REMOVAL & INSTALLATION
Except 4WD Vista
- Remove the hub center cap and loosen the halfshaft center nut. Loosen the wheel lugs.
- Raise and safely support the vehicle allowing the front suspension to hang. Remove the front wheels. Remove the under engine splash shield.
- Remove the lower ball joint and strut bar from the lower control arm.
- Drain the transaxle fluid.
- On models that are equipped with a center bearing; remove the snapring or bolts that mount the center bearing/support. Insert a prybar between the transaxle case (on the raised rib) and the halfshaft double off-set joint case (DOJ) or tripod joint (T.J.). Do not insert the prybar too deeply or the oil seal will be damaged. Move the bar to the right to withdraw the left-hand shaft; to the left to remove the right halfshaft.
If the vehicle is equipped with a tripod (T.J.) Rzeppa (R.J.) joint equipped halfshaft, be sure to hold the (transaxle side) T.J. case and pull out the shaft straight. Simply pulling the shaft out of position could cause damage to the T.J. boot or the spider assembly to slip from its case.
- Plug the transaxle case with a clean rag to prevent dirt from entering the case.
- Use a pusher/puller tool, mounted on the wheel lugs, to push the halfshaft back and out of the drive hub. Take care to prevent the spacer from falling out of place.
- Service the halfshaft as required. Install the halfshaft through the drive hub first, then install the transaxle side. Connect the strut bar and lower ball joint. Connect the center bearing on models equipped. ALWAYS install a new retaining circlip ring on the transaxle end when installing the halfshaft. Fill the transaxle with lubricant and install the lower splash shield. Mount the wheels and lower the vehicle. Tighten the wheel lugs, and tighten the halfshaft hub nut to 185 ft. lbs.
- Remove the center wheel hub. Loosen the wheel lugs and the center halfshaft nut.
- Raise and safely support the front of the vehicle with the suspension hanging.
- Remove the front wheels.
- Drain the transaxle fluid.
- Disconnect the lower ball joint from the steering knuckle.
- Remove the strut bar and the stabilizer bar from the lower arm.
- Remove the center bearing mount snapring/bolts from the bracket.
- Lightly tap the double-offset joint outer race with a wooden mallet and disconnect the cardan joint.
- Disconnect the halfshaft from the center bearing bracket.
- Use a pusher/puller tool mounted to the wheel studs and press the halfshaft from the drive hub.
- Unbolt and remove the bearing bracket.
- Use a wooden mallet and lightly tap the cardan joint yoke and remove it from the transaxle. DO NOT pry the cardan joint from the transaxle, damage can be caused to the joint and boot.
- Service the halfshaft as required. Install the cardan joint.
- Apply grease to the cardan joint contact surfaces.
- Attach a new O-ring to the oil seal retainer.
- Install the center bearing bracket. Torque the mounting to 40 ft. lbs.
- Insert the center bearing into the mounting bracket, make sure it is fully seated. Secure with the snapring bolts.
- Coat the halfshaft splines with grease and slide it into the cardan joint.
- Slide the halfshaft into the drive hub. Install the suspension components and wheel. Lower the vehicle and tighten the wheel lugs and the center halfshaft nut. Torque the nut to 188 ft. lbs.
The right side halfshaft is serviced in the same manner as those on other front wheel drive models. See the except 4WD Vista procedures.
Two types of halfshafts are used on front wheel drive models. The 1979 through 1981 models use a shaft equipped with a double offset joint (DOJ) on the transaxle side, and a Birfield joint (BJ) aon the wheel side. In 1981 a halfshaft using a Tripod joint (TJ) on the transaxle side and a Rzeppa joint (RJ) on the wheel side was introduced. 1981 and later models could be equipped with either style halfshaft.
The halfshafts are equipped with different style rubber boots for quick identification. The TJ boot has three folds as opposed to two on the DOJ boot. The RJ boot is equipped with two annular projections on the small end, while the BJ boot is smooth.
Boot kits containing grease, clamps, snapring or circlip and necessary boots are available for all joints. If joint replacement is required, all halfshafts are serviced with a DOJ or BJ kit which replaces the TJ or RJ joint.
Do not disassemble a BJ or RJ. Service them with a new joint, or clean and pack them using a boot kit. The halfshafts use a special grease! Do not add any grease other then that contained in a repair kit!Double Offset Joint
- Remove the boot band from the double offset joint (DOJ) and slide the boot away from the joint.
- Remove the circlip from the DOJ with a flat bladed tool. Remove the halfshaft from the DOJ and wipe off the grease.
- Remove the snapring that retains the inner race. Remove the inner race, cage and balls without disassembly.
- Clean the inner race, cage and balls as an assembly.
- Remove the Birfield joint boot, clean grease away and inspect the joint for wear; check the splines on both ends of the shaft for wear.
- Check the DOJ for rust, damage or wear to the outer race, inner race, cage and balls. If any parts show wear, replace with the necessary kit. It is a good idea to at least replace the boots. Kits available are; halfshaft and Birfield joint, Double offset joint, Birfield boot kit and DOJ boot kit.
- Tape the ends of the splines to prevent damage to the boots when they are installed.
- Apply gear oil to the shaft and slide the new boots on. If you are not installing a kit apply an equal amount of grease as the amount you wiped away.
- Install the parts after you have regreased them. To install the DOJ kit, use the grease supplied with the kit and apply an amount to the inner race and cage. Install the inner race and cock slightly.
- Apply grease to the balls and install them in the cage. Place the inner race on the halfshaft and install the snapring. Apply grease to the outer race and install. Install the boots and bands.
- Install the halfshaft shaft using a new retainer ring on the DOJ side.
- Remove the boot retaining bands and slide the boot away from the joint.
- Pull the axle shaft out of the TJ case. Remove the snapring that retains the spider assembly.
- Remove the spider assembly, boot and boot bands. Discard the old boot and bands. Clean all parts.
- Inspect the spider rollers for smooth rotation. Check for rusted or damaged TJ case and spider assembly.
- If TJ parts are damaged, a DOJ repair kit is required for repair.
- To assemble the old TJ, first wrap tape around the shaft splines to protect the new boot from getting cut.
- Apply grease to the shaft and slide on the boot.
- Install the spider assembly onto the shaft and install the retaining snapring.
- Apply 2 1 / 2 -3 ozs. of the supplied grease into the TJ case and install the axle shaft. Apply the rest of the grease and secure the boot.
- Install the halfshaft using a new retaining circlip ring on the transaxle side.