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Front Diff Replaced at 59K -- 683 Miles Before Powertrain Warranty Expiration

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by MQQSE, Jan 15, 2012.

  1. Jan 15, 2012 at 10:07 AM
    #1
    MQQSE

    MQQSE [OP] Chief Pal Guy, GOB

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    Bottom Line Up Front: If you are seeing excessive metal shavings on the front diff drain plug magnet and in the gear oil when you drain it, I strongly recommend you have the front diff checked.

    Here's the story: I bought my 2007 AC 4cy/5spd/4x4 in May 2010 with 23k miles on it.

    In March 2011, at 42K miles I changed all my drive train fluids to synthetic (front and rear diff/xfer case/manual trans).

    - I noted at that time that there were as much or more metal shavings on the front diff drain plug magnet as the rear diff.
    http://www.tacomaworld.com/forum/2n...-put-off-changing-front-differential-oil.html

    Towards the end of November 2011, after our first big snowfall, I noticed quite a bit of noise coming from the front diff the first time I used 4Hi at hwy speeds.

    - I changed out the front diff gear oil, and again noticed a lot of metal shavings on the drain plug magnet and in the used oil. After changing out the gear oil, things seemed to quiet down.

    - But some of the noise still seemed to be there, and as I had been planning to change out the front wheel bearings in the Spring, I went ahead and changed out the wheel bearings on both sides. When I broke open the old driver side bearing, I noticed what appeared to be light brown scorching on the racer. When I put it all back together, it seemed noticeably quieter. I assumed the low hum noise I was hearing at that point, was "normal" drive train noise in 4Hi. I now know I was wrong.

    - Around Christmas a tell tale circle about silver dollar size appeared on my Garage floor. When I crawled under the truck it was clearly coming from the back side of the front diff. When I had changed the oil in Nov, I didn't notice any leakage or seepage, but I didn't look real close either. I did it with the truck on jack stands and just enough room to get under and change out the oil. Since the plugs are on the driver side, the back section of the diff is partially blocked by the frame. I suspect the seal may have been seeping at that time, and I just missed it.

    Please note the technicians words on the attached invoice, "Found excessive metal shavings in differential fluid. Recommend new front differential."

    I was lucky that spot showed up on the garage floor before I crossed the magic 60K powertrain warranty expiration! Front diff is a $2200 job! :eek:

    The front end is now quieter than it has ever been in the time I've owned the truck; both in 2Hi and 4Hi. I suspect there were issues in the front diff when I changed out the oil at 41K. I'll be interested to see how the front diff oil looks when I change in another 20K. At the rate I'm putting on the miles, that'll be around next Oct/Nov.

    If the "sometimers" doesn't get me :eek:, I'll try to remember to post the results then.

    Felt this was worth sharing here! :cool:
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Jan 16, 2012 at 3:06 AM
    #2
    MQQSE

    MQQSE [OP] Chief Pal Guy, GOB

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    Bump ... 92 views is that good or bad? :notsure:
     
  3. Jan 16, 2012 at 3:15 AM
    #3
    6spdtaco

    6spdtaco Well-Known Member

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    Tom Woods driveshaft. TRD short throw shift kit. TRD exhaust. AFE Stage II intake. CBI Bumpers front and rear. Warn 8000i winch/ synthetic line. OME 3" lift w/ dakar springs and 886 coils. ATO Front skid. ARE MX cap. Trail Team FJ wheels. Cooper Discoverer ST 265/75-16 C tires. Diff breather relocation mod.
    congrats on getting it in before the warranty expired. No issues with mine yet (46000 miles) and I'm expecting something major to go wrong right around the time the warranty expires. That is just how my luck seems to work.
     
  4. Jan 16, 2012 at 3:17 AM
    #4
    Rusty 06 4x4

    Rusty 06 4x4 NBHNC

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    how much would have cost if not covered
     
  5. Jan 16, 2012 at 3:27 AM
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    MQQSE

    MQQSE [OP] Chief Pal Guy, GOB

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    $2200 ... I read in a thread on here somewhere about a guy having it replaced at 90K; he went to Toyota Corporate (or something like that) and they cut him a check for half ($1100).

    And ... Good Morning Rusty! :wave:
     
  6. Jan 16, 2012 at 4:07 AM
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    Rusty 06 4x4

    Rusty 06 4x4 NBHNC

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    Damn $2200:eek: I have to get the transmission on my 04 chevy Express work van rebuilt when I get my taxes and that is gonna set me back about $1600 it will be the third time for this van>> :pout: and good morning to you as well:wave:
     
  7. Jan 16, 2012 at 8:03 AM
    #7
    MQQSE

    MQQSE [OP] Chief Pal Guy, GOB

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    Bump for S/A.
     
  8. Jan 16, 2012 at 8:13 AM
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    Night

    Night Well-Known Member

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    Well, the front diff is still rotating all the time so you still put the 59K on that diff. CV's and the front diffs always spin with the tires IIRC. Might be the reason for the metal shavings in the front.
     
  9. Jan 16, 2012 at 8:34 AM
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    MQQSE

    MQQSE [OP] Chief Pal Guy, GOB

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    I'm aware of that ... but quoting the Toyota Technician "Found front pinion seal leaking. Due to excessive metal shavings and noise from front diff. Recommend new diff."

    I guess my point is, some metal is expected, but I don't know exactly what quantity is excessive and what is normal. I'll have a better idea after I run this new diff for 20K.

    They ordered the parts and replaced it under warranty. I'm just trying to be helpful. I read on one of the threads here about a guy having to replace his at 90K...and he contacted Toyota Corp.; they refunded him half the cost of the replacement diff. That's $1100...total cost of a new diff installed is $2200.

    If you don't want to check yours, that's ok with me. :cool:
     
  10. Jan 16, 2012 at 6:43 PM
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    Frostbyte

    Frostbyte Well-Known Member

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    i just had mine replaced at 32XXX miles. It had the infamous vibration from 15-45mph.
     
  11. Jan 16, 2012 at 7:30 PM
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    Nater

    Nater Well-Known Member

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    I just had mine done with excessive shavings and the infamous vibe at 10k.
     
  12. Jan 18, 2012 at 3:30 PM
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    Dustyroades

    Dustyroades Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the heads up. I will have a good look when I change my diff fluids.
     
  13. Jan 23, 2012 at 1:34 AM
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    MQQSE

    MQQSE [OP] Chief Pal Guy, GOB

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    Bump for SA.
     
  14. Jan 23, 2012 at 2:00 AM
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    BlazeTaco

    BlazeTaco Well-Known Member

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    I got to ask, Are you guys that are having the front diff problems running lift kits and or larger tires?
     
  15. Jan 23, 2012 at 2:01 AM
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    MQQSE

    MQQSE [OP] Chief Pal Guy, GOB

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    I'm not ... completely stock ... set of firestone ride rite airbags on the rear.
     
  16. Jan 23, 2012 at 2:11 AM
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    BlazeTaco

    BlazeTaco Well-Known Member

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    Any driving on non slippery surfaces in 4x4 or plowing?
     
  17. Jan 23, 2012 at 2:24 AM
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    MQQSE

    MQQSE [OP] Chief Pal Guy, GOB

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    No plowing ... 4x4 only on snow covered / icy roads, but that applies a good part of winter here; and rarely used in summer except for obligatory 10 miles every so often to keep everything lubed/working--that is on dirt or gravel roads locally.

    My truck was originally a lease vehicle in Oregon--leased to a construction outfit near as I could tell from the carfax and drywall stains in the bed; picked up at auction from dealer by Magnum Motors up here ... I bought it in May 2010 w/ 23K on the odometer.

    I will say that I'm more attentive to 4x4 use now, and only use it when absolutely necessary (hills/exit&entrance ramps to highway/pulling out into traffic on snow or ice at busy intersections). That's my info FWIW.:cool:
     
  18. Jan 23, 2012 at 7:49 AM
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    Frostbyte

    Frostbyte Well-Known Member

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    mine was stock at the time, i got the lift recently, right after the diff change actually. I was able to get it changed under warranty.
     
  19. Jan 23, 2012 at 7:54 AM
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    BlueT

    BlueT Well-Known Member

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    How much oil did you put in front diff when you replaced ? What you describing sounds like running diff with not enough oil. Front diff is little tricky and small change in oil level can kill that thing.
     
  20. Jan 24, 2012 at 7:17 AM
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    MQQSE

    MQQSE [OP] Chief Pal Guy, GOB

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    @ 1.6 qts ... I filled until it ran out the fill hole...waited for it to settle and then filled until it ran again. If I remember correctly, it was in the neighborhood of 1 1/2 bottles.

    But thanks for the heads up ... I'll make sure I pay very close attention to the amount next time I change it. :cool:

    My first time with a 4x4 truck ... so I might have made that mistake. :eek:

    Don't tell Toyota that. :eek:
     
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