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Leaking front Differential Cover

Bzz

Member
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December 15, 2001
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City, State
BC <--That's in CANADA..=)
Year, Model & Trim Level
'97 XLT
I have a 1997 Ford Explorer XLT. I noticed oil stains underneath the car, on the garage floor the other day.

Upon closer inspection, the leak seems to be coming from the bottom of the front differential cover.

So, I figure this should be a simple gasket change...but obviously, nothing's that simple..:rolleyes:

My question is, what's the easiest way to access all the bolts that hold the cover on?...

Can I drive my Explorer onto ramps that I use the change the oil...unbolt the 3 bolts that hold the differential to the car and hope that the differential drops down a few inches (still attached at the input shaft and axles), below the front cross member, so that I can get at all the bolts to replace the gasket?


any other advice for those that have got to it?..preferably without removing any other parts..
:)
 


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jasonb

Jackstand Wheeler
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City, State
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Year, Model & Trim Level
'99 Sport 4x4




Bzz

Member
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City, State
BC <--That's in CANADA..=)
Year, Model & Trim Level
'97 XLT
thanks for the quick reply..

dropping the diff FULLY would be my LAST resort..there's GOTTA be an easier way to access the 10 bolts..:D to replace a gasket...
 




Bzz

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BC <--That's in CANADA..=)
Year, Model & Trim Level
'97 XLT
...so no one has tried just removing the 3 bolts holding the differential up and seeing if it will drop down a bit to access all the bolts on the diff cover huh?..:(
 




jasonb

Jackstand Wheeler
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you'd have to get it to drop about 8" or so. thats a lot more play than i think you will get out of the halfshafts. i dont think it will work.
 




Hoppy

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Ontario, Canada
Year, Model & Trim Level
2000 XLS 4x4 SOHC
Did just dropping the axle work? I have to do the front cover seal on my 2000 Ex. I'm trying to find the easiest way as well.

Hoppy
 




Bronco638

Nobody Home
Joined
November 17, 2003
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City, State
Itasca IL
Year, Model & Trim Level
'96 XLT 4.0L OHV
There's enough room on my '96 to unbolt the cover, remove it, clean the gasket face and install the cover again. You'll need to use a flex-head wrench for this, though.
 




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