Whilst riding with my buddy Rob, we heard the familiar thump, thump, click, click, of an axle gone bad on his 09 Civic LX. He asked me if I could take a look at for him.
Tools I used:
- Air gun
- 32mm axle nut
- 14mm socket
- 17mm socket
- 19mm socket
- 17mm flat wrench
- 19mm flat wrench
- Large Screw Driver or Pry Bar
- Hammer of some kind
Let's get started:
Jack it, stand it.
Remove that 32mm axle nut. This is where the air wrench helps. It is gonna be on there pretty tightly. It helps if you knock out the notch on the axle nut, alrighty.
Don't forget to detach the 12mm brake line bolts and unclip the ABS senson wire.
This model has struts up front. There are two 19mm bolts with 17mm nuts holding the strut to the lower control arm.
Once out use a large screw driver or pry bar to brake the axle from the transmission housing. Please be careful to not damage the transmission housing seal. You can see it with a flash light. This keeps the fluid in the tranmission from running out.
The axle for the automatic model is an unequal length. Reminds me of the ole D15\D16 days of Civic's past.
Insert the new axle gently in to place. Having some help to hold the spindle while you slide the axle in to place is handy. Otherwise working the axle around the spindle and inserting it smoothly can be challenging.
Slide the spindle back in to the strut. Put your spindle to strut bolts back in. 19mm, 17mm. Torque them to 65 ft/lbs.
Snap the ABS sensor in back in place.
Put the brake line back in its holder and tighten the 12mm bolt to secure it.
Tighen down the new 32mm nut and make sure to notch the safety in. Torque says 133ft/lbs.
Now take it for a shake down and enjoy your click free axle.
The intial decision to go axle was based on noises and a look see once upon a long time ago when we did Rob's brakes. The issue would arise when he turned right only. After swapping the axle the clicking was gone but, the thud and shudder was still there.
When I pulled off the front passenger side tire before getting started. I was greeted with this. Bands hanging out of the tire and all. This gave me pause however, I didn't think too much of it given my focus to get the axle changed. I made a call to Rob to talk to him about this issue. He was going to get tires and an alignment almost the next day.
So, Rob took the car to an alignment shop where they mounted new tires and where going to align in when they stopped and called. They told him the passenger side inner tie rod end was shot. This was the main cause of the noise and the feeling in the car. They could not align it without replacing that first.
The outer tie rod looked great when I was inspecting however, I didn't stop to look at the inner. I mean, why would there be an issue? In this case there was. Another life lessons, don't rush, double check other things when there seems to an issue. Saves time and money. More to come on that subject.