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Old 08-09-2010, 11:05 PM   #1
zaitcev's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 323
Front diff throws oil

I examined the jeep today and found front driver side brake lines dripping with a fluid. At first I thought it was brake fluid, but the brake fluid makes the fingers feel strange, kinda like after soap. This fluid did not. After some searching I found that it comes from the differential's breather. On my JK the breather hole is connected to a long rubber hose that goes along the left side of the engine compartment and ends under the top longitudal stiffener with a trick valve. I surmise this is done for fordability.

In short my front diff spews oil through its breather very high up.

What may be the reason for this?

Also, the differential housing gets pretty hot in driving (in normal 2WD). Is this ok? How hot can it get before I need to have it checked?

-- Pete

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Old 08-09-2010, 11:26 PM   #2
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Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: northeast ohio
Posts: 2,274
heat is normal. don't worry about it.

have you recently filled your axles or gotten a fluid change? if you manage to overfill them they will overflow out the breathers.

um...they quiet? no whine or grinding or anything?

EDIT: check those hoses out too. make sure there's no crack or split or anything and that everything is nice and tight. nice seals, etc

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Old 08-10-2010, 09:35 AM   #3
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Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 9,914
Mine "dripped' oil for the first 6 months after "new" and when I checked the "LEVEL" fill plug, it would still spill out slowly !!

It's just an overfill from the jeep assembly, sometimes a little -sometimes a lot

Pull your fill plug and let it drain, till level with the bottom of the plug, do some wipe up and you should be OK !!

I've Never had any trouble with the rear diff. !!

Good luck

"ya gotta have class"
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Old 08-10-2010, 10:35 AM   #4
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 323
Thanks, guys. I'll find the level plug and report (obviously not one on the bottom).
-- Pete
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Old 08-30-2010, 03:25 PM   #5
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 323
Here's a report, to round up the thread.

There was no more throwing and indeed the front was overfilled at the factory. So I think perhaps it was linked to crawling at extreme angles.

I replaced the fluid with Valvoline 80W-90. I did not use a synthetic because some folks complained that axle seals started leaking after a switch to synthetic. Anyway, the front diff was more or less ok, the rear had plenty of sludge. That's after only 3660 miles. There may be something going on with the rear diff, but front seems ok now.

Thanks for the suggestions,
-- Pete
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