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Old 01-05-2016, 01:00 PM   #1
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Rear Diff axle removal

How hard is it to remove the rear axles from the rear diff?

I am leaking fluid out of both axle seals after the rebuild. Weir performance did the rebuild and a local shop installed the rear diff. Both are blaming each other for the leak (of course....).

So basically i'm sick of it. I just want a freaking working diff! I'm going to try and replace the seals myself. Weir says I can do it without dropping the diff out of the car.

I guess what I need to know is how hard is it to pop out an axle (one at a time?) from the diff so I can replace the seals?

Thanks!
Ryan
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Old 01-05-2016, 01:11 PM   #2
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http://www.ft86club.com/forums/showt...highlight=axle


Doesn't seem that hard. Haven't done one myself on an 86 though.


Good Luck.
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Old 01-05-2016, 02:03 PM   #3
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Pretty easy, your two options are to drop it (you don't need to completely remove it you can lower it enough to slide the axles out if you have the car jacked up high enough.) or unbolt the rear trailing arm and lca which should allow you enough room on the outer side of the axle to slide the inner side out. The biggest thing to think of from a DIY perspective is having the proper socket/seal driver to install the new seal without damaging it. Aluminum seal driver kits can be bought and rented fairly cheaply.
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Old 01-05-2016, 03:10 PM   #4
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Pretty easy, your two options are to drop it (you don't need to completely remove it you can lower it enough to slide the axles out if you have the car jacked up high enough.) or unbolt the rear trailing arm and lca which should allow you enough room on the outer side of the axle to slide the inner side out. The biggest thing to think of from a DIY perspective is having the proper socket/seal driver to install the new seal without damaging it. Aluminum seal driver kits can be bought and rented fairly cheaply.
Good to know. I have a machine shop at work with pullers and every kind of spacer/block/shape imaginable so I'm sure I can find something to evenly drive it in with.

Its just odd that BOTH axle seals are leaking. I'm going to drop it just so I can get a better look at it, but I will leave it as "connected" as possible. I presume that's just leaving it connected to the driveshaft?

Thanks for the advice!
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Old 01-05-2016, 05:06 PM   #5
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Good to know. I have a machine shop at work with pullers and every kind of spacer/block/shape imaginable so I'm sure I can find something to evenly drive it in with.

Its just odd that BOTH axle seals are leaking. I'm going to drop it just so I can get a better look at it, but I will leave it as "connected" as possible. I presume that's just leaving it connected to the driveshaft?

Thanks for the advice!
Yep, you should be able to leave the driveshaft connected for this, but worst cast it's just for small bolts if you need to remove it. Also try to have a nicely sized board to set the diff on a jack when you lower it. I've replaced a diff myself at the track without a board to balance the diff on and I can assure you trying to hold it up with your knees and start the bolts sucks.
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Old 01-05-2016, 05:43 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by xsnapshot View Post
How hard is it to remove the rear axles from the rear diff?

I am leaking fluid out of both axle seals after the rebuild. Weir performance did the rebuild and a local shop installed the rear diff. Both are blaming each other for the leak (of course....).

So basically i'm sick of it. I just want a freaking working diff! I'm going to try and replace the seals myself. Weir says I can do it without dropping the diff out of the car.

I guess what I need to know is how hard is it to pop out an axle (one at a time?) from the diff so I can replace the seals?

Thanks!
Ryan
it's probably that time of year to start learning how to do everything difficult on your own(my self included)
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Old 01-06-2016, 09:45 AM   #7
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Reference: http://www.ft86club.com/forums/showthread.php?t=54054

You don't need a puller or special installer for the seals. Pull it out with a screw driver by sticking the driver through the middle and rotating outward like you are removing a nail with a claw hammer. Grease edges and tap new seals in by working around the edges with a blunt rod (I used a 3/8" socket extension). Use a multi purpose grease on the inside where the axle sits. If there isn't any on the original ones, the shop screwed up installing it and that was likely the cause of failure.

I'd recommend removing drive shaft first and using two jacks. 1 to support the diff and move it around, the other to jack up the passenger side suspension so you can make room to get the axle out.

I used a bearing splitter (see above thread) to remove the axle, but they can be tapped out with a screw driver.
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Old 01-06-2016, 12:39 PM   #8
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Reference: http://www.ft86club.com/forums/showthread.php?t=54054

You don't need a puller or special installer for the seals. Pull it out with a screw driver by sticking the driver through the middle and rotating outward like you are removing a nail with a claw hammer. Grease edges and tap new seals in by working around the edges with a blunt rod (I used a 3/8" socket extension). Use a multi purpose grease on the inside where the axle sits. If there isn't any on the original ones, the shop screwed up installing it and that was likely the cause of failure.

I'd recommend removing drive shaft first and using two jacks. 1 to support the diff and move it around, the other to jack up the passenger side suspension so you can make room to get the axle out.

I used a bearing splitter (see above thread) to remove the axle, but they can be tapped out with a screw driver.
Thanks for the advice. I dropped my diff last night. At first glance the seals seem fine, but I ran out of time to remove them and inspect thoroughly. I will be taking them out tonight and will take a closer look.

When I drained it, I only got about 3/4 of a quart. So I lost about half a quart from the leak in 3 weeks.

How hard is it to get the axles back in?

The breather seemed fine and no oil was present there. The diff cover seems to be good as well with no leaks visible. Just the axles seals.

If the diff was overfilled would this "blow out" the seals? Or what could be causing the seals to leak? It doesn't seem like they would ever see pressure. build up with having the vent there.
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Old 01-06-2016, 12:47 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by xsnapshot View Post
Thanks for the advice. I dropped my diff last night. At first glance the seals seem fine, but I ran out of time to remove them and inspect thoroughly. I will be taking them out tonight and will take a closer look.

When I drained it, I only got about 3/4 of a quart. So I lost about half a quart from the leak in 3 weeks.

How hard is it to get the axles back in?

The breather seemed fine and no oil was present there. The diff cover seems to be good as well with no leaks visible. Just the axles seals.

If the diff was overfilled would this "blow out" the seals? Or what could be causing the seals to leak? It doesn't seem like they would ever see pressure. build up with having the vent there.
The breather vent isn't straight open to atmosphere. I had a spare one and blew into it and it does still contain a small amount of pressure. Maybe .5 psi. I vaguely remember removing a plug and hearing a little bit of pressure escape or enter.

There's also a decent chance that there is still a decent amount of diff fluid clinging to everything internally. So measuring fluid out may not give an accurate representation to how much was lost. There's also really no way to overfill unless you use a pump to flow oil in fast and then plug quickly. A normal fill means filling through side port until oil starts to spill out a little.

Getting axles back in is much easier than removal. Just be careful not to nick the seals when inserting. Before reinstalling, I would get an eyeglass screw driver and bend the cir-clips back out a fraction so they more resemble OEM. Manual says replace, but I've replaced them and I've used old ones and couldn't tell the difference.

I actually had a similar instance of seal failure, I think it was a lubrication issue in my case. Haven't had an issue since though.


Here's another reference thread where guy had same issue:
http://www.ft86club.com/forums/showthread.php?t=80417

Last edited by kodyo; 01-06-2016 at 12:58 PM.
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Old 01-06-2016, 06:09 PM   #10
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The breather vent isn't straight open to atmosphere. I had a spare one and blew into it and it does still contain a small amount of pressure. Maybe .5 psi. I vaguely remember removing a plug and hearing a little bit of pressure escape or enter.

There's also a decent chance that there is still a decent amount of diff fluid clinging to everything internally. So measuring fluid out may not give an accurate representation to how much was lost. There's also really no way to overfill unless you use a pump to flow oil in fast and then plug quickly. A normal fill means filling through side port until oil starts to spill out a little.

Getting axles back in is much easier than removal. Just be careful not to nick the seals when inserting. Before reinstalling, I would get an eyeglass screw driver and bend the cir-clips back out a fraction so they more resemble OEM. Manual says replace, but I've replaced them and I've used old ones and couldn't tell the difference.

I actually had a similar instance of seal failure, I think it was a lubrication issue in my case. Haven't had an issue since though.


Here's another reference thread where guy had same issue:
http://www.ft86club.com/forums/showthread.php?t=80417
What you mean lubrication issue? As in you were using the wrong fluid?

Spence at Weir Performance said its possible if the wrong fluid was used that it could be a reason it's leaking. I've also found reports of the Camaro SS having the issue where a limited slip additive caused the diff to start leaking.
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Old 01-06-2016, 06:17 PM   #11
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What you mean lubrication issue? As in you were using the wrong fluid?

Spence at Weir Performance said its possible if the wrong fluid was used that it could be a reason it's leaking. I've also found reports of the Camaro SS having the issue where a limited slip additive caused the diff to start leaking.
Nah, more like I forgot to add a multipurpose grease to the seals before installing axles.
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Old 01-08-2016, 01:28 PM   #12
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Well I put in my new seals last night. It was tough putting it back up by myself but I got it eventually. I went for a 30 min drive and came back to check it and I did not see any sign of leaking.

So hopefully this issue is now behind me. It's actually pretty straightforward and fairly easy to do. I would recommend it for any reasonably proficient DIY'er.
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