Note: This does not affect your ability to perform manual checking – it only affects how the wheel bearings are replaced.
In temperate countries, changing winter or summer tires is an appropriate time to undertake this simple procedure to verify the condition of wheel bearings.
This simple 10-minute how to check wheel bearings procedure can be a huge time saver if done on time and could well identify the cause of uneven tire wear, brake lining/pad wear and putting that annoying clunking sound to rest.
The procedure only requires a jack and jack supports and strong arm to rate and rock the wheel – there is not that much to it. If there is play or unevenness while in motion – it is time to visit the motor shop and have the bearings changed.
It is not difficult even for newbie’s and is just one of those many simple tests you want to get used to doing on your own, as you get accustomed to your vehicle.
It may be time you made a commitment to spend less time and money at the auto shop from now onwards and gain in-depth understanding of your vehicle.