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Wheel Bearing Washer...which way?


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Time for the front wheel bearing cleaning, packing and adjusting maintenance.

Noticed the washer behind the castle nut has a flat side and a curved side on the small key tab.

I never noticed this during prior servicing. That was years ago, and I didn't have the luxury of time to notice such details.

Do you install the washer flat side in (against the bearing) or curved side in?  Or does it matter?? 








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Washers get that shape from the punching process.  For regular washers, I use the round side up if I want them to look nice and round side down if I want to keep from marring the surface under them.  I agree with Toby, that it doesn't matter in this case, but (like Mike) I'd probably put it back the way it was, using the bearing marks on the one face as a guide... just because I enjoy that sort of consistency.



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1 hour ago, Mikesmalaga72 said:

Noticing the bearing witness marks on the flat side

Yes...I noticed that too. 

But just because there are witness marks on the flat side doesn't necessarily confirm it was installed correctly.

I'm curious to see the orientation of the washer on the passenger side ... stay tuned.



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OK...a closer look confirms what Son of Marty said!

The slot in the axel for the washer key is curved at the inner end. This allows the washer to sit flush against the bearing when the nut is tightened to 22 - 24 lb. ft. to "set" the bearings. After the "set", the nut is loosened, and the bearing end play is adjusted to spec. 

Manual calls for >0.002", but also says to be sure the washer can move. I ended up with about 0.0035".

If the flat side was installed facing inward, it might not seat the bearing correctly. There should be NO witness marks on the washer!

So much for intuition...I've done it wrong all these years.☹️




PS: I thought that curved edge on the washer tab looked too deliberate... not just a result of stamping. The washer also has a chamfered edge that flows with the bearing angle when installed correctly.









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