How To Clean Trailer Bearings? Steps To Clean Trailer Wheel Bearings new for 2022

Trailer wheel bearings need to be cleaned and lubricated regularly to ensure safe and smooth operation.

If not cleaned and lubricated regularly, trailer wheel bearings can seize up, causing the trailer to wobble or even break free from the tow vehicle.

How To Clean Trailer Bearings
How To Clean Trailer Bearings

So How To Clean Trailer Bearings? Steps To Clean Trailer Wheel Bearings. Cleaning and lubricating your trailer’s wheel bearings is a quick and easy process if you have the right tools. In this article, we’ll show you how to clean and lubricate your trailer’s wheel bearings with simple steps.


Tools And Materials Required

Tools And Materials Required
Tools And Materials Required


  • Adjustable wrench (large)
  • Flat-head screwdriver
  • Hammer
  • Jack
  • Jack stands (2)
  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Wrench for lug nuts


  • Bearing grease
  • Brake cleaner (spray can)
  • Clean rags
  • Kerosene
  • Penetrating fluid
  • Small pan

How To Clean Trailer Bearings? Steps To Clean Trailer Wheel Bearings

How To Clean Trailer Bearings
How To Clean Trailer Bearings

What Are Wheel Bearing Seals? How to clean trailer wheel bearings? Below are steps to clean trailer wheel bearings:

Take out the wheel bearing

Start by cranking down the wheel on top of the car while it’s still on the ground to prevent it from bearing any weight. Remove the lug nuts, wheel, and tire, as well as the brake rotor.

Consults the manufacturer’s guide to remove the bearing because each vehicle make has different attaching methods for bearings. Improperly removing it might damage the bearing housing and result in early failure. Always use appropriate tools, such as bearing pullers or induction heaters, when removing wheel bearings to prevent permanent harm.

Take apart the bearing

After the bearing is extracted, use a socket wrench to take out the dust cap and then remove the inner bearing races. With great care, pry out the ball bearings with a screwdriver and put them in a secure spot – you will need to reinstall them later on.

Remove the old wheel bearing’s cone or cup, being careful not to damage it as you will need to reuse it. If any seals are present, remove them using a seal puller as well. You should now have all of the components of your old wheel bearing in front of you.

Clear your bearings

You can now start cleaning your bearings. Thoroughly clean the hub and both bearings with some fresh rags and a solvent. It’s crucial that you don’t have to regularly clean them if you do it right the first time. It’s also advisable to wear gloves while handling bearings since oils from your fingers can get transferred and over time cause rusting or corrosion.

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There are a few ways you can clean your bearings, such as:

  • Several drops of solvent cleanser or citrus cleaner should suffice.
  • With a soft cloth, remove any accumulated dirt.
  • Pressurized air blast bearings.
  • Wipe debris from rubber shields using a lint-free cloth and warm soapy water.
  • After cleaning the surfaces, dry them with a lint-free towel.

Lubricate the bearing again

You’ll need to use the correct lubrication before you reassemble the bearings. This will aid in the maintenance of good condition, as well as ensuring that the rolling elements continue to function properly. There are a few different methods for re-lubricating bearings:

  • Using a brush or your fingers, apply bearing oil.
  • Soak the bearings with isopropyl alcohol or oil.

Bearing lubrication is important for preventing corrosion and ensuring smooth operation. Make sure to use the correct lubricant for your bearing type.

Put the beaning back together

It’s time to reassemble the bearing when the bearings are fully lubricated. This is a simple procedure that can be completed with only a few basic equipment.

  • Place the inner race on the shaft first.
  • After that, add the bearings.
  • Finally, replace the outer race on top.

Use a hammer to tap the nails into place until they are fully seated. You may also need to use a seal driver to get everything properly aligned and sealed.

Reinstall the clean bearing in the machine

Now that the bearing is clean and lubricated, you can install it back onto the machinery. Use the same precautions as before when handling the bearing. In addition, regular maintenance checks will help to prolong its lifespan – look out for any signs of wear and tear and replace the bearings if necessary. By following these steps, you can keep your equipment running smoothly for years to come.

Symptoms of a dirty wheel bearings

Symptoms of a dirty wheel bearings
Symptoms of a dirty wheel bearings

What Does a Bad Wheel Bearing Sound Like? Wheel bearing noise can be tricky since it can easily be mistaken for tire noise. Even when a noisy wheel bearing is the actual culprit, it can be difficult to narrow it down to the wheel affected.


What Happens When A Wheel Bearing Goes Out? Wheel bearings that are packed with grease spin freely and without generating too much heat. They are inserted into the wheel hub, which holds the wheel and tire in place on the vehicle. The inside of the wheel bearing is attached to the drive shaft (on front-wheel, rear-wheel, and four-wheel drive vehicles) or spins freely on a non-drive axle.

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If you notice abnormal tire wear while changing your wheel bearings, it might be a good idea to replace them as preventative maintenance. A grinding or roaring noise coming from the tires is usually caused by too much heat building up inside the wheel bearing and lack of lubrication.

When you hear a grinding noise, it is because there is metal-to-metal contact. Most times, you will only hear the noise from one side of the vehicle. It is rare for both wheel bearings on either side to wear our simultaneously. Therefore, if you notice this symptom: don’t clean and repack the wheel bearings; replace them both at once on the axle.

Tips for extending the life of wheel bearings

Tips for extending the life of wheel bearings
Tips for extending the life of wheel bearings

By taking care of your vehicle’s bearings, you ensure that your equipment functions optimally and lasts for a long time. Here are three tips to extend the life of your bearings:

Check that the wheel bearing is properly installed

The first step is to double-check that the bearings are in place correctly. A bearing can wear out quickly if it isn’t installed correctly. The bearings should not be over- or under-tightened, as this will reduce their longevity as well.

Use the manufacturer’stightening torque guide for your equipment. If you don’t know how to install bearings, ask a professional.

Keep the wheel bearing from overheating

If bearings are heated to a temperature above what is permitted by the manufacturer, it will cause the wheel bearing to degrade. Wheel bearings can overheat for various reasons, including:

  • Rotating elements produce friction.
  • Inadequate lubrication
  • External heat (such as fire or welding)
  • Electrical arcing

Bearings tend to overheat when there is inadequate lubrication or airflow. To avoid this, make sure to regularly lube your bearings and keep an eye out for any strange sounds or vibrations that could indicate a problem.

Maintain clean wheel bearings

Dirt, dust, and grease can gum up bearings and cause them to wear prematurely. Cleaning not only keeps your bearings working effectively, but it will also help prevent early wear and tear.

READ:  What Are Wheel Bearing Seals?

FAQs How To Clean Trailer Bearings

FAQs How To Clean Trailer Bearings
FAQs How To Clean Trailer Bearings

Can you use brake cleaner to clean bearings?

Get a rag and wet it with brake clean. Wipe out the spot where the bearings ride, making sure to get rid of all dirt and grime. Let the brake clean evaporate completely; this will ensure that your bearings are properly lubed. Pack bearing with fresh grease and you’re done!

What is the best cleaner for wheel bearings?

According to this method, you should start by removing all accessible oil or grease. If the products are mineral or synthetic oils and greases, wipe down surfaces with a hydrocarbon solvent such as mineral spirits or kerosene. Finally, use an isopropyl alcohol wipe for good measure.

Can I clean bearings with lemon juice?

If you can get a spray-on degreaser, it will be much easier to clean your bearings. Lemon juice is also quite effective. Soak your bearings in the solution of your choosing and shake the bejeezus out of them for around 2 minutes before rinsing them with some more clean solvent.

Can I clean bearings with WD40?

Never use WD40 to clean skateboard bearings. This is a product intended only to remove rust and grime, not as a lubricant or cleaner for bearings. It’s fantastic at first, but you’ll need to reapply more as it dries out the bearings.


Trailer wheel bearings need to be regularly cleaned and maintained in order to keep them functioning properly. By following the steps‘s team have outlined in this post, you can clean your trailer wheel bearings quickly and easily, ensuring that your trailer is always ready for the next road trip. Have you tried cleaning your trailer wheel bearings recently? What method did you use? Let us know in the comments below!

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