Leaking Axle seal on the front. Should I upgrade the axle to a dana 44? - JeepForum.com
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Go Back JeepForum.com > Models > Jeep Wrangler Forums > YJ Wrangler Technical Forum > Leaking Axle seal on the front. Should I upgrade the axle to a dana 44?

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Unread 02-07-2010, 12:50 AM   #1
MWguy101
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Leaking Axle seal on the front. Should I upgrade the axle to a dana 44?

I have a 95 Yj, from what I can tell it was the base model. I just got some new 33 in Duratec trires on it, which look great. The mecanic told me my front axle seal was leaking on the front right side. He said we might be able to rebuild the axle or depending on how bad it was, I might need to get a new one.

My questions is this, if I have to replace the axle, can I put a Dana 44 on the front and leave the rear one as the original factory one? If so, besides just swaping out the axles, do I need to change out any other parts suck as the shaft, steering linkage, breaks, etc. or can I leave the rest all factory.

I have a 4 in rough country lift on the jeep. It has a 2.5 l engine.

Any advice woudl be great.

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Unread 02-07-2010, 01:19 AM   #2
91YJBoy
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seal only cost $10 i would just fix it
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Unread 02-07-2010, 06:24 AM   #3
I8AHUMR
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Since you have the 95 you have the larger u-joints which is a plus as far as strength. I've seen estimates saying the HP D30 with the larger u-joints are good up to 35's. I wouldn't use a leaking seal as an excuse to swap a 44 in. Much easier to swap a few parts rather than an entire axle.
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Unread 02-07-2010, 06:58 AM   #4
jbeebe
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might need to replace the whole axle???? that sounds like a load of bs to me. replacing an axle seal is a pretty standard thing. D-30 Axle Shaft Seal Replacement - 1 it's on a tj but you get the idea.

but to answer your questions. there is no d44 made for our yj's, so we have to get it from another vehicle, such as a wagoneer, or the J-trucks. all of which require a certain amount of modification to reposition the spring perches, shock mounts, etc.

Another point is that your rear axle the d35, is much weaker than the d30 to begin with, so if you go d44 in the front, and remain d35 in the back, it would just be a little ridiculous haha. the d35 can't handle more than 33" tires (some would argue it can, but the general consensus is this).

so to sum it up. replacing an axle seal for a mechanic is a routine job, and the seal is cheap. it's really not that big of a deal, don't let the mechanic take you, if he gets into the axle and says something like "yea this seal is too bad, we're gunna need a new axle", talk to us first!!!!!!!
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Unread 02-07-2010, 07:56 AM   #5
MWguy101
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Thanks for the link that is really helpful. This looks like its going to be a fun project.
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Unread 02-07-2010, 08:10 AM   #6
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no sense un upgrading a hp 30 to a 44 imo.
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Unread 02-07-2010, 08:35 AM   #7
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Check for play in the u-joint and unit bearing on that side. One of those can go bad which creates enough movement in the axle to wreck the seal. Either one is a fairly easy fix and not too expensive, even cheaper if you get junkyard parts.

otherwise swappping in the right side seal costs about $10 in parts.
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Unread 02-07-2010, 08:39 AM   #8
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never go back to that mechanic, sounds like he's tryin to rip you off
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Unread 02-07-2010, 08:39 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MWguy101 View Post
Thanks for the link that is really helpful. This looks like its going to be a fun project.
there are some other tools that people rigged up to seat in the seals, just do a search or start a thread for ideas.
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Unread 02-07-2010, 09:33 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by I8AHUMR View Post
Since you have the 95 you have the larger u-joints which is a plus as far as strength. I've seen estimates saying the HP D30 with the larger u-joints are good up to 35's. I wouldn't use a leaking seal as an excuse to swap a 44 in. Much easier to swap a few parts rather than an entire axle.
FYI: I have a 1995 but I have the smaller joints. Only some (or most?) 1995 YJs had the larger joints.
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Unread 02-16-2010, 04:05 PM   #11
MWguy101
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How hard is the axle seal to replace? I am getting a price range from mechanics from $350-$500. The part it self is only $10 at advance auto parts. One mechanic told me you need a special tool to do it. Its seems like a lot of money to install a $10 part.
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Unread 02-16-2010, 04:13 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MWguy101 View Post
How hard is the axle seal to replace? I am getting a price range from mechanics from $350-$500. The part it self is only $10 at advance auto parts. One mechanic told me you need a special tool to do it. Its seems like a lot of money to install a $10 part.
If you have a lift, proper tools along with experience in this particular job it would take about 1-2 hours. Maximum.


Doing it while laying under the jeep in the dark with a home made seal drive may take longer. Not sure what your time is woth but $500 is robbery.
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Unread 02-16-2010, 04:19 PM   #13
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Quote:
Doing it while laying under the jeep in the dark with a home made seal drive may take longer. Not sure what your time is woth but $500 is robbery.
I agree. I had a mechanic tell me my rear diff was trashed when my seal was leaking. I replaced the seal about 5 months ago and no problems. Just check for play in the u joint like someone else said. oh yea... make sure the yoke doesn't have grooves in it, or it will make the seal leak again.
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Unread 06-16-2011, 02:44 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MWguy101 View Post
How hard is the axle seal to replace? I am getting a price range from mechanics from $350-$500. The part it self is only $10 at advance auto parts. One mechanic told me you need a special tool to do it. Its seems like a lot of money to install a $10 part.
I had the exact same experience at Orange County Motorsport. My passenger side seal has failed 2X since the original repair 3 months ago. I'm not even driving off road.

Isn't there a more permanent fix?
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Unread 06-16-2011, 03:26 PM   #15
Alabamaranger
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Since we have 2 Jeeps, we bought that special seal tool installer ($45) so you don't waste 3 seals trying to pull one in. With the tool, the first seal goes in perfect less than 1 minute. As stated, be sure tio check for play in the bearing for the inside axle shaft. Otherwise if that inside axle shaft is wobbling due to a bad bearing, that outer axle is going to wobble too, which will make the seal to leak.
seal3.jpg   seal2.jpg   seal1.jpg  
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