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DIY: How to change an axle

Discussion in 'General Tech Articles' started by phunky.buddha, Oct 18, 2004.

  1. phunky.buddha

    phunky.buddha Admin with a big stick Admin VIP

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    How to change your axle(s): 88-00 Civic, 90-01 Integra

    The axle swap only takes about half an hour (for me). If it's your first time, budget out about 1-2 hours. You'll need a 14mm socket, 17mm socket, 32mm socket and breaker bar (for the spindle nut), ratchet and torque wrench, hammer/mallet, pipe wrench (my preference). Get some cotter pins to replace the old crusty ones from your castle nuts too (two total if you take EVERYTHING apart).

    What I basically do is:

    Remove center cap from wheel or remove hubcap- this may require wheel removal
    Have the car sitting on the ground on all wheels
    Remove spindle nut from end of axle through center of wheel (it's really hard to do with the car in the air)
    Jack up corner of car
    Remove wheel
    Remove 17mm castle nut that holds lower control arm to spindle
    Remove 17mm (I think, may be 14mm) bolt that secures bottom of damper fork to lower control arm
    Use mallet or hammer to break control arm free from spindle
    Swing up and out of the way
    Bang end of axle through back side of spindle to free it from the hub
    Wrap pipe wrench jaws around axle between axle cup and transmission housing (or intermediate shaft housing, depending on transmission)
    Tighten pipe wrench, but leave a bit of slack
    Kick pipe wrench handle so axle pops free
    Remove axle

    Reassemble

    You might want to disconnect the tie rod end from the spindle to make things easier- sometimes you have to remove it so everything can clear, sometimes you don't.

    I think the torque values are as follows, but you'll want to check a service manual to be absolutely sure:

    lower control arm to spindle (17mm) = 43lbft
    tie rod end to spindle (14mm I think) = 36lbft
    shock/damper fork to lower control arm = 36lbft ???
    spindle nut = 132lbft

    When you put the new axle in, you want to make sure that the axle bottoms out in the transmission (or intermediate shaft). There's a little circular spring clip around the end of the shaft that holds the axle in to its cup.

    Once you've replaced as many axles as I have, it becomes easy as pie- it really does take me less than half an hour on most days. $60 and some skin off your fingers is all it takes the first time- after that it's free, courtesy of AutoZone's lifetime warranty.

    :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
     
  2. pissedoffsol

    pissedoffsol RETIRED

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