FWD Tech Guides '95-'07 Guides/How-To information for FWD Montes 1995-2007

Repair Guide: Drive Axle Replacement

Old 03-25-2010, 11:01 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 246
Default Drive Axle Replacement

Tools to be used:

Hammer (rubber and sledge)
wheel bearing grease or lithium grease
ball joint fork
2 metal coat hangers or stiff wire
2 arm puller
Sockets (1/2(deep and short), 19mm, 36mm(deep), and 5/8)
3in 3/8 extention
3/8 universal socket
12in 3/8 extension
spare 3/8 extention or punch of that size and length
Wrenches (18mm, 1/2)
Breaker bar
torque wrench
19mm 1/2 drive socket
pry bar
jack stands
needle nose pliers
long 3/8 ratchet for leverage

1. Loosen Lug nuts (19mm)
2. jack car up and place on jack stands
3. verify car is steady on jacks
4. remove wheels
5. using pry bar, wedge between studs and using a breaker bar break the axle nut loose (breaker bar, 36mm (deep), and pry bar)
6. loosen sway bar nut till its barely holding on to bolt (chilton does not mention this, trust me it makes the ball joint easier to remove) 1/2 size nut and bolt
7. remove 2 bolts holding brake caliper and pads to rotor, no need to separate caliper from caliper mount. it will come off as an assembly, hang with metal coat hanger or stiff wire
8. remove rotor
9. disconnect wheel speed sensor
10. remove cotter pin from ball join nut
11. remove ball joint nut (18mm wrench, its a pain)
12. separate ball joint from steering hub (ball joint separator, hammer)
13. remove axle nut rest of way
14. attempt to push axle through hub, try rubber mallet for a love tap
15. if step 14 does not work use 2 arm puller
16. rotate steering hub and remove from ball joint
17. if step 15 did not work hit axle with sledge will removed, you may use a extension or such to remove axle, DO NOT HIT HUB
18. remove axle by prying between axle housing and transmission, you may have to give a love tap with hammer to get it moving. if you can find a sliding hammer with adapter to use on this that will work, mine came out with a strong love tap
19. lubricate inside of hub
20. install axle into transmission
21. install splines into hub
22. install axle nut
23. reconnect ball joint to steering knuckle
24. tighten sway bar bolt/nut
25. tighten ball joint nut
26. insert cotter pin into ball joint nut
27. reconnect wheel sensor
28. using pry bar tighten axle nut and torque to 159 ft/lbs or consult tech manual
29. install tires, tighten lug nuts
30. lower car and tighten lug nuts to 100 ft/lbs or consult tech manual

This how in no way makes you a expert on cars or should I be held responsible for any damage you cause to your car while working on it. They are your hands and you are doing the work making you liable.

Old 03-26-2010, 09:08 PM
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Ontario
Posts: 453

i only made it to step #6 and was shaking my head nope doing it wrong buddy....can be done way easier and with less tools and damage to other parts. at least on a gen 6 and probably gen 7 and 5.
Old 03-27-2010, 11:19 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 246

so your saying there was a easier way, well i damaged no parts and i had all the tools i needed. Unless your talking about taking it to a garage to work on it.

Figured I was going to do this job on my car, and I took my time to take photo's while i was doing it.

Guess if its "not correct" in your book its not worth posting the pictures

Last edited by MonteDriver; 03-27-2010 at 11:21 AM.
Old 03-28-2010, 11:46 AM
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Ontario
Posts: 453

so your telling me you didn't tear the grease boot on the ball joint with the seperator? i don't believe you. and you don't need to touch the stabilizer link or the brakes they can stay there. and placing a pry bar between the studs is damaging to the threads of the wheel studs, to remove the axle nut. just put a punch into the slots of the rotor and let it turn till the caliper anchor is is holding it still. i change axles all the time for cv boots leaking grease its less $$ to replace an axle than to change a boot and repack the cv joint with grease.

regardless you can still change a axle that way your not wrong i was just saying it can be done easier i didn't mean to offend you. i'm sorry if i did.
Old 03-30-2010, 11:19 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 246

No I did not tear the ball joint with the fork, I actually only needed a love tap on it(probably could have just hit a pry bar and had it come loose). I did not see how to get the axole pressed out with the 2 arm puller with the brakes still on the car, being as i had to attach it to the hub. Granted i could have used a hub puller but the book recommended a 2 arm puller. and if your man enough to pull the ball joint form the steering knuckle with the swaybar and control arm installed, you must be the Hulk. I could not get the control arm to give me the room i needed, and loosening the swaybar from the control arm gave me the movement i needed (I also tried removing the forward part of the control arm and that did not help).

I would love to know your way of getting the ball joint out because I've done explorers and many other cars. I just order a balljoint also when having to disconnect them. This time I got to return them.
Old 10-08-2010, 04:08 AM
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Littleton, CO
Posts: 17

I'm planning on replacing both half shafts on Tuesday. How long should I expect this to take?
Old 10-09-2010, 02:11 AM
lougreen03's Avatar

Monte Of The Month -- March 2013
5 Year Member3 Year Member1 Year Member
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: michigan
Posts: 8,442

Breaking the axle nut loose is much easier by placing the donut spare on and lowering the car back on the ground. Especially if it's stuck on there. No slipping prybars to fight with.
Old 12-18-2010, 09:49 AM
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 4

I had the left drive axle break on me one time going about 5 mph over some train tracks, really strange!!
Old 02-12-2013, 07:55 PM
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 5

I cant seem to get my. Axle shafts to go into the tranny. What am i doing wrong
Old 11-11-2013, 04:48 PM
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Shelbyville, TN
Posts: 165

good guide! Hoping I don't have to do this, but it doesn't look like it's TOO terrible...how long did it take if you don't mind my asking?

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