Jump to content


Welcome to Ultimate Subaru Message Board, my lurker friend!

Welcome to Ultimate Subaru Message Board, an unparalleled Subaru community full of the greatest Subaru gurus and modders on the planet! We offer technical information and discussion about all things Subaru, the best and most popular all wheel drive vehicles ever created.

We offer all this information for free to everyone, even lurkers like you! All we ask in return is that you sign up and give back some of what you get out - without our awesome registered users none of this would be possible! Plus, you get way more great stuff as a member! Lurk to lose, participate to WIN*!
  • Say hello and join the conversation
  • Subscribe to topics and forums to get automatic updates
  • Get your own profile and make new friends
  • Classifieds with all sorts of Subaru goodies
  • Photo hosting in our gallery
  • Meet other cool people with cool cars
Seriously, what are you waiting for? Make your life more fulfilling and join today! You and your Subaru won't regret it, we guarantee** it.

* The joy of participation and being generally awesome constitutes winning
** Not an actual guarantee, but seriously, you probably won't regret it!

Serving the Subaru Community since May 18th, 1998!

Guest Message by DevFuse
 

Photo
- - - - -

tool for rear differential


  • Please log in to reply
20 replies to this topic

#1 lekmedm

lekmedm

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 89 posts
  • Annandale

Posted 16 November 2005 - 01:51 PM

I've been itching to change the oil in the differentials of my new, used, high-milage Subie. What kind of fan-dangled square shaped tool do I need to open the drain and fill plugs in the rear? Do I use the same in the front?

Also, I'm tempted to completely open the rear pumpkin as it's completely wet and hasn't been out in the rain. I'd like to have a good look at what's in there and give it a good cleaning. Is there a special gasket under the cover, or can I just squeeze one out of a tube?

#2 1 Lucky Texan

1 Lucky Texan

    I read a lot about Subarus

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 4,979 posts
  • Texas

Posted 16 November 2005 - 02:10 PM

I've been itching to change the oil in the differentials of my new, used, high-milage Subie. What kind of fan-dangled square shaped tool do I need to open the drain and fill plugs in the rear? Do I use the same in the front?

Also, I'm tempted to completely open the rear pumpkin as it's completely wet and hasn't been out in the rain. I'd like to have a good look at what's in there and give it a good cleaning. Is there a special gasket under the cover, or can I just squeeze one out of a tube?


I dunno about opening it - I would make sure it isn't just some 'blowback' from an oil leak up front somewhere.

I've read here that most folks just use a 1/2" square drive breaker bar to take out the plug. You will likely need a 'cheater' bar too.

#3 kevinsUBARU

kevinsUBARU

    hi

  • Members
  • 2,964 posts
  • Ulster County

Posted 16 November 2005 - 03:50 PM

Yes, just use a 1/2" square drive...just make sure you remove the filler hole (top) before you drain it. I believe the front differential takes a 18mm socket, and there is no crush washer on it.

By the way, what kind of ru did you get?

Kevin

#4 grossgary

grossgary

    Elite Master of the Subaru

  • Members
  • 20,091 posts
  • WV

Posted 16 November 2005 - 04:10 PM

regular out of the box 1/2" socket wrench on the rear and a regular socket on the front (just like draining your oil). i wouldn't open up the rear diff, usually it's wet from something up front leaking and blowing back....trans, diff, oil...anything. over many years doesn't take much to build up and gunk things up. no need to open up a diff and clean it. drain and refill with synthetic and be on your way. check the level from time to time. kind of tricky to do, but just add more fluid in after a couple months and see if it takes any. how the car sets has a lot to do with how much you get in there since there isn't much clearnace to pour the bottle in.
and yes the gasket sealant is out of the tube type.

#5 lekmedm

lekmedm

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 89 posts
  • Annandale

Posted 16 November 2005 - 04:18 PM

...and there is no crush washer on it.

By the way, what kind of ru did you get?

Kevin


What's a crush washer??? I think I noticed a washer associated with the oil drain plug as shown in the owner's manual. Is that something that regularly needs to be replaced?

What kind of ru...? It's in my sig. I thought everyone could see it. I can. It's a 1998 Legacy Outback 2.5L ATX with about 137,000 mi on it now.

BTW, by 1/2" square drive, do you mean the square end to a 1/2" ratchet for sockets? I have a Mercury that uses a 3/8" square end ratchet to get out the ATX drain plug. Am I right in understanding it's the same idea?

#6 lekmedm

lekmedm

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 89 posts
  • Annandale

Posted 16 November 2005 - 04:21 PM

regular out of the box 1/2" socket wrench on the rear and a regular socket on the front (just like draining your oil). i wouldn't open up the rear diff, usually it's wet from something up front leaking and blowing back....trans, diff, oil...anything. over many years doesn't take much to build up and gunk things up. no need to open up a diff and clean it. drain and refill with synthetic and be on your way. check the level from time to time. kind of tricky to do, but just add more fluid in after a couple months and see if it takes any. how the car sets has a lot to do with how much you get in there since there isn't much clearnace to pour the bottle in.
and yes the gasket sealant is out of the tube type.



Ah, thanks for the clarification. I see that in the time I was composing my last post, you were already replying.

Should the car be standing level when draining the rear diff, or can it be up on ramps?

#7 nickb21

nickb21

    Subaru Fanatic!

  • Members
  • 558 posts
  • Hunterdon County

Posted 16 November 2005 - 04:37 PM

You can put it on ramps to drain it, just make sure it's level when you fill it.. I drained mine on the flat and got probably 90% of the oil out.

I believe there is a breather tube at the top of the diff, maybe there is a small leak there.

#8 beezer

beezer

    USMB is life!

  • Members
  • 210 posts
  • Paris, Canada

Posted 16 November 2005 - 07:53 PM

I would check the axle seals. If the diff. has a coating of oil and dirt on the sides and onto the axles that's probably what it is.

Pretty sure you can change the seals with the diff. still on the car. (I know you can on a '92, GRRRR). Just have to remove the axles and change the seal out.

#9 subie94

subie94

    Major Subaru Fan..

  • Members
  • 1,583 posts
  • Epsom,N.H.

Posted 16 November 2005 - 08:24 PM

I've read here that most folks just use a 1/2" square drive breaker bar to take out the plug. You will likely need a 'cheater' bar too.


yup that's how i did mine.remove lower one to drain,upper one to fill.

Posted Image you can see them at the edge of the pic

#10 grossgary

grossgary

    Elite Master of the Subaru

  • Members
  • 20,091 posts
  • WV

Posted 17 November 2005 - 07:04 AM

ramps fine to drain, have flat to refill.

a good many people here ask questions about cars that aren't in their sig's so it's not a bad idea to post sometimes. i have 8 different subarus, 3 different models and forget to post which one i'm asking about from time to time.

#11 lekmedm

lekmedm

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 89 posts
  • Annandale

Posted 17 November 2005 - 10:34 AM

Thanks for the advice, everyone! :)

#12 95Leg

95Leg

    New User

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 18 posts
  • carolina

Posted 17 November 2005 - 11:29 AM

There's not much room to use a cheater bar if you don't lift the car.

I was able to get the rear drain plugs off easily by using a regular 1/2" socket wrench, and then using a floor jack (or you could use the scissor jack) at the end of the wrench. The car started to lift up a little and then the plugs finally broke loose.

Then of course a fluid pump makes refilling the oil very quick also.

#13 1 Lucky Texan

1 Lucky Texan

    I read a lot about Subarus

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 4,979 posts
  • Texas

Posted 17 November 2005 - 11:50 AM

Well, I haven't done a diff. but I've read some of them have magnetized plugs - so, be sure to wipe off any metal particles.

#14 BobBrumby

BobBrumby

    Subaru Nut

  • Members
  • 583 posts
  • Brisbane, Australia

Posted 07 December 2005 - 12:55 AM

when i looked at draining the oil in my rear diff the drive socket was about 1-2mm smaller than the square whole. did you guys have the same problem? i just dont want to do any more damage to them.

#15 avk

avk

    My Outback is bigger than yours

  • Members
  • 959 posts
  • Somerset County, NJ

Posted 07 December 2005 - 09:12 AM

The square hole in the plug is actually 13 mm, but in Australia, shouldn't it be a standard size instead of half-inch?

#16 1 Lucky Texan

1 Lucky Texan

    I read a lot about Subarus

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 4,979 posts
  • Texas

Posted 07 December 2005 - 09:39 AM

The square hole in the plug is actually 13 mm, but in Australia, shouldn't it be a standard size instead of half-inch?


Good question. maybe it's one of those things that could remain 'english' for a long time - like 1/4-20 tripod sockets for cameras.

I dunno

#17 ferret

ferret

    Subaru Nut

  • Members
  • 669 posts
  • Northern NJ

Posted 07 December 2005 - 09:39 AM

Subaru, as we all know, is a Japanese automobile. And being such uses Metric sizes. The Differential drain/refill plugs are no different.

They are 13mm square drive. We in the US use a 1/2" drive to remove them. 1/2"=12.7mm. This is why a 1/2" drive feels a little loose. On the job we use a combination of metric and ise spec fasteners. When it comes to a 13mm or 1/2" nut/bolt, most guys these days carry and have been using their metric sets. But when they need to hold the other side and that's the same size, they often force the 1/2" wrench or socket on the 13mm nut/bolt. Needless to say they are that close.

I've replace the differential oil many times. Opening the top first, (If you can't get that open, how are you going to refill it). Then open the bottom and let it drain into a pan. The plugs are 2 different sizes and the lower one has a magnet on it. Then clean the plugs and I use a non-adheasive sealer on the threads (I use locktite red non-adhesive sealer). Then replace the lower plug and torque it to 32 ft/lbs. Fill the upper hole until it drips. Then replace the upper plug.

All done without jacking up and on a level surface as not to overfill. Total time 30 minutes or less.
End of my $.02.

#18 Handtool

Handtool

    Eat, Live, Breath Subaru

  • Members
  • 292 posts
  • Yelm

Posted 07 December 2005 - 10:18 AM

There's not much room to use a cheater bar if you don't lift the car.
I was able to get the rear drain plugs off easily by using a regular 1/2" socket wrench, and then using a floor jack (or you could use the scissor jack) at the end of the wrench. The car started to lift up a little and then the plugs finally broke loose.


Great Idea! This is gonna save me a lot of cussing and time spent laying in the gravel.

#19 Setright

Setright

    Elite Master of the Subaru

  • Members
  • 3,176 posts
  • Denmark

Posted 07 December 2005 - 01:46 PM

Ferrit has it down.

#20 AlpineRaven

AlpineRaven

    USMB is life!

  • Members
  • 187 posts
  • Australia

Posted 07 December 2005 - 02:48 PM

Subaru, as we all know, is a Japanese automobile. And being such uses Metric sizes. The Differential drain/refill plugs are no different.

They are 13mm square drive. We in the US use a 1/2" drive to remove them. 1/2"=12.7mm. This is why a 1/2" drive feels a little loose. On the job we use a combination of metric and ise spec fasteners. When it comes to a 13mm or 1/2" nut/bolt, most guys these days carry and have been using their metric sets. But when they need to hold the other side and that's the same size, they often force the 1/2" wrench or socket on the 13mm nut/bolt. Needless to say they are that close.

I've replace the differential oil many times. Opening the top first, (If you can't get that open, how are you going to refill it). Then open the bottom and let it drain into a pan. The plugs are 2 different sizes and the lower one has a magnet on it. Then clean the plugs and I use a non-adheasive sealer on the threads (I use locktite red non-adhesive sealer). Then replace the lower plug and torque it to 32 ft/lbs. Fill the upper hole until it drips. Then replace the upper plug.

All done without jacking up and on a level surface as not to overfill. Total time 30 minutes or less.
End of my $.02.


I use 1/2" Drive to undo mine (yes down here in Australia), its easy and I don't need any extra tools.
Cheers
AP

#21 sid_vicious

sid_vicious

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 117 posts
  • Madison, WI

Posted 07 December 2005 - 02:52 PM

I use 1/2" Drive to undo mine (yes down here in Australia), its easy and I don't need any extra tools.
Cheers
AP


The 1/2" breaker bar works fine, but there is actually a socket called a pipe plug socket that is just a plain square. The retention ball on ratchets and breaker bars can get in the way a little, though it's not really a problem. I thought about finding a 1/2" pipe plug socket just because having the perfect tool for the job is a good feeling, but I don't think it's worth buying anything when a breaker bar fits so well.




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users