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Old 05-23-2013, 06:07 PM   #1
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Front diff fluid aging; 4wd vs rwd

If changing the rear diff fluid at 20K miles on a wrangler that never uses 4wd, does the front diff fluid need to be changed?

I'm just not familiar with how beatup the front diff fluid gets in rwd mode vs 4wd mode.

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Old 05-23-2013, 06:43 PM   #2
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the front diff still turns, so yes, replace it.

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Old 05-23-2013, 07:20 PM   #3
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the front diff still turns, so yes, replace it.
yep
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Old 05-23-2013, 08:24 PM   #4
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X3 on that.
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Old 05-31-2013, 01:06 AM   #5
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I changed both diffs fluids tonight at 3K miles. I figure it'll be good for post-breakin. Anyways, the rear fluid was pitch nasty black while the front fluid looked like fresh beautiful honey. So its possible the front fluid needs to be changed a lot less frequently.
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Old 05-31-2013, 01:09 AM   #6
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more heat in the rear diff because of the load. Front diff turns but virtually no load. This affects the oil.
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Old 05-31-2013, 01:09 AM   #7
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I changed both diffs fluids tonight at 3K miles. I figure it'll be good for post-breakin. Anyways, the rear fluid was pitch nasty black while the front fluid looked like fresh beautiful honey. So its possible the front fluid needs to be changed a lot less frequently.
X2. It's really pretty easy to change out the fluid from both, but even if you wheel it a lot the front always looks "new" compared to the rear.
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Old 05-31-2013, 02:12 AM   #8
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It's pretty stinky and a bit messy, but very doable by yourself. I used the following write up to make a video on it.
LINK>MAINTENANCE : Jeep JK Wrangler Differential Fluid Change Write-Up
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:55 AM   #9
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I recently had our JKUR at the dealership for something else and they said I should change out the fluids in all three diffs. Do we even have three diffs??
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:58 AM   #10
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Lol nope. Might wanna go to a different mechanic lol. Might of ment one of them as the transferase or trany
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:59 AM   #11
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I do my diffs twice a year. I put on about 40-60,000km a year and wheel it. When the weather changes.cOld I change. When the weather changes hot. I change.
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Old 05-31-2013, 11:20 AM   #12
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Lol nope. Might wanna go to a different mechanic lol. Might of ment one of them as the transferase or trany
Good, for a minute I thought I might be the crazy one involved in that phone call. It’s the largest Jeep dealership in town, but I was just talking to the Service Rep… and he seemed to know just enough to not sound like a total idiot. Anyways, they wanted $250 to change these fluids… I’ll just do them myself.
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Old 05-31-2013, 12:06 PM   #13
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I recently had our JKUR at the dealership for something else and they said I should change out the fluids in all three diffs. Do we even have three diffs??
On AWD cars it can be called a center diff that splits power to the front and rear axles. We don't have AWD. In a 4x4 its called a transfer case. Basically does the same thing but ours is selectable with a RWD option as well as 4hi and low. I'm sure he just wasn't used to talking to mechanically inclined people so when he called the Tcase a diff, he probably thought nothing of it

But yeah I'd definitely do it yourself
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Old 05-31-2013, 01:03 PM   #14
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Thanks jkjeeper06, I've built out an AWD car, so I know those have the center diff... just was not 100% sure on the Jeeps (only owned it for about a month).
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Old 06-23-2013, 04:48 PM   #15
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I've read that if you have trak-loc in the rear diff you need an additive.
I have trak-loc in the rear, does this mean I have it on the front too or do I just use regular gear oil in the front?
2005 4.O with 3.73 in a Dana 44

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