: Wheel Bearings Packed, "Hot to Touch"
08-09-2009, 08:51 PM
Recently had wheel bearings packed and replaced on my trailer. When driving at 70 mph in 80 degree weather the bearing buddy hub is hot enough when gripped that it is very uncomfortable after holding on for 5 seconds or so.
Previous to having new bearings installed and when driving under the same conditions one hub would be only very slightly warm and the other warm.
Bearing job was done by a Mercury dealer so would assume that the bearing nut is not too tight. Or should I back off the nut one notch.
08-09-2009, 10:50 PM
Since you did not do it yourself,don't assume anything. Jack it up,inspect it yourself. Spin the wheel,make sure it's not binding and runs smooth. Make sure there is neither too little play,causing a bind,or too much causing a wobble. Adjust as needed. I like to tighten the nut pretty tight first to make sure everything is seated,then back off slightly to the correct endplay.
08-10-2009, 05:26 AM
Yes- don't assume the job was done correctly- the evidence says otherwise. The spindle nut should have been tightened firmly with Channellocks to seat the bearings in the races, then loosened, then re-tightened no more than finger-tight, then loosened (never tightened) enough to allow insertion of the cotter pin- at least that's how I was taught to do it. A little free play is necessary. None leads to over-heated bearings.
If you find the nut over-tightened, contact the dealer whose shop did the work. Ideally, they will want to re-do the job at their expense, replacing any damaged parts.
The hubs should never be too warm to touch. If you have brakes on your trailer also make sure they are not the source of the problem. A buddy had a brake dragging and it got way hot.
08-11-2009, 05:00 AM
Jacket up the trailer and spun the wheels. They did rotate for a couple of revolutions. Backed off the nut one notch to finger tight and they rotated freely. No wobble or play when trying to shake the wheel side to side.
So, I'm hoping no damage to the bearings. The dealer who did the bearing work is 500 miles away from home.
Thanks for the replys!
08-11-2009, 05:48 AM
I wouldn't drive 1000 miles round trip to have that dealer re-do the work, either. Experiences like this are why I do that and many other jobs myself- that's one mechanic who will always re-do a botched job for free. :)
It sounds like that trailer was towed in excess of 500 miles with overtightened hubs, but only a bit overtightened. You said the hubs were too warm for comfort, which isn't good, but isn't horrible either. Horrible is when the hub burns your fingers and grease is running out of it. Keep an eye on hub temperature and free-play this summer. Whoever you have repack the bearings this fall, advise him in advance of the problem with the previous repacking job so he'll take some extra care inspecting the bearing and race condition.
If it was my trailer, I'd pull the hubs apart and inspect the bearings now, but that's just me. I'm the kind of guy who checks the tire pressure and fluid levels on a brand new car at time of delivery- but then I often find they are wrong- stories for another day.
08-11-2009, 06:13 AM
I did some work on my oil bath hubs earlier this year. I'm a bit anal when it comes to hubs and running at a warmer temp then I like. After I put them together one side was running about in my estimation 3 or 4 times warmer then the other side. This by just feel of course. I jacked up the warmer side and gave the wheel a spin by hand and it spun around with no resistance but I still backed the nut off a bit just so I could feel the slightest liitle clunk when I pulled the wheel towards myself, installed the cotter pin. It now runs the exact same temperature as the other wheel.
I agree with the posts on correctly setting the torque.
I will regrease a hub, then use a socket and torque wrench to tighten down to about 50 ft lbs.
This will completely seat the bearings etc.
Then, I back off the nut until the nut is completely free.
I then tighten up the nut finger tight, and back it off to the first castellation on the nut.
I then check the hub and make sure that I can get just a bit of side to side play.
The thing that happens is that as the trailer begans to move, the hub will heat slightly - the parts will expand and virtually all of the play will go away, with no binding on the bearings.
I generally figure that you will typically get about a 10-15 degree heating over ambient temperature under high speed towing conditions.
Never hot to the touch.
08-24-2009, 10:43 PM
hi. I thought i had a problem once with heat. then my wife said "you know the sun has been shining on that tire all afternoon! oh that is why the tire and hub were a lot warmer than the other side. keep that in mind