88 Toyota 4x4 Front Rotor Replacement

My Son was recently given a nice 88 Toyota 4x4 for his first car. We have some work to do on it to get it ready for him to take on the road.

We purchased new rotors and pads for the front. I have done this task a 100 times or more BUT I have NEVER seen a more of a pain in the bung then this. We have a “Shop Manual” from the local auto parts store that isnt much of a help.

ANYONE have any idea what the proper procedure for removing these rotors from this truck?

You’re probably confronted with what are called “TRAPPED” rotors. Trapped rotors usually require the disassembly of the hub assembly in order to replace them. So look in the section of the manual about front bearing/hub service.


Why yes! I’m right in the middle of it right now!

It’s a pain because you have to take the locking hubs and the wheel bearings apart to do it. First off, you’ll need to order yourself a 54mm socket-- I got everything all torn down and was confronted by this giant nut that needs a special socket you usually can’t buy locally.

Okay, first off, you need to take the locking hubs off. It’s easiest to do this with the truck still on the ground. With them in “free”, you take the 10mm bolts off the front cover and remove it. Then there will be a 12mm bolt on the end of the axle you need to take out. After then you need to remove the 6 12mm nuts that hold the hub onto the rotor. Now the tricky part-- there’s these little cone washers that squeeze between the studs on the nuts you just removed and the hub. The manual says to tap on the studs with a brass punch-- I was able to get them out by gently tapping on the hub next to them. After they all come off you can take the rest of the hub off.

Next you should lift up the truck, take the wheel off and remove the caliper. Simple enough, two bolts on the back and the brake line. Next, back to the bearings. There’s a snapring on the end of the axle-shaft you need to pry out and then take the big washer out. Next, use that big socket you bought to take the big 54mm wheel bearing retaining nut out-- there’s a little tabbed washer behind it you may have to bend the tabs back on. After than, you should be able to slide the bearing/rotor assembly off-- unless you’re replacing them, be careful not to drop any of the bearings. After that, there’s some bolts that hold the actual rotor on. And then you’re done! Installation is reverse of removal, although you need to be sure that the bearings are all back together, clean and repacked and that you get the torque on the big bearing retaining nut correct.

Fwew! A far cry from “remove caliper. rotor will slide off.” The bulk of this job will be described under wheel bearings in your service manual. I’ve found a few good online step-by-steps I’ll try and post here in a bit.

Good Luck!

THANK YOU GREASYJACK … if you post those links I would be so thankful to you. Thanks for the 54mm socket. shew … I want my 70 chev back !!!

and Tester … I have those P.I.T.A. trapped rotors on my colorado and I have NO IDEA why they did it that way … idiot engineers !!!

Okay, here we go:

Here’s a good one on taking the hub and bearings apart: http://jaw.iinet.net.au/cars/4runner/hub.html

Here’s another one: http://www.4x4wire.com/toyota/maintenance/front_end/

Also, my public library website has an okay service manual on it-- I think you can get the same information from the autozone page. Now if I can only figure out how I’m going to get the darn CV axle out…

Good Luck!

GreasyJack gets Car Talk BLOG AWARD for 2008 !!

Thank you !!! Those websites helped us alot. i apperciate you letting us know about those sites.

Thanks agian !!!

Let me tell you that those cone WASHERS are a PAIN TO GET OFF !!! It took me and my son four weekends to get those things off. I finally got mad and went to Autozone and loaned a stud removal kit and broke three studs on the left front then I got mad and hit it with a rubber mallet then they finally poped out of place. But they are sure a pain to get off!!! I had to work on it for three weekends then WOW ! on the fourth they finally poped out !


Coat them in anti-seize lubricant when you’re putting them back on-- it’ll make your life much easier down the road.

Thanks !!! I will keep that in mind.