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JeepMe 05-09-2011 03:59 PM

Front Driveshaft Play
I've been hearing a clunk in the Jeep for a little bit. I finally got under it to look around. I looked at the exhaust, rear a-arm, tie rod ends, and control arm bushings. Everything was rock solid, then I found this:

*EDIT* Click image for video. Skip to 13 seconds to really see the play. This is below the Jeep, driver's side, where the TC and front driveshaft connect.

I come from a car background, so I've never seen the inside of a transfer case. But, I don't think that's normal. Can someone either confirm that this isn't normal (or say it is, doubt it)? Then, what am I looking at replacing to fix it?

Escape 05-09-2011 08:28 PM

Re: Front Driveshaft Play
I'd say that's normal.

How many miles on the Jeep? It will have some play in it and the clunk you are hearing is the driveline taking out the play "so to speak" when you change from P/R/N/D. As long as it is not progressively getting worse I say your fine.

Keep an eye on it though. Maybe put some paint marker lines to see if the play is staying the same or getting worse.

Frango100 05-10-2011 06:59 AM

Re: Front Driveshaft Play
Its probably the slack in the drive chain inside the T-case which makes the noise on the video. When exactly do you hear the clunk?

JeepMe 05-10-2011 09:12 AM

Re: Front Driveshaft Play

Originally Posted by Frango100 (Post 412144)
Its probably the slack in the drive chain inside the T-case which makes the noise on the video. When exactly do you hear the clunk?

After doing some more testing, I think this is normal. The Jeep has 93k miles but it almost all highway miles in 2wd (I drive 65 highway miles a day to work and back). When I put the Jeep in 4HI or 4LO, the front driveshaft was rock solid. I'm assuming this is just the backlash in the front diff gears that's being taken up when I rotate it.

The clunk I hear is when going over rough roads. Gravel roads at moderate speed, country roads with lots of patches, etc. I haven't checked the top shock mounts. That's my next check. If that's fine, I'll be back under looking again.

01grand 05-10-2011 02:25 PM

Re: Front Driveshaft Play
Some play like that is normal, especially with that transfer case, the movement is the backlash from the front diff, the shaft is completely neutral in 2wd at the tcase end. My '93 was the same way, slack in 2wd, solid in 4wd.

Now, when it starts squeaking in the front somewhere and its not brakes, that means its time to have the u-joints replaced......:o

Frango100 05-10-2011 03:24 PM

Re: Front Driveshaft Play
Looking at the video, he has CV joints :D. My Jeep also has CV joints on the front propeller shaft, only on mine the rubber boot is quite different.
But also wheel bearings, front axles CV joints or diff can start making noises.

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