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Rear Differential remove/replace

Discussion in 'Stock 1995 - 2001 Explorers' started by drakeguy22, February 4, 2010.

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    1. drakeguy22

      drakeguy22 Active Member

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      ive been seaching around this site trying to find a decent write up on the removal and replacement of a rear differential on a 99 explorer and i cant find one... so anyone got any info on it???
      I'm buying a 99 4x4 explorer with 100,000 miles this weekend and it needs a new rear diff. obviously im going to do it myself or i wouldnt have asked for info on it.
      any info on this project would be awesome
       
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    3. my pos mounty

      my pos mounty Well-Known Member

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      PM sent with questions before I continue writing this lengthy reply
       
    4. mshuler009

      mshuler009 Active Member

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      Rear End Removal & Installation

      Ok, I will give you the best off the top of my head write up I can for you....So here it goes:

      Before swapping rear differential assemblies please ensure that the gear ratios are the same; otherwise speedometer and transmission shift points will be affected. Also ensure same brake package is on the "new" diff. If old diff has disc, and new has drums or vise versa you will experience brake difficulties due to different master cylinders installed on the different vehicles. If they are different you could always swap brake assemblies over to the opposite diff. If equipped with drums to begin with, you will need to pull the axle shafts to remove backing plates. If this is the case please reply and I will walk you through that also.

      Now for the Good Stuff




      Lift and support vehicle safely: Place jackstands on frame rails in front of the front leaf spring mount.

      Remove Rear Tires

      Disconnect Rear Sway Bar End Links

      Remove Driveshaft

      Remove Brake Flex Hose From Junction Block on rear diff.

      Disconnect Rear Shock Absorber Lower Mounts

      Disconnect ABS Magnetic Pulse Generator Connector from the top of the diff.

      Remove Rear Diff Cover and Drain Fluid

      Replace Cover (snug bolts up)

      Position Floor Jack under center of rear diff.

      Put SLIGHT Pressure on it

      Remove U Bolt Nuts.
      ****I have always left one on each side slightly on for safety****

      Remove Remaining Nuts and U Bolts

      *********************************************************
      This is where the term "Rear End Wrastlin" Comes into play


      You will need to slide the diff over to one side, force one axle tube below the leaf springs, then continue sliding in that direction; thus putting the diff below the leaf springs. Then Slowly Lower.

      Re-Installation is the reverse of removal; However I suggest you replace axle seals, and pinion seals.




      I think I covered it all for not even looking at one....if any questions arise please reply to this post. Good Luck
       
    5. Electrohacker

      Electrohacker Well-Known Member

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      I think he means differential, not axle
       
    6. drakeguy22

      drakeguy22 Active Member

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      Thanks for the info!
       
    7. gavin

      gavin Elite Explorer

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      are you looking to replace the whole rear axle housing, or rebuild the differential (ie, carrier bearings, pinion bearings, etc)?

      rebuilding the differential will require a lot of time and quite a few specialty tools. Although you may find a shop to do it, it can be fairly spendy.

      Otherwise just swapping out the rear axle housing isn't terribly difficult, but that can also be a catch-22 if you end up with a dud replacement housing (shot R&P, bent tubes, twisted tubes, etc).
       
    8. drakeguy22

      drakeguy22 Active Member

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      i planned on just replacing the differential....
       
      Last edited: February 4, 2010
    9. gavin

      gavin Elite Explorer

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      well... that's only the carrier (holds the ring gear, transfers the output to the axle shafts).

      So you will need an install kit (~$100 or so).
      Tools required include pinion depth gauge, calipers for measuring shims, beam-style torque wrench (both foot pounds and inch pounds, bearing installer for carrier bearings, magnetic base dial indicator for measuring backlash.

      and then of course a few assorted sockets and/or wrenches.

      I've seen a thread in the Off-Road Drivelines subforum... I'll see if I can find it again.

      edit: http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=144780
       
    10. mshuler009

      mshuler009 Active Member

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      Ooops...

      Sorry for assuming you were going for the whole housing.....but hey, atleast you know. Let us know if you need more info; I'm sure one of us can guide you through it!
       
    11. KPSquared

      KPSquared Active Member

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      Don't wanna say you can't search... but I just completed a re-gear on my truck and found all the info I needed (having never done it before) on this site and a few others. There is lots of info out there. It's not an easy job, requires a few precision tools, and a TON of patience. All I can say is READ READ READ.

      It would be WAY easier to just find a good axle at a wrecker and swap the whole thing. USe MShuler009's method... just add removing the rear shackle bolts on the leaf springs... then you don't gotta wrestle... just pull straight back.

      I did it without a pinion depth gauge but it would have made it a LOT easier and a lot less trial and error. but I got it set up. Anyone with some mechanical fortitude and the willingness to learn should be able to pull it off.
       
    12. 96eb96

      96eb96 Well-Known Member

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    13. drakeguy22

      drakeguy22 Active Member

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      so i went to pick up the Explorer today and was told by the shop and the guy i was buying it from that the rear end chattered really bad.... i would assume that it would be the ring and pinion gears..... what do ya think????
       
    14. my pos mounty

      my pos mounty Well-Known Member

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      Do you have the limitedslip diff?
      Axle code D4
       
    15. drakeguy22

      drakeguy22 Active Member

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      not sure it was -5 when we were out looking at it and pondering.... quickly. it was FAREEZIN! where would i find that code?
       
    16. my pos mounty

      my pos mounty Well-Known Member

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      If it chatters primarily when turning corners, it could be something as simple as the clutch packs. If its doing it all the time, you are most likely looking at rebuilding the diff or replacing the entire rear axle.
      If your interested in what junkyards around you have and for how much you can try www.car-part.com it will show inventory, prices, miles away from where you are as well as condition of the axle and maybe even mileage on the donor vehicle.
       
    17. drakeguy22

      drakeguy22 Active Member

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      my local junk yard is in Marcy NY.... Vince's U Pull It. only about 60 miles away haha. worth the drive tho. the guy i bought it from said it does it when it goes over 10mph... but he also told me it was FWD !!! HAHA
       
    18. my pos mounty

      my pos mounty Well-Known Member

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      The full rear axle assembly varies a hell of alot in New York!! From $100 all the way up to $550 :eek: :crazy:
      FWD explorer eh?? LOL
       
    19. drakeguy22

      drakeguy22 Active Member

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      yeah i checked out that site... theres junk yards i never even knew about! some of the prices are crazy. i looked at him very funny when he told me it was FWD
       
    20. 96eb96

      96eb96 Well-Known Member

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      Not to many good junkyards here in upstate ny..and they know that and mark everything up like crazy. They don't bargain either and its like they are doing you a favor.
       
    21. drakeguy22

      drakeguy22 Active Member

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      your in the city compared to me man haha.yes i completly agree they do think there doing us a favor.... what a joke! but if you wanted to take the drive Vince's U Pull it in Marcy NY, right next to Utica, has killer prices. motors and tranny's for 99.99, and all fenders for 19.95! when i hear upstate new york thats where i am... right in the adirondack mountains..... the nearest fast food joint is 50 miles haha
       
    22. 96eb96

      96eb96 Well-Known Member

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      wow thanks I'll keep that place in mind, I found his website. I have to goto queensbury, he rips me off, and that is not much farther.
       
    23. coonerboy

      coonerboy Active Member

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      I will second Vince's. I got all of my message center and EATC swap parts there for less than $75. And don't worry, they have plenty of Ex's and Mounties.

      One tip: if you have kids, don't bring them with you. I drove up with my 4 year old and they wouldn't let him go in with me. Luckily I'm only 20 minutes away.

      I use to live in Schenectady and can remember getting some parts from a scrapyard in the Milton/Ballston Spa area. Good luck!
       
    24. drakeguy22

      drakeguy22 Active Member

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      Last time i was there(mid Jan) they had about 20 Ex's and just as many mounties! got my hood, fenders, headlights, grille, bumper, all for around 100 bucks!
       
    25. drakeguy22

      drakeguy22 Active Member

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      Just got back from Vince's U Pull It!!!! Got the Ring & Pinion, Diff, Axles... everything i need to fix mine for 85 bucks!!! i think thats a helluva good deal.

      My rear end is a code 45
       
    26. drakeguy22

      drakeguy22 Active Member

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      So i figured out the so called "chattering" in the rear.... the pinion is so f'ed.... the kid drove it with no fluid for god knows how long
      [​IMG]
      [​IMG]
       

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