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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 98 Sahara that is all stock. About 850 miles ago I had a bearing repair job done on my rear end. Well long story short I got a growling noise from the rear axel again and I’m not going to pay some one else this time. I want to try to find a used one from a salvage yard and install it myself. My question is, is there a good cross reference for parts so I will know which years will work with mine? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Im assuming this bearing work did not come with any type of warranty?

and, pretty sure all tj axles are set up the same bracket wise. not sure about drive-shaft length differences between a 35 and 44. Im sure someone with more knowledge will chime in soon.
 

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Something is obviously wrong if it only lasted 850 miles... I would bring it back to the shop where you had it done and complain. They should have a warranty on their work. For that few miles it sounds like they either installed bearings wrong or they didnt align the gears properly inside. If no luck there, then yes I guess you could swap in a junkyard one. Look for a Dana 44 as they are much stronger than a Dana 35. Here's an axle chart if you need it . As far as swapping axles, it's pretty simple. The hardest part is really just setting up the brake lines, and thats not too bad at all.

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Don’t worry; me and the guy at the shop are going to have a prayer meeting tomorrow morning. But, if they got it wrong this time I don’t have a lot of faith they will get it right this time. As far as the 44 over the 35 I hope to not have to remove the axels from the housing. Just roll that whole sucker under there and bolt it in.
 

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Sandlapper said:
Don’t worry; me and the guy at the shop are going to have a prayer meeting tomorrow morning. But, if they got it wrong this time I don’t have a lot of faith they will get it right this time. As far as the 44 over the 35 I hope to not have to remove the axels from the housing. Just roll that whole sucker under there and bolt it in.
Good to hear, let us know how that goes. Dana 44 and Dana 35 are complete axle assemblies. 44 shafts and differential won't fit in a Dana 35 and vise versa. Either one would roll in like you are looking for, but go for Dana 44 if you can find one. :wavey:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
So let me get this straight. As long as I get one from a TJ it doesn’t matter if it is a 35 or a 44 as long as the gear ratio is the same it should work, what about the breaks when did they start using disk on the rear or does all TJs have drum? And thanks again.
 

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Abe Froman
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So let me get this straight. As long as I get one from a TJ it doesn’t matter if it is a 35 or a 44 as long as the gear ratio is the same it should work, what about the breaks when did they start using disk on the rear or does all TJs have drum? And thanks again.
That is correct as long as it is from a TJ and has the same ratio. Disc and drum brakes are interchangeable, but disc brakes are preferred by most. Just remember that a Dana 44 axle is about 1" longer than a Dana 35.
 

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Assuming you already have a Dana44 rear axle, I would not swap it out for a used one from a wrecking yard. Why not? Two reasons:

#1: you don't know the condition/history of the used axle. Who is to say it doesn't need maintenance of its own?

#2: even if you had a competent shop rebuild your current Dana44 (by that I mean open it up and replace every wear item in the entire thing), it still will cost you less than replacing the axle.

From a financial statement, it just makes sense to fix your current Dana44 rather than replace the whole thing.

If you actually have a Dana35 right now, then forget everything I just said--swap it out immediately and replace it with a Dana44.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·

Well here’s an update I took it back in and now he said that there was some sort of additive that it needs and that for some reason it did not have enough and that the positive traction unit was binding causing the noise. My questions are 1.does this sound legit. 2. If not what else could it be? 3. I only drove it like this for maybe 40 miles or so do you think that was enough to do any real permanent damage? 4. I know that there is a lot of debate about the D35 and the D44 and I know that the D44 is suppose to be a much better axel but, as stated before the Jeep is mainly used for moderate off road trips. For what I am using it for wouldn’t the D35 be sufficient if I am forced to scrap this axel and start over? I have been looking for a D44and they are as hard to come by as hen’s teeth. And when I do find one, they are real proud of them. And last I know that the 97 through 2002 will fit under my 98 but are there any other years. Thanks for any help. It would and will be greatly appreciated.
 

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Yes a additive is required if you have a limmited slip rear. If it was not put in with the fluid you could burn the clutch packs up but I don't believe it would in 850 miles. Yes, you could possibly here a bindin/growling noise from the rear with out the additive in the fluid. After the fluid is changed you should drive it at speed and stop to check to see if you are building heat in the rear, you should be able to put your hand on the cover and it be warm but not hot. If it is hot it is binding likely in the gears or bearings.
 

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Almost all of the quality gear oils today come with the friction modifier in it already as it won't hurt an open diff any. Lack of would make the clutches slip not the rearend growl. The growling is an ominous sign....
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Second time in was not for a growl it was for a slight popping that seem to coming from the rear driver side. Still trying to sort it all out I’ll keep hacking at it.:banghead:
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Ok so I got my ride back this afternoon and all seems ok but its only about 5 miles to the shop so I didn’t get a lot of road time in bringing it home but I will check it out this week end. I think I am still going to keep looking for a D44 and build it slowly until I get it as I want it. Maybe by then I can beg the wife to let me have another toy to put it in, thanks for everyone’s help though.
 
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