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Old 06-15-2014, 12:14 PM   #1
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Dana 35 making strange pulsating type noise

Recently got a used D35 for my 95 yj because my bearings were going out in the old one. I installed this new one a couple days ago and it's making a strange noise. It's like a pulsating/choppy light grinding and the tempo is directly related to my speed. It's not that loud and seems different than the bearing noise from my previous rear end. It's not brakes rubbing because i only notice it when accelerating. Any clues as to what this is and difficulty to fix? Could a good gear lube change or cleaning fix if?

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Old 06-15-2014, 12:44 PM   #2
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How big of tires are you turning? Did you open it up before installing and check the gears for wear? Did you mess with the pinion nut pre load? The D35 is a weak link for anything larger than stock tires, my 35 lasted a whole 2000 miles with 35" tires. It started making the sound you describe after breaking off a ring gear tooth. I expected this and had a Ford 8.8 ready to drop in.

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Old 06-15-2014, 02:09 PM   #3
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How big of tires are you turning? Did you open it up before installing and check the gears for wear? Did you mess with the pinion nut pre load? The D35 is a weak link for anything larger than stock tires, my 35 lasted a whole 2000 miles with 35" tires. It started making the sound you describe after breaking off a ring gear tooth. I expected this and had a Ford 8.8 ready to drop in.
I didn't inspect it because I'm not 100% sure what to look for. I was talking to the guy for a while and took his word for it. I was going to get some gear oil this week and open it up. Just look for worn teeth and metal shavings? I wish I could afford a rebuilt 8.8 or D44! I'm running 255/75/17 tires. A small 32" tire basically.
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Old 06-15-2014, 07:21 PM   #4
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Yes, open it up and check out the gears to see if they look worn or damaged, check the bottom of the case to see if there are pieces or shavings. Have you grabbed the rear yoke and given it a shake? any play in the yoke or u-joints? Jack up the rear and give the tires a spin checking for noise or binding.
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Old 06-25-2014, 11:50 AM   #5
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Yes, open it up and check out the gears to see if they look worn or damaged, check the bottom of the case to see if there are pieces or shavings. Have you grabbed the rear yoke and given it a shake? any play in the yoke or u-joints? Jack up the rear and give the tires a spin checking for noise or binding.
I'm going to change the gear oil today hopefully. Anything I can use to clean or flush out the inside of the diff? I played with the drive shaft and there is a little play in it. Maybe an inch worth of rotational wiggle. No side to side play in it. Changed the u-joints a couple months ago, so they're good.
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Old 06-25-2014, 12:03 PM   #6
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Also, I noticed it while coasting at lower speeds. It sounds more like a tapping when I'm coasting in neutral.
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Old 06-25-2014, 02:42 PM   #7
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Sounds to me like the spider gears in the carrier are worn.

It's a simple fix if that is all it is. It can be done with the carrier still in the housing, but much easier if you pull it out and put it on a work bench or in a vise.
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Old 06-25-2014, 05:04 PM   #8
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mine did the same thing it was the pinion bearing, check and make sure it doesnt have play
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Old 06-26-2014, 03:42 PM   #9
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Sounds to me like the spider gears in the carrier are worn. It's a simple fix if that is all it is. It can be done with the carrier still in the housing, but much easier if you pull it out and put it on a work bench or in a vise.
Just took the cover off. Nothing obvious. A little pitting and scuffing on the pinion and spider gears. Some metal flakes in the diff but doesn't seem like a whole lot to me. I don't really know what I'm looking for though. I've never worked on rear ends before. Here are a couple pics. They may be a little crappy.


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Kind of hard to get a good pic of the pinion.
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Old 06-26-2014, 03:42 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by MkUltraOps View Post
mine did the same thing it was the pinion bearing, check and make sure it doesnt have play
How do I check the pinion bearing?
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Old 06-26-2014, 03:51 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by reno92 View Post
Yes, open it up and check out the gears to see if they look worn or damaged, check the bottom of the case to see if there are pieces or shavings. Have you grabbed the rear yoke and given it a shake? any play in the yoke or u-joints? Jack up the rear and give the tires a spin checking for noise or binding.
Nothing binding and no noise that I can tell. Little wear on some of the teeth throughout. No flakes or shavings bigger than normal glitter. The fluid looked a little cloudy like maybe water got into it.
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Old 06-26-2014, 04:26 PM   #12
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I just noticed when wiping out the diff cover these couple of gouges. Could this be an indicator for anything in particular?

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Old 06-27-2014, 10:42 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by Jstephens1029 View Post

How do I check the pinion bearing?
Push the driveshaft or yoke up amd down left and right...it shpuld have no lateral movment it should only spin
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Old 06-27-2014, 10:44 AM   #14
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I just noticed when wiping out the diff cover these couple of gouges. Could this be an indicator for anything in particular?
My dif cover looked like that after the whole thing came apart...maybe the previous owner had it rebuilt
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Old 06-27-2014, 10:45 AM   #15
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Push the driveshaft or yoke up amd down left and right...it shpuld have no lateral movment it should only spin
Alao check carrier bearing.. .same thing try and move the whole carrier up and down left and right....it shouldn't move only spin
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Old 06-27-2014, 10:46 AM   #16
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Alao check carrier bearing.. .same thing try and move the whole carrier up and down left and right....it shouldn't move only spin
If its not that...and your gears look okay....it might be an axle bearing
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Old 06-27-2014, 11:26 AM   #17
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Almost the Same for the axles, but they can move in and out a little, but no up and down.
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Old 06-27-2014, 12:02 PM   #18
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Was the cover on backwards?
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Old 06-28-2014, 12:25 AM   #19
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If its not that...and your gears look okay....it might be an axle bearing
There was no lateral movement in the driveshaft. It did rotate about 3/4 of an inch back and forth before anything kicked in. There was nothing else that I could really tell besides some pinion wear and a little bit of spider gear pitting. I think I'm just going to have to save up and get it rebuilt eventually.
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Old 06-28-2014, 12:27 AM   #20
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Was the cover on backwards?
It's a rock rusher diff cover and the lettering read left to right and right side up.

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