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Urgent: Drive shaft broke: 88 GL10 turbo AWD


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36 replies to this topic

#1 M45

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 12:58 AM

Hi,

I've had an 88 GL-10 Turbo AWD wagon for just over a year, and I like it. I replaced my radiator (last year) with help from the USB forum for some finicky little details. Many thanks!

The drive shaft going to the rear broke at a point just after the automatic transmission. This happened at speed on the highway, but I was able to coast over to the shoulder. Transmission fluid came out. I got it towed to a repair shop, Larry's Autoworks, in Mountain View, CA. They list themselves as a Subaru repair shop.

If anyone can help me with information about what is involved I'm all ears. I took pictures (with a decent camera) and I'll upload them in about an hour. I'm worried that the automatic transmission may have been damaged. Replacing or fixing the AT is a hellish expense, I think.

I need to figure out what to do. I can't afford another car and can't really afford a repair bill either. It's my "daily driver" (though I didn't drive daily) that I depend on, and I need a station wagon.

I've done a bunch of work on cars from time to time. I only have a carport at an apartment and four jackstands, but I have gumption, and patience and a willingness to learn. I have a reasonable set of tools with wrenches up to 21 mm, and I'd be willing to buy some tools if it will in total save me money. I've gone to pick and pull yards to fix cars in the past, if that is what it takes.

I will probably have to pay the shop some money for their time diagnosing, at least, so maybe I will be advised to have them do the minimum to get it driving. The front CV boots are broken and the CVs will probably have to be replaced soon rather than later, but I can do that myself, I think.

Thanks in advance for any ideas or thoughts or info that you might share with me.

#2 subiemech85

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 01:19 AM

now is a great time for 5mt 4wd swap

#3 mdjdc

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 06:50 AM

Find out what parts you are going to need and then PM me. I may have all of the parts you need. I even have the orrect tranny if you want to stay with the auto tranny.

Good Luck

Mike

#4 M45

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 01:09 PM

Posted Image

#5 The Scooby

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 01:14 PM

if you coasted off to the side and shut it off you will be fine.

when a auto tranny gets low on fluid it simply wont work, i say get a new drive line, i have one if you need it, refill the tranny and see what it does.

#6 M45

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 01:17 PM

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#7 M45

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 01:27 PM

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#8 M45

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 01:41 PM

I'd like to keep this car if I can. It is in pretty good shape (missing some rear left trim, one hubcap, and the hood pull handle). Radio or speakers freak out on high tones or noise. But dash is uncracked and the car is comfortable with sunroof and electronic door locks.

Posted Image

The images were taken by the light of the tow truck.

#9 bratman18

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 01:43 PM

So you should probably buy a driveshaft and refill the tranny and drive it. It should be just fine after that!

#10 M45

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 01:44 PM

if you coasted off to the side and shut it off you will be fine. when a auto tranny gets low on fluid it simply wont work, i say get a new drive line, i have one if you need it, refill the tranny and see what it does.


That is encouraging. However, it dumped fluid on the highway, so at least a seal is broken, or worse. The car won't start, probably due to some kind of interlock broken, or maybe just a no-fluid warning lockout.

#11 monstaru

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 01:44 PM

thats a broken u-joint.should cost about 20 bucks.

but you may be able to pick up an entire driveline for that from the junkyard.just measure yours and find the appropriate vehicle then pull it.it is merely 4 (12mm) bolts at the rear differential.you'll need two 12mm wrenches.

by appropriate vehicle i mean one that has the same tranny setup obviously.the measuring is to keep you from having to pull one then find out that it is wrong.cheers, brian

#12 bratman18

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 02:02 PM

That is encouraging. However, it dumped fluid on the highway, so at least a seal is broken, or worse. The car won't start, probably due to some kind of interlock broken, or maybe just a no-fluid warning lockout.


there probably is no seal that needs replacing, when the drive shaft pulls out of the tranny the fluid comes out, so I'm sure that it pulled out enough to let the fluid pour out. As far as fixing it goes, either buy one from someone on here or do as Monstaru says and go to a junk yard and get a good used one or you can try to just replace the u-joint.

#13 baccaruda

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 02:07 PM

Your car will be fine with simply changing the driveshaft. You may need a 14mm wrench or ratchet to remove the 2 center carrier bolts.

#14 mdjdc

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 02:23 PM

Tjhe reason the tranny dumped fluid is that the output shaft universal broke which allowed the output shaft to migrate backward. That opened the seal and allowed fluid to pour out. If you were to push the shaft back up on the spline shaft and seated it properly the leak would go away.

I have an entire drive shaft assembly sitting in my shed for that tranny.

Let me know if you want it and make me an offer.

The tranny will probably work fine once it is refilled. The car probably won't start due toa neutral saftey switch issue. It may think it is still n drive since the fluid all leaked out.

Even if the tranny is damaged, I have one that will work just fine.

Good luck

Mike

#15 The Scooby

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 02:31 PM

there probably is no seal that needs replacing, when the drive shaft pulls out of the tranny the fluid comes out, so I'm sure that it pulled out enough to let the fluid pour out. As far as fixing it goes, either buy one from someone on here or do as Monstaru says and go to a junk yard and get a good used one or you can try to just replace the u-joint.


Your car will be fine with simply changing the driveshaft. You may need a 14mm wrench or ratchet to remove the 2 center carrier bolts.


Tjhe reason the tranny dumped fluid is that the output shaft universal broke which allowed the output shaft to migrate backward. That opened the seal and allowed fluid to pour out. If you were to push the shaft back up on the spline shaft and seated it properly the leak would go away.

I have an entire drive shaft assembly sitting in my shed for that tranny.

Let me know if you want it and make me an offer.

The tranny will probably work fine once it is refilled. The car probably won't start due toa neutral saftey switch issue. It may think it is still n drive since the fluid all leaked out.

Even if the tranny is damaged, I have one that will work just fine.

Good luck

Mike


+100

it dumped because the drive shaft came out, put in a new driveline, refill the tranny, and your good.

also the tranny has NOTHING to do with the engine starting, thats another issue on its own.

#16 Suberstar88

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 02:51 PM

I bought my wagon with a non-functional auto tranny, with the help of my next door neighboor (a subaru guru) we had it in and out in no time, it's fairly easy, you will want an engine hoist(or makeshift one out of a sturdy board and ratchet strap) and a jackstand, and a set of basic tool's. And there are plenty of people willing to give you info on this process, keep that awesome wagon.

#17 M45

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 03:10 PM

The shop called. They say that the shifter cable is broken, there may be damage to the transmission (they are talking replacement), and there was some mention of the rear differential. They think that the cost of repairs would exceed the value of the car, but of course they are talking about California mechanics' labor rates and new parts, etc.

I'm going to go down there now and take a look and have a chat. With a little bit of luck I'll be able to take some better more extensive pictures. I hope to be back in four hours.

I don't have a hoist at home, just a carport with four jackstands and a floor jack. Even so, I'm tempted (and financially motivated) to attempt some major work, if necessary.

#18 mdjdc

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 03:27 PM

A broken shift cable is the reason that the car won't start. it thinks the car is still in drive, not neutral.

Replace the cable, it is something you can easily do in your driveway.

You don't need an engine hoist to work on the car. A trolley jack is the most you will need if the tranny needs to be replaced and youcan definitely do that in the driveway. I have put two of those in my wife's car and it took me about four hours each time. Just watch what you are doing and you can have the car back in no time flat. I

If you want to move over to a 5spd tranny, I have one of those too, but not the shifter setup or the pedal box.

Again, fix the shifter cable and try the tranny. It sounds like the shop is a non-subaru shop and they are just calling the tranny toast. These trannies are fairly robust and just losing fluid doesn't necessarily fry them.

Let me know if there is anythin I can do to help. I have almost all the replacement parts you need to fix that car and get back on the road. You CAN fix this yourself fairly cheap and keep the car.

PM me if you want more info and I can get you my email and phone # so I can help any way possible.

#19 zyewdall

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 03:30 PM

I'd take it home and fix it yourself.... Sounds like the shop just wants to replace more than is necessary. I can't really envision the rear differential being affected, unless you did a pole vault with the drive shaft -- which, luckily it looks like you did not. Like a number of people have said, these transmissions drain their oil if you pull the driveshaft, so that would explain the oi leak... probably don't need a new transmisison. Plus... it looks like you have several options for replacements on the board anyway.

Z

#20 bratman18

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 03:35 PM

#1 replace driveshaft
#2 fill tranny with atf
#3 fix shifter cable
#4 jump in start car and drive it!


Like said previously, the car thinks it's in drive. When the shifter cable broke it wasn't in neutral or park so the car won't start. The drive shaft broke because of a bad u-joint and the fluid poored out because the slip yoke on the drive shaft slipped out enough for the fluid to poor out. These are all very easy things to change by yourself. Have the car taken to your place, get the parts needed and replace broken parts...don't let the garage wongleflute you around!

#21 The Scooby

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 06:31 PM

A broken shift cable is the reason that the car won't start. it thinks the car is still in drive, not neutral.

Replace the cable, it is something you can easily do in your driveway.

Again, fix the shifter cable and try the tranny. It sounds like the shop is a non-subaru shop and they are just calling the tranny toast. These trannies are fairly robust and just losing fluid doesn't necessarily fry them.


I'd take it home and fix it yourself.... Sounds like the shop just wants to replace more than is necessary. I can't really envision the rear differential being affected, unless you did a pole vault with the drive shaft -- which, luckily it looks like you did not. Like a number of people have said, these transmissions drain their oil if you pull the driveshaft, so that would explain the oi leak... probably don't need a new transmisison. Plus... it looks like you have several options for replacements on the board anyway.

Z


#1 replace driveshaft
#2 fill tranny with atf
#3 fix shifter cable
#4 jump in start car and drive it!


Like said previously, the car thinks it's in drive. When the shifter cable broke it wasn't in neutral or park so the car won't start. The drive shaft broke because of a bad u-joint and the fluid poored out because the slip yoke on the drive shaft slipped out enough for the fluid to poor out. These are all very easy things to change by yourself. Have the car taken to your place, get the parts needed and replace broken parts...don't let the garage wongleflute you around!



or just find a reputiable subaru shop, it should like they are gonna try to rape you.

take it home, swap drive lines, fix shifter cable, fill tranny with fluid and you SHOULD be fine.

all you need is to jack the car up and put it on stands, remove the 4 12mm nut/bolts that holds the drive shaft to the rear diff, remove the 2 14mm bolts the hold in the carrier bearing to the chassis and remove. replace in same steps with new driveline.

replace shifter cable, could 12mm's and such, fill the tranny with ATF and your good to go.

i have the shifter cable and driveshaft in stock at my work, if your intrested shoot me a PM and ill get it shipped out to you asap.

#22 M45

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 08:40 PM

Ok, First, thanks to all who've responded! This Board is great!

I've seen the car on the hoist at the shop and the transmission case is cracked. So I'm looking at replacing the transmission, myself. Another possibility would be to sell the car if anyone would buy it as is, and try to find some beater for even less money. I'm guessing that almost nobody would buy it, so scraping together the bucks for a replacement (used) transmission is just about my only choice.

I wonder if a manual transmission (and flywheel) would be less expensive than an auto (it is AT now). I generally prefer driving manual, and I wonder if a manual would be a little more fuel efficient.

I'll post new pictures in a few hours.

#23 bratman18

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 08:43 PM

I bet that only the tail housing is cracked which is another easy fix. And manual is awesome but it is a fairly involved swap. You need to swap out the tranny of course then do some wiring then add the pedal cluster etc. a lot of people on here have done the swap so I'm sure you could get some help on how to do it.

#24 Caboobaroo

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 09:03 PM

Ok, First, thanks to all who've responded! This Board is great!

I've seen the car on the hoist at the shop and the transmission case is cracked. So I'm looking at replacing the transmission, myself. Another possibility would be to sell the car if anyone would buy it as is, and try to find some beater for even less money. I'm guessing that almost nobody would buy it, so scraping together the bucks for a replacement (used) transmission is just about my only choice.

I wonder if a manual transmission (and flywheel) would be less expensive than an auto (it is AT now). I generally prefer driving manual, and I wonder if a manual would be a little more fuel efficient.

I'll post new pictures in a few hours.


I think I'll be the first to point out that this is a 4EAT car since it has the FT4WD badging on the sides. Since thats the case, its cheaper to go 5-speed then find a replacement tranny because they're not very common. Find a donor car in the wrecking yard and get the tranny IF its a turbo'd car that you're getting it from, or else you'll have to change the rear diff as well to match gear ratios.

Beware though, the 4EAT is heavier then the STi 6mt tranny which is a huge tranny too. This is one of the heaviest trannies Subaru made up until recent. If you feel like diving into a project on a clean car (with I would do), the 5 speed swap it and have more fun with it then the automatic.

#25 Yo'J

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 09:18 PM

The clean ones are getting harder to find.........:eek:




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