I noticed a small amount of grease on the underside of the lower ball joint nut & on one of the ribs of the CV joint boot, time to get out the tools.
This procedure is for a LHS CV joint /boot replacement on a 2001 T4 with auto. trans,-- RHS & manual trans. is very similar.
Usual disclaimer, follow these instructions at your own risk. This procedure is how I did it & is based on info from workshop manual. I am not saying its the only way to do this job but it worked for me.There is at times a bit of pushing & shoving so make sure vehicle is secure on stands of adequate load rating.I have written this procedure some months after doing this job so if you find any errors or wish to make any suggestions please PM me on this forum.
These are the parts that come in the kit for replacing complete joint.GKN Lobro, same as original.[approx. $140] The boot kit is the same minus the CV joint. [approx. $20] Not shown but included in kit is a new stretchbolt.
These are the special tools you will need & sealing washer 8D0 407 309A $6.40.
2 new stretch bolts for lower ball joint VN104 09602 Approx. $1.60 ea. Note. The stretch bolts & 14mm XZN won't be needed if you choose alternate method. [see below]
- Removal of driveshaft
Place jack under front of van & take some of the load off the front wheels. Undo centre bolt in drive shaft [27mm AF socket 3/4 drive] around a quarter of a turn & loosen all wheel nuts.
If a wheel bearing is loaded by the weight of the van, without the drive shaft screw tightened, the brg will be stressed & the life reduced. Continue to jack & place stands underneath.Make sure that stands are strong enough[van is heavy] & placed in correct position,
You will need it high enough to remove the undertray, & to be able to slide underneath to the driveshaft flange & torsion bar adjusting nuts behind the fuel tank.[if you choose to do this]
Remove axle bolt completely.[someone on the brake pedal]
Remove under tray.
Loosen all the screws connecting the inner CV joint onto the trans. drive flange using 12mm XZN key while the brakes are still available to hold the assy from turning.I noticed in ETKA that some models use larger screws [M12 instead of M10 on my model] If yours is one of those you will need a corresponding larger tool , probably 14 XZN.
Measure distance on torsion bar adjustment from end of thread to side of nut.[this is needed to reset height correctly].
Remove nut completely. VW use a deep 27mm socket no 3257. I used a 27mm ring spanner which did the job but took longer.
Some members on the busgoons forum site have said it's not necessary to slacken the torsion bar tension. This probably works if you have a manual trans. but if yours is an auto. the upper suspension arm needs to be lifted quite high to get the driveshaft in & out.
Unbolt shock absorber [18mm nuts on top & 21mm on bottom] & remove bolt & absorber.
Remove the 2 socket hd, cap screws holding the lower ball joint onto the lower wishbone with M14 XZN [triple square] key. It is possible to leave these screws in & remove the nut underthe balljoint but you will need a special puller to remove & reinstall from lower wishbone.
Once again the guys on busgoons use a different method which saves the purchase of new stretch bolts & the special tool to undo them. Slacken the nut under the lower balljoint & place a jack against it. By striking the lower arm with a largeish hammer the joint will [i am told] pop out & no need for the special puller that VW uses.
Turn steering onto full lock to the left so you have access from the front.
Lift up the brake & brg assy & remove the driveshaft from brg. by pulling assy. outwards, pivoting on the upper ball joint & pushing down on lower link. If like me you are lucky, it will slide out but if yours has been near salt & is rusty you may need a press tool to push axle through hub.
Once drive shaft is clear of the hub do not allow to drop but support with a cord or wire in the horizontal position.
Remove the screws from the drive flange with your 12mm XZN key [they don't need to be removed completely]
If yours is an auto you will need to remove elect plug from multi-function switch. [press in ears to release & pull out]
VW says on the auto.you need to remove the "pendulum support" from gearbox & move engine/gearbox assy. forward to remove driveshaft. I did this on removal but found if you lift the steering assy high enough, you don't need to do that. The part of the assy that interferes is the cap on the inner CV joint.
- Dismantling driveshaft CV joint
This part is where you get your hands dirty.
Place assy in the vice using soft jaws . Study the amount of crimp on the large boot clamp, this is what you will be needing to duplicate on reassembly. Note also where the small end is clamped onto the grooves.
Cut the crimped section with side cutters to remove clamp. It's fairly tough as it is made of stainless steel.
On this model VW the outer joint is removed by jacking & not by driving off as in the golf models.
VW use a special tool but I made one from the screw that I had removed. The tapped hole in the CV joint is slightly tapered & the original bolt is not long enough so a couple of mods are needed.
The screw is inserted into the joint & applies pressure to the end of the shaft. The circlip is forced into the groove on the shaft allowing the joint to come away.
Make a note how the convex washer & plastic spacer is positioned on the shaft. Remove boot & wash every thing clean. [use paper towels/rag & solvent,very messy]
Don't tip the inner part too much or you will loose balls. If the joint is fully dismantled, the inner & outer parts must be assembled in the same relative positions. It's important to clean the grooves where the balls run because they can have wear without displaying any noise & if you just regrease, fairly soon you will need to do it all over again.
My kit came with 2 tubes of special grease [80gm each] Squeeze one tube into the inner part of the joint, working it thoroughly into the ball tracks.
Assy is in this sequence. Inner clamp, boot, dished washer, plastic thrust washer, circlip,CV joint & large clamp.
Tap CV joint onto shaft using a soft hammer until circlip is seated correctly.Check by trying to pull from shaft, lifting boot & checking that assy is hard against plastic thrust washer.
Fill the outer part of the joint with the other tube of grease. The grease I had over I put inside the boot.
Slide the boot along the shaft until the rib fits nicely into the groove on the CV joint.
Once again VW have a special tool to crimp the new clamp. Because it's stainless, it's tough to crimp even with proper pincer pliers. To apply the necessary force I put the head of the pliers[ not the handles] in the vice to get the extra force required. So far it has stayed in place. If you were worried about it you could tighten as best you can & then ask your dealer to tighten it to the correct tension.
The inner clamp is now positioned over the boot & clamped. There is no positioning groove so you slide the boot over the grooved section until the boot feels like it has no tension on it, in either direction.
Stick your new gasket onto the cleaned face of the inner CV joint. This is self adhesive after protective paper is removed. Don't try sticking to gearbox flange, it moves out of position as you try to fit the assembled shaft.
The inner joint looked good to me, so I just added some more grease. In my experience the outer joint works a lot harder than the inner & this was evident by the grease in the outer almost pouring out like oil while the inner was quite thick.
Clean all the soc. hd cap screws & 'banana" shaped plates & install while still in the vice.
- Reinstalling driveshaft.
Clean drive flange in gearbox.
With the upper track control arm as high as possible & brake disc blocked up, insert shaft into position & retying outer end with a cord or wire.
Loosely screw in cap screws to drive flange.
Next the fun part , inserting the splined outer CV joint into the hub, after cleaning & adding some never sieze. At this stage you could do wth some help, one person laying down & the other squatting or kneeling near the brake assy. I did it on my own but it would have been a lot easier with help.
From now on it's all downhill. Fit new stretch screws into lower balljoint, tighten to 90Nm & then turn 90degrees further.If you used the other method, install nut at bottom & by tightening draw the ball joint into the arm.
Reassemble shock absorber, Upper nuts 100Nm, lower nut 160Nm.
Install new stretch bolt through hub to drive shaft. 150Nm + 90degrees. You may need to fully tighten when van is back on the ground.
Tighten screws into drive flange to 80Nm [best with help on brake pedal]
Clean & grease torsion bar adjustment bolt & reinstall nut to previous setting.[ if you slackened off tension]
Install wheel, tighten wheel nuts.
Reinstall undertray & lower to ground.
Fully tighten wheel nuts to 160Nm.