Chrysler Neon 1995-1999 Repair Guide

Knuckle and Spindle

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



See Figures 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5

  1. Remove the cotter pin, lock nut and spring washer. Discard the cotter pin.
  2.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 1: Remove and discard the cotter pin, then remove the lock nut and washer


WARNING
The wheel bearing will be damaged if after loosening the hub nut, the vehicle is rolled on the ground or the weight of the vehicle is allowed to be supported by the tires.

  1. With the vehicle still on the ground and the brakes applied, loosen the hub nut. The hub and halfshaft are splined together through the knuckle (bearing) and retained by the hub nut.
  2.  
  3. Raise and safely support the vehicle.
  4.  
  5. Remove the front wheel and tire assembly.
  6.  
  7. Unfasten the brake caliper-to-steering knuckle attaching bolts.
  8.  
  9. Remove the caliper from the steering knuckle. The caliper is removed by first lifting the bottom of the caliper away from the knuckle, then removing the top of the caliper out from under the steering knuckle.
  10.  
  11. Support the caliper from the strut using a suitable piece of wire. Do NOT allow the caliper to hang by the brake hose.
  12.  
  13. Remove the rotor from the front hub and bearing assembly.
  14.  
  15. Remove the nut attaching the outer tie rod end to the steering knuckle. The nut can be removed as follows:
    1. Hold the tie rod end stud with an 11 / 32 in. socket while loosening and removing the nut with a wrench.
    2.  

  16.  
  17. Separate the tie rod end from the steering knuckle using a side puller.
  18.  
  19. Remove the nut and bolt, clamping the ball joint stud, from the steering knuckle.
  20.  
  21. Separate the ball joint stud from the steering knuckle by prying down on the lower control arm. Be careful when separating the ball joint stud from the steering knuckle, so the ball joint seal does not get cut.
  22.  

Be sure not to separate the inner CV-joint during this operation. Do not let the halfshaft hang by the inner CV-joint, the halfshaft MUST be supported.

  1. Pull the steering knuckle out and away from the outer CV-joint.
  2.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 2: Pull the steering knuckle out and away from the outer CV-joint

The steering knuckle-to-strut attaching bolts are serrated and must not be turned during removal. Remove the nuts while holding the bolts stationary in the steering knuckles.

  1. Remove the 2 steering knuckle-to-strut damper clevis bracket attaching bolts. Remove the steering knuckle from the vehicle.
  2.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 3: Unfasten the 2 steering knuckle-to-strut mounting bolts

  1. The cartridge type front wheel bearing used on these vehicles is not transferable to the replacement steering knuckle. If the replacement knuckle does not come with hub and bearing, a new bearing must be installed. Installation of the new bearing must be performed before installation of the steering knuckle.
  2.  

To install:
  1. If necessary, install a new hub and bearing cartridge into the steering knuckle.
  2.  
  3. Install the steering knuckle back into the clevis bracket of the strut damper assembly. Install the strut damper-to-steering knuckle attaching bolts. The steering knuckle-to-strut bolts are serrated and must not be turned in the steering knuckle during installation. Tighten the attaching nuts to 40 ft. lbs. (54 Nm), plus an additional 1 / 4 turn.
  4.  
  5. Slide the halfshaft back into the front hub and bearing. Then, install the steering knuckle onto the ball joint stud.
  6.  
  7. Install a NEW steering knuckle-to-ball joint stud, clamp bolt and nut. Tighten the clamp bolt to 75 ft. lbs. (100 Nm).
  8.  
  9. Install the tie rod end into the steering knuckle. Start the tie rod end-to-steering knuckle attaching nut onto the stud of the tie rod end. While holding the stud of the tie rod end stationary, tighten the tie rod end-to-steering knuckle attaching nut. Then, using a crow foot wrench and 11 / 32 in. socket, tighten the tie rod end attaching nut to 40 ft. lbs. (55 Nm).
  10.  
  11. Install the brake rotor.
  12.  
  13. Install the caliper on the steering knuckle. First slide the top of the caliper under the top abutment on the steering knuckle. Then, install the bottom of the caliper against the bottom abutment of the knuckle.
  14.  
  15. Install the brake caliper attaching bolts and tighten to 2 ft. lbs. (31 Nm).
  16.  
  17. Clean all dirt, and/or foreign matter from the threads of the outer CV-joint stub axle. Install the hub nut onto the threads of the stub axle and tighten hand-tight.
  18.  
  19. With the car's brake applied, to keep the rotor from turning, tighten the hub nut to 135 ft. lbs. (183 Nm).
  20.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 4: You must have an assistant fully depress the brakes in order to tighten the hub nut

  1. Install the front wheel and tire assembly. Install the lug nuts and tighten to 100 ft. lbs. (135 Nm).
  2.  
  3. Carefully lower the vehicle.
  4.  
  5. Install the spring washer, lock nut and a new cotter pin. Wrap the cotter pin prongs tightly around the lock nut.
  6.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 5: The new cotter pin must be properly installed

  1. Take the vehicle to a reputable repair shop to have the toe checked, and adjusted if necessary.
  2.  

 
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