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95.5-2004 Tacomas & 96-2002 4Runners 4th gen pickups and 3rd gen 4Runners

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Old 10-09-2008, 10:53 PM   #1
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'99 4Runner center of Rear Axle leaking

I have been looking through the forums but haven't come across anyone who seems to be having the same problem I am, hoping someone will have some advice. I've had a leak that started about 2 days ago on my 1999 4Runner where the drive shaft meets the rear axle. It appears to be coming from where the bell hosing meets the axle. Would this just be from a bad seal or is this a bigger problem? Has anyone replaced this themselves? I am big on doing it myself if at all possible. I have attached some pictures for clarification Any info would be greatly appreciated!! Thanks.
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'99 4Runner center of Rear Axle leaking-img_0428.jpg   '99 4Runner center of Rear Axle leaking-img_0432.jpg  
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Old 10-09-2008, 11:05 PM   #2
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the bell housing you're reffering to is the third member. that itself attaches to the axle which is sealed by a gasket or rtv (gasket maker). either that is leaking or the drain plug may be leaking. check to see if the drain plug is tight. i believe its a 24 mm socket if you don't have one that big you may have to buy one. did you notice where it first started coming from??? the plug or the housing. clean it up with brake cleaner and then see where it first starts leaking from. this leak doesn't look like anything that needs immediate to where you shouldn't drive it. in other words it doesn't look like anything serious. there is a lot of gear oil in there so don't panic. by the way great job in posting pictures. it makes it way better to help see and diagnose the problem.
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Old 10-09-2008, 11:30 PM   #3
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I originally thought the drain plug was loose but it appears to be coming from the connection of the bell housing. I wiped off the excess buildup and could see it slowly start to creep out. I assume their is a large gasket that seals where the bell housing meets the axle?
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Old 10-09-2008, 11:52 PM   #4
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actuall its a small gasket that seals it, wipe it off with brake cleaner to see exactly where its coming from. maybe a bolt??? to take the third member out isn't that a breeze of a job but its not bad. if its leaking from the third you're best bet is to remove the third then clean off the surface where the two make contact then get rtv gasket maker to seal it up.
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Old 10-10-2008, 07:10 AM   #5
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Looks to be a gasket failure to me as well.

Its not that difficult to fix.first the parts:
Parts from dealer:

diff housing gasket(thin paper)
diff drain and fill gaskets(2)
(1) tube FIPG PN:08826-00090,orange sealant(could use "right suff"as well).do not use rtv

If you want to do axle seals,now is the time to do them:
axle seals (2)

Parts from auto store:
4 quarts gear oil.
generic vacuum plug/cap assortment
roll of blue towls
2 cans brake cleaner
highly reccomend some nitrile gloves


ok,have parts..lets begin:
loosen rear lugs,jack rear,secure w/stands,put in neutral.

drain gear oil.

Take a scribe or tuchup paint,tire marker,ect.paint/scratch a line at diff flange and drive shaft(to keep it in phase)

Remove driveshaft from diff flange,slide driveshaft out of trans.(4 bolts and nuts at flange)

Remove e-brake cables(clips) from both side backing plate.

Remove 4 nuts that attach brake backing plate from axle housing,both sides.

Unscrew brake lines from wheel cylinders (must use 10mm LINE WRENCH)....Brake fluid now will leak from line,have some vacuum line caps on hand to put over brake line,so you don't run out of brake fluid.

Remove axle assemblies(will just slide out from axle tube)..carefull not to rest axle on seals if reusing them.

Remove all but 2 nuts(leave loose) that attach the diff to the axle assembly....GENTLY tap side of diff(3rd member) with soft face hammer,might have to use a pry bar(go easy) to get it to seperate from axle assembly.

Diff. is now resting on axle housing studs,remove the two remaining nuts(should be finger tight).

Remove diff. from axle assembly.

Remove old paper gasket(get every piece) from diff and/or axle assembly.

clean up sealing surface,diff side and axle side.

clean up diff,axle assembly w/ brake clean.

Put a LIGHT coating of FIPG(orange) or "right stuff" on both sides of paper gasket.

Place paper gasket on axle housing studs.

Install Diff.

Now is a good time to tackle axle seals,once diff is in.

Now its assembly time.......Installation is reverse of disassembly.

Do not over torque diff nuts..(my rule of thumb)equivilant to 1/4 ratchet,tight as you can do with one hand.

If a stud comes out of axle assembly when you are taking it apart,when you put it back use a little bit of sealant on threads.

Make sure you get drive shaft bolts tight,touch of blue thread lock is good insurance,same with the 4 axle flange nuts.

Don't rest axle shafts on seal when you are assembling(carefull not to nick them as well)

Don't forget to put gear oil back in.

Don't froget to put in PARK before you lower it off the stands.

Don't forget to bleed the brakes and check the brake fluid level,before the test drive.


Its going to be a messy job,need to have a couple of catch buckets on hand...And you will thank me for the nitril gloves
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Old 10-10-2008, 08:51 AM   #6
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I dont' bother with the OEM paper gasket.

A nice bead of Toyota FIPG or RTV silicone (High temp & oil resist) will be more than sufficient.

Last edited by GrillmasterP; 10-10-2008 at 08:54 AM.
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Old 10-10-2008, 11:31 PM   #7
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Thanks for everyones help. I think I'm going to round up all the supplies tomorrow and have a go at it on Sunday. I'll report back on how it went. Thanks again!
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Old 10-11-2008, 07:33 AM   #8
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Wow great description. 97ltd4x4 spent some time for you. Some vice grips applied carefully to the rubber brake line will also keep them from leaking.

The axle seals require a seal driver like Harbor Freight's in case you decide to change them. The seals are fragile but have to be installed firmly.
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Old 10-11-2008, 07:37 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 97ltd4x4 View Post

do not use rtv
why's that?
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Old 10-14-2008, 08:55 PM   #10
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Thanks to everyones help. The repair went very well and I'm 3 days leak free! I ended up picking up a bottle of the "right stuff" from my local NAPA and skipped the paper gasket. I especially want to thank 97ltd4x4 for that great, detailed description.
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Old 10-14-2008, 10:53 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by climber3 View Post
Thanks to everyones help. The repair went very well and I'm 3 days leak free! I ended up picking up a bottle of the "right stuff" from my local NAPA and skipped the paper gasket. I especially want to thank 97ltd4x4 for that great, detailed description.
3 cheers for 97ltd4x4:
Great writeup, obviously you've done this before.

Great work climber3 another successful repair with help from Yotatech

Paul
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Old 11-03-2008, 08:41 PM   #12
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.....test

Last edited by Surfgromdave; 07-19-2013 at 11:45 AM.
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Old 11-03-2008, 08:41 PM
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