How hard is it to change out the transfer case? - Jeep Wrangler Forum
Jeep Wrangler Forum

Go Back   Jeep Wrangler Forum > TJ Jeep Wrangler Forum > TJ Tech Forum

Join Wrangler Forum Today


Reply
 
Thread Tools

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on WranglerForum.com
Old 01-17-2013, 02:14 PM   #1
Newb
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 8
How hard is it to change out the transfer case?

well I just bought my first jeep a couple weeks ago, a 1997 wrangler ..I was in a hurry the night I looked at it and forgot to even put it in 4 wheel drive when i test drove it....yup..how stupid ...the guy said it just needed a clutch kit...when i got it home i took it for a drive and put it in 4WD and heard noise so i took it out of 4wd.....well one clutch kit,new flywheel, slave and master cylinder and a new steering box later and now my mechanic says the transfer case is shot.........i'd like to find a used one and then swap it out myself if its not that hard.....i have a shop and tools..but never much of a car mechanic....but i do work on boat motors as a hobby and by trade i'm an aircraft structures mechanic..so I can turn a wrench if needed......

question is...how in depth would this be? too complicated for a jeep newbie? what can i expect to pay for a used transfer case?..any info would be appreciated! Thanks!

Kajun is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 01-17-2013, 02:39 PM   #2
Jeeper
 
Dextreme's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Oregon City, OR
Posts: 3,623
Images: 1
The first think I would do is download a free Service Manual from JeepsLimited.com - Home (Register first) and read through the manual to see if it is something you want to take on.

__________________
'99 Chilli Pepper TJ Wrangler "Mistress"
33x12.5 DuraTracs
Zone 4.25"
Dextreme is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 01-17-2013, 02:42 PM   #3
Jeeper
 
Patrick H's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Northern NM
Posts: 3,135
If you're at least a little bit mechanically inclined, it's a gravy job.
Patrick H is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 01-17-2013, 03:00 PM   #4
Knows a couple things...

WF Supporting Member
 
Jerry Bransford's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Escondido, Calif.
Posts: 32,324
Images: 2
What exactly is happening that has led you to believe the transfer case is bad? Sometimes the shifter linkage is just out of adjustment. What kind of noise did you hear, and did you hear the noise when shifting into 4Hi or into 4Lo? Was the noise a grinding that happened when you tried to shift into 4Lo? Were you driving or sitting still when you heard the noise?

Replacing the transfer case is an easy task but you have to make sure its replacement is the right kind. For example, you can't put a transfer case in that was bolted to a 5-speed manual transmission into a TJ with the 32RH automatic transmission or a major ATF leak will occur.
__________________
When you have a choice, buy American.

Jerry Bransford is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Old 01-17-2013, 08:23 PM   #5
Newb
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 8
Thanks Dextreme for the manual tip! I did a youtube search for it and watched a couple videos... doesn't look too bad...i should be able to do it...
Jerry...the last time i heard it was a couple weeks ago so i dont remember exactly what the sound was but when i put it in 4H...it made a clinking noise and i immediately put it back in 2WD...my mechanic says the chain is hitting the case and it sounds like it wants to jump off the teeth of something like that.....he hasnt opened it up.....when i get it back from the shop i may see if i can open it up and see if i can see what is causing it......thanks
Kajun is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 01-17-2013, 11:51 PM   #6
Sponsoring Vendor

WF Supporting Member
 
Black Magic Brakes's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 1,868
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kajun View Post
Thanks Dextreme for the manual tip! I did a youtube search for it and watched a couple videos... doesn't look too bad...i should be able to do it...
Jerry...the last time i heard it was a couple weeks ago so i dont remember exactly what the sound was but when i put it in 4H...it made a clinking noise and i immediately put it back in 2WD...my mechanic says the chain is hitting the case and it sounds like it wants to jump off the teeth of something like that.....he hasnt opened it up.....when i get it back from the shop i may see if i can open it up and see if i can see what is causing it......thanks
Of the 5 major drivetrain components, front and rear axles, engine, transmission and t-case, the latter is by far the easiest to remove, work on, and reinstall.

A bit of common sense, unplug a few things and some simple fasteners and it's sitting in your lap.

Be aware that when you pull the back half off. There is not a good way to check chain slop. The back half of the case supports the rear of the front output shaft and when you pull it, it moves over and puts excessive slack in the chain that isn't there normally.
__________________
I am Savvy, I am the brake Wizard.
http://blackmagicbrakes.com
Black Magic Brakes is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 01-19-2013, 07:55 AM   #7
Newb
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 8
Thanks .. So how would Do I see if the chain is good? Is it worth opening up or just getting a replacement would be better?
Kajun is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 01-19-2013, 08:16 AM   #8
Jeeper
 
Flopolopagus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Blackstone
Posts: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kajun View Post
Thanks .. So how would Do I see if the chain is good? Is it worth opening up or just getting a replacement would be better?
I am actually undergoing the project or rebuilding mine today.

Symptoms: Shifting into 4H results in a whining noise, that gets louder untill it "clunks" and repeats the process. The noise gets faster with speed, and giving the vehicle torque (In 2wd or 4wd) results in a low rattling sound comming from the transfer case (The shifting boot was off, so I could hear everything clearly.)

I am expecting the shifting fork and the chain to be shot. Most rebuild procedures I have looked at result in that, and having to be replaced. The rebuild kits (seals, bearings, silicon, and fork pads) go for between $90 and $250. I found a chain for $60, and a fork for $40. This is probably going to be a two day job. Day one: Removing and disassembling the case, diagnosing issues, ordering parts. Day two: reassembling case, re-installing case, and test driving.

Here is the tutorial I am referencing: NP 231 J Rebuild and SYE install

Also, there are some helpful youtube videos if you search your transfer case type. (Mine is a 231-J)

Compare the time and cash costs of the replacement as opposed to the rebuild, and Good Luck.
Flopolopagus is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 01-19-2013, 09:23 AM   #9
Sponsoring Vendor

WF Supporting Member
 
Black Magic Brakes's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 1,868
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flopolopagus View Post
I am actually undergoing the project or rebuilding mine today.

Symptoms: Shifting into 4H results in a whining noise, that gets louder untill it "clunks" and repeats the process. The noise gets faster with speed, and giving the vehicle torque (In 2wd or 4wd) results in a low rattling sound comming from the transfer case (The shifting boot was off, so I could hear everything clearly.)

I am expecting the shifting fork and the chain to be shot. Most rebuild procedures I have looked at result in that, and having to be replaced. The rebuild kits (seals, bearings, silicon, and fork pads) go for between $90 and $250. I found a chain for $60, and a fork for $40. This is probably going to be a two day job. Day one: Removing and disassembling the case, diagnosing issues, ordering parts. Day two: reassembling case, re-installing case, and test driving.

Here is the tutorial I am referencing: NP 231 J Rebuild and SYE install

Also, there are some helpful youtube videos if you search your transfer case type. (Mine is a 231-J)

Compare the time and cash costs of the replacement as opposed to the rebuild, and Good Luck.
I think this is another one that I would use if I had never opened a case before

upgrade my NP-231 - JeepForum.com

__________________
I am Savvy, I am the brake Wizard.
http://blackmagicbrakes.com
Black Magic Brakes is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Jeep Wrangler Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Download our Mobile App

» Featured Product

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:34 PM.



Jeep®, Wrangler, Liberty, Wagoneer, Cherokee, and Grand Cherokee are copyrighted and trademarked to Chrysler Motors LLC.
Wranglerforum.com is not in any way associated with the Chrysler Motors LLC