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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello jeepers,

I have quite the situation on my hands with my jeep and could use your input. While driving to school with a minor oil leak that progressively got worse as I got down the road I was forced to ditch my jeep on the side of the road due to outrageous prices for oil by the quart in a convenience store. I continued to school and arranged to have my father tow it back so I can try to fix the oil leak over break.

He rented a tow Dolly from U-HAUL to tow the jeep back on. He put the front axle on the dolly and rear roll freely. From the story, it didn't make it on the highway very far before the wheels of the jeep locked up and violently started skidding pulling back the tow vehicle. He also described a lot of smoke in the rear view mirror and the rear differential being "red-hot". He was alluding to the smoke in the rear view being from the differential which I had recently re-built, a Dana 35 with 4.10s. Is it possible for that differential overheated due to lack of fluid perhaps for such a low gear ratio ?

I suspect that the smoke was due to the tires skidding on the road, and was tipped off when my mom told me that when she describe the situation to the tow truck driver he agreed and added " Yea, you can't do that with 4-Wheel Drive vehicles ". This leads me to the transfer case. Although I am sure it was not engaged, I think that the angle of the Jeep while on the Tow Dolly may have caused the ATF within it to gather in the back/bottom most corner. I have looked at the diagram and it appears the oil pickup tube is in that very side perhaps the front of the transfer case did not receive proper lubrication and seized the transfer case ?

There is also alternate scenarios where a bump in the road caused my brakes to lock up or transmission to jump into gear. Unfortunately however, I think the problem is more serious.

So, if you are familiar with towing Jeeps or any type 4-Wheel Drive vehicles and can answer the question why can't you tow 4-Wheel Drive vehicle with a tow dolly or have gone through this problem yourself in the past I would appreciate your input because until I can get my hands dirty I can only speculate as to what I am going to have to fix over break when I get home for school. Thank you for reading, and have a nice day !

Mike
 

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To basically para phrase other posts: For flat towing, the T-case must be in neutral, but the transmission must be in Park (automatic) or in gear (manual) during towing (5th).
The T-case oil pump is driven from the output shaft of the T-case, so flat towing will turn the driveshafts and the oil pump providing T-case lubrication. So that's all good news.

However, not so for the tranny. Even with the T-case in neutral, the viscous nature of the lube in the T-case will spin the T-case input shaft, which will in turn spin the output shaft of the tranny if it is left in neutral. This is where the trouble starts. The transmission will not lubricate the bearings if the tranny input shaft is not turning, so the bearings will starve for lube. Placing the transmission in gear (any gear) will prevent all of this from happening.
 

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you can tow a jeep with a tow dolly/flat tow it. just make sure the AT is in park or MT is in a gear. the biggest thing is the Transfer case has to be in neutral. I have no idea why your Diff got so hot, unless it was your diff leaking the oil and not your engine.
 

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Pinion angle while towing, pinion fried the bearing?? Disconnect the driveshafts and check all the driveline components.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I do not think I am referring to flat towing. The tow dolly was the one where you drive one axle up on to it and thus is much higher than the axle on the ground. It resulted to the Jeep being towed at an extreme angle.
 

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I think its time to get under that jeep, pull some diff covers and drain some oil.
See whats burnt up.
Might check those tires for flat spots as well.
Angle shouldn't hurt anything
 
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