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Unread 05-29-2012, 12:07 PM   #1
mitchs1224
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tips for differential leak

after changing the fluid in my front diff after axle shaft swap, i now have a small leak from the diff, some guys said not to use a gasket and just use rtv or silicone only, some said yes use a gasket, i used a basic cork stye gasket from napa, what are some tips to get a leak free seal? when i first took it apart there was no gasket just gobs of silicone, is this the most common leak free method? thanx for the input.

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Unread 05-29-2012, 12:16 PM   #2
zeus87gn
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Don't bother with the gasket - the cork ones don't do any good on differential covers.
The black and/or blue silicone gasket maker does just fine on it's own.
The trick is to get it evenly dispersed about the bolt flange.
I believe you should wait about 10 minutes before putting the cover on after you put the silicone on it.
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Unread 05-29-2012, 12:17 PM   #3
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I use to buy the paper gaskets but just stopped. I have been using RTV for the last 6-7 years or so. I just put a 1/4" bead around the lip and circle the bolt holes. I make sure to clean the mating surfaces and degrease them. When I put the cover back on I just put it on and finger tighten the bolts. I then do something else on the jeep or go get a beverage. After that I torque the bolts in a criss-cross pattern and fill it up.
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Unread 05-29-2012, 12:17 PM   #4
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silicone.....

never used a gasket on my diffs not sure on the 10 minute wait... I know I.. like louie.. hand balm it and usually have a smoke or somehting before I tighten them down, but a few occasions I have just popped it on and tightened it down and it was fine as I was in a hurry to go wheeling in the morning....so......

waiting a bit is preferred tho...
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Unread 05-29-2012, 12:20 PM   #5
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I use black or red RTV and finger tighten it until it starts to ooze out, then wait an hour before tightening it down. Then fill. Never have any leaks. Be sure to go around each bolt hole too. You will be tempted to put a large bead around there, but it doesn't take more than an 1/8" bead or so. The most important part is to make sure both surfaces are cleaned of old gasket material/oil and then wiped down with acetone or brake cleaner.

EDIT: I could have just waited and said, "What Louie said......"
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Unread 05-29-2012, 12:35 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by giggityjeeper View Post
silicone.....

never used a gasket on my diffs not sure on the 10 minute wait... I know I.. like louie.. hand balm it and usually have a smoke or somehting before I tighten them down, but a few occasions I have just popped it on and tightened it down and it was fine as I was in a hurry to go wheeling in the morning....so......

waiting a bit is preferred tho...
I've just put a bead on and stuck the cover on, finger tightened and then start torquing down many times. Those times were usually in the parking lot, at night, in cold weather. The key in my mind is a continuous bead and clean mating surfaces.

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Originally Posted by firefighter315 View Post
I use black or red RTV and finger tighten it until it starts to ooze out, then wait an hour before tightening it down. Then fill. Never have any leaks. Be sure to go around each bolt hole too. You will be tempted to put a large bead around there, but it doesn't take more than an 1/8" bead or so. The most important part is to make sure both surfaces are cleaned of old gasket material/oil and then wiped down with acetone or brake cleaner.

EDIT: I could have just waited and said, "What Louie said......"
It never hurts to get more opinions.
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Unread 05-29-2012, 12:41 PM   #7
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Come to think of it, it did work better when I put the cover on (after getting the silicone on the cover correctly), finger tightened the bolts, and then waited to tighten them down.
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Unread 05-29-2012, 12:47 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zeus87gn View Post
Come to think of it, it did work better when I put the cover on (after getting the silicone on the cover correctly), finger tightened the bolts, and then waited to tighten them down.
yep a single bead about 1/4 in diameter should wokr great..... no gaps tho... has to be continous... on
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Unread 05-29-2012, 03:06 PM   #9
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I hate silicone with a passion, so I try to avoid using it. Here is a writeup I did back in '09, and I'm still using the same Lube Locker gaskets that I used in the writeup.

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f12/b...enance-728231/

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Unread 05-29-2012, 03:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mean Max View Post
I hate silicone with a passion, so I try to avoid using it.
http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f12/b...enance-728231/
x2

I'm not exactly what you'd call a "neat" person, and I tend to get silicone all over *everything* when I work, ha ha.

The Lubelockers are totally worth it. Have them on both axles and they've never so much as wept.

The biggest thing with either method is to evenly torque all the bolts.

I usually hand tighten skipping every other bolt (going around twice) and then torque down using the same method. Works great!
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Unread 05-29-2012, 04:07 PM   #11
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I use this: The Right Stuff. Thing I like about it is there is no wait time. It's a great thing to keep in your trail tools. Can is pressurized, so you get a nice continuous bead. Literally apply, throw it on, torque down, fill and drive.

Also, if you need to get back in there (which we all do at some point) it doesn't take an 8lb sledge and cold chisel to get the cover off. I had to do this when I first put my Solid covers on using this: Ultra Black. Was told by a buddy that once this stuff cures you could take the bolts out and never look back. Then again, I bet he's never smacked rocks with his diff either. I wouldn't advise it, but it was definitely one b**** to get off.

Oh, and neither one has ever leaked on me.
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Unread 05-29-2012, 10:12 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mean Max View Post
I'm still using the same Lube Locker gaskets that I used in the writeup.

Max
Max, so far I've been too cheap to get some. I think I would like to give them a dance so I don't have to break out the gasket scraper each time. I'll break down and get a couple one of these days.
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Unread 01-21-2013, 11:57 AM   #13
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I have put a new rear diff cover on with lube locker. I have the bolts down retry tight and it has started to leak. It has been sitting for about two months. So there is about a 3 inch puddle under the rear diff. What might i be doing wrong?
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Unread 01-21-2013, 12:04 PM   #14
crackedcornish
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yup, go with the Lube Locker gasket

if your covers mounting surface is flat/clean and you don't over torque the bolts, it will last a long time without any leaks

ETA: an FYI for you guys with auto transmissions, they also make trans pan gaskets. I just wish LubeLocker made oil pan and valve cover gaskets too.
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Unread 01-21-2013, 12:54 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cbl600r View Post
I have put a new rear diff cover on with lube locker. I have the bolts down retry tight and it has started to leak. It has been sitting for about two months. So there is about a 3 inch puddle under the rear diff. What might i be doing wrong?
this isnt the answer.. When you tighten it down really tight you dimple the cover where the bolts are and squish the gasket out.. so it leaks.. You just need to have it all make contact.. Your going to need to pull the cover and get it straight again.. and get a new gasket.
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