Chevrolet Sonic Wheel Bearing Replacement Cost

Know what price you should pay to get your vehicle fixed.

Wheel Bearing Replacement
The average cost for a Chevrolet Sonic wheel bearing replacement is between $667 and $763. Labor costs are estimated between $360 and $456 while parts are priced at $307. Estimate does not include taxes and fees.
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Wheel Bearing Replacement

What is a Wheel Bearing?

A wheel bearing is a set of steel ball bearings that are held together by a metal ring (called a race) that allows the wheels of a car to spin with as little friction as possible.

What are the symptoms of a bad Wheel Bearing?

A worn wheel bearing can cause a "rumbling" or “growling” noise when the vehicle is traveling at a speed of fifteen miles per hour or greater, especially when the weight of the vehicle leans toward the worn bearing. This is especially noticeable in long, steady turns, like may be experienced on a freeway exit ramp. The sound can mimic that of normal road noise caused by the tires, but it gets gradually louder over time. A vibration may also be felt in the steering wheel or in the floor panels. A severely worn bearing can cause a significant amount of noise. The wheel may have excessive play in it. If the bearing breaks, it can also cause a significant amount of damage to the suspension, cause the vehicle to handle poorly, and even cause a catastrophic malfunction if – in extreme cases - the wheel comes off the car.

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How does a Wheel Bearing work?

A wheel bearing is part of the front and rear wheel hubs In the front, the hub connects the wheel to the steering knuckle of the front suspension. The wheel connects to the hub, and the hub spins smoothly inside the wheel bearing. This allows the weight of the vehicle to rest on the hub as it spins, while maintaining as little surface contact as possible. Minimal surface contact between the wheel hub and the steering knuckle (in the front) or the hub and the axle or knuckle (in the rear) results in minimal friction. The wheel bearing is lubricated with grease in order to further reduce friction. Most vehicles feature sealed wheel bearings that encapsulate the ball bearings and the lubricant in an assembly.

Can I drive with a bad Wheel Bearing?

A vehicle with a wheel bearing that is beginning to wear out can be driven, but as the wear increases, so do the chances of damage occurring to other parts of the suspension. If you suspect that a wheel bearing is beginning to wear, have a technician evaluate the problem as soon as possible. A vehicle with a significantly worn wheel bearing should not be driven. If the wheel bearing fails completely it is possible for the wheel hub and wheel to detach from the vehicle and cause serious damage or injury.

How often do Wheel Bearings need replacement?

Vehicles with traditional, tapered wheel bearings should have the bearings serviced every 25-30k miles. Most vehicles, however, have sealed bearings that do not require maintenance. Sealed bearings can last 100k miles or more and do not have a required maintenance schedule.

How are Wheel Bearings replaced?

To replace a wheel bearing, a technician will need to lift and support the vehicle, remove the wheel and tire, and remove the brake caliper and rotor. On some vehicles, the wheel hub and bearing are simply unbolted from the steering knuckle and can replaced as a unit. On other vehicles, however, the hub and bearing are pressed together into the knuckle and need to be removed with special tools. In these cases, the hub and new wheel bearing must be pressed into the knuckle on a hydraulic press.

Wheel Bearing Replacement Cost Estimates

The average cost for a Wheel Bearing Replacement is between $667 and $763 but can vary from car to car.

Can I replace the Wheel Bearing myself?

Some vehicles with sealed front wheel bearings can be serviced at home as a DIY repair. If the wheel hub and bearing are simply bolted to the knuckle and can be replaced as a unit, an intermediate DIYer with experience removing brake or suspension components can complete the repair. But many vehicles require that a technician remove hubs and bearings that are pressed into the knuckle. These components are difficult to disassemble, and reassembly requires a hydraulic press. In such cases, wheel bearing replacement is best left to a professional technician.

How are Wheel Bearings diagnosed?

If a vehicle is suspected to have a worn wheel bearing, a technician will likely take the vehicle for a test drive to verify where the sound is coming from and determine which wheel bearing is the culprit. In the shop, the technician might lift the vehicle in the air on a hoist, rotate the wheel, and listen for sounds from the wheel hub. The technician will also test the wheel for excessive play by holding the tire on each side and rocking the tire back and forth. If there is play in the wheel and the steering and other suspension components are in good condition, the bearing has likely worn out.

RepairPal Recommendations for Wheel Bearing issues

RepairPal recommends that if a wheel bearing is making noise, it should be replaced as soon as possible. A wheel bearing needs to be replaced immediately if it is found to be loose or leaking during related repairs or inspections. RepairPal recommends that vehicles with pressed-in wheel bearings be referred to a professional technician for replacement.

What to look out for when dealing with Wheel Bearing issues

The front wheel bearing is an essential component of the vehicle suspension. The more a wheel bearing wears out, the more friction is created - and more damage that occurs. On most vehicles, the wheel bearing requires special equipment to be serviced. If a bearing is installed improperly, premature failure may result.