No power to front passenger wheel after wheel bearing replacement

I have decent mechanical ability and recently took off both front wheel knuckles to have the wheel bearings pressed out and new ones back in. I own a 2006 Mazdaspeed 6 with 106,000 miles. I didn’t have much problem getting the wheel hub knuckles off and back on and after they were reinstalled with all bolts tightened, I took the car for a test drive and right away knew something was very wrong. I heard the sound of the drive-shaft CV joint boot twisting and there was a serious lack of power. The engine speed did not correspond with the vehicle speed. Continuing a little ways, small metal noises could be heard from the passenger side wheel. The only indication I had of some problem from that side was during the reinstallation of the drive shaft into the wheel hub. The CV joint dust boot was fully extended and didn’t compress like it should. I put the car back on jacks, took off the wheel and saw that the drive-shaft boot was all twisted. It was obvious that power was going through the drive-shaft past the first CV joint, but no power was making it past the second CV joint to the wheel.

Knowing that something was seriously wrong, I had it towed to Firestone down the road. The mechanic removed the boot and said that the drive-shaft had broke. I also inspected this and saw that the drive-shaft was not connected at the wheel hub.

The morning of, the car was working just fine without problems. The tool I used to remove the drive shaft from the wheel hub was a Seven Ton Reversible Puller which I rented from O’Reilly’s Auto store. The drive shaft was so stuck on, that I had to use an impact wrench to turn the bolt. Could the highly forced removal of the drive-shaft from the wheel hub shatter the CV joint on the drive-shaft?

You just need to install an new axle shaft on it complete with new CV joints. I over extended a CV shaft once when pulling it out to replace a wheel bearing. Once its pulled apart, no point trying to put it back together again-just get a rebuilt for about $100.

Thanks for the reply. The folks at Firestone state it should cost $300-$350. How is the drive-shaft removed from the transmission?

Normally it is a splined shaft with a C clip on the end. It pulls out with a sharp tug or a slide hammer, and pushes back in place again with a rap. Gotta make sure it goes back in place though.

@Sledgehammer this is the proper tool. A lot easier to set up than that 3 jaw puller which the parts store loaned you.

I have used this tool many times and it’s never let me down.

This is the tool for removing the axle shaft from the trans

Odd u can remove knuckle but not figure out how to than remove axle? U were SO close. Axle was hanging down loose after knuckle is gone. I assume shop did axle since car was towed there and on lift? U obviously did not tell them to not do anything and than tow it home?

Shop did the axel and I got taken hard. I was running out of time and all the research I had done to this point didn’t include the possibility of this problem. The cost of replacing the drive-train was ridiculous $340, but I was running out of time and stores were going to be closed until Monday, two days too late as I need my car for work. Thanks for the info @db4690. My confidence has gone back up.

Story: I did one of these on my car after work one night in the underground garage. On my 50 mile commute, the CV race came apart. As long as I kept going forward it still hung together for the last 5 miles. In the garage, I had to back up a little to get into my stall, and thats when the ball bearings fell out and could go no farther.

So my options were tow it 50 miles home, tow it to a local repair place, or fix it myself. Towing was a problem because of low clearance access, cost, and the wasted time and hassle. So I called the wife, listed all the tools I needed and where they were, and she was able to find everything plus pick up the axle I ordered. So at 5:00 I changed out of my suit and started working. Took a couple hours but got it done and drove it home.

Ironic. U changed bearing but ruined axle in process. So shop took knuckle off again to remove axle. At least splined axle was free to slide out of new bearing now.