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Wheel Hubs & Bearings for Saturn

Being a responsible driver means having general knowledge about your vehicle. If you own a Saturn, it is important to know about your wheel hubs and bearings. This system, sometimes referred to as a hub assembly, is vital to your suspension and braking.

What do Saturn hubs and bearings do?

Most newer Saturns have a one-piece hub system. Included in this system is the hub, wheel bearing, ABS wheel-speed sensor, and the mounting flange. Your front wheel hubs connect together the axles, the knuckles, and your wheels. All of these pieces are vital to your Saturn vehicle as they give support and aid in turning the wheels. The front-wheel bearings and hubs are necessary for your suspension and braking systems.

Are rear bearings and hubs different from front ones?

Similar to your front wheel hubs and bearings, the rear ones connect the wheels of your Saturn to the rear axles and brakes. However, rear hubs and bearings do not help you to steer. If you have a Saturn with rear-wheel drive or 4WD, they do send power to the rear wheels.

How do you know when to change your hub assembly?

It is common for wheel bearings to wear out due to bad installation, age, or even debris or water that has gotten inside the unit. Once they wear out, they will turn unevenly. When this happens, you will usually notice at least one of the following signs to let you know it is time to get your Saturn a new hub assembly:

  • Grinding sounds - The wearing down of the bearing will cause your vehicle to make a grinding noise near or around the tires. You may notice that the noise is more severe at faster speeds or when you are turning.
  • Vibration - If your car starts to feel like it is constantly on a rumble strip, especially when traveling at faster speeds or when you turn, this may be a sign it is time for a new hub assembly. This is because ball bearings that are worn down will make the axle turn unevenly and then cause vibration.
  • Difficulty with steering - You may notice that your steering wheel does not seem as accurate or tight as it used to be. Some drivers describe this as the steering having more play.
How often should you replace hub bearings?

Like most other parts on your vehicle, you need to check and maintain your wheel hubs and bearings. On average, a sealed wheel bearing will last for 85,000 to 100,000 miles. However, some can last as many as 150,000 miles. Wheel bearings should be checked and maintained about every 25,000 to 30,000 miles.