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Unread 09-21-2009, 05:05 PM   #1
NOCARRIER
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How to remove a DANA 30 Front End Differential

Hi,

My 99 GCL has a noisy front diff - I think its time to change the carrier bearings.

I found a shop in Seattle that will rebuild the pumpkin for $300 bucks. Everyone else wanted $600 - $850 so I figure this is a good deal.

My question is how do I get that sucker off? What is the removal procedure? It looks pretty in depth to me. I have a feeling that the radiator coolant flows through the diff? Also, what is the tear down procedure? I imagine it'd be something like this:

1) Remove wheels
2) Remove both half axles
3) Remove the hub assemblies
4) Use a spring compressor to remove the springs
5) Unbolt the shocks
6) Unbolt the steering arm stabilizer
7) ???

I have done everything up to that point before, but that is about it.

What else goes into this job? Do I gotta remove the brake lines? The drive line? The Transfer Case? Lift the engine? Drain the coolant? Do i even need to remove the springs and shocks? What about the steering - how much crap needs to come off in order to slide the pumpkin off?

PS - I need the whole housing, not just the gear carrier (which would be nice, wouldn't it? I asked them if they can rebuild with just that part... the answer is no.)

Thank you Jeep Masters for looking at my post!!


--shawn

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Unread 09-21-2009, 05:29 PM   #2
Darthteddy
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The Coolant doesnt run through the axle so you should be good on that part.

The brake lines are just attached to the Brake Calipers, So when you take the Calipers off, just suspend them with some wire to something in the fender well.

For drive line youll just have to remove the front drive shaft. Do this by pulling the U Joints at each End.

To get the steering off you can Take off the Drag link from the Pitman arm or from the Tie Rod. Id Take Off Both the Tie Rod and the Drag link. Would be a good time to Replace all the TREs.

Gonna have to take off the Control Arms. Could go as far as changing the bushings on those if you had extra cash.

Theres a Vent tube that runs into the engine compartment most likely. Not sure on WJs.

Then theres the trac bar that will need to be unbolted.

The Sway Bar endlinks will need to be removed.

Im sure im forgetting something. It seems like alot but its not to bad once you start doing it.
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Unread 09-21-2009, 05:35 PM   #3
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So does the pumpkin slide off the axle or does the whole axle need to come off?

Will I need to take off the springs and shocks too?

The front drive line has CV boots on it, the back drive line has U Joints.

The front drive line has like 6 - 8 bolts per side. If I unbolt those, will the shaft simply drop down? Or do I gotta raise the transfer case or something?

Thanks for the reply.
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Unread 09-21-2009, 05:45 PM   #4
AgitatedPancake
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As i stated in the other thread your going to have to remove the entire axle assembly from te vehicle which means unbolting every part of the axle connected to te body. You havw to unbolt the 4 control arms, track bar, dag link, abs sensor and calipers. The axle weighs a couple hundred pounds. Honestly, not trying to offend you but your lack of experience on the subject makes me want to say just drive the truck to the shop and have them do it all. It may cost more but it will be easier on yo and, guaranteed to be done right.
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Unread 09-21-2009, 07:25 PM   #5
WiCkeDuDe
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Your not removing the differential. Your removing the whole front axle. The shop has to setup your diff to the specific axle with shims. They need the whole thing or normally you just drive the vehicle there and they do it on a lift.

I would have to agree that this project seems outta your means. Do you have pullers or a seperator for your tie rods? There are a few tools you will need along with several jackstands and a large jack.

Its not hard to damage a ball joint or tie rod in trying to get them out. Why dont you just drive it to the shop?
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Unread 09-22-2009, 04:18 PM   #6
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Hey guys,

"I find your lack of faith disturbing."

thanks for your confidence in me guys - lol!

It does kinda sound like a big job, but I think I can handle it. In fact I'm gonna HAVE to handle it if I'm gonna be able to afford this repair....

I did find one shop that said its only $100 bucks more to bring the vehicle in and do the diff rebuild as opposed to a bench job where I bring in the axle, but that only shows me that it s actually not that much work - otherwise they'd be charging $1000 bucks for labor.

Right?

--shawn
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Unread 09-22-2009, 04:42 PM   #7
KDog223
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NOCARRIER View Post
thanks for your confidence in me guys - lol!
Well when you open with "I have a feeling that the radiator coolant flows through the diff" I think we were all in shock a little bit or at least thought you were joking.
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Unread 09-22-2009, 04:45 PM   #8
WiCkeDuDe
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I would be driving the thing down right now. $100 is a small price in my opinion. The shop doesnt care because its not that hard to set up the diff in the axle on the lift or on the bench. Personally I like it better in the truck if you have a lift. Its not as hard to hold everything and its right at your height so no bending over.

For that $100 you have to do a ton of work to pull out the front end. The shop doesnt care because you are doing it. If you bring the vehicle in they DO NOT remove the front axle. They do it with the axle installed.

All those ball joints, tie rods ends and bolts for the control arms should be torqued as well with the jeep on the ground. Thats a hella lot work for $100 in my opinion.
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Unread 09-22-2009, 05:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WiCkeDuDe View Post
I would be driving the thing down right now. $100 is a small price in my opinion. The shop doesnt care because its not that hard to set up the diff in the axle on the lift or on the bench. Personally I like it better in the truck if you have a lift. Its not as hard to hold everything and its right at your height so no bending over.

For that $100 you have to do a ton of work to pull out the front end. The shop doesnt care because you are doing it. If you bring the vehicle in they DO NOT remove the front axle. They do it with the axle installed.

All those ball joints, tie rods ends and bolts for the control arms should be torqued as well with the jeep on the ground. Thats a hella lot work for $100 in my opinion.
I don't think I could say it any better than that...take the whole jeep down there and let them do the rebuild with your jeep up on a lift. If you try pulling the entire axle, I'll bet good money you curse yourself (and us) for trying it.

Now your other option, provided its just the carrier bearings which are toast, is to just pull the carrier and replace the carrier bearings. Thats a much more feasible job for you, although you'll still have to take the carrier to a shop to have the bearings pressed on and off.
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Unread 09-22-2009, 05:15 PM   #10
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Have you had this confirmed with a mechanic? What happens if the bearings are not the cause of your noise?
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Unread 09-23-2009, 01:54 AM   #11
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You have basic misunderstanding of what goes into a gear set up.
The shop doesn't take the axle off to do the job. The extra 100$ is just the labor to pull the axleshafts and driveshaft while its in the vehicle.
For the money its well worth it to have them do it with the axle in the vehicle. You'll be spending the better part of two days pulling the whole thing and reinstalling it. Then you'll need to get an alignment...etc...
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Unread 09-23-2009, 03:39 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 99avant View Post
Have you had this confirmed with a mechanic? What happens if the bearings are not the cause of your noise?
Possibly just the front drive shaft?(Transfer case to Diff) You already said that it has the CV joints which fail and can cause a lot of noise.

Edit: Ooops, didn't realise that this is the same as this http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f13/9...-noise-862164/

You seem determined to take the front axle off whatever! Good luck to you and don't forget the write-up & pics
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Last edited by Laidback; 09-23-2009 at 03:54 AM..
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Unread 09-23-2009, 12:20 PM   #13
NOCARRIER
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OK you guys convinced me... I gave in and called the dealer this AM.

I told the lead service mechanic this whole story, and about the noise and how I going to take my axle off and what I've done, and it pretty much shocked him so bad he ORDERED me to bring my truck in to him and let him tell me whats wrong, in which he'll open the diff and inspect the drive line, all for $30 bucks.

I guess I can't pass that up =)

I'll let u guys know what he says and get ur advice on how to proceed.

Tx
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Unread 09-23-2009, 12:22 PM   #14
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PS sorry for the dup threads - my original intent was to create that first topic to diagnose the problem, and this topic to fix it, but it ended up the solution for both was telling me im an idiot :P
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Unread 09-23-2009, 12:51 PM   #15
99avant
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Good job, this is the way that I would go in your position.

I wasted $1300 on a front diff rebuild last year. It ended up being a bad driveshaft and transfer case.
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