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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm planning to change the right-front wheel bearing on my 02 4wd Trailblazer this weekend, and I have one question that I have not been able to find an answer to. Do I need to replace the half shaft axle nut, or can the existing nut be reused? Haynes manual says not to reuse the old nut and to use a new one. Parts guy at NAPA says that if a new nut was needed it would usually be in the box with the hub, and there is no new nut in the box. He said that it was OK to reuse the nut on GM vehicles. So, to the many people who have already done this repair, which is it?

Thanks for your assistance, Bill.
 

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2003 gmc envoy_slt
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7,190 Posts
The 2003 service manual says nothing about throwing out the old nut or installing a new one. I doubt there would be a change in one year.:m2:
 

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2002 olds bravada
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41 Posts
I've re-used same nut

I've changed three wheel bearings now (passenger side twice), and re-used the nut every time.

Everything is still intact.

Although: I should have replaced the driver's side bearing again when I replaced the passenger side for the second time, because my dealer is telling me it is getting loose.

I bought low-budget, non-OEM bearings to replace my OEM ones, and within 14 months one of them was bad - with routine driving.

Hard to rule it out completely, but shortly after I got in an accident, the bearings started to whine. Just a data point, not necessarily cause and effect.

I have the bearing change down to less than two hours per side now. You'll need an 18mm (or 17, I forget which) deep-well socket, and a 6" extension bar will make the job a lot easier. I used a 3-foot lead pipe slid down over my 1/2 ratchet to break the bolts loose, and I borrowed the axle nut socket from AutoZone (for free).
 

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2003 chevy trailblazer_ls
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1,236 Posts
I reuse them once or twice. After that, I generally look for a new one, but if you have it apart that many times, chances are you are in line for a new or rebuild axle shaft anyway by then.

Most manuals for most front-drive vehicles recommend replacement of the front axle nut every time. I'm not really sure why that is -- all it does is hold the axle shaft in place so it doesn't walk around side-to-side. It carries no real load, etc. Some use interference threads, so re-using them can cause the nuts to get loose, but I can't remember ever seeing one missing from anything, and I've probably serviced several hundred front axles in my life. Probably more of a manufacturer/insurance liability thing than a real parts failure.
 

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2004 gmc envoy_sle_xuv
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38 Posts
I would add that be careful around the CV boot

I got the bright idea to use my impact w/universal sockets removing the 3 bolts that hold the bearing in. It really made things easier:duh:. I didn't notice at the time that the socket had a rolled pin protruding out the side. After making a 200 mile round trip, my wife was looking to see where the new bearing was and asked..."why was all the grease covering alot of the area I was working on". I looked and the boot has 3 nicks in it from the socket I used :hissy:. I'm now waiting in the halfshaft to come from Rockauto......
 
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