Saturn Coupes/Sedans/Wagons 1991-1998 Repair Guide

Halfshafts

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



See Figures 1 through 13

  1. Remove the wheel cover or the center cap for access to the halfshaft nut. Have an assistant depress the brake pedal and loosen the front halfshaft nut. If no one is available, pump the brakes a few times so the calipers grab and hold the brake pads, then loosen the nut.
  2.  
  3. Raise the front of the vehicle and support it safely using jackstands, then remove the corresponding wheel and splash shield.
  4.  
  5. If removing the left side halfshaft or right side intermediate shaft, loosen the plug and drain the transaxle fluid into a clean container.
  6.  
  7. Remove the halfshaft nut and washer.
  8.  
  9. Remove and discard the cotter pin from the lower control arm ball joints. Back off the ball joint nut until the top of the nut is even with the top of the threads.
  10.  
  11. Use tool SA9132S or equivalent to loosen the lower control arm ball joint in the steering knuckle, then remove the nut. Do not use a wedge tool or seal damage may occur. The ball joint will be completely removed from the knuckle after the tie rod ball joint is separated.
  12.  


WARNING
The outer CV-joint for vehicles equipped with ABS contains a speed sensor ring. Use of an incorrect tool to separate the control arm from the knuckle may result in damage and loss of the ABS system.

  1. Remove the tie rod cotter pin and loosen the castle nut, then separate the tie rod end from the knuckle using Tie Rod Separator SA91100C or equivalent. Once loosened sufficiently, remove the castle nut and separate the components completely. Do not use a wedge-type tool or the seal may be damaged.
  2.  
  3. You may wish to place a cloth over the sway bar to protect the surface, then use a prybar to leverage the knuckle and separate the lower control arm ball joint. Position a cloth at the prybar contact point with the cradle, then push down on the bar and separate the ball joint from the knuckle. Make sure the knuckle does not contact and damage the ball stud seal.
  4.  
  5. While pulling the knuckle/strut assembly away from the halfshaft, pull the end of the halfshaft from the wheel hub. If difficulty is encountered, tap on the end of the halfshaft using a block of wood and a hammer. Support the halfshaft assembly using a length of mechanic' wire or with a jackstand.
  6.  
  7. If removing the right halfshaft, disconnect the halfshaft from the intermediate shaft by tapping the inner joint with a hammer and a block of wood. Remove the halfshaft from the vehicle.
  8.  
  9. If removing the left halfshaft, disconnect the halfshaft by inserting a large prybar into the space between the inner joint and transaxle. Pry the halfshaft from the transaxle, being careful not to contact and damage the transaxle oil seal. Remove the halfshaft from the vehicle.
  10.  

To install:
  1. If installing the left side halfshaft, install SA91112T or equivalent transaxle seal protector. Install the halfshaft into the transaxle; after the splines have safely passed the transaxle oil seal, remove the seal protector and fully seat the halfshaft.
  2.  
  3. If installing the right side halfshaft, insert the shaft onto the intermediate shaft and push firmly to engage the circlip. Install the shaft assembly into the transaxle.
  4.  
  5. Insert the outer end of the halfshaft into the wheel hub. Be careful not to damage the CV-joint boot.
  6.  
  7. Thoroughly clean and lubricate the ball joint stud threads of the lower control arm and tie rod end.
  8.  
  9. Install the lower control arm ball stud to the steering knuckle, then install the nut, but do not tighten at this time.
  10.  
  11. Attach the tie rod end to the steering knuckle, then install the nut. Tighten the nut to 33 ft. lbs. (45 Nm) and install a new cotter pin. If necessary, tighten the nut additionally, but do not back it off to insert the cotter pin.
  12.  
  13. Tighten the lower control arm ball stud nut to 55 ft. lbs. (75 Nm); tighten additionally if necessary to align the holes, then install a new cotter pin.
  14.  
  15. Install the washer and a new halfshaft nut, then tighten the nut to 148 ft. lbs. (200 Nm).
  16.  
  17. If equipped with ABS, inspect the wheel speed sensor signal for proper operation.
  18.  
  19. Install the inner splash shield and wheel.
  20.  
  21. Lower the vehicle and properly fill the transaxle.
  22.  
  23. Check and adjust the front end alignment as necessary.
  24.  



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Fig. Fig. 1: With the vehicle firmly on the ground, have an assistant depress the brake pedal and loosen the front halfshaft nut



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Fig. Fig. 2: After removing the wheel, remove the inner fender splash shield



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Fig. Fig. 3: If removing the left halfshaft or the intermediate shaft, first drain the transaxle fluid



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Fig. Fig. 4: Use tool SA9132S or equivalent to separate the ball joint from the lower control arm



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Fig. Fig. 5: Once the ball joint has been separated from the steering knuckle, remove the tie rod end cotter pin and castle nut



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Fig. Fig. 6: Use a separator tool to remove the tie rod end from the steering knuckle



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Fig. Fig. 7: Check the tie rod end and rubber boot for rips or other damage



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Fig. Fig. 8: Use a prybar to apply leverage and separate the control arm ball joint from the steering knuckle



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Fig. Fig. 9: If difficulty is encountered, tap on the end of the halfshaft using a block of wood and a hammer



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Fig. Fig. 10: While turning the steering knuckle outward, pull out the halfshaft



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Fig. Fig. 11: Insert a prybar between the halfshaft and transaxle and carefully pry the shaft away



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Fig. Fig. 12: Use both hands to support the joints of the halfshaft and carefully remove it from the vehicle



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Fig. Fig. 13: Failure to use a seal protector may allow the halfshaft splines to damage the transaxle seal, causing a need for replacement

CV-JOINTS OVERHAUL



Disassembly

See Figures 14, 15, 16, 17, 18 and 19

  1. Using soft metal or wood to protect the shaft, clamp the halfshaft to a workbench in a vise.
  2.  
  3. Remove and service the CV-joint from the end of the halfshaft, as follows:
    1. If the halfshaft has a damaged deflector ring, use a brass drift and hammer to remove the damaged component from the CV outer race.
    2.  
    3. Either cut the outer seal retaining clamps using a side cutter or use a flat bladed screwdriver to disengage the outer band from the inner band at the retaining peg, then discard the clamp.
    4.  
    5. Separate the joint seal from the CV-joint race at the large diameter, then slide the seal away from the joint, along the halfshaft. Wipe any excess grease from the CV inner race.
    6.  
    7. Use a suitable pair of snapring pliers to spread the ears of the inner race retaining ring, then remove the CV-joint assembly from the shaft.
    8.  
    9. Remove the seal from the halfshaft.
    10.  
    11. Use a brass drift and gently tap on the cage until it is cocked and the first ball may be removed. Repeat this to remove the remaining balls.
    12.  
    13. When the balls are removed, pivot the cage and inner race at a 90 degree angle to the center line of the outer race. The cage windows should align with the lands of the outer race, then lift the cage and inner race.
    14.  
    15. Rotate the inner race up and out of the cage.
    16.  
    17. Thoroughly clean and degrease all CV-joint parts and allow them to dry before assembly.
    18.  

  4.  
  5. Remove and service the tri-pot joint and joint seal from the halfshaft' other end, as follows:
    1. Cut the eared seal retaining clamp on the tri-pot seal using a side cutter, then discard the clamp.
    2.  
    3. Remove and discard the earless clamp using a small, flat bladed screwdriver.
    4.  
    5. Separate the seal from the tri-pot housing at the large diameter, then slide the seal away from the joint along the halfshaft. Wipe away excess grease from the face of the tri-pot spider and the inside of the housing.
    6.  
    7. Remove the tri-pot housing from the spider and shaft.
    8.  
    9. Spread the spacer ring using tool SA9198C or equivalent, and slide the spacer ring, along with the tri-pot spider, back on the halfshaft as shown.
    10.  
    11. Carefully remove the spider retaining ring from the halfshaft groove, and slide the spider assembly off the shaft. Use care not to lose the tri-pot balls and needle rollers which may separate from the spider trunions.
    12.  
    13. Remove the seal from the halfshaft.
    14.  
    15. Thoroughly clean and degrease the housing and allow it to dry prior to assembly.

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      Fig. Fig. 14: Exploded view of the halfshaft assemblies



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      Fig. Fig. 15: Use soft metal or wood to protect the halfshaft from the vise



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      Fig. Fig. 16: Use a brass drift and hammer to remove the deflector ring



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      Fig. Fig. 17: Use tool SA9198C or equivalent to remove the race retaining ring



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      Fig. Fig. 18: Use a brass drift to cock the cage and remove the balls from the CV-joint



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      Fig. Fig. 19: Slide the spacer ring and spider back along the halfshaft, then remove the retaining ring

    16.  

  6.  

Assembly

See Figures 20, 21, 22 and 23

  1. Install the tri-pot joint and seal, as follows:
    1. Inspect the tri-pot joint components for unusual wear, cracks or damage and replace, as necessary. Clean the shaft; if rust is present in the seal mounting grooves, use a wire brush.
    2.  
    3. Install the small seal retaining clamp on the neck of the seal, but do not crimp.
    4.  
    5. Slide the seal onto the shaft and locate the neck of the seal on the halfshaft seal groove.
    6.  
    7. Crimp the retaining clamp as illustrated, using tool SA9203C or equivalent. Measure the dimension of Section A and recrimp, if necessary.
    8.  
    9. Install the spacer ring on the shaft and position it beyond the retaining groove, then install the spider, also past the retaining groove.
    10.  
    11. Using SA9198 or an equivalent tool, install the retaining ring to the halfshaft ring groove, then slide the tri-pot spider towards the end of the shaft and seat the spacer ring in the axle groove.
    12.  
    13. Place about 1 / 2 of the grease from the kit inside the seal and use the remainder to repack the tri-pot housing.
    14.  
    15. Install the convolute retainer over the seal. The retainer must be in position when the joint is assembled or seal damage may result.
    16.  
    17. Position the retaining clamp around the large diameter of the seal, then slide the tri-pot housing over the tri-pot assembly on the shaft.
    18.  
    19. Slide the large diameter of the seal over the outside of the tri-pot housing and locate the seal lip in the housing groove. The seal must not be dimpled or stretched. If necessary, carefully insert a thin, flat and blunt tool between the large seal opening and outer race to equalize pressure, then seat the seal by hand and remove the tool.
    20.  
    21. Position the tri-pot assembly at the proper dimensions, as illustrated, then install the large seal retaining clamp around the seal. Close the clamp using tool SA9161C or equivalent.
    22.  

  2.  
  3. Assemble and install the outer CV-joint and seal, as follows:
    1. Inspect the CV-joint parts for any signs of unusual wear, cracks or damage and replace the joint assembly, if necessary.
    2.  
    3. Put a light coat of grease on the inner and outer race grooves, then insert and rotate the inner race into the cage.
    4.  
    5. Install the cage and inner race into the outer race with the windows of the cage aligned with the lines of the outer race.
    6.  
    7. Use a brass drift to gently cock the cage/race and install the balls.
    8.  
    9. If removed, install the race retaining ring into the inner race.
    10.  
    11. Pack the assembled joint using the premeasured amount of grease from the service kit.
    12.  
    13. Install the small retaining clamp on the neck of the new seal, then slide the seal onto the shaft and locate the seal neck in the shaft seal groove.
    14.  
    15. Crimp the seal retaining ring using SA9203C or an equivalent crimping tool. A proper crimp will share the same dimensions of the tri-pot seal retaining ring crimp shown earlier.
    16.  
    17. Place about 1 / 2 of the provided grease inside the seal, then repack the CV-joint using the remaining grease.
    18.  
    19. Position the large seal retaining clamp around the seal.
    20.  
    21. Make sure the retaining ring side of the inner race is facing the halfshaft, then push the CV-joint onto the shaft until the ring is seated in the shaft groove.
    22.  
    23. Slide the seal large diameter over the outside of the CV-joint race and locate the lip of the seal in the housing groove. The seal must not be dimpled or stretched. If necessary, carefully insert a thin, flat and blunt tool between the large seal opening and outer race to equalize pressure, then seat the seal by hand and remove the tool.
    24.  
    25. Crimp the retaining clamp using tool SA9203C or equivalent and compare the crimp dimensions to the clamp crimped earlier. Recrimp if necessary to achieve the proper dimension.
    26.  
    27. If removed, position the deflecting ring at the CV-joint outer race. Use tool SA9160 or equivalent, along with a M20 x 1.0 nut, to tighten the tool until the deflector bottoms against the shoulder of the CV-joint outer race.
    28.  

  4.  
  5. Remove the shaft assembly from the vise and install it in the vehicle.
  6.  



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Fig. Fig. 20: Crimp the seal retaining clamp according to the dimensions shown in Section A



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Fig. Fig. 21: Install the spacer ring and spider past the retaining groove, then install the retaining ring



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Fig. Fig. 22: Make sure the tri-pot seal is properly positioned before installing the large seal retaining clamp



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Fig. Fig. 23: Using an installation tool to bottom the CV-joint deflector ring

 
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