How to Replace a Rear Differential

Below guide will teach you How to Replace a Rear Differential . Please follow the instructions carefully.

Things You’ll Need:

  • Screwdriver
  • Chisel
  • Press Machine
  • Scraper
  • Socket and Ratchet Set
  • Needle Nose Pliers
  • Automatic Center Punch
  • 3/8 in. Drive Ratchet
  • Differential Cover Gasket
  • Differential
  • Gear Oil

Estimated Costs:

  • DIY Costs: Est. $1,326.01 parts only
  • Shop Costs: Est. $1,851.00 parts and labor

Image may not be specific to your car


  • Park the car on a flat surface.
  • Loosen the rear wheel lug nuts before lifting it up with floor jack. Using the floor jack, raise the rear of the vehicle. Chock the front wheels.
  • Prop the vehicle up on the jack stands so that you can work under the vehicle safely.
  • Take the rear wheels out by removing the lug nuts completely.
  • Put a drain pan under the rear differential. Take the differential cover away and let the gear oil drains out in the drain pan completely. Once the gear oil stops to drain, examine the oil in the drain pan for any signs of metal or other contaminants.
  • Take the brake drums away.
  • Remove the flange holding the axle seal in place and take the axle bearing and collar out of the axle shaft.
  • Next, glide the axle away from the axle tube. You need to repeat the same process on the other side.
  • Carefully, take the differential carrier out. Make certain that you don’t damage the gasket sealing surface during the process. Keep both right and left bearing assemblies and shims in sets separately so that you can install them in their accurate positions later.
  • Thoroughly examine the differential carrier housing for damage and other contaminants. Also, examine the ring, pinion and carrier bearings carefully. If you find any sort of wear and tear, replace the component. Wipe off the differential carrier housing properly.
  • Take new differential carriers and install them in place. Carefully adjusts the positions of ring, pinion and carrier bearing. Secure the differential carrier with differential bearing cap properly.
  • Insert the axle back into the axle tube. Rotate the axle until the splines lined up with gears in the differential.
  • Fasten the flange to secure the axle. Do the same for the other side.
  • Take a new gasket and use it to secure the carrier cover. Apply proper torque to the carrier bolts.
  • Add fresh gear oil to axle assembly.
  • Reconnect the brake drums and fix the rear wheels with lug nuts.
  • Take a small drive and make sure that new rear differentials are properly installed.

Further Reading

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