Front wheel bearing replacement advice needed ?

Steve Scalmanini sscalmanini at
Mon Oct 30 05:08:28 EST 2006

I have to replace a front wheel bearing ASAP.  Is the best way to remove the entire strut, leaving all the alignment nuts at the top in place and tight, and bring it to a shop for removal and replacement?  (I don't have easy access to a press.)  Or is there a tool I should buy/rent/borrow to do it on the car?  If the former, do shops typically have the correct plates (with partial circular cutouts to fit around the bearing) to press against or are any special plates required (that should be gotten from VW/Audi) so as to not damage the strut housing?  

Are the removal and replacement procedures opposite?  I.e., remove bearing first from strut housing by pushing on outer race, then from hub by pulling on outer race; install into strut housing first by pressing on outer race, then press the hub into the inner race (which would have to be directly supported from the back side of the strut housing so as to not damage the bearing.)  Bentley indicates the opposite installation process but it doesn't make sense to me to press the bearing onto the hub first; how would you avoid damaging the bearing when pressing the hub (with the bearing already on it) into the strut housing?  (Unless the bearing presses onto the hub until it hits the back of the wheel-bolt flange, so you could press on the flange which directly contacts the inner race when pressing them together into the housing.  Is this the case?)  

Any advice appreciated.  


Steve Scalmanini 
Ukiah, CA 

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