Changing hub on 1990 Delta 88

oldsmobile

#1

I have a 1990 Olds Delta 88 that I think needs a new right front hub/bearing (rumbling noise between 20-40 MPH). My GM book says that I need to separate the ball joint and remove the drive axle as part of this process. However, I’ve seen some online videos of the same repair on newer GM cars such as the FWD Impala, and none of those guys separated the ball joint or removed the drive axle. Is there a design difference with my older model that requires this? I just want to be prepared with the right tools before starting the job. Thanks,



-Andrew L


#2

I’m trying to remember. I don’t think you have to pull the axle but I do believe you do have to either separate the ball joint or the tie rod end to get it off. Be careful you don’t pull the axle apart when taking the hub off like I did or you’ll have to replace the axle.


#3

Yes, I believe you do have to separate the ball joint in order to get the hub off. Your car is a different design than FWD Impalas. The axle should be able to stay in the transaxle, but be careful when removing it from the hub. Do not separate the joints inside the boots and do not damage the threaded end of the shaft. An air hammer with a point tip is usually the best way to get the axle to come out of the hub.


#4

Just a follow-up on this, I did this job a few weeks ago. The hub and bearing itself was not hard at all. I did have to separate the lower ball joint and swing the knuckle out after removing the hub, just so I could get the old grease seal out of the knuckle. However, I decided to replace the ball joint while I had it apart, which proved to be a lot harder than I expected! I ended up having to take the whole control arm off and use my dad’s drill press to get the factory rivets out of the old joint. Now that I know that, next time I can skip straight to that approach instead of spending hours trying to grind the rivets out with the control arm still on the car :stuck_out_tongue:

-Andrew L


#5

Yep, been there. You are supposed to just drill through the rivets from the bottom and then punch them out, but with rust and clearance from the ground etc., I ended up taking the control arm out once too. Next time it’ll be easier with the bolts instead of the rivets. You did get the bolts facing the right direction, correct? Some call for facing up and some facing down. It’s critical but don’t know why.