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Old 05-25-2013, 08:16 PM   #1
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Another OPDA question

There is a lot of info about the inspection and replacement of the OPDA for the 2005/6 Wrangler in various forums. I have a 2005 4.0L. I heard that there wasn't a recall for this, but the dealer inspected and replaced mine at about 3,500 miles in 2005. It wasn't doing anything unusual at the time, they sent me a notice to bring it in. As I read all these threads, I question the replacement gear quality.

Would they have put in a improved part, or one susceptible to the same failure? I'm a little worried with about 80,000 on the motor now. I haven't pulled it to check and its not making any strange noises, but i've heard that it could fail without any warning at all. Should I just pull it and put the dorman part in to be safe?


I'd be interested to hear what you guys think...thanks!

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Old 05-25-2013, 10:49 PM   #2
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I have an early ’05 that had the OPDA gear replaced as part of the TSB (not a recall). A couple yrs ago I started getting the laughing monkey & pulled the OPDA. The replacement gear had excessive & very uneven wear. I put in a Crown replacement gear & cleaned up the shaft & added an oil cup to lube the upper bushing. I haven’t checked the gear in a while but the last time I had it out the new Crown gear looked good. I don’t put that many miles per yr on it so this is not a high mileage report but I’m happy so far. The original gears were improperly heat treaded as I understand it so I assume they just replaced them with standard later production gears. That has nothing to do with the binding issue & lack of upper bushing lubrication as I found out with mine. I’m sure the increased drag from the binding shaft has a lot to do with the gear wear. The only way to know is to pull it to be sure.

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Old 05-26-2013, 12:53 AM   #3
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Thanks for the response...sounds like I'd be prudent to at least pull it and take a look. It doesn't sound like it's very complicated from all the posts.

Thanks!
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Old 05-26-2013, 06:12 AM   #4
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Inspection is a great idea. I have an 05 Rubicon with 44K miles on it. I went ahead and ordered the Dorman because I want this new to me Jeep to live a long and healthy life. So I went and did the swap out yesterday and found I really didn't need to replace the unit after all. Had a bit of a shine on about half of the teeth were there was a bit of wear. The wear was only visible under a magnifying glass. Besides that it looked great. Happy I swapped it though. Now to see how the Dorman performs.
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Old 05-26-2013, 06:19 AM   #5
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Inspection is a great idea. I have an 05 Rubicon with 44K miles on it. I went ahead and ordered the Dorman because I want this new to me Jeep to live a long and healthy life. So I went and did the swap out yesterday and found I really didn't need to replace the unit after all. Had a bit of a shine on about half of the teeth were there was a bit of wear. The wear was only visible under a magnifying glass. Besides that it looked great. Happy I swapped it though. Now to see how the Dorman performs.

Your gear looks like a knife edge. That's normal?
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Old 05-26-2013, 06:59 AM   #6
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It must be the angle and quality of the picture, edges are nice and square. Virtually no wear at all.
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Old 05-26-2013, 09:24 AM   #7
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I was thinking about ordering the Dorman to just have around, in case. I'll pull that OPDA as soon as it stops raining. It doesn't sound like any codes popped up after your swap. Did you use the sharpie method and transfer the marks?
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Old 05-26-2013, 09:24 AM   #8
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Ya .. Yours looks real good compared to most I've seen !!
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Old 05-26-2013, 03:34 PM   #9
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I was thinking about ordering the Dorman to just have around, in case. I'll pull that OPDA as soon as it stops raining. It doesn't sound like any codes popped up after your swap. Did you use the sharpie method and transfer the marks?
Sharpie, but also had a buddy who owns a shop. We put it on the computer and adjusted. No codes, but we had the machine to fine tune.
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Old 05-26-2013, 03:48 PM   #10
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What is the opda
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Old 05-26-2013, 06:07 PM   #11
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What is the opda
Oil pump drive assembly
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Old 05-26-2013, 06:17 PM   #12
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Ahh thank you I didn't know they had issues with them
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Old 05-26-2013, 06:18 PM   #13
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Sharpie, but also had a buddy who owns a shop. We put it on the computer and adjusted. No codes, but we had the machine to fine tune.
Ok, thanks! I assume if I do it carefully, the sharpie method should be good enough.
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Old 05-30-2013, 02:24 PM   #14
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Got my TJ last weekend and already have a new OPDA on the way... should be here Monday. Mine is ticking slightly at present.

Reading all the various methods for replacement, it would seem the most reliable way to do it would be to line up the engine to cylinder 1TDC, drop a pin/allen wrench/bolt/whatever into the old OPDA, remove, replace with new unit, and then yank the plastic alignment pin from the new one.

Just seems more reliable than messing with sharpie marks and trying to transfer them.

Am I missing something?
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Old 05-30-2013, 04:08 PM   #15
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Nope, you got it right. Don't forget the gasket.
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Old 05-30-2013, 08:36 PM   #16
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If the holes are aligned it'll be at TDC if your jeep currently runs. There's no use in doing more work than needed until it's needed.
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Old 05-30-2013, 10:25 PM   #17
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Nope, you got it right. Don't forget the gasket.
I guess I assumed the new unit came with a gasket. If not, is this gasket something that any parts store has?
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Old 05-31-2013, 06:12 AM   #18
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The one I ordered specifically called out that it comes with a gasket.
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:08 AM   #19
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The one I ordered specifically called out that it comes with a gasket.

Ok, hopefully mine comes with a new one. I ordered the dorman from rock auto, and I understand some people were getting gaskets included and some weren't. I'll find out soon enough, it'll be here tomorrow.
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:13 AM   #20
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Just got mine a couple weeks ago. It came with a gasket.

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Old 06-08-2013, 05:22 PM   #21
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Well, if anyone is interested, here is my OPDA I just pulled out of my 05 TJ. It had about 73k miles on it and doesn't look too bad to me. The edges look kinda square, I guess, but I don't know how to interpret the gear wear pattern. Regardless, I replaced it with the Dorman, and I have peace of mind at least...
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Old 06-10-2013, 08:22 PM   #22
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I was going to pull the OPDA on my 06 TJ today. But, the torx head screws do not want to budge. Applied some PB Blaster, will try another day. My 4.0 has 75,000 miles on it. I am real curious about the condition of the gear on the OPDA.
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Old 06-10-2013, 11:16 PM   #23
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I was going to pull the OPDA on my 06 TJ today. But, the torx head screws do not want to budge. Applied some PB Blaster, will try another day. My 4.0 has 75,000 miles on it. I am real curious about the condition of the gear on the OPDA.
My head screws came right off, but I had to PB Blaster the heck out of the 1/2 inch bolt on the mounting bracket. I let it sit overnight...still was quite the challenge to get that one off.
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Old 06-11-2013, 04:01 PM   #24
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Well, if anyone is interested, here is my OPDA I just pulled out of my 05 TJ. It had about 73k miles on it and doesn't look too bad to me. The edges look kinda square, I guess, but I don't know how to interpret the gear wear pattern. Regardless, I replaced it with the Dorman, and I have peace of mind at least...
What method did you use to replace it? Any issues?
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Old 06-11-2013, 04:33 PM   #25
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What method did you use to replace it? Any issues?
Like the folks above suggested, I ended up lining up the holes (TDC) and dropping an allen wrench in them and sharpie-marking the opda casing/engine block. Had to rotate the engine a little bit to get the holes lined up. I also had to turn the oil pump a tiny bit to get the shaft to rotate in. Everything matched up with little effort. I haven't any codes pop, and it runs well.
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Old 06-16-2013, 04:24 PM   #26
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Got my OPDA off today. The wear as minimal. I have a Dorman replacement on order. Will install it when it gets here later this week. I had no issues when I reinstalled the original OPDA. Here is a picture of the gear on the OPDA. Kinda of blurry, though.
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Old 06-16-2013, 11:27 PM   #27
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Looks pretty good to me, from what I can tell. The same wear pattern that mine had, it looks like...
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Old 06-17-2013, 07:08 AM   #28
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Yes, looks almost the same as mine at 44K miles above. I also have an 06 with 12K on it. I don't think I am going to bother to replace it. At 20K I think I will just pull it and check it. Just came back from a 1000 mile road trip with my 05 with the new Dorman in it. All was perfect! No codes, no nothing. Feel good about having the Dorman installed.
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Old 06-17-2013, 09:51 AM   #29
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I replaced mines even though it wasn't worn for the Dorman version for piece of mind. worth the $200 investment.
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Old 06-26-2013, 07:11 PM   #30
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Finally installed the Dorman today. Piece of cake.

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