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2002 Forester S
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11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm changing the front right wheel bearing on a 2004 Forester. The ball joints popped right out, but when I went to pull the knuckle free it felt as if the output shaft pulled out from the diff and I can't seem to separate the knuckle from the axle. Did I pull the shaft out of the diff? Shouldn't the axle pull out of the knuckle without excessive force? Any assistance would be greatly appreciated. All the videos suggest that the axle easily pulls out of the knuckle.

TIA.

Tom
 

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2002 Forester S
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Okay, I went to Autozone and rented a hub puller and got the axle out of the hub. Now to problem 2, if you pull on the axle is it possible to pull it out of the diff? If so, what's the fix for that?

Tom
 

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2002 Forester S
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks. What is that pulls out? I thought there was a pin which keeps the CV joint at the diff attached. Did something pull out of the diff or did the joint come apart?

Tom
 

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There is a C-clip at the end of the inner shaft on the axle into the differential.

Most people use a long bar and strike the metal edge of the axle shaft to remove it quickly.

Alternatively you can use a pry bar and pry it out.

There is also a factory tool that wedges itself between the diff and axle.

Once the c-clip is release make sure to support the shaft to prevent damage to the output side seal on the differential.
 

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2002 Forester S
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the explanation. I pulled on my unintentionally as I was just trying to remove the axle from the knuckle. Can I just punch it back in or give it a rap with a hammer to rest it in the c-clip?

Tom
 

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2010 2.5X Manual
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311 Posts
The roll pin keeps the CV joint attached to the stub-shaft. It's the stub-shaft that pulls out of the diff.
 

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I install them by hand. Put a little bit of oil or vasoline on the c-clip then center it up, then slam the outter shaft into the stub by hand. Rarely takes much force if everything is lined up. I can do it with one hand for reference.

Again, mind the seal. Inspect it first.

When you reinstall the outer shaft into the hub clean the splines off and lubricate the splines and base to help with install and prevent noise. Also helps with torquing accuracy.
 

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2002 Forester S
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for the advise, I kept rotating the axle and pushing by hand and it suddenly popped back in place. Everything buttoned up and the forester is back on the road w/o the bearing noise.

Tom
 
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