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  • Axle seal and rear main seal or pan seal

    Hey guys finally got registered to post. What an ordeal.

    I have a leaking pass side front axle seal leaking gear oil all over. Was told it would cost me about $300 labor and parts. I try to do most things myself, beside like rebuilding trannys.

    I have a 86 CJ7 with 4" suspension and 3" body lift rolling on 35x12.50 15 BFG mud tracks. I6 with 5 speed(unknown) and unknown front axle(guessing dana 30)

    How hard is this really?? I started asking around and was told to take it somewhere, well, after the $300 labor quote, its going to leak or im going to fix it. The seals i have, about $3 each.

    Other question is do the rear mains leak often, susposedly 50k on motor and tranny, but that could have been a "home rebuild" too. Whats is involved there? Im hoping its the oil pan gasket.

    Thanks guys, u seem to know ur stuff, i did a search on axle seal and found only one thing saying someone did it. Pics or diagrams would help if anyone has any.

    Thanks agian.


  • #2
    No ones done an axle seal??


    • #3
      I just did mine three weeks ago. The bearing surface on the inner axle was shot so I replaced that. Taking it apart is not that big a deal, just time consuming. To put the axle seals back in, I used a long piece of steel rod, put it through the axle tube and put a socket on that fit the seal. Very carefully I tapped on the rod to drive the seal into place. Putting the dif back in was a different story. I could get one side in, but not the other. Saw a high spot inside the housing right on the forward edge of where the outer race goes. Took a die grinder and took that high spot off. I was then able to tap the dif in far enough that I got the bearing caps on. I used the bearing caps to draw the dif in and then torqued them to 40 or 45 foot pounds. Can’t remember which, whatever the book said. Keep close track on how the bearing caps go on and put a blanket under the dif in case you drop it. I also took my tie rod loose on the passenger side to get the dif out but I have mine mounted on top of the knuckles so this may not apply to you. I’m not sure if all this was the correct way but it is how I did it. I just took the cover back off and it is now draining for a fresh oil change. No water in the dif and no leaks so far.


      • #4
        shops are never cheap. i had to replace the mains in my for truck and several shops said they couldn't do it. the ones that would do it wanted $800 or more for labor. one weekend in my garage it was done. i've replaced axle seals but not in my jeep, but they weren't hard at all. you'll need a 6pt socket to get the axle nut off, but that's it. some people tap it out with a screw driver to, but you can't torque it back in that way.


        • #5
          If you don't know what you are doing in the Axle it can be a bit rough. If I remember right the inner seals are right next to the diff. That can be a bit of a trouble to pull. Plus you have to make sure you get everything in exactly like youu took it apart. I think you might want to pay the $300. If you would rater work on your jeep insead of paying someone else then get a bunch of tools and an FSM for your year jeep and go to it. Anything can be done with the right tools and an FSM.


          • #6
            I would spend that 300 on a locker and do it yourself ... it's more of a pain in the arse than it is difficult ~ ... It can be done with a set of wrenchs, a small pry bar, a broom stick, a big hammer ... and I would say about a case of beer


            • #7

              you should have no problem doing this yourself, i've replaced the axle seals before and just recently replaced the rear main seal in my 304 v8 on a 78 cj 7. purchase a chiltons book on your year and model of jeep they show you step by step and with some diagrams on how to fix about everything on your jeep. if your handy at all it won't be a problem, just follow the directions and tourqe to specs.
              good luck \

              78 cj 7, 304 v8, headers and pipes, msd ignition, 4wd 4" lift, 33" dunlop mud grapplers on american racing wheeles, full cage roll w/frame tie ins, racing bucket seats w/4 point harnesses