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2001 Forester Automatic
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138 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
2001 Forester L Drum Brakes Rear
135,000
I think all the wheel bearings have been replaced at least once. I had to do the passenger side front last year. Lots of issues. The wheel bearing was so disintegrated the brake disc moved more than an inch when wiggled via 6 and 12 o'clock check. I ended up getting a junk yard knuckle and having a new bearing pressed in. BLA BLA BLA. The car is making a noise that sounds a lot like another bearing going. Wiggle test on all 4 wheels does not show play. I want to try the heat test so I'm going to get a laser thermomerter. Are they accurate/any good? Should I just aim at the center of the wheel? I'm going to pop the little hub caps and aim right at the axle nut. Is this a decent procedure? Can I expect to see a signifigant difference in temp at the bad wheel bearing? I will drive the car at leat 10 miles before testing.
Thanks for any and all advise.
 

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2016 Forester Limited CVT
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92 Posts
I had a rear bearing go out on my 2001 recently. It was just on its way out, and I could feel a big difference in hub temps just with my hand. I think temp is a good indication of bearing issues....

Just my $.02
 

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I oddly had no temp differences on either of my failed wheel bearings. I had one that failed as bad as yours with over an inch of play, it ended up being the hub was worn where the inner race of the bearing sits, had no noises or temp difference until it started vibrating and got to the point that you could see the slop when jacked up (it suddenly got very bad over about 1,000 miles while it had been basically fine before that).
 

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2001 Forester Automatic
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138 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I oddly had no temp differences on either of my failed wheel bearings. I had one that failed as bad as yours with over an inch of play, it ended up being the hub was worn where the inner race of the bearing sits, had no noises or temp difference until it started vibrating and got to the point that you could see the slop when jacked up (it suddenly got very bad over about 1,000 miles while it had been basically fine before that).
The problems I observerd were related to brakes. There wasn't a whole lot of noise, just a weird feeling in the front (I don't drive it much, it belongs to my wife) but the brakes sure felt terrible. After checking the brakes I realized that the rotor was pushing the pad back into the caliper way to much due to the wobble. I was amazed the whole thing didn't seize up. The bearing was virtually powder when I took everything apart. Have to say Suby hasn't proven to be a real good car. This one has had a lot of serious problems and it was bought new by a maintenance freak. Got a GM truck with 335K that has been a lot less trouble keeping on the road.
 

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1999 Forester
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Try the CV joints!

I drive about 10 miles of dirt road several times a week. Wet weather is a bear - my driveway is about a mile long downhill. It's like a carnival ride. Uphill is always a breeze. The only time my Forester fails is when I slide off the road and some of the wheels aren't touching the ground.

The power train less axles is unbeatable. The rest of the car is a piece of crap. The struts to CV boot clearance is about a half inch. Mud and rocks tear the boot and rip off the boot clamp. Dirt embeds itself between the CV joint and the wheel bearing seal and destroys the seal. Dirt gets into the CV joint and the bearing and ... $200 in aftermarket parts.

I've replaced all struts, two rear bearings, and numerous axles. Made a simple jig to press the bearings out of hubs. Long bolt removal - use torch; use never-seize when replacing.

Small price for the reliability in foul conditions.

Good luck.
 
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