AWD transfer case issues/noise | Page 2 | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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AWD transfer case issues/noise

For the rebuild pricing of $500, I'd agree and go hunt a lower mileage unit, lesser miles and not leaking should be best. Be picky about the pinion seal being dry, you don't want to have to replace that immediately.
Just called the only local yard, and they have 5 diffs.
Price is $210, which includes inspection and reseal. They will not sell one with bad bearings or gears. That seems reasonable.
 



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Go for the one with the lowest miles that has no wetness at the pinion seal.
 






I have done more than one regular differential on pickups and big rigs
its all together just daunting not really hard, that said I have not done the
dana 35's in my explorer (yet) Im of a mind to install aussie lockers after
I get everything right stock (mechanics baseline)
much of what keeps shade tree mechanics from trying is costing yourself more
money which is hard to come by, something shop mechanics have to bet on
every day.
What you get if you succeed is a rock solid rebuild, that you can depend on
and in a bind you can rebuild again . if you look at it thru my eyes
the pain of learning how to rebuild a section is the comfort of knowing
that you can fix what ever comes at you. that confidence works in every
part of your life. and then if that works you can make plans like I do to
make inexpensive modifications like aussie lockers that will make
snow and sand driving more trustworthy.
What I did not like seeing under my explorer is the suspension in the way
of the access cover, I grew up on fords this should not bother me

so if your doing the bearings look at the axle shafts are they worn
is that humming coming from the face of the ring gear because the
teeth have worn flat, is the pinion nut lose from the preset foot pounds

to tighten the use once nut on the pinion yolk
there is a bearing preset that is determined by a string on a fish scale
or a inch pound torque wrench
Ford pinion nuts have a crush washer that wobles and gives up more endplay
or maybe the bearing is getting worn
either way find out in the book what the inch lbs is
see vid here


if you only have a fish scale and string put all the bolts in
and wrap the string around the bolts and see if it makes
1/2 a lb to 3/4 a lb thats close enough pardo, don't over tighten
little steps, sneak up on the final resistance to turning
this is called PRELOAD
(p.s. did I say the wheels are off and the truck is blocked safely)
(PPS the emergency brake is off to ;if Rear wheels)
(ppps chock blocks!!!! )
(pppps flat land with cement)
Alot of people get hurt under cars for no good reason
because they are in a hurry, don't be, have a friend who knows
how help you, pay him is steaks and beer, hes worth it
your going to be in harms way have more than one jack stand block and tire
giving you a safety margin. mechanics do this without thinking
you must stop and think until it becomes your Zen of safety

I can tell you I have reset many pinion nuts and the trucks have gone a
few years enough for guys to plan for a overhaul, maybe save for that electric locker
that costs 1200 dollars

for axle bearrings it is just what it is and strait forward to repair, I'd do that and would advise you
to try , take your time watch what your doing , have a mechanic friend to call if you get in a bind
Have beer for him to come over and sTupidvise, this is most definitely man skills 101.
And mechanics all have an attitude that more people should know how to fix what they break

Here is another freebie, if you have a family with 2 or three cars get a 4th one to use as things break
I even did that when I was single have a winter bomber car and my good truck, one or the other was
always down, which gave me room to fix it right, rather than do what I have to to get to work tomorrow

confidence and the time to do jobs right,,,,,,,,,, mucho importanado
saftey is job 1, fixing is job 2; never break your own rules
that is your new rule

I wouldent let hilary check my tires or Donald trump sell me oil
why can't I have ben Carson for the first black president and trey Gowdy
as a supreme court justice, its my world,,,,,,,,make it so
 






OK, thanks for all the help guys.
I think I am going to go ahead and pick up a good used diff.
I might rebuild my existing one at some point. It doesn't seem too difficult.

I pulled the carrier out, and placed it on my bench on the carrier bearing side and when I spin it, I hear the exact noise I heard while driving. One bearing is much worse than the other, and the pitting on the race shows it. However, I think the pinion bearings are actually in good shape.

While waiting for the yard to pull and inspect a diff for me, I am going to replace the massively leaking oil pan gasket, and change out the oil pump since I already have the diff out of the way... This should be fun!
 






Well, time for an update....
I ended up replacing both carrier bearings and outer differential bearings on my original front diff. I did not touch the pinion bearing as it felt quite nice. It turns out that the carrier bearings were very worn with pitting on the races. I carefully set the pinion to crown interface with shims to about spec and reinstalled the differential. It is now very smooth and quite, at least on the bench.
Unfortunately, I still have the grinding sound and vibration, though it seems more pronounced now that the carrier bearing noise is gone!

I am now wondering if it could be the transfer case itself. Could bad bearings within the case be loud enough to hear, and bad enough to feel? Or could it be the viscous coupling?
The noise is present with and without the front drive shaft installed. And, that front driveshaft is of the double cardan variety, rather than the CV style, so someone changed it out at some point. It feels smooth and tight on the bench.

I do think at least one rear axle shaft bearing is worn, but I don't think it is bad enough to be heard and felt.

Argh, crazy!
 






After doing some research, I am going to pull the front drive shaft out again, and take the u-joints off and apart to inspect them, and at the same time, I will check the cardan joint. From what I can tell, there is a ball/cup inside that can wear and make noise.
 






With some effort and decent sockets/hammer/block to work with, changing the regular u-joint is not bad. I'd do that at least if the age is unknown. I'm about to do my front shaft u-joint, and the hubs. I still have a little whirring in the front of my "new" truck. My parts taken from my other truck are good, but these parts I mentioned are the oldest.
 






Well, time for an update....
I ended up replacing both carrier bearings and outer differential bearings on my original front diff. I did not touch the pinion bearing as it felt quite nice. It turns out that the carrier bearings were very worn with pitting on the races. I carefully set the pinion to crown interface with shims to about spec and reinstalled the differential. It is now very smooth and quite, at least on the bench.
Unfortunately, I still have the grinding sound and vibration, though it seems more pronounced now that the carrier bearing noise is gone!

I am now wondering if it could be the transfer case itself. Could bad bearings within the case be loud enough to hear, and bad enough to feel? Or could it be the viscous coupling?
The noise is present with and without the front drive shaft installed. And, that front driveshaft is of the double cardan variety, rather than the CV style, so someone changed it out at some point. It feels smooth and tight on the bench.

I do think at least one rear axle shaft bearing is worn, but I don't think it is bad enough to be heard and felt.

Argh, crazy!



Could it be a bad front hub bearing noise?

To convert from a cv joint to a double cardan requires an adapter plate on the transfer case flange as the bolt count and pattern are different.

Please refresh my memory , which engine and year is your explorer?

edit, I see you have an early 98 -late 97 mfg date. V8 or v6 engine?
 






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