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Possible U-Joint issues, advice needed

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas' started by Wild Card, May 8, 2012.

  1. May 8, 2012 at 6:43 PM
    #1
    Wild Card

    Wild Card [OP] Truck yeah!

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2012
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    171
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    First Name:
    Doug
    Portland, MI
    Vehicle:
    02 TRD SR5 4x4 V6 Xtra Cab 5spd
    6" Deckplate. Trimmed TB gasket. Grey wire. Disable DRL's.
    I bought this truck about 3 months ago. 2 months ago, I started to notice a weird, minor vibration coming from the bottom of the truck upon acceleration, notably in 3rd gear between about 30-40mph.

    Since about a month ago, I have noticed a faint squeaking noise upon moderate acceleration. This noise would disappear upon coasting or light acceleration, but would get much worse during hard acceleration. As of yesterday, I now have a very, very noticeable "clunk" when upshifting, most noticeable during the 1st-2nd, and the 2nd-3rd.

    The truck is a 2002, V6, manual transmission 4x4.

    So, my first thought was that a u-joint was failing.

    I look under the truck, and, oh joy, I have 4 u-joints in the rear-driveshaft alone! Yay!

    So, I dropped the drive-shaft (don't worry, I marked it all out) and proceeded to test the u-joints. ALL u-joints pivot perfectly and without any resistance or noise. The carrier bearing is very, very slightly out-of-round when turning, but has no slop whatsoever. The u-joints also have no slop of any kind.

    Any ideas?

    I really don't feel like taking every u-joint apart if I don't have to, as all I have is a trusty 3/4" socket and a hammer to do it with.

    I'm also quite broke right now, and can not afford to just bite the bullet and replace every single one. I want to find the culprit.

    I don't believe it is a front u-joint, as the squeaking and clunking noises seem to be emanating from slightly behind and to the right of the driver position inside of the truck.

    So, once again, any feedback would be great!

    Thanks!
     
  2. May 9, 2012 at 10:55 AM
    #2
    Wild Card

    Wild Card [OP] Truck yeah!

    Joined:
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    First Name:
    Doug
    Portland, MI
    Vehicle:
    02 TRD SR5 4x4 V6 Xtra Cab 5spd
    6" Deckplate. Trimmed TB gasket. Grey wire. Disable DRL's.
    Bump for visibility.
     
  3. May 9, 2012 at 3:09 PM
    #3
    Wild Card

    Wild Card [OP] Truck yeah!

    Joined:
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    First Name:
    Doug
    Portland, MI
    Vehicle:
    02 TRD SR5 4x4 V6 Xtra Cab 5spd
    6" Deckplate. Trimmed TB gasket. Grey wire. Disable DRL's.
    Well, 68 views, no offers of advice...

    I think that I've found the problem. The rear u-joint is actually the culprit. I had to maneuver in an odd fashion, but I finally got it to bind up. Also, in that position, I can see that it is crumbling apart in a bad manner. Wasn't far from self-destructing.
     
  4. May 9, 2012 at 3:12 PM
    #4
    boshak

    boshak Well-Known Member

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    Tony
    Southern California
    Vehicle:
    2003 Manual 4x4 5VZ-FE
    OME 881's, Wheeler's 5-leaf pack, Bilstein 5100's
    Sorry, no advice here but hoping you'll post results if you find any! Good luck... And bump again.
     
  5. May 9, 2012 at 3:46 PM
    #5
    Wild Card

    Wild Card [OP] Truck yeah!

    Joined:
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    Male
    First Name:
    Doug
    Portland, MI
    Vehicle:
    02 TRD SR5 4x4 V6 Xtra Cab 5spd
    6" Deckplate. Trimmed TB gasket. Grey wire. Disable DRL's.
    I'll be working on replacing the u-joint tonight and tomorrow morning. We shall see if it fixes the problem.
     
  6. May 9, 2012 at 3:57 PM
    #6
    Greensystemsgo

    Greensystemsgo Self Proclaimed first gen expert :doh:

    Joined:
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    Nick
    Avondale, AZ
    Vehicle:
    1999 TRD/SR5 4x4
    5100/5125's All pro expedition leafs Eibach coils Light racing uca's 2004 gauge cluster All stainless brake lines 1" diff drop kenwood with polks rebuild seat support webbing satoshi grill optima red top
    unfortunatly the joints in the double cardan are not replacable, and the double cardan itself must be replaced. how many miles? it might be worth simply replacing carrier for the sake of things sense you have it out. the inner most and outter most ujoint are changable on a decent table vice.
     
  7. May 9, 2012 at 3:58 PM
    #7
    Greensystemsgo

    Greensystemsgo Self Proclaimed first gen expert :doh:

    Joined:
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    Nick
    Avondale, AZ
    Vehicle:
    1999 TRD/SR5 4x4
    5100/5125's All pro expedition leafs Eibach coils Light racing uca's 2004 gauge cluster All stainless brake lines 1" diff drop kenwood with polks rebuild seat support webbing satoshi grill optima red top
    unfortunatly the joints in the double cardan are not replacable, and the double cardan itself must be replaced. how many miles? it might be worth simply replacing carrier for the sake of things sense you have it out. the inner most and outter most ujoint are changable on a decent table vice.
     
  8. May 9, 2012 at 4:42 PM
    #8
    coseng

    coseng Active Member

    Joined:
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    Grove City, PA
    Vehicle:
    2011 TRD DC
    OME 885x front, Dakars rear, LR UCAs, ECGS bushing
    I sympathize with you situation. Sometimes it is difficult to diagnose which joint is bad just by moving it. Joints aren't that expensive and I tend to replace them all when I have the shaft out. My taco is an 2011 so I don't have any experience with it, but I removed the rear shaft on my 2003 RAM 3500 a couple of times to replace the u-joints and carrier bearing. The last set was greasable and was in the truck for over 70,000 miles before I traded it on my Tacoma. Good luck.
     
  9. May 9, 2012 at 5:25 PM
    #9
    Wild Card

    Wild Card [OP] Truck yeah!

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    Doug
    Portland, MI
    Vehicle:
    02 TRD SR5 4x4 V6 Xtra Cab 5spd
    6" Deckplate. Trimmed TB gasket. Grey wire. Disable DRL's.
    Well, I'm down to almost a "food or truck" budget right now. I found the bad u-joint. Luckily, it was the one on the end, near the rear-axle. Was disintegrating pretty badly in one spot. I am working on pounding it out right now. I would love to replace everything, but $10 was about my budget on this one :)

    Oh well, now that I know how, it's actually quite easy to get the whole drive-shaft off. Thanks everyone, I'll let you know more once I get this corroded, tight fitting u-joint out!
     
  10. May 10, 2012 at 8:29 AM
    #10
    Wild Card

    Wild Card [OP] Truck yeah!

    Joined:
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    171
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Doug
    Portland, MI
    Vehicle:
    02 TRD SR5 4x4 V6 Xtra Cab 5spd
    6" Deckplate. Trimmed TB gasket. Grey wire. Disable DRL's.
    Well, that ujoint was gone. Crumbled while pounding it out. Only 1 cap had any needle bearings left at all. The rest had disintegrated. The truck is fine now, and all bad symtpoms are gone. That sucked to do without a press or a vice!!
     
  11. May 11, 2012 at 3:39 PM
    #11
    x2468

    x2468 Well-Known Member

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    '02 TRD 4wd V6 Xcab Sr5
    I need to look into u-joints. I have a feeling some of mine need tending to.
     
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