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Truck repair question #14491109 01/21/20
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BillyGoatGruff Offline OP
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Say a truck goes into a dealership for a front axle pinion seal repair. And then upon being picked up after the work was done the front differential grenades and seizes up about 1.5 miles down the road. After being towed back to the dealership they diagnosed the issue as the pinion bearing failing.

What are the odds that the bearing was bad all along and chose that moment to fail? Or is it more likely due to the seal replacement procedure having something to do with it?

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Re: Truck repair question [Re: BillyGoatGruff] #14491213 01/21/20
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I’m thinking it’s about a %99 chance the “tech” who replaced the seal screwed something up.

Knew a guy who took his truck in for a brake job. Guy doing the brakes thought he’d go ahead and replace the fluid in the diff while he was back there. Turns out on that model of GM full floater you need to jack up first one side and then the other to get the fluid out to the outers, he neglected this step. 40 miles down the road the bearings were smoking and had ruined the housing.

I think the guy’s son summed it up best when he said, “taking your truck in for a brake job and getting the rear end ruined would be like going to the clinic for a cold and they accidentally give you AIDS”.

Re: Truck repair question [Re: BillyGoatGruff] #14491268 01/21/20
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Your mechanic is to blame. They should stand behind it.

Re: Truck repair question [Re: BillyGoatGruff] #14491293 01/21/20
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Probably the same odds as that plane crashing on its own the same night as a bunch of missile strikes.

Re: Truck repair question [Re: BillyGoatGruff] #14491302 01/21/20
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BillyGoatGruff Offline OP
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It was a warrantee repair to start with so I’m not out any money on the second repair anyway. They said they’re doing me a favor by rolling it all into one warrantee claim so I’m not out another $100 deductible. Mighty nice of them…

I had to start raising my voice to get a loaner vehicle for the mean time. Waiting till it’s done to try and get them to pay for the tow. I absolutely hate taking anything to this place, but it’s the only dealership within a couple hours. So I’m married to the corksuckers.

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Re: Truck repair question [Re: BillyGoatGruff] #14492596 01/21/20
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MadMooner Offline
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How much oil leaked out of the bad seal? Run dry and get hot?

May not be the techs fault.


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Re: Truck repair question [Re: MadMooner] #14493288 01/22/20
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BillyGoatGruff Offline OP
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Originally Posted by MadMooner
How much oil leaked out of the bad seal? Run dry and get hot?

May not be the techs fault.



That's what I'm wondering. Their story is the bearing was probably dry, or had gotten dry maybe. But why would it only fail after they put a new seal in if everything was done correctly? I've no idea how bad the seal was. I've gone through similar things with the dealership before. I take it in, and somebody looks at who doesn't know I have a lifetime warranty. They recommend new this or that. I say sure, do it. Then they present me with a bill afterward and I tell them nope, it'll be $100. But it seems when I get someone who has seen my truck before, it's bare minimum effort because they know it's only warranty work.

My first thought was like most of you guys, they fugged it up. But having not replaced the pinion seal before I didn't want to make a fool of myself. smile

ha, forgot to add the tow truck driver told me last summer he towed a guy for the same thing, from the same dealership. Apparently they didn't put oil back in the diff after replacing the seal. Said that guy didn't make it as far as I did before his locked up.

I was blocking a full lane on a narrow part of the road, so after guiding traffic around me so I wasn't holding anybody up I put her in 4wd and crawled to the closest parking lot. The sounds from that pumpkin were awful. My axle is getting rebuilt as I guess it was quite a mess in there. wink

I just hope the strain on my u-joints and transfer case doesn't cause problems later.

Last edited by BillyGoatGruff; 01/22/20.
Re: Truck repair question [Re: BillyGoatGruff] #14493442 01/22/20
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I'll put money on the "tech" over-tightening the pinion flange nut and destroying the crush sleeve between the pinion bearings. Said "tech" probably doesn't have a clue about the inner workings of a differential and the importance of marking the pinion shaft, flange and nut before disassembly and re-installing above in the exact same position after seal replacement. Over-tightening that nut will destroy the bearings very, very quickly.

Last edited by badger; 01/22/20.

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Re: Truck repair question [Re: BillyGoatGruff] #14493455 01/22/20
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badger Offline
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Originally Posted by BillyGoatGruff
It was a warrantee repair to start with so I’m not out any money on the second repair anyway. They said they’re doing me a favor by rolling it all into one warrantee claim so I’m not out another $100 deductible. Mighty nice of them…

I had to start raising my voice to get a loaner vehicle for the mean time. Waiting till it’s done to try and get them to pay for the tow. I absolutely hate taking anything to this place, but it’s the only dealership within a couple hours. So I’m married to the corksuckers.


Were it me, I'd be wanting a replacement differential I wouldn't trust anyone there to rebuild the old one.


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Re: Truck repair question [Re: badger] #14493634 01/22/20
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Originally Posted by badger
I'll put money on the "tech" over-tightening the pinion flange nut and destroying the crush sleeve between the pinion bearings. Said "tech" probably doesn't have a clue about the inner workings of a differential and the importance of marking the pinion shaft, flange and nut before disassembly and re-installing above in the exact same position after seal replacement. Over-tightening that nut will destroy the bearings very, very quickly.


That was my exact thought. Probably didn't mark the nut before removing it and just used an impact to torque the fugger back on. If that's the case I'd push to have the diff entirely rebuilt or replaced as that'd also screw the mesh on the ring and pinion and they may be compromised as well.

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Re: Truck repair question [Re: ajmorell] #14493670 01/22/20
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BillyGoatGruff Offline OP
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Originally Posted by badger

Were it me, I'd be wanting a replacement differential I wouldn't trust anyone there to rebuild the old one.

Originally Posted by ajmorell

That was my exact thought. Probably didn't mark the nut before removing it and just used an impact to torque the fugger back on. If that's the case I'd push to have the diff entirely rebuilt or replaced as that'd also screw the mesh on the ring and pinion and they may be compromised as well.



Not sure what all is being done, but when the bearing failed it dropped pieces into the gears and stopped the truck just as fast as if I'd hit a tree. Glad I was only doing 20 in town. It that would've happened at highway speed on a winter road I might not be typing this. It was probably another 1/2 mile I drove it after getting it moving. Last I talked to them it was going to be a whole new differential. With the amount of violence that went on inside that pumpkin I'd imagine it all needs replaced. If I hadn't been so damned mad about it I'd have stuck around to watch them pull the cover off and see it. Not sure the difference between a new diff and a rebuilt one.

It is a fortunate thing for them and I that they were closed when it nuked on me.

Upshot, is I'm driving a new "Blazer" in the interim. would be kinda neat on dry pavement but it sucks in a couple inches of slush or snow. Not worthy of the moniker.


Last edited by BillyGoatGruff; 01/22/20.
Re: Truck repair question [Re: BillyGoatGruff] #14493769 01/22/20
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northern_dave Offline
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Originally Posted by BillyGoatGruff
Say a truck goes into a dealership for a front axle pinion seal repair. And then upon being picked up after the work was done the front differential grenades and seizes up about 1.5 miles down the road. After being towed back to the dealership they diagnosed the issue as the pinion bearing failing.

What are the odds that the bearing was bad all along and chose that moment to fail? Or is it more likely due to the seal replacement procedure having something to do with it?


Bearing play is likely the cause for the seal to fail. And the technitions should have suspected and investigated to that length.

Or, maybe it was a chevy. In which case... failures are so frequent none can be predicted.


Something clever here.

Re: Truck repair question [Re: BillyGoatGruff] #14493776 01/22/20
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northern_dave Offline
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seriously tho, they had to pull the yoke to do the seal and upon reinstalling they could have F'd up the bearing preload.


Something clever here.

Re: Truck repair question [Re: northern_dave] #14496719 01/23/20
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BillyGoatGruff Offline OP
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Originally Posted by northern_dave


Bearing play is likely the cause for the seal to fail. And the technitions should have suspected and investigated to that length.

Or, maybe it was a chevy. In which case... failures are so frequent none can be predicted.



haha no, it was my '12 Power Wagon.


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