Jeep Cherokee Talk banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,692 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey all, I'm looking for some opinions. I have yet to go out and open up the diff, but I am getting a vibration that was not there before. I was thinking it was just excessive gear noise, but there is something afoot with my front axle.

It is really noticeable from 35/40 MPH to 70 MPH. This is a constant vibration that changes with wheel speed with very little exceptions. I thought it could just be a noisy bearing, for the Koyo Bearings I used on the front gear swap were not the noise rated type.

The vibration is dampened when in four wheel high.

The vibration appears to get slightly more violent when turning to the passenger side, and is less prevalent when turning driver side(both directions are different than when driving straight)

I am thinking it is likely one of four things:

1.) Carrier Bearings are having an issue

2.) Bad or misaligned or ?? universal joint on the driver's side axle shaft

3.) Bad driver's side wheel bearing

4.) the backlash on the gear set has widened and loosened

I'm gonna drain off the differential and look at the fluid to see if there are metallics in the fluid. If not, then gonna swap out axle shaft and go for a ride.....

I have the gear and tools to pull the diff, but I'm not looking to get in there fully just yet.

I am about to put about 5k on the odometer in the next month traveling back and forth to the Midwest.. Fine time to start making noises n' stuff.....

Any other opinions would be appreciated!

Thanks!


PS I should mention that the pumpkin is normal temp after driving 100 miles or so. No where close to how hot they got during gear set break in.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,692 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Just drained the diff and nothing glaringly wrong. A little shaving and some powdery stuff on the drain plug magnet but nothing unexpected or out of the ordinary.

The tru-trac diff was new when I installed it. It has been about 5-7k miles since then. There was some gear coating in the oil, but again, nothing outrageous.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
9,829 Posts
First thing to check, even though you notice a difference between right and left turns is the CV joint on the front drive shaft. Easy to check, just remove it and see if you still have the noise
 
  • Like
Reactions: DaingMaing

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,364 Posts
Looks like I only had an hour window, but opening the diff is the last thing I ever do. There are too many other joints and bearings that will fail first in my experience. I know you have been worried about your gears since you installed them, but pulling the front driveshaft is easier, saves fluid, and will show you several wear points that clunk or vibrate. I've never seen a wheelbearing vibrate, but they make noise when failing, so that would be next on my list. What ujoint did you install in the driveshaft last? Napa and others were junk for me, spicer is the only one that has lasted.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,692 Posts
Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
First thing to check, even though you notice a difference between right and left turns is the CV joint on the front drive shaft. Easy to check, just remove it and see if you still have the noise
Thanks, I appreciate it.

Looks like I only had an hour window, but opening the diff is the last thing I ever do. There are too many other joints and bearings that will fail first in my experience. I know you have been worried about your gears since you installed them, but pulling the front driveshaft is easier, saves fluid, and will show you several wear points that clunk or vibrate. I've never seen a wheelbearing vibrate, but they make noise when failing, so that would be next on my list. What ujoint did you install in the driveshaft last? Napa and others were junk for me, spicer is the only one that has lasted.
All of the u joints are dana spicer, both on the axle and all three on the drive shaft. I replaced them all after finishing up the axle last year.

My main concern is the trutrac. It is the last resort in the pecking order. With the vibration being dampened by engaging 4wd and being worse turning in one direction versus not as prominent in the other: it leaves only one or two things to check before pulling the pig. However, with the oil coming out clean-ish and the diff casing being average temperature, I have some hope that it is something more simple.

Draining the oil was to see if there were any other symptoms I might find before tearing anything apart, or removed. It was the easiest thing to check. The driveshaft was something I didn't think of. It is the first thing this afternoon once it gets warmer outside. Parking lot repairs are the worst.

thanks guys
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
9,829 Posts
One more thing, you have already pulled your cover. But one thing I recommend in gear oil is Power Punch. It has molybdenumdisulfide (never seize) in it. Great high pressure additive and I use it in all my lockers. Helps it all work smoother. If you True Trac ends up being the problem, try some if it in the oil and take it wheeling to get it good and worked in
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,364 Posts
I've had joints fail in 6 months or less before for seemingly no reason (probably install fail on my part), so I always check them first. I love my TruTrac. The thing is maintenance free and just works. I have 0 concerns about it.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,692 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
One more thing, you have already pulled your cover. But one thing I recommend in gear oil is Power Punch. It has molybdenumdisulfide (never seize) in it. Great high pressure additive and I use it in all my lockers. Helps it all work smoother. If you True Trac ends up being the problem, try some if it in the oil and take it wheeling to get it good and worked in
I just drained it, and haven't pulled the cover just yet. I have a ~5k mile trip coming up in a couple days or longer if I can't figure this out. I will look into the additive.Thanks for the heads up.

I've had joints fail in 6 months or less before for seemingly no reason (probably install fail on my part), so I always check them first. I love my TruTrac. The thing is maintenance free and just works. I have 0 concerns about it.
After a few tests, it seems like it is likely a carrier bearing, but I will do my due dilligence with the axle shafts and wheel bearings tomorrow. I just didn't have the time today to tear apart the wheels.

I got each tire up independently, and tested out the trutrac, and all sounded right. The U joints appear to be just fine and all c clips in the correct spots. The wheel bearings did not make that tell tale sound when they go bad . Everything underneath is tight and right where it is supposed to be. I had to stop for the day, but I'll be back at it in the morning.

I'm gonna remove the wheels, brakes, axle shafts, wheel bearings and replace them with my spares and see how it drives. If it is still there, I'll be pulling the cover.


Here's a dumb question:

Would it be fine if I pulled the axle shafts and carrier and drove 2500 miles?

Thinking I'd rather do carrier work in a garage back home, but I'm unsure if that is something I could get away with. I don't like the idea of running with out them, and it seems a bit unsafe relying on just 6 bolts keeping the wheels on....

Has anyone done that before or know better?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
9,829 Posts
If you take the stub shafts off the axle shaft and put those back in, then OK. But the wheel bearing needs it to hold together. Pull the front drive line too. If you have a 242 tcase you can lock it in 4WD
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,692 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the help. I wouldn't have thought that about the axle stubs...

...If you have a 242 tcase you can lock it in 4WD
Curious as to why this would need to be done? If the drive shaft, carrier, and most of the axle shafts are out...

🤔
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
9,829 Posts
Well, I suppose you could leave it in 2WD come to think of it. I had tcase differential on the brain
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,692 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Well, I suppose you could leave it in 2WD come to think of it. I had tcase differential on the brain
All good, I was wondering if it's fine to just pull the drive shaft and pull the axle shafts(minus the stubby end) and roll with it that way?

I'm thinking I may just leave the pig in there and deal with it 2500 miles later in a warm garage?

IDK, I'm just looking at all angles and trying to do as little as possible in a nasty parking lot. I'll know more in about three hours. I've gotta find a torch before I can start today. The wheel spacers are gonna need to come off and that red locktite ain't gonna remove itself!🤦‍♂️

Thanks!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Gluckmysock

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
10,909 Posts
Yes, pull three axles and leave the stubbies in the wheel bearing, they are what keeps them together. Pull the drive shaft and you have a 2wd front axle. I would plug they end of the axle tube to keep water or dirt from getting in there.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,692 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Well just finished up on the axle stuff, and I'm still not sure what had happened; however, the vibration is gone. The wisdom of the sages was correct. Thanks 4.3 & Superman!

The driver's side shaft replacement helped a little at the start, but after a few miles the vibration was back. I then checked on the differential and the bearings(without pulling it) and everything was still tight and the backlash was still spot on. Fast forward to this afternoon, and the replacement of the passenger side shaft corrected the issue. Smooth sailing and green light on leaving for the mid-west here in a few days.

I'm not sure what was causing it, but both wheel hubs did not spin freely nor did the U-joints on both axle shafts. I'm wondering if the hubs and tight U Joints caused some sort of differential bias at high speeds? Perhaps that was what the vibration was coming form? IDK, and I won't know for a bit until I get back from vacation in late May. I have other fires to put out and repairs to finish before I can take off. My A/C Compressor is making some noises. Likely time for a replacement in a few weeks.

I learned some things during this ordeal. Thanks for the knowledge and help fellas!
 
  • Like
Reactions: XJSuperman
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top