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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Think I dropped something plastic in front diff '96 4EAT

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14 replies to this topic

#1 porcupine73


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Posted 03 November 2012 - 08:47 PM

Hm changing the front diff gear oil on '96 Legacy AT today ... and I was using this gear oil pump to pump in the new oil ... and it had this roughly 1" long hose barb to barb white plastic connector on the end ... and for some reason without thinking I left that hooked to the vinyl tube, stuck it in the dipstick hole, and started pumping.

Then when I pulled the vinyl tube out of course the white plastic connector wasn't there ... I'm 95% sure it went into the front diff.

So I drained the oil again, and felt around through the drain plug hole, and even stuck a piece of copper wire in there to feel around, but couldn't feel it. So I jacked the front up, set the parking brake hard, put in the FWD fuse, started it up, and let it turn the front wheels for maybe 20 seconds, thinking that might make the plastic thing fall down to be accessible through the drain hole.

But no dice, no sign of it anywhere in the drain. So I put the plug back in, filled it back up, and went up and down the driveway a couple times. I didn't hear anything odd and it seemed ok...

So either this plastic thing isn't in the diff, or it is and as least yet hasn't caused a problem ...

Hm how should i proceed?

#2 idosubaru


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Posted 03 November 2012 - 09:09 PM

look down/up there with a light? probably no way to get much visibility that way.

i think i might try pulling the dipstick and drain plug and shooting some compressed air down the dipstick hole to make sure it's not 'stuck up top' or something.

you could pull the axle and pull the axle stub out of the front diff- they are only retained by a circlip and pop out and pop back in. with that out, even both sides - you might have a chance of seeing it.

in the end it's plastic and one would think it won't hurt the gears as long as it can't get into bearings or compromise fluid flow to them.

#3 1 Lucky Texan

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Posted 04 November 2012 - 12:10 AM

I'd guess the problem with compressed air or other pressurized substance ,could be bad for seals. Certainly you want the least pressure that 'might' work.

#4 Fairtax4me



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Posted 04 November 2012 - 12:50 AM

White plastic? Like squishy vinyl sorta stuff or the hard brittle kind like PVC? Actually it probably doesn't matter. Either way it would just get chewed up. I wouldn't try any strange solvents since they might damage the seals.

Compressed air probably wouldn't hurt anything. Take the drain plug out and the air has two escape routes. You should really only need like 20-30 psi for an air nozzle anyway. A couple sweeps in the fill tube should get some turbulence going on in the diff and might knock it to somewhere that you can see it at least.

#5 porcupine73


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Posted 04 November 2012 - 02:10 AM

Thanks, it was that white hardish pvc type of plastic. Unless it didn't end up in the diff maybe, but I didn't see it on the ground or trapped anywhere near where the hose was under the hood.

Ah blowing some air in there, that seems like a good idea to try to push it through.

I think I will let it go for now, since it's plastic it sounds like those big hard steel gears would probably crunch it for a snack if it gets in the way. If it were something metal I think I'd have to probably work harder to get it out.

I tried having someone turn the wheel while I looked in the drain hole but I didn't see or hear anything but I realized whatever gear I was looking at wasn't turning,

so I put the FWD fuse in and just let it spin the wheels for a few seconds itself, hoping it would dislodge or crunch it up if it were a problem but I still didn't see it. I'm pretty sure it didn't drop to the bottom because I think I'd of heard/felt it with the copper wire.



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Posted 04 November 2012 - 06:47 AM

this would solve your problem of not being able to see where it went.



#7 idosubaru


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Posted 04 November 2012 - 08:50 AM

my only concern would be the drive gear for the speedo is only plastic, i'm not sure if there's any change of them coming together but you wouldn't want anything getting pushed/chewed into those plastic gears on the passengers side of the diff.

#8 ivans imports

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Posted 04 November 2012 - 11:16 AM

the only thing that could be damaged is the spedo drive gear the rest is tough as nails i think it whould just get chewed up and sit in bottom

#9 porcupine73


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Posted 04 November 2012 - 11:28 AM

Ok great thanks. Would mine have a speedo gear in the diff? This is an AT, I thought maybe the MT's had the cable driven speedo?

Hm that $15 USB boroscope is interesting. It doesn't look like it has the semi rigid style cable like a normal boroscope but for $15 it's hard to go wrong. Ah I'd probably stick it in there and get it stuck up in the gears somehow and when I pulled the cable out, the cable would come out and the camera part would get lodged in there. While it stares right at the plastic part that fell in haa.

#10 idosubaru


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Posted 04 November 2012 - 01:27 PM

Ok great thanks. Would mine have a speedo gear in the diff?

yes. it's a driven gear that's intergrated into the front diff - and it's plastic. they do fail occasionally, symptom is your speedo gets jumpy and then quits working.

#11 avk


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Posted 05 November 2012 - 12:02 PM

Will this piece be small enough to pass through the drain hole? If so, a vacuum cleaner might help with getting it out (hopefully without starting a fire).

Edited by avk, 05 November 2012 - 12:09 PM.

#12 porcupine73


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Posted 05 November 2012 - 12:06 PM

It would fit out the drain hole yes. I think pretty much anything you could fit through the fill hole would fit out the drain hole. Well I drove it today and I didn't hear any crunching or have speedo problems so hopefully it's OK. It is possible this white plastic thing didn't actually go in the diff, the fact that even after turning the tires and it not ending up at the bottom makes me think maybe it fell somewhere else and I just didn't see it.

#13 johnceggleston


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Posted 05 November 2012 - 06:22 PM

porc, you seem to have lost your touch.

no pictures????? :lol:

you should be fine.

i lost one of those red tubes that fit on the spray nozzle of WD40 inside the cylinder of a 61 chevy V8 once. at least i think i lost in the cylinder. i never found it. but the engine ran great so i didn't worry.

happy motoring.

#14 Subaru Scott

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 08:19 PM

Well, let me tell ya... I knew a guy once that wanted to buy this Subaru that was owned by a corporation whose employees had been abusing it HEAVILY!! They told him that if anything major went out, they would get rid of it. So, he poured a whole quart of brake lathe shavings into the manual transmission. Now I know this was bad, but it was almost justifiable as far as saving the poor suby from many years of abuse. They say it shuddered and bucked and growled like a truckload of tigers in heat and then kinda quieted down before they gave it to the customer. It came back some 30k miles later for other issues... no mention of tranny problems, and it was quiet as ever. He eventually did buy (saved) the car from them and when the tranny was pulled apart, the whole inside was polished! With no considerable wear at all!! IT DIDN'T CARE! It ate metal and took it... these aren't Chevy's we're dealing with :headbang:

#15 92LoyaleH4


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Posted 12 November 2012 - 08:54 PM

if the diff can handle a mighty 94 hp im sure a little plastic wont kill it:Flame:

BUT i would drive it for about 50 to 75 miles and change the fluid..like others said make sure the "diffstick" is out when you drain it. If anything you have freash fluid and should have the remains of the plastic out (not that it would do any harm really...You could also pour fresh lube into diff when the drain plug is out to flush the bottom out..

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