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97 4:11 Rear diff leak... strange?


 
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lawrence914
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Joined: 18 Jun 2005
Location: Huntsville, Alabama

PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2005 5:40 am    Post subject: 97 4:11 Rear diff leak... strange? Reply with quote

Confession time... I cop out and have someone do my oil changes on the Jeep. For twenty bucks (or so) it's just worth it to me not to have to haul the waste oil back, etc, etc. Why does this matter? Well, I think it finally bit me.

Last time I went in (to a different place) for an oil change, the guy comes out. He's an older gentleman, walks the no-nonsense walk of retired Army (and in this town, probably is.) Tells me that I have a significant rear diff leak. He says that someone probably overfilled it previously and now it's starting to leak. They're not allowed to tamper with diffs, but he wanted me to get it looked at. Nice guy - didn't want to sell me anything.

Okay... now it's time to get it fixed before my cross-country trip. I power-washed it off, and discovered that it's only leaking from the rubber fill plug. Huh?

Leaking from the rubber fill plug makes no sense to me. Anyone else had this happen?

-Lawrence
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IBTJn
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Joined: 31 Dec 2004
Location: Just Outside of Portland, OR

PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2005 5:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yea, happened on the wife's XJ. Make sure the vent line is clear and replace the plug. That's all her's needed. She has 150k miles on it. I'd try that first.

Wink
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Keithtj
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Joined: 05 Jan 2004
Location: Out of jail now

PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2005 9:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mine leaks also, well both diffs leak. I need to replace the plug, reseal the diff and replace the cuppling on the diff that connects to the drive shaft.
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WhatWasIThinkin
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Joined: 02 Jan 2004
Location: Epping New Hampsha

PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2005 12:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with all above, probably overfilled. But something that can cause the same symptom is excessive water that can get in during deep water crossings with the vent tube knocked off. If this doesnt apply then probably just overfilled.
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lawrence914
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Joined: 18 Jun 2005
Location: Huntsville, Alabama

PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2005 5:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's definately leaking from the drain plug.

I poked around under there looking for a vent tube, but didn't see one. Can someone point me in the right direction?

-Lawrence

P.S. Do the all the stock swaybar drop-links suck? I replaced both of mine yesterday as they separated at the ball joint.
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Code3TJ
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Joined: 01 Jan 2004
Location: Uzbekistan

PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2005 8:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd start by putting a pan under it and pulling the rubber plug. Let the excess fluid drain out. If it hasn't been changed in a while or you think water got into it, go ahead and change the fluid while you're under there.
http://jeephorizons.com/tech/diffoil.html
I don't remember where the vent tube is on the Dana 35, but it's probably a short metal tube welded onto either the top of the diff or the driver's side axle tube. There should be a rubber hose attached to it that runs up into the gas filler housing. Start looking for the rubber hose running up into the jeep to see if it's blocked.
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lawrence914
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Joined: 18 Jun 2005
Location: Huntsville, Alabama

PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2005 7:38 am    Post subject: Gas filler? Reply with quote

I was going to the dealer to pick up a new filler plug and I just had a thought.

the vent hose goes up to the gas filler to vent, or it vents into the fuel system? If it vent's into the fuel filler (to capture the fumes?), what's to prevent fuel from spilling down the vent tube? Shocked

-Lawrence
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WhatWasIThinkin
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Joined: 02 Jan 2004
Location: Epping New Hampsha

PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2005 9:25 am    Post subject: Re: Gas filler? Reply with quote

lawrence914 wrote:
I was going to the dealer to pick up a new filler plug and I just had a thought.

the vent hose goes up to the gas filler to vent, or it vents into the fuel system? If it vent's into the fuel filler (to capture the fumes?), what's to prevent fuel from spilling down the vent tube? Shocked

-Lawrence


It just runs up becide the fuel filler to its own vent cap. It does not vent into the fuel fill. IF you ever remove the gas fill bezel you can see it easily.
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lawrence914
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Joined: 18 Jun 2005
Location: Huntsville, Alabama

PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2005 3:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had time to mess with it this afternoon. I pulled the plug and two cups of excess fluid just poured into the pan. I expected a couple of drops. The Wrangler is sitting nice and level.

How in the heck could they have overfilled it to that point? Could other fluid have entered the axle from somewhere? I do no deep water crossings or anything.

The gear oil was black and poured freely. Nothing shiny in the fluid.

-Lawrence
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WhatWasIThinkin
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Joined: 02 Jan 2004
Location: Epping New Hampsha

PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2005 11:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you went to one of the quicky oil change places and had them do your diffs, then I could see where they could easily overfill it.

Gear oil is very thick and they use a pressure pump that pumps it in from a 55 gal drum. Being so thick they pump it in so fast that it takes a moment to run back out, so the second they see oil show up at the hole its too late if they overfilled. Most likely they packed the plug in as fast as they could.


As far as quick lube places go, well if you realy want some pimply faced 16 year old drop out that dont know shit working on your rig, then the quick lube places are your heaven. This is no lie. I know 2 different people that have had the quick oil places buy them new engines....eventually, due to the lack of incompetance of the oil monkee's they hire. Last 2 times I used them for winter oil changes years ago ended up almost disasters for my truck. First time they didnt tighten the oil filter. I noticed oil in the snow under my Dodge Ram the next day so I poped the hood and there was oil all over the filter. When I reached in to clean it with a rag the filter spun in my hand Rolling Eyes The second and last time they pumped in @3 quarts too much oil. On both occasions I called them to talk to the manager and got the same responce "well bring it in and we'll take a look at it" Rolling Eyes
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kizer
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Joined: 02 Jan 2004
Location: Marysville, North of Seattle

PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2005 11:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sometimes you can overfill a rear end if your rear end is higher than your front end.

As well if they are using a pump to fill the rear they could of pumped it in and then threw on a plug.

Personally if you have any doubts what-so-ever I would pull the rear cover like Code posted above and drain and refill your rear end. Its a messy, but very easy task. If there is a remote chance that any other fluid entered your rear end it could make things a bit more difficult in the future. Better safe than sorry. As well you could do it yourself for less than 15 or so bucks and get into the habbit. I do both of mine every 12months like clockwork. Wink
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