One thing that we should all be aware of is that the wheel bearings in FWD designs (and as used in the Fiero RWD) were not designed to have the cars weight on the wheels with the axle shafts removed. If the car is rolled on it's own wheels while the transaxle (and axles) were removed, you can expect that one or both of the rear wheel bearings have been damaged.
From: Lee Brown
The 88's use sealed wheel bearings. I had to replace mine at 50K (but, I autocross). Many auto parts supermarkets have them for around $80.00 each. You can do this at home in your driveway with simple tools.
From: Randy Agee
To check, jack up the front of the car. Grab the tire at the top and bottom and rock back and forth. More than 1/8" movement spells trouble.
From: Randy Agee
Here is how I check bearings:
|go out on a clean quiet road and drive about 30 mph (or whatever speed the noise is loudest);|
|turn the steering wheel sharply to the right - the car will heel over to
the LEFT a little bit putting more load on the left hand wheels:
|now crank the wheel over to the left:
A little horsing around like this and you can likely isolate which wheel is the offender. Tires don't seem to get louder when loaded down to same extent as wheel bearings.
From: Peter Frise
The driver-side rear wheel bearing had gone bad on my '88 GT late last summer. It would make a noise similar to the one you describe. I took it to a shop that I have some confidence in and they were able to pinpoint the bad bearing assembly by lifting the car and running it in gear off the ground. By using a piece of steel rod and placing one end against the bearing housing, the other end against your forehead or behind your ear, you could definitely hear the "sh sh" scraping/grinding noise coming from the bearing while the car was running in gear. I compared it with the passenger side and it was completely silent. They replaced the bearing assembly, and an alignment was not required! You do not need to loosen any of the links (neither the lateral links nor the trailing link) that would require an alignment afterwards.
From: Derik Voigt
If the bearings are in good shape, you should be able to repack them and be done with the problem. I replaced the bearings (less than $15 per side) as I was already replacing the disk rotor and it comes with new inner bearing races.
From: Lee Brown
This is a very easy fix to do. The hub itself is the same hub used with all the years. I just did an 88 GT with an 85 hub. So you can also save money by going to the junk yard. Tools needed are a lug wrench for the wheel, a 55mm torx for the brake assembly and the three bolt attaching the hub and a thiry mm deep socket at least half in drive w/breaker bar or some sort of lenght extension for the rachet (I use a pipe about 2ft long) bust and remove the nut and the hub should come out. You may need a puller though I didn't. While you have the hub out look inside the knuckle and check the seal that rides on the axel shaft as long as its not dry from lack of lubrication or deteriorated it should be ok. Reverse the disassembly process and your done. I must caution you that the e/brake assem. can be tricky to reassemble if you don't have the right tools. But if your creative there are way to achieve this with screw driver and pliers. If you choose to do this your self take your time and pay attention.
From: Terry Carter
From Pontiac Service Manual
Sometimes I repeat steps 1 & 2 a couple of times, but that's just me.
From: Scott Backer
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