In this video I bring you along as I have tackle the most feared job of all rust belt mechanics. The dreaded Subaru rear wheel bearing. These things are perhaps the most seized bearing you can change. They rank right up there with the infamous Ford Explorer rear bearing. I'll show you the trick I use to get the job done in a short time and with minimum crying,
-Enjoy!
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All right folks. One of the most feared jobs in the Auto industry. The infamous Subaru Rear wheel bearing I Have no idea if that's a true statement, but for today's video, we're going to assume it is in the: Northeast guys have quit your job. Instead of doing these, there's rumor that some guys have quit become cosmetologists I Don't know if that's true either, but I've heard the rumor.

So today I'm going to end those fears for you. Show you a trick Memaw Taught me. But first we have to get to the bearings. We're going to pull the brakes off.

a customer request new brakes in the rear as well as both rear wheel bearings. Whoa Man down, let's see what we can do. Show you the key to success with these things. Hopefully it might blow up in our face.

if it does blow up in our face. you'll be right there along with us in a while. I Think it's mean boy. we're gonna take the parking brakes off.

Maybe There we go. Oh right on the ground man. all deliveries are showing up all right now. We're going to take it right off the cable here.

just like so. peel the bolts out. We're almost done folks. I'm gonna reach up here on the back side 14 mm I'm going to want to give it a tap, it'll swivel and we got four of those little guys to take out.

There We are folks. last. Bolt I'm gonna tell you folks I Have tried every method known to man to get these things off presses and pullers and you name it, it doesn't work. These things are stuck like I Think these things even in Florida are stuck.

They go into the knuckle quite a long ways and unfortunately there's nothing to press against here. So if you're using our the Lyle tool that we have that full time here, it's got the forcing screw you can push against the you know caliper bracket. I Wouldn't suggest it because you're just gonna break it. You're going to need a whole knee assembly by the time you're done.

Um, use the actual tools. Last Chance slash First try remover The trick I've used where you remove the bolt. you know the wheel bolt and you know, stick a forcing screw through there. All it does is you know, pop the Hub face off I've done it where I've left the axle nut on doing that method, you really take a chance of breaking the speed sensor when you do that.

it kind of works, but usually it ruins all the bolts and you're really super pissed off by the time it's off. So I'm going to show you a method that I find that works is the easiest, but first thing I do is get this Hub face off. The other thing that folks will say you'll see down in the comments is that they put the bolts in from the back side and then just you know tap on them and then the The Hub comes off. It's not going to happen I Promise you on these Subarus that will not work.

It works on a lot of cases and that's a great way to do it. But on these, you're going to end up buying four new bolts and you're just going to push the threads right out. You gotta trust me folks, these things are stuck all right. So give that a couple whacks, get it right out of your way, and then you're going to want to go break out the welder.
I'm gonna show you, a lot of people ain't gonna like this, but I'm all about just getting the job done so you have to get past it coming here with the old drill and a burr. Get that a little polish and then we're gonna grab a bolt. Whatever I did with it here. I'll find it.

Stand by and here's the plan. I take a half inch bolt out of the bolt bin. It'd be better if he had one that was threaded all the way. but in this case this one's not.

We're going to stick the bolt up here with these nuts. These nuts. we're gonna weld it onto the bearing and then we're gonna stick another nut under here. Under this nut.

you'll see why. Trust me. This is a tried and true method that I've I've used and it works. So the problem? I Guess I Guess what we're ultimately doing is we're just trying to get the bearing housing to crack out of the knuckle and that's all you need to do is you just need to get it to pop.

Uh, if you're inclined to just stick a single nut up here and weld it, you can't get enough booger on it to keep it from Just Snapping off it just torques down falls off. So I found in my limited experience that welding two of them keeps it from getting out of keeps it from getting all cattywampus I guess and then sticking another one under here just fills the space. You could probably use a smaller nut under there, but I'd grab three half inches so that's what we're going to use. You'll understand here in a minute and you'll thank me.

especially if you work in the shop and you've turning your two-week notice over doing one of these bearings. And the best part is, you don't even have to be a YouTube certified welder to do this because it's you know it's going in the trash anyways, so nobody can really criticize how crappy of a welder you are. so it's kind of a win-win I'm going to bat this one all the way out here. I'm gonna hold this one here flat.

I'm gonna give it a little tack, just kind of hold it in place I might have it down too far. Nope, not too bad, not too bad at all. You don't need a lot of thread because we're only going to give it just a short push so we'll stick that one under there. I'll try again I Want to push down on that a little bit here? Dang it all the heck.

This is a story of my life right now. This is real world under there. a little more, but that's good enough. but we're going for it.

We're done fiddling. Give that a little tack right there, a little tack right there, and then tack the nut to the nut and that's it folks. Now this thing's gonna be kind of jammed in there. Don't sweat it, just leave it in there.

When you start welding, it's going to be moving and it doesn't matter. We just need to be able to force it against the backing plate that's behind here. There's a really small area that you can push, and ideally it'd be nice to have two, but you'll see we're only going to need one. It's pretty cave.
Spanish I Tell you what, you'll want to give me a little hug when you do one of these. Let's see here: get the old helmet on the welding Center is nuclear, so set it as high as it goes. Just fry this little fella. Oh foreign.

We're going to give that a go. I'm not super happy how I've got the nut welded on the inside, but it might be enough to hold it. We have to do a little cool down there for a half a second fella. too close.

We'll grab the three-quarter circuit and a half inch hook and Dougie will get some Leroy Jethro and Gibbs get it. We'll put that on there. We'll put it around things. it doesn't really matter.

you don't really need pants. repeat because it's not going to do squat. Okay, here we go fellas. Nope.

I knew she wasn't stuck. good. Gosh dang it. Let's uh, let's try this again.

I can't really get in there I should have welded that one first. Let me see if I can't booger it a little bit more. We're off kilter right now so it may not work I might have to do round two, but that's that's what happens sometimes. Let's see how it would.

All right, if you can't weld good weld a lot. That's what my motto is. Oh no, you did it. Thank you.

It's not where I want it. This one isn't going to work. I bet. Work like a charm like a dream come over here dreaming.

Then you want to break out the dog because now we got our cracked sideways here. These are pretty pretty precise fit. thank you. Say what? Who just won the war? you want to go to warm blocking see? Got the hammer right here.

Oh Subaru wheel bearing. What? That's how you win son and that really is it folks to go here and clean out the Rocks These suckers go in this backing plate a long ways. Well, plus they go through the backing plate which is so this has a you know, hard metal piece behind it so it's stuck in that they're stuck in the canuckle. It's awful foreign so it's not too bad a job folks.

For the DIY at home, maybe maybe not this. This might be one bearing I would tell the folks at home you probably shouldn't do. and if you go to a shop, you probably should ask them if they have any experience removing them. Um, you know the last thing you want to do is get slapped with a you know, eight hour bill because they just couldn't get it apart and end up doing the whole knuckle and everything.

They are really awful to do anybody that's done one you know it's pretty terrible unless you know the tricks and they're walking the park baby. Foreign specs here. there's that. Oh, let's see another game and you don't really have to worry about the mark you put on the backing plate.

It's pretty insignificant here. Let me, uh, get some brake clean. I'm gonna hit that in a while. We're gonna take some of our silly ramek touch all the spots here.
Touch them twice, hang our shoe, find the pin, find a retainer through the back side. I did see on the internet I Posted a picture of me doing one of these one day welding and take one of these off. It was on the Facebook maybe on the entity. Somebody mentioned that soup that they make a puller for these.

So I looked it up, watch some guy use it. It takes about a half a day to get it on and hooked up. and then I think it was a tune of about nine hundred dollars. Foreign because this only costs a couple dollars.

you know, providing you have a welder. I Suppose maybe in the comment section, you can see what as a Diy-er um, what you guys have done to do these I'd be curious to know. All right. Am I going the right way with this thing? Yes sir.

Got my spring foot down back in on the parking brake lever. Here we go. It doesn't go that way. That's the way it's going.

now. we should be good though. There's someone whose shoes fall off. That's all.

that's all. Oh I got my finger. Mm-hmm that looks right right? I Think this thing's seized up? Yes sir, this side's not. Let me get this.

Broke Free She's free now boys. We'll slide that little guy up in there because we are putting some new brakes on it while we're back here. I Might be able to adjust them. Perfect.

Let's see if we have any fingerprints on it. We'll get rid of the evidence. not that anybody uses their parking brakes, but we'll make sure it works when it leaves. That's it baby.

I Got to give it the customary to flip around. it's very important one in the next one. oh my. God that'll hold that the rubbers was missing there already out of parking brake.

Let's get a bracket. Let's slide that little fella. Now don't just go slapping on your rusty crappy old bracket. You got to clean out all the rust where the bad ears go.

You guys seen this. Do it a million times. So I didn't show you I don't show you on the million in one I'm gonna come through and torque those specs. but make sure your uh, you know your pins are free.

the pads they gotta. they gotta move in and out easy. I'm talking like boom. just barely touch them like watching like a pinky finger that if I wanted to take your caliper, push it back with the pushy back tool, clean the Piston face, lubricate the metal to metal surfaces.

Slip that baby on. Hey, it's that guy. It's okay. now we're gonna take and uh, we're gonna snug these up.

We'll come back through like I say We'll torque everything to factory specs so you don't have to worry about that. We still have to tighten up our axle hub nut there prior to doing that though. we're going to reach through our little star adjuster. make sure you made a mental note of which way it needed to turn and we're going to wind it all the way up.
We want our little parking brake shoes come out to the hit right there. tight as mud. We're gonna back it off a few clips. Yeah, come on.

Make sure your spring is wound up in your star adjuster there. Yes sir. Easy. Oh I Have to get a smaller screwdriver here.

Sticker in there. Do this one-handed All that danger. danger. There we go.

We got one. seven, Seven ftlbs. Now before I Put the wheel on. Make sure you peen down your axle nut, down into the groove or the axle to keep her from backing off.

A free tip for you if the OG Groove lines up here and there's nothing left to pin over, take the axle nut off this side and swap it for the one on the other side. and chances are, they don't line up in the same exact spot. So, or buy a new axle not like you're supposed to, one or the other. All right folks, that's it.

Rear wheel bearing on your Subaru Doing it the easy way. We'll say we'll use our little claw hands and make these quotes because it's not super easy because you have to have a welder. If you're a Diyer, you might not have a welder. and if you don't, just go buy one.

It might be cheaper than paying somebody to do your wheel bearing on your Subaru I Don't know that for a fact, but these things are a mother lover. I've tried as I mentioned earlier in the video, all the tricks, all the different polars and finagling things you can get on here to try to get these things to break loose and you know, double air hammering Bolts from the back I mean you name it. Tried making up swear words and they still don't come off and that's the method I ended up using one time in a fit of rage and I'm like oh wow, that worked pretty well I have to remember that and then ever since then when these come in, that's just my go-to I don't try anything else first because they're super duper stuck. We grab a couple nuts and a bolt and we weld them up.

I'm so freaking childish and we weld them up on there and boom, you know Bob's your uncle so you guys seen how we do it I'd be curious to know how you guys have done it in the comments section in regards to: Subaru rear wheel bearing set is and uh, how your shop gets them off and uh, that's it. While you're down there, tell me that story. Subscribe to insty the Facebook ring the bell, get the notifications. you guys know what to do at this point and just remember viewers.

If I can do it, you can do it. Thanks for watching foreign.

97 thoughts on “Removing a stuck subaru rear wheel bearing”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars mushroomhill says:

    I saw a tool off amazon that you bolt on and basically whack down with a sledgehammer to free up the bearing. (Hub Buster) Have you tried/heard of it? I wouldn't mind getting a welder to learn how to weld but the sledgehammer tool seems to have high success from what I've seen.

  2. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Kent Babcock says:

    Home gamer here. I did LR with my son last weekend. We used a hub shocker and did not disassemble the backing plate. It took us a couple hours with numerous coffee breaks. We did pull the speed sensor out of the hub

  3. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Abdelmajid Amal says:

    😊😊😊

  4. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars xminguy says:

    This video convinced me to pay someone to do it lol. As a DIYer, you have to choose your combats. This war ain't mine. I'll save money on easier stuff

  5. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars PH says:

    Great technique and excellent video.
    I have absolutely no need to change a wheel bearing on a Subaru or on any car for that matter, yet I watched the entire video and found it very therapeutic, so thanks for posting it. AI must have reached a new level of intelligence – the YouTube algorithm seems to have correctly anticipated what I needed. 😊

  6. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars hothatchpa says:

    Clever. Saving this video.

  7. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jerseyhighlander says:

    Well, that was an absolute first… never seen those nitrile welding gloves before. Where do you order them?

  8. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Robert McKenzie says:

    Hot nuts to the rescue! Whoda think? 😄

  9. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jay McNabb says:

    Spot on! Spent the better part of a day trying to get the rear hub off a 2014 Forester. Then followed Eric's process with success
    . Cheers!

  10. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Angela Prater says:

    Sweet job.

  11. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Patrick S says:

    Best mechanic I’ve seen on YouTube, unreal

  12. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Steve Palenicek says:

    They just pound on them with big hammer at Subaru 😂nice method

  13. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Steve Palenicek says:

    Nice

  14. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Cardoc 4406 says:

    Done many of these using every method you could think of except that.Last one I did was in my driveway for my son in law after I retired. Took about 2 hours and he was amazed how frozen it was. I have 3 welders and never thought of using them. Nice work/idea.

  15. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Who Cares says:

    IMHO it would be easier and faster just to take off the knuckle and hit the hub assembly from the inside.
    Or, as we usually do – just hit the hub on the loosened bolts and it comes off.

  16. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars SubUrban Cowboy says:

    Some PBblaster a week before you do the job is also helpful, but in your situation, that isn't possible. I love this, and now that I have a welder, I will do that next time I see a problem like that. I would suggest at least grade 8 hardware, and lots of anti-seize on re-assembly.

  17. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars mike johnson says:

    The infamous Subaru rear wheel bearing. It's NOT a repair…it's a maintenance item. (2006 Forester XT) I would seriously suggest replacing the rear strut as well.

  18. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Brian Kintz says:

    As mechanic in oregon who works on all types of junk I can confirm that these buggers are stuck here too. Not as bad as you got it of course but stuck none the less. I always appreciate a rust belt expertise. Gives me new way to approach things

  19. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars john stefanick says:

    I followed this just as shown, it went just like yours, initial pressure broke the front weld, I added more weld and turned the bolt and it started coming out. I would leave pressure on the bolt and smack the bearing housing with a 1 lb hammer and give the bolt a couple more turns. Smack turn smack turn, this was a little scary but it came out pretty straight forward. Big Thank You!

  20. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars William Hanna says:

    Excellent yes exactly asyou did it !

  21. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Nick says:

    Key and peele reference love it

  22. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars isaac tapia says:

    I want to see some more BIG NASTY action .498k style

  23. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Slimmy 696 Jim says:

    You made a creativen comment the younger guys may not have thought about 😊 switch the big nuts from side to side to allow the lock feature to be used

  24. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars isaac tapia says:

    Maaaan all those Subaru bearings get stuck even here in California, away from the ocean, we sand on our roads not salt. and still those bearings are rusted in so good it will bend a puller.

    I tighten the puller until it's almost starting to bend and then stand to the side of it and hit the wheel bearing with a hammer and usually I'll just walk away for half a day and it will suddenly

  25. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Tyler Schlag says:

    It’s a fact. This job is a nightmare

  26. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Rasmus Race says:

    Hi! Amazing work 👌 I've got a 07 european forester with shot rear bearings, but having a hard time finding the correct part! I noticed theres a difference between the hub assembly for the drum and the discbrake ones. Anyone have the partsnumber for the drum one?

  27. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Tyler miller says:

    Yeaah. I had to pull the knuckles. Press out the cv axle in the press. They was stuck of course. Then proceed to the bearings. Reassemble. West Virginia here an I haven’t seen an easy one yet.

  28. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars WhatsForDinner says:

    That was oddly therapeutic and eminently satisfying to watch. Love your channel!

  29. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Bradstradamus says:

    this one earns a sub.

  30. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jim Venizelos says:

    Ah, 06 F150 exhaust manifolds are much worse

  31. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jim Venizelos says:

    Good tip! But ya should have warned us to wear our welding hoods. My retinas are screaming.

  32. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars ROBERT R Penny says:

    1 kg of C4 works not bad but should probably do it in parking lot

  33. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Patrick C. says:

    I just take a 10 # sledge and drop it hard (i.e. smash it) in the flange where the wheel studs go on, rather than pulling it out horizontally like you did, I bash down on it vertically and they pretty much come right off and its very satisfying! LOL 19 year old subaru in Vermont

  34. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Clem says:

    Just wondering if it would be possible to slide hammer the whole hub off with the axle nut attached after removing the four retaining bolts? Maybe there wouldnt be enough play in the axle to allow this though and I am sure you wouldn't want to pull the axle from the differential or damage the cv joints.

  35. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Unblurredlines says:

    This was so fine there's barely words 👍🔧🙏
    Thanks much.

  36. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars chronicblazer84 says:

    Air hammer the flange, it comes out easy.

  37. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Ted_Cruz's_ghost says:

    What grease did you use on the parking brake shoes. Is it just a white lithium. Back in the day when I was doing brakes we had a special kind of grease but I don't remember what it was called or who made it.

  38. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Billy C says:

    Id like to ask, how many of you know what happens when you ground directly on a bearing housing.

    Answer: the current will arc across the balls and races. Thereby inducing erosion from electrical discharge. What you end up with is micro pitting and the bearing is toast. In an application where the bearing is being replaced then its redundant but just thought id fill you in on some hidden phenomenon that occur without you realizing. I've seen guys weld exhausts up while oddly choosing a wheel/driveline component / casing as a ground. This goes for transfer cases, transmissions, etc. Anything with a ball bearing support provision. Pass your current through any of them, and the balls and races within are guaranteed to have little black/brown burnt pits from electrical erosion. Might need a magnifying glass to see it but itll cause bearing failure in short time. Hope this helps make some of you better techs. The worst was when i saw a guy welding on a really nice expensice lathe. Bye bye headstock lol

  39. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Hola! markthepcdoc says:

    SO HOLD ON JUST A MINUTE. The Subaru has both caliper AND drum brakes?????? WTH!

  40. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Brian Day says:

    Wish i saw this 4 hours ago DIYing it myself. Ended up using a flat chisel and was able to slowly move the whole assembly between the backing plat and the rest of the parts that were staying

  41. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Slimmy 696 Jim says:

    Thanks so much for showing people your method, but I bet the younger guys have less patience for your method , but it's much better than A BIGGER HAMMER METHOD😅😅😅

  42. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Rich Vandervoort says:

    I was able to get my bearing out of the knuckle with just a slide hammer. However I ended up replacing the axle shaft because it is still stuck in the bearing. This is a WA state car. I did heat the besring with a oxy acetylene torch until the grease boiled out. I had a three jaw puller on the hub flange and I was hitting it with a sledge hammer. I still have the axle shaft stuck in the bearing in my shop.

  43. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Sailing Odyssey says:

    Slick. Spent a day beating two of them out of my outback…and guess what, they are due again. The bolt and mig are the deal…thanks. I can do that. Thanks.

  44. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Attila Went says:

    Great work! Greets from Germany!

  45. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Chris H says:

    Rented a slide hammer from a local parts store and used two of the bolts to hold the adapter to the hub. And spent at least an hour as a 300lb man hammering it as hard as I physically could until it broke loose. Ruined the two bolts so obviously had to replace them.

  46. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Ke Bo says:

    As a former ‘98 Impreza GTT and a ‘99 Impreza GTT owner and DIY’er i can say that the timing belt is no joke as well 🤣🤣 Just like a “simple” 2 minute spark plug job. Thats not applied to a Subaru Boxer engine 😂

  47. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Scott Liput says:

    Ok, so I have a wheel bearing so stuck that this doesn’t even work…. Any suggestions? I’m thinking about taking the whole knuckle off and soaking it in a tub of evaporust until it comes apart