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Discussion Starter #1
At 68,000 miles the original right rear wheel bearing failed on my '99. I had it replaced with the upgraded roller bearing. Now, at 95k, it has failed again. I expected more than 27,000 miles from the bearing, especially because it is supposed to be better than the original. Anybody else have problems with the newer bearings? Is this just a fluke?

Also, the mechanic discovered an oil leak at the front of the engine, which he says may be the oil pump seal or camshaft seals. Since I haven't yet replaced the timing belt, I told him to replace the belts, water pump, and all seals. Did I miss anything?

Ted
 

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2014 Impreza Ltd CVT
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3,319 Posts
Was it a Subaru Service Dept that did this? Reason I ask is the replacement bearing comes smeared in grease. Some mechanics assume this is a pre-packed bearing and just install it. Not Correct !!
That grease was just to protect the bearing during shipping and storage. There is at least 1 Subaru TSB that addresses this reminding the mechanic to remove that grease and repack it with the proper grease.
This has led to early failure on replacement bearings.....sorry..only the messenger.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
TSB #03-50-02, on the New Procedure for Replacing Rear Wheel Bearings,is the one that specifies the roller bearing replacement for the original caged balls. This TSB says, (in bold type) "The new genuine Subaru wheel bearings are not to be packed with grease of any kind. The bearing is ready to install out of the box."

Ted
 

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Discussion Starter #5
That's what it says. The service manager at my dealer told me that re-packing the new bearings has led to premature failure.

There doesn't look like enough grease on them, but it works.

Ted
 

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1998 Forester "S" lifted. Bog-o-matic
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2,006 Posts
SOA says to not repack the new bearings.


Has the Hub or Knuckle been replaced?

If the bearing was bad for a while it can damage both of those, and if not corrected will lead to bearing failure.
 

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The Modfather
2019 Impreza 5dr Sport - Manual
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8,053 Posts
go to www.endwrench.com

search the archives because there are a few PDFs on the subject.
 

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2017 Outback 3.6R Limited High Torque CVT
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In my experience, they do not repack the bearings but they do add grease to them before installation. Wheel bearings are a common problem but I find it unusal that it has went bad after such a short amount of time. What types of conditions do you normally drive in? Do you frequesntly drive through extremely dusty/dirty conditions? I would take a visit to the dealer and ask their opinion because they may be willing to help you out with this one.

Jackie
Annapolis Subaru
 

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The Modfather
2019 Impreza 5dr Sport - Manual
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The problem becomes if it's not done properly the wheel bearing housing gets deformed and the new one goes bad in short order. Back in 99 - 00 there was a rash of bearings going bad one after another. I've seen people compalin they had 3 -4 replaced (this is in the rear)

Look here:

Wheel Bearing Replacement
Feature
Spring 2003
To reduce the possibility of repeat premature failures, Subaru has introduced a new procedure to service the rear wheel bearings on several vehicles. The new procedures are detailed here.

http://endwrench.com/images/pdfs/WheelBearing.pdf
 
D

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Subaru Wheel Bearing Problem

I need help. I bought my 1999 Subaru Forester in Oct. 1999. It had 22,000miles on it. I bought it from the dealership. It now has 92,000. I have replaced the same right rear wheel bearing four times at least. It goes out every 1.5 to 2 yrs. When they replaced it before, it was under warranty. I had the 5 yr extended warranty. It just went out again, but this time it cost me $410 to fix it. I told them it is not normal for the same wheel bearing to go out this often, the right one. The left one has yet to go. I told them I did not think I should pay for this because this is not normal, and if I have to come in another 1.5-2 yrs. I will really be angry. That is approximately a wheel bearing every 14,000 miles. I am already very angry. I talked to Subaru of America and they said they could not help me and referred me to Subaru Hawaii... a Ron Callihan. I sent him everything I had and he said he will not honor this as it is normal wear and tear. I have also talked to a mechanic in town and he said "this is not normal". Has anyone else had this problem, and can you help me fight this thing. Diane
 

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2015 Forester XT Touring CVT
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crazy question, ive replaced both front wheel bearings, i now have a humming noise that sounds like its coming from the front left and its only arou 50mpg. ive tried 2 different sets of tires and had them both rebalanced and its does it with both. im assuming its another front wheel bearing but im not sure. what does a rear wheel bearing failure sound like?
 

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98 Forester...what else
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I need help. I bought my 1999 Subaru Forester in Oct. 1999. It had 22,000miles on it. I bought it from the dealership. It now has 92,000. I have replaced the same right rear wheel bearing four times at least. It goes out every 1.5 to 2 yrs. When they replaced it before, it was under warranty. I had the 5 yr extended warranty. It just went out again, but this time it cost me $410 to fix it. I told them it is not normal for the same wheel bearing to go out this often, the right one. The left one has yet to go. I told them I did not think I should pay for this because this is not normal, and if I have to come in another 1.5-2 yrs. I will really be angry. That is approximately a wheel bearing every 14,000 miles. I am already very angry. I talked to Subaru of America and they said they could not help me and referred me to Subaru Hawaii... a Ron Callihan. I sent him everything I had and he said he will not honor this as it is normal wear and tear. I have also talked to a mechanic in town and he said "this is not normal". Has anyone else had this problem, and can you help me fight this thing. Diane
Any competent mechanic would have replaced the hub by this time. I'm certain that the issue lies with the deformation of the hub assembly, and is not an issue of the bearing itself.

I hate to say it, but it's an extra couple hundred dollars, but once it gets done, you won't have that problem again.

BTW, we've replaced both front bearings, and both times we've wound up replacing the hub at the same time.
 

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2015 Forester XT Touring CVT
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its good to hear at least im not the only one with front wheel bearing problems....i havent had a rear one yet and im on 122k miles so knock on wood.
 

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Subaru said that improper installation was the cause of most bearing problems. Repeated failures with either ball or roller bearing can be caused by a distorted bearing carrier OR improper installation. My 2000 Forester with ball bearings is doing fine at 112,000 miles.
 

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2004 FXT / 2020 Outback Onyx XT
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I talked to Subaru of America and they said they could not help me and referred me to Subaru Hawaii... a Ron Callihan.
Who is Ron Callihan? Is he the District Service Operations Manager for Subaru Hawaii? I would call SoA back and tell them that you want to escalate it higher at Subaru Hawaii. They should at least work something out with you.

Also, check the regional forums here and at nasioc.com. Some kama'aina knowledge might help.

-Dennis
 

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04 forester 2.5X
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my 04 forester's right rear wheel bearing went out at only 37000 miles...
got the to throw in a service since i bought it with 30000 and they said everything was good, but they never did the 30K service, they did it yesterday for free...
 

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2000 Forester L AWD auto
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91 Posts
ok so I did a search for 'rear wheel bearing' and have decided tha's exactly the problem with my Forester. I took it to the stealership yesterday to get the hesitation problem that I thought was just bad plug wires diagnosed, and while there they told me that the bearing in the back was very noisy and should be replaced -- 550.00 plus tax!!!! Ok so are these bearings made out of gold or am I paying for the mechanic to fix it AND paying for him to get a 'personal escort' for the night??!! 550 bucks WTH!!! Has anyone else taken their wheel bearing problem to a non subie repair shop? Any idea how much cheaper it might be? On a side note the hestitation that they diagnosed as a bad ignition coil and bad plug wires, has completely stopped!! Ever since they ripped the car apart to check it out and then put it gack together, the thing runs fine, well except for the lovely humming of the wheel bearing. Anyone know of a good place to take the subie to get the demons exorcised??!! Not sure why the hesitation would all of a sudden just stop. They quoted me 315 plus tax to replace the coil and the plug wires. The wires I JUST PUT ON 2 WEEKS AGO, BRAND SPANKING NEW!! I called the local bone yard and found a used coil for 75 bucks, gonna buy it just in case the hesitation returns. Thanks all for letting me vent!!
 

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2001 forester
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I had the rear wheel bearings replaced at around 40K miles. Now at 60K, there is renewed whining from back there.
My neighbor has had it done twice in 120K miles.
Both are 2001 foresters.
is there/ was there ever a recall?
What is the best way to proceed, fix it once for all, ...?
 

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2018 Forester XT 6spd/8spd/Many Gears CVT
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1,532 Posts
I think I know what is happening and I used to see it often when I was working at a dealership. Most people who do wheel bearings do not pack the bearings correctly. Many think that the grease that comes with the bearings is the bearing grease when in fact it is there to prevent the metal from rusting during transport across the pond. I recommend finding a shop that uses bearing grease. We replaced the bearings on our 02WRX track car with a high quality bearing grease and it has been fine for the past 5 or 6 track events. Before we were blowing them out every other track event.

Regards,
Gary
 

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I had a r w b go at 70,000. Dealership was prohibitive, warranty expired. Took it to my local guy, half the price, no probs. He described it as a dead straightforward bearing replacement. Cost me half what the dealer wanted.
 
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