Symptoms of a bad center Dif? - Subaru WRX Forum
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post #1 of 37 Old 12-14-2011, 03:55 PM Thread Starter
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Symptoms of a bad center Dif?

At worke with not much time. The Wrx Im purchasing supposedly needs the center Dif replaced. Owner took it into Subaru, and after driving a tech said it was classic center Dif symptoms withvs classic cause(hooking up the right side wheels, spinning the left wheels playing). However, owner said driving it a couple weeks ago it was choppy driving while the center Dif caught/ failed, and the speedometer started going with the rpms, although the car wasn't moving that fast. Please give input.

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post #2 of 37 Old 12-14-2011, 06:33 PM
 
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I'm guessing this is a 5spd, so it has a viscous coupler. The two things that the car will exhibit if it is failing, is a tendency to hop or bind when the steering is at full lock (think low speed, parking maneuvers) The other is a whining, space ship-like noise on accelerating indicating the bearings in the transfer case (specifically the coupler, most of the time) are bad.

Other than that, there is no reason to cite a center diff. issue. The first necessitates a new coupler, figure on $375-400 for the part, 3.5 (shop time) hours to replace. The second is about $45 for bearings, same labor.

Transfer case repairs are really not that hard, since the trans stays in the car, just the exhaust and driveshaft have to be removed (oh and the shift shaft) It is a good time to replace the associated seals, while you're in there.

The description you gave of the tech's diagnoses, sound like it was done on a lift (wheels in the air) Have you driven the car ??

Cullen
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post #3 of 37 Old 12-14-2011, 07:39 PM Thread Starter
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Haven't driven it yet. Its coming from Cali Saturday. Guy is trailoring it down and giving me a stupid good price, couldn't pass it up. 5 speed.

Honestly the way he's describing it sounds like a bad clutch... Almost. Slipping, gripping jerking. Except it hasn't dropped any gears. And the speedometer keeps up with rpms.

As im sure you know, the center Dif tries to split power to the rear/ front. Apparently when you have slippage and grip simultaneously in the rear and front this can cook the fluid quickly in the Dif causing it to fail. Apparently this was the cause of the problem, and the tech said symptoms matched. He said if you don't hold the wheel completely straight it starts binding.

Possibly the front Dif?

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post #4 of 37 Old 12-14-2011, 07:45 PM
 
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If the price is that good, get it, diagnose, fix and then drive it like you stole it !! Let us know what the actual driving symptoms are once you drive it yourself. Second hand information is never actually information

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post #5 of 37 Old 12-14-2011, 08:55 PM Thread Starter
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Lol, fair enough. I just want to get a jump on it. I already bought a center dif, hoping that's the fix. I'll resurrect this thread soon with first hand info.

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post #6 of 37 Old 12-15-2011, 06:02 PM
 
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I already bought a center dif, hoping that's the fix.
What did you buy, the coupler and bearings, or what ?

Cullen
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post #7 of 37 Old 12-15-2011, 07:13 PM Thread Starter
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The entire center dif unit out of another 07 manual trans, used with about 40k. There is some debate about whether or not this is a "wear" part, but most subaru's can make it their whole life without going through one of these. And they are all the same after 99, so it was fairly easy to find one.

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post #8 of 37 Old 12-16-2011, 06:31 AM
 
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Failures are usually caused by mismatched tire/wheel size, never changing the trans lube or getting full of metal from a gearbox problem. Otherwise, those parts just last.

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post #9 of 37 Old 12-20-2011, 10:15 AM Thread Starter
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So I drained the tranny last night, it looked like green metallic paint. There was a magnetic drain plug and it had collected a ball of shavings there size of a wad of gum. All very fine from what I could see. He had a new gear set installed, any chance a new gear set is like a new engine, in that it puts out shavings when new and should be changed within only a few hundred miles? Or is this a bad sign?

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post #10 of 37 Old 12-20-2011, 10:30 PM
 
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The green metallic paint description sounds like a blend heavy on the Redline shockproof. Having never done a new gearset (198K miles on my stock tranny, thank you !) I can't answer the shavings part, but normally I would say eww, not good. Wait for the guys with rebuilt boxes to chime in. How's it drive ? What are the symptons ?

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post #11 of 37 Old 12-21-2011, 06:59 AM
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I haven't ever seen shavings in my box, but I also changed the trans fluid 4 times in the first 3000 miles so the amount may have been so minuscule I just didn't notice

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post #12 of 37 Old 12-21-2011, 07:01 AM
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500 miles after the build it should be changed IIRC.

Flush that sucka

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post #13 of 37 Old 12-22-2011, 12:54 AM Thread Starter
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Having trouble popping the roll pin in the shifter linkage. Thats my last hurdle. Anyone that has advice, Im listening.

Cullen, I haven't really driven it. The transmission issues assured i wouldn't be able to get it up my support steep driveway. So we backEd up the trailer and dropped it on my shop floor.

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post #14 of 37 Old 12-22-2011, 06:38 AM
 
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The roll pin for the shift linkage actually is two pins, one little one in the center. Bang that out of the center with a small punch (1-1 1/2mm) first. Then the pin (3mm-ish) will pop out easier.

I recommend replacing all the bearings in the transfer case while you're in there, esp. since there was shavings floating around in there. Less than $100 for all from a dealer. The ones on the output shaft have will have to cut or chiseled off unless you have access to some good tools (like a hydraulic press with gear pulling attachments) Replace the shift shaft seal and output shaft seal, too.

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post #15 of 37 Old 12-22-2011, 12:44 PM Thread Starter
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I'm only pulling the rear of the case and it's staying in the car. I'm by means knowledgeable when it comes to transmissions, I just read a few how to's for the center Dif and said, hey, I can do that.

Are these bearings and seals accessible from the rear? I'm assuming the output is. As well as shift seal.

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