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Wheel bearing replacement question.

Old 09-12-2020, 12:37 PM
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Default Wheel bearing replacement question.

I am coining to be doing a bearing and race replacement on my boat trailer. I know the rear seals are leaking because I have grease forming on the inside of the rims.
I pulled the caps off to take a look at what I would be dealing with and noticed the zirk fitting is at the end of the spindle. All the parts I’ve looked at have spindles with no grease fittings. I pumped some grease in the fitting and got water and old grease out for now.
Nubie question, where does the grease come out inside the bearings when pumped in from this fitting.
just trying to increase my knowledge before I pull the hub and get started.

thanks for any info I can get.
Old 09-12-2020, 12:51 PM
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seems you would need the saame type replacement (with zerk) mine has a rubber cap and grease comes out the enges of the cap kinda around the zerk.
have you ever replaced races? maybe easier to get a new hub ?
Old 09-12-2020, 01:20 PM
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I’m hoping the races and bearings are good yet. May just have to replace the rear seals. If they are scored or need replacing I have a friend who can knock them out and put new races in. I can then take it from there.

I was just wondering where the grease comes out of the spindle when you put grease in.
Old 09-12-2020, 01:43 PM
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It comes out the front.
Old 09-12-2020, 06:14 PM
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The spindle is “gun barrel” drilled. The grease comes out between the rear seal and the inboard bearing which pushes all the old grease out thru the the hole in the dust cover.

If you have already pushed water and nasty grease out of your hub, it’s highly likely your bearings are toast. Before you replace the rear seals make sure the seal riding surfaces are “baby bottom” smooth. (16-32 rms)
Old 09-12-2020, 06:34 PM
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Thank you. That answered my question. That is why I’m replacing everything. I figured water was getting thru the rear seals. Previous owner probable pushed too much grease through the zirk and blew the rear seals out.
Old 09-12-2020, 06:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Fullthrottle52 View Post
Thank you. That answered my question. That is why I’m replacing everything. I figured water was getting thru the rear seals. Previous owner probable pushed too much grease through the zirk and blew the rear seals out.

That's not right. You can and should put lots of grease through the fitting. I put half a tube in every one of my hubs with an electric grease gun when I do it.
Old 09-13-2020, 05:56 AM
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Originally Posted by cajflynn View Post
That's not right. You can and should put lots of grease through the fitting. I put half a tube in every one of my hubs with an electric grease gun when I do it.
CAJ is right, it’s easier for the grease to puke out the front than to blow the seal. A little grease leakage under the seal is good, because it lubes the seal lip and reduces wear.
Old 09-13-2020, 06:37 AM
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Sometimes, it's hard to tell which comments are the correct ones when searching the internet for advice. The guy above worked for one of the best bearing companies in the world for a very long time. His humble approach belies his knowledge.
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Old 09-13-2020, 09:32 PM
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Look at the area on the spindle that the seal actually makes contact with...if it is rough and pitted, there is a saver type cup that will work....
Old 09-15-2020, 01:58 PM
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Originally Posted by cajflynn View Post
That's not right. You can and should put lots of grease through the fitting. I put half a tube in every one of my hubs with an electric grease gun when I do it.
As an aside to the OP, do you jack up the trailer and rotate the tire as you add grease? I have read this in the maintenance manual. I am curious from someone who has serviced a lot of trailers, does this happen in practice?
Old 09-15-2020, 08:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Little_Giant View Post
As an aside to the OP, do you jack up the trailer and rotate the tire as you add grease? I have read this in the maintenance manual. I am curious from someone who has serviced a lot of trailers, does this happen in practice?
I've done it but most of the time I don't. It's not really possible with a big boat on the trailer.
Old 09-20-2020, 11:48 AM
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Originally Posted by slickster View Post
Look at the area on the spindle that the seal actually makes contact with...if it is rough and pitted, there is a saver type cup that will work....
My trailer axle had the Stainless Steel speedy sleeves , but rust grew up under it and caused the seals to fail.

But they are a good way to repair spindles that are pitted
Old 09-21-2020, 08:16 AM
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Here is a snapshot of one example of a center axle fed system.


Old 09-21-2020, 11:21 AM
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I have not pulled my hubs off yet because I decided to make this a colder weather project. I don’t pull my boat far so should be ok for a few more weeks.

I did notice from the above picture that there are 3 steps on this spindle. I was thinking mine had 2. One for the bearings and one for the grease seal. I’ll have to wait and see what mine looks like when I get it off. Thanks for the pic. Helps me understand where the grease is coming out of the spindle.
Old 09-21-2020, 12:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Fullthrottle52 View Post
I have not pulled my hubs off yet because I decided to make this a colder weather project. I don’t pull my boat far so should be ok for a few more weeks.

I did notice from the above picture that there are 3 steps on this spindle. I was thinking mine had 2. One for the bearings and one for the grease seal. I’ll have to wait and see what mine looks like when I get it off. Thanks for the pic. Helps me understand where the grease is coming out of the spindle.
Another tip is to add grease when the wheels & grease are warm, like right after a trip. The grease will flow easier and there's less chance you'll push any past the rear seals.

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