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A worn or faulty wheel hub can result in wheel vibration, uneven tire wear, and odd noises. If you’ve begun to notice these symptoms, it may be time to replace the damaged wheel hub.

If you’re interested in DIY wheel hub replacement, you may find a wheel hub puller handy. This set of tools can make dislodging a stubborn hub easy.

Learn how to properly use a wheel hub puller with this guide.

wheel hub close look
A worn or faulty wheel hub can result in wheel vibration, uneven tire wear, and odd noises.

What is a Wheel Hub Puller?

The wheel hub puller is a set of tools used to remove the wheel hub from the axle without damaging the hub. It consists of a yoke or adapter, a pressure screw, a slide hammer, and lug nuts. These tools make it easier to perform wheel hub replacements at home should you go the DIY route instead of taking your vehicle to a mechanic.

How to Use a Wheel Hub Puller

The type and size of a wheel hub puller will depend on the type of wheel bearings on the vehicle. In general, these tools are used on vehicles with independent front-wheel suspensions and press-in wheel bearings.

Level of difficulty: Intermediate

Tools You’ll Need:

  • Safety glasses and gloves
  • Wheel hub puller (adapter/yoke, pressure screw, slide hammer)
  • Lug wrench
  • Torque wrench
  • Jack and jack stands
  • Wheel chocks
  • Penetrating oil

Before using the wheel hub puller kit, make sure that the hub shaft has been thoroughly doused with penetrating oil. The penetrating oil will make it easier for you to remove the wheel hub, especially if it is already covered in rust.

working on a wheel hub with a tool
A wheel hub puller is a tool you can use if you’re planning to replace your wheel hubs yourself.

Instructions:

  1. After allowing the penetrating oil to sink in, attach the adapter or the yoke to the hub.
  2. Install the lug nuts in reverse, flat side against the yoke, and tighten them.
  3. Install the pressure screw or the lead screw to the hub and tighten it by hand.
  4. Continue tightening the pressure screw with a wrench until the tip of the axle shaft is free from the hub.
  5. Remove the lead screw and replace it with the slide hammer.
  6. Fasten the slide hammer rod into the yoke and secure it with a locknut to avoid damage to the threads.
  7. Once connected, slide the hammer away from the wheel hub until the latter comes off.

What are the Symptoms of a Bad Wheel Hub?

Replacing a faulty wheel hub as soon as it shows signs of failure helps ensure the safety of your vehicle. Here are some of the common symptoms to watch out for:

  • Growling or humming noises
  • Uneven tire wear
  • Pulsation when braking
  • Active warning lights

To learn more, check out this article: Bad Wheel Hub Symptoms.

a car's wheel hub on white background
Replacing a faulty wheel hub as soon as it shows signs of failure helps ensure the safety of your vehicle.

What Causes a Wheel Hub to Fail?

Although a wheel hub rarely fails on its own, a lot of factors can cause it to wear out earlier than expected. Below are the common causes of a failing wheel hub:

Natural Wear and Tear

As your vehicle ages and gains miles, parts like the wheel hub eventually become less efficient and ultimately fail.

Improper Installation

A misaligned wheel bearing or a loose lug nut can strain the wheel hub. When components aren’t positioned the way they should be, the wheel hub suffers and bears the brunt of the stress.

a typical wheel hub of a vehicle
Although a wheel hub rarely fails on its own, a lot of factors can cause it to wear out earlier than expected.

Exposure to Contaminants

Constant exposure to harsh road conditions and contaminants can cause premature wear on the wheel hub. At the same time, it may also suffer from corrosion damage due to moisture.

Accidents

Wheel hubs may incur damage and later fail as a result of high-impact car collisions or road mishaps. The force from these accidents can break, dent, or destroy the hub assembly.

Any information provided on this Website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace consultation with a professional mechanic.

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