I quietly sit back and watch this episode unfold.......Steamup is absolutely correct...3 years out of the direct drive motor is a very good lifespan. The real trick is being able to get the fan blade off the shaft!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The very position of the motor and the heat it gets from the shaft being in the heated exhaust stream guarantees you will have a failed front end bearing in a short time. I have had 3 fail, in 3 years or less.
My solution was to replace the direct drive with the remote motor and belt drive. Ask the boys if that is an avenue you could explore. I'm not telling you that is a good path; it is an EXCELLENT path.
Noise and vibration are eliminated, and trust me, this will make you smile also.
Like the Fram Guy says: Pay me now or pay me later. I have told AHS that option should have been eliminated years ago, but it is a cost thing. Some folks look at the bottom line and do not know why it is justified to spend a few hundred more to have NO aggravation. Believe it or not, that particular motor is the very same one Jacuzzi uses to power the pump on hot tubs, etc. It is not inexpensive, and that is why I recommend going to the indirect motor, grease-able bearings and a smooth, quiet, belt drive. The factory will work with you, I'm sure. Tell them to email me or call me if they have any questions! I HAVE been there three times, and won't go again.
Do it once, do it right, and demand satisfaction.
Thousands of potential customers read this forum for advice, and current owners ask pertinent questions all the time. After the 'Puff Back' saga, it's time to step up to the plate!