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2005 Forester L.L.Bean Ed auto
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all, 4th post ever.
2005 LL Bean. 96k on the clock. Head gasket and head refresher in 2016 after leak found. ($2K.) Has always been a strong runner. Passed inspection yesterday but was given "a couple months" on this bearing. Noticeable humming while tooling around town. Was told it's a bear of a job; YouTube has confirmed. I don't possess the tools and possibly not the patience to tackle it myself. Quote was $760 plus whatever other worms fall out of the can we would open. Junking it is the last and worst option. Parting it out is a close 2nd.
I've skimmed and bookmarked a few threads from here about it for reference. I have a few places around to get quotes, so I guess I'm looking for assurance that biting the bullet and coughing up the cash is worth it.
Added intrigue: there's a Subie specialist nearby (who did the gasket) that I personally am ok with, but sold a lemon Outback to a relative.
Is that quote what I should expect? Do I, with novice mechanical skills, basic tools, a couple of willing helpers and a big garage, attempt this after renting the litany of needed tools?
I'll hang up and listen. :p
 

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2014 Forester 2.5i
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301 Posts
with the shortage of new cars out there all car prices have gone up. so one way or another you're going to take a shot on this. guy i know sold his 06 outback with manual trans for 8 grand. first day he listed it.
 

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2019 Crosstrek 2018 Forester XT
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14,789 Posts
That is maybe 200+ high. Do not try it yourself.
 

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2005 Forester L.L.Bean Ed auto
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6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
with the shortage of new cars out there all car prices have gone up. so one way or another you're going to take a shot on this. guy i know sold his 06 outback with manual trans for 8 grand. first day he listed it.
If I sell, fix then sell or sell with repair needed info?
 

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2005 Forester L.L.Bean Ed auto
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6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Get another quote. Had my left rear done for $320 including parts at an independent shop in Rochester (Turning Leaf) last year.
Nice. I have a lead on a shop @ Little Valley. I'll gladly pay what you did and a bit more. Fingers crossed
 

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246 Posts
I have an '08 and had to replace the R Rear wheel bearing.
Found out it's a lot easier and recommended as the OEM fix to replace the knuckle/hub/bearing assembly rather than try to R&R just the bearing itself.
Just be careful not to break lock flanges where ebrake goes into the backing plate.
rr_knuckle-hub-bearing.jpg

 

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2019 Forester, 2012 STi, 2008 Forester (Sold)
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140 Posts
Yes, seems high. Had the RR done on my 08 by a specialist for around $3-400 USD which included new bushings as they had to be torched out. Original quote form a local shop was double that as they really didn't want to deal with it.

If I recall, the bearing had to be pressed in so not likely something you can do yourself.
 

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2004 Forester XS 5MT
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1,059 Posts
JUST had both rears done with Dorman loaded units. So far so good. $700 with veterans discount from O' Reillys and $650 installed. I can hear again!
 

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Do I, with novice mechanical skills, basic tools, a couple of willing helpers and a big garage, attempt this after renting the litany of needed tools?
Definitely not if replacing just the bearing itself but OK if replacing the hub complete with bearing as suggested by @08subfor
 

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2005 Forester X and XT Manual and Auto
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1,066 Posts
I tackled it myself too and was pretty concerned, but have since done a bunch. If you get the tools for around $200, the bearings can be had for $50 each, then you can do it cheaply next time. It's not easy, but if you take your time and follow the steps no part of it is "pros only" - assuming you have the slide hammer, puller set, and maybe one of the claw type pullers, in case the hub comes out with the inner race stuck on (probably will). I'd say if you have some experience wrenching on cars, it's worth a try. There's a first time for everyone.
 

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2004 FXT
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19 Posts
I say tackle it yourself. Sounded like you will have help. To save a step, buy a new hub. You can rent/borrow a bearing press kit or buy a kit at harbor freight. Rent/borrow a slide hammer from the auto parts shop. The worst case scenario is if the lateral link bolt is seized. But can presoak with pb blaster or wd40 ahead of time to help it along. If you have the drive, you can tackle it. Don't give up before you begin. You can do it!
 

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2015 Forester 2.5i Limited CVT
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1,491 Posts
With a 3 ton press, it can be DIYd easy. You do need the correct size pressing sleeves. Tons of YT videos on this.
 

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@cjcopp -- with bearing/hub/knuckle assembly (~$230), all I needed was a slide hammer to get hub off and a spring compresser (AutoZone rents them for free with deposit) to make disassembly easier and to get bottom strut bolts aligned on install.
 
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2011 Subaru Forester
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1,363 Posts
You can buy a good quality Timken or SKF rear bearing for roughly $50 + a retaining clip for a few bucks, the rest of the job is labor. In my books, it's a max two-hour job for a good mechanic. I don't see what is unique about replacing it on the Subaru. The setup is the same on many Nissan, Toyota, and other vehicles. I suspect a bearing replacement kit would allow you or someone to change it without removing the knuckle assembly.
Yup here is a guy who does it that way. You can watch him press it in in the second part of the video.

 

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2015 Forester 2.5i Limited CVT
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1,491 Posts
Why do you need a spring compressor?
If you mark the camber bolt, a line, you can get close. Mark it at 90 degrees. Straight up. You will still need a wheel alignment.

Not sure how good that Rock Auto part is.
The knuckle, hub from Subaru is about $300
With an oem back plate, you get close to $400

So I understand your reasoning. But, big but here. If the bearings fail again in 25k miles, and you have to do it again. ???
 

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2004 Forester XS 5MT
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1,059 Posts
Mine failed at about 25 k worth of driving it over 4-ish years. If I had time and it wasnt my DD I might have tackled it in spare time. Dormans have the backing plate but it was touching a tad the caliper mount (rust) whizzy wheel took care of it. Shop was concerned as the left side a smidge warmer after test drive and initially first drive to work (35 min, some hwy) had it, with an IR thermometer 20 degrees F higher on day one and 10 degrees higher the rest of the week. Had it up to over 80 MPH no issues noise etc. My OCD looks at the trailing arms/Lateral links with disdain now since those are still original, gonna have to fix that!
I may also disable hill holder as well, dont need that going south to add to any of this.
 

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Longevity -- I bought the car with 160k miles. Changed RR assembly and installed an ATF cooler wtihin the first 2000 miles of owning it.
The '08 now has 187k miles and no problem, so far, with the wheel bearing in question.
 

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If the bearings fail again in 25k miles, and you have to do it again. ???
Indeed - it is so easy to get it wrong and there have been many stories over the years about early failure after replacement. I am skilled at vehicle repairs and I would not attempt to replace the bearing itself. I had a right-rear replaced at a Subie workshop in 2009 and it's still good; they had a hell of a job getting the old bearing out.
 

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2015 Forester
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208 Posts
Theseus161 I have gotten lots of parts from Rock Auto. I will say I watch brands, as some I've never heard of and look like they might be questionable. I have bought the exact same parts from Rock as some local houses carry for half the price. Sometimes a better part for half the price. Including shipping. I will say having to pay shipping back for cores is annoying and in a few instances not worth it.
 
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