DIY: CV Axle Shaft Replacement - Club RSX Message Board
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Old 12-25-2015, 12:46 AM   #1
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DIY: CV Axle Shaft Replacement

* In my searches for help on my own job, it looks like the work is the same no matter which model of RSX you have, but just in case: I'm working with an automatic.



Tools and Parts Needed:
- New axles (OEM or Raxles are recommended for stock swaps, but they are costly)
- Floor jack
- Jack stands
- Breaker bar or impact wrench
- Needle nose pliers
- Ball joint separator ($19 at Harbor Freight)
- Penetrating fluid (I'm partial to Loctite Freeze & Release I got from Advance Auto)
- Pry bar or sturdy flat head screw driver
- Hammer and small block of wood
- 12, 14, 19, and 32 mm sockets
- Short extension
- Wobble bit may help with half shaft bolts
- Center punch


Step 1: Remove the Axle Nut

How you go about doing this depends on whether you have an impact gun. I got an electric gun from Harbor Freight that has been great for me on many jobs. Penetrating fluid and/or heat may have been needed in some cases, but I have yet to run into something that absolutely required a proper air gun.

If you have an impact gun: with the car on the ground, start by loosening the 19 mm lug nuts. Make sure the handbrake is set, then jack up the front of the car and set the strengthened parts of the pinch welds on jack stands. With the wheel removed, it's as simple as zipping off the 32 mm axle nut with the impact.

If you don't have an impact gun, you need a breaker bar (or a ratchet with a long pipe over the handle for leverage): crack loose the 19 mm lug nuts and then jack up the front of the car just enough to get the wheels off the ground. Take the wheel off, pop out the hub cap, then reinstall the wheel and set it back down on the ground. Here you're using the weight of the car and the friction of the tires to keep the hub still while you use a breaker bar and 32 mm socket with extension to crack the axle nut loose - don't be afraid to stand on the breaker bar, as these can be stubborn. Now you can jack the car back up and set the lift points on jack stands.






Step 2: Disconnect the Ball Joint from the Lower Control Arm

Use needle nose pliers to pull the cotter pin from the castle nut (it's an odd style, careful it doesn't go flying), then break the nut loose with a 17 mm socket. Do not completely remove the nut; unscrew it just enough to where the edge of the nut is flush with the end of the ball joint stud. This is to prevent damaging the threads or stud, which is easy enough to do when trying to break the ball joint loose.

Sometimes a solid whack or three with a small sledge hammer on the control arm around the stud will knock it loose. But when that fails, you need a ball joint separator. Penetrating fluid helps. Once it's cracked, remove the nut.





So now you've got the bushings in the LCA fighting your springs, keeping the ball joint in place. The easiest way to separate them is to use your floor jack with a block of wood to jack up the hub a bit, then take a hammer (dead blow is best in this case, if you have one) down on the control arm. Be careful, as the spring may throw your jack out from under the car once the stud is free of the control arm.






Step 3: Pull Out the CV Axle

Use your hammer (again, dead blow preferred) to knock the threaded end of the axle out of the hub. If you're having trouble with this, try jacking the hub up again with your block of wood.

The driver side axle should pull from the transmission very easily, if not with a little help from a pry bar or flat head screw driver. The passenger side tends not to be so willing. If the pry bar doesn't release the axle (the inboard end is female here), you're going to have to remove the half/intermediate shaft. First there are three 12 mm bolts securing the heat shield, then three 14 mm bolts holding the shaft mount to the engine block. My photo below is laid out to show you where to locate all of these. Once the six bolts are out, the axle and half shaft slip easily from the transmission as one unit.



Now to separate the CV joint from the half shaft. Here you see I angled a block of wood into the gap, and hammered the axle away from the shaft. Some people lay a socket in there sideways and hammer on it to wedge the two apart; personally I don't like the risk of damage to the parts or my tools.





From here, press the new passenger side axle onto the half shaft, then slide both axle assemblies into the transmission, and continue to retrace your steps for reassembly. Remember to use your center punch to punch a new dip in the axle nut to keep it from accidentally walking itself out, should for whatever reason it come loose.

Torque specs:
- Axle nut, 134 lb/ft
- Wheel studs, 80 lb/ft
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Last edited by CyborgGT; 01-24-2016 at 07:15 PM..
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Old 12-25-2015, 02:35 PM   #2
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Thanks buddy
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:09 AM   #3
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Awesome write-up! Thanks! I'm going to have to do this in the next week or so since my CV boot ripped on no longer has grease in it.
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Old 12-31-2015, 01:06 AM   #4
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You don't have to remove the ball joint, it's a pain in the ass... You can pull the two bolts that go thru the strut and pull the entire knuckle towards you with the ball joint still attached. Just make sure you mark the location of the knuckle so you don't throw off your camber / alignment.
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Old 01-01-2016, 10:08 AM   #5
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I did consider that but the camber is why I chose the ball joint instead, which isn't difficult if you have the right tool.
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Old 11-21-2016, 06:20 PM   #6
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Good thread, thanks op
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Old 12-05-2016, 12:51 PM   #7
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is any grease needed for any of splines of the new axles when installing?

^sorry if this is a ignorant question.
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Old 01-21-2017, 09:03 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by chunktwo View Post
is any grease needed for any of splines of the new axles when installing?

^sorry if this is a ignorant question.
I will be doing this and would also like to know if any grease is needed ? Just a precaution. First time changing a car axle
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Old 03-26-2017, 05:03 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chunktwo View Post
is any grease needed for any of splines of the new axles when installing?

^sorry if this is a ignorant question.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shekefie View Post
I will be doing this and would also like to know if any grease is needed ? Just a precaution. First time changing a car axle
Whoa, didn't know this question was here, sorry!

For future readers' reference, I don't think anything's really required; I've certainly never put anything on the splines in either of my cars and never had problems. But as a preventative measure against corrosion or seizing if you live in an area where that's a problem, I would think any kind of bearing grease, anti-seize, et cetera would be a smart idea. Just don't put anything on the end that plugs into the transmission.
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Old 11-19-2017, 01:37 PM   #10
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I realize this is an old thread... but does anyone have a part number or a source for the OEM axles? I'm not having luck finding them.
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