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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I noticed a mysterious leak dripping off of my skidplate recently. After investigating, I found something interesting.


I know next to nothing about working on my truck, so I apologize for my ignorance. From what I found searching on here, I think I might have a bad seal in my front diff. What do you guys think? The dripping is on the passenger side. The photos are looking up at the truck from the ground. I recently put a 2.5" toytec spacer lift on my truck by the way.
 

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Thats the outer axle seal for the front diff. Those commonly go bad if you wheel in the mud alot. In any case, its a pretty easy fix. Unbolt the spindle from the lower control arm. Pry the CV from the diff. Remove and replace the seal. Install the CV and attach the spindle. Check the online FSM for additional instructions if you need it.
 

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is that simple?

interesting.
 

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Yeah, thats the quick and dirty way to do it. You might also have to pull the outer tie-rod but sometimes not. The proper way is to completely remove the CV axle from the hub and then remove the spindle, etc. Thats too much work and really isn't necessary to get at that seal.
 

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Yeah, thats the quick and dirty way to do it. You might also have to pull the outer tie-rod but sometimes not. The proper way is to completely remove the CV axle from the hub and then remove the spindle, etc. Thats too much work and really isn't necessary to get at that seal.
Is it that easy on the 05-07 trucks also?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yeah, thats the quick and dirty way to do it. You might also have to pull the outer tie-rod but sometimes not. The proper way is to completely remove the CV axle from the hub and then remove the spindle, etc. Thats too much work and really isn't necessary to get at that seal.
Cool, thanks man. Where do you think I could buy one of those seals?
 

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Like the others said, it looks like gear oil seeping past the front differential outer axle seal. Does the oil smell bad? If so, it's definitely gear oil.

It's simple to replace if you've done them before, but the first time around might take awhile. When you press in the new seal, you have to do it very carefully, and you can't press it in too far, but at the same time you can't press it in so that it remains too close to the outer edge, either. Otherwise, gear oil will leak out again. Happened to mine and Jacque's Tacos several times til we finally got it right with Chris K's help. Don't laugh, but to press it in, I used a Beefaroni Chef Boyardee can to help me carefully tap it in.

You'll definitely have to remove the CV axle to do this job. There should be a write-up with pics in the tech section of 4x4wire.com/toyota on how to replace the CV axle. Follow those steps to help you get to that bad seal.

Hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Like the others said, it looks like gear oil seeping past the front differential outer axle seal. Does the oil smell bad? If so, it's definitely gear oil.

It's simple to replace if you've done them before, but the first time around might take awhile. When you press in the new seal, you have to do it very carefully, and you can't press it in too far, but at the same time you can't press it in so that it remains too close to the outer edge, either. Otherwise, gear oil will leak out again. Happened to mine and Jacque's Tacos several times til we finally got it right with Chris K's help. Don't laugh, but to press it in, I used a Beefaroni Chef Boyardee can to help me carefully tap it in.

You'll definitely have to remove the CV axle to do this job. There should be a write-up with pics in the tech section of 4x4wire.com/toyota on how to replace the CV axle. Follow those steps to help you get to that bad seal.

Hope this helps.
That helps out a lot, thanks!
 

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I dont really know. I've never taken a good look at the front end on those trucks.
Thanks. I had looked up the install procedure on the 05-07 and it shows removing the hub from the spindle, then removing the bottom balljoint, then pulling the inner joint from the diff etc.. Looked like a real pita. Figured there might be a trail repair shortcut out there. I would like to put a set of long travel boots on mine, some time down the road. It would be cool if someone designed a new stub axle with a Porche 930 or 944 joint to eliminate the tripod joint in these trucks. Then you could get some real travel out of them and have a bullet proof CV in the process.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
alright, so I called my local toyota dealership and told them I needed an outer axle seal, and they didn't know what I was talking about. i went onto the 4x4wire.com website, and I was looking at this picture.
http://www.4x4wire.com/toyota/maintenance/cv_axle/p727.jpg
so the part I need is technically called the inner dust shield/fluid seal? or am I completely wrong? I just want to make sure I get the right part.
 

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alright, so I called my local toyota dealership and told them I needed an outer axle seal, and they didn't know what I was talking about. i went onto the 4x4wire.com website, and I was looking at this picture.
http://www.4x4wire.com/toyota/maintenance/cv_axle/p727.jpg
so the part I need is technically called the inner dust shield/fluid seal? or am I completely wrong? I just want to make sure I get the right part.
no, the part you need in pressed into the diff itself, not attached to the CV.
according to the FSM it is called an "oil seal".

http://www.deserted1.com/FSM/Repair_Manual/03tacoma/sa/fdc4wd/comp.pdf
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
My leak disappeared, so I decided to check my front diff fluid level, and it was basically empty! I filled it back up, and now my leak is back. Of course the dealership wants like $25 for a part I can get from toyotapartsales.com for $10.
 

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This wasn't covered by your warranty?

-Radar
 

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My leak disappeared, so I decided to check my front diff fluid level, and it was basically empty! I filled it back up, and now my leak is back. Of course the dealership wants like $25 for a part I can get from toyotapartsales.com for $10.
the same exact thing happened to me, but it was covered by my warranty. i didn't pay a dime to have that seal fixed
 

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No, my truck is a '98, so I don't have a warranty. I just need to order the seal, and go buy a 35mm socket:(

just leave the axle attached to the spindle swing everything out of the way by removing the 4 lower ball joint bolts...unless you need to replace the axle or otherwise work on it as well. the seal is easy to pop out and a new on back in.
 
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