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('04 Cavalier; 120K miles) I'd been having a whining noise on (highway) left turns. I found significant play in the right rear hub assembly, which I replaced. In less than 200 miles, the same condition had recurred. I got another under warranty, and installed that. Now, after ~500 miles, there is again substantial play.

I doubt that I got two bad units, though that's not totally out of the question. When I replaced the first one, the mounting bolts were all tight, and everything looked OK (to me). Tire wear has been even throughout. The car tracks OK.

Any thoughts on what might cause such rapid failure would be appreciated.

(For those not familiar with the Cavalier, it has a 'hub assembly', that mounts with 4 bolts. There is no spindle nut.)

G

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  • What kind of hub assy are you getting? I mean, you are buying a generic one from AutoZone or are you purchasing an ACDelco one? Jul 28 '15 at 16:05
  • Generic, in that sense. It's a 10 year old Cavalier. But, even junk should last more than 500 miles.
    – George
    Jul 28 '15 at 17:28
  • Yes it should, but wondering if whatever brand you've bought might have a production run problem or something. Jul 28 '15 at 18:05
  • Just for completeness, instead of replacing the 2nd hub under warranty, I bought one elsewhere. (Autozone, in fact.) This has not shown any play, after substantially more miles. So, it looks like I did get two bad units.
    – George
    Oct 23 '15 at 3:21
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As you've stated this is a hub assembly, so we know there isn't any 'user error' in how the bearings are pre-loaded or the grease is packed. You've also stated there is 'substantial play' in the bearing, which certainly is not normal for a pressed bearing hub assembly.

As Paulster2 suggested this may be a production run issue, which is rare but possible. I'm assuming you got the warranty replacement part from the same store, who could have received a 'batch' of bearings from the same production run.

The only other issue I can think of is that the bearing is being overheated by a constantly engaged 'dragging' brake. Check that the wheel rotates freely after installing the hub and adjusting your parking brake. If this is not the issue, take the part back to the store and let them know whats going on. Request a refund and buy your part from a different store and/or manufacturer.

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