Okay so here is my How-to on how to change the front wheel hubs on dakotas. Everyone feel free to correct anything I missed because i want to post this in the Dakota How-to Forum
My truck is a 2000 Dakota r/t but this should be accurate for 97~2003 or so dakotas. As well as similar years of durangos
First thing you need to do is get the parts and tools. We will start with the tools.
1. 3/8 socket wrench
2. 3/8 drive 7mm hex key (allen head socket)
3. Flat head screwdriver (for pulling the brake caliper clip off of the spindle)
4. 3/4in impact socket (Lug nuts)
5. Any extensions that you may want
6. 36mm socket for hub nut
7. 1/2in drive torque wrench (capable of 185lb-ft)
8. I would recommend a pair of working gloves such as craftsman. (Hot brakes are not fun to touch)
9. Paper towels (lint free preferred)
10. Contact cleaner (To clean brake rotor before putting back on)
11. Impact gun (optional)
Okay so now that we got the tools we need parts!
1. Hub, wheel bearing assembly. I got a timken assembly from Autozone for $117 before tax.
2. Hub nut. (This is a one time use part. NEVER REUSE OLD ONES! $15.50 at dodge dealer.)
Okay so here comes the fun part! Doing the work.
1. Using a floor jack lift the front of the vehicle until the wheels come off of the ground.
2. Support the vehicle with a jack stand.
3. Remove any lug-nut covers
4. Remove the lug-nuts and wheel.
5. Remove the caliper using either a 7mm allen head socket or allen wrench. (there are 2 bolts that hold the caliper to the spindle)
Caliper bolts shown here. One upper and one lower.
6. After removing the caliper you are ready to remove the hub nut. I used my impact wrench but a breaker bar works just fine. (36mm socket)
7. Remove the hub assembly. It will simply slide off.(give it a nice shake so you can hear how toast it really is. Mine rattled like crazy!)
(On a side note... While you have the caliper off look at the spindle where the brake pads contact it. If there are any grooves I would sand them down as much as possible because they can cause the pads to hang up.)
8. So now that you have the hub off of the spindle take a look at the shaft and clean any oil, grease or debris off using a good contact cleaner. Brake cleaner works very well.
Time for the new parts!
9. Wipe all of the grease/oil off of the hub that was put there in the package. especially the inside (part that slides onto the spindle)
10. Slide the new hub onto the spindle.
11. Install the new hub nut using a socket wrench. (probably not a good idea to use the impact to install it)
12. After you have it snugged down grab that torque wrench. (185lb-ft is what it needs to be cranked to)
13. It is very hard to crank it this tight so make sure your vehicle is supported on the jackstand! Try and torque it as smoothly as possible. Jerking it will only give you a false reading on the torque wrench. It will click or deflect but it will not actually be torqued correctly. (consider using your leg and standing on the wrench if you cant put enough force on it regularly. REMEMBER Smooth motion)
14. Make sure it spins freely.
15. Clean brake caliper with contact cleaner and reinstall
16. Install the caliper with the 7mm allen bolts
17. Dont forget about that brake pad spring! Pop it back over the spindle.
18. Spin the whole assembly and make sure it is good to go.
19. Install the wheel.
20. Lower the vehicle and torque the wheel down (110lb-ft is what light trucks should be torqued to. Thats what ive heard and I torque mine to)
21. Put any lug cover back in place
22. YOUR DONE!!! WOOT WOOT!
Take it for a spin and admire your quiet front wheel.