How To Remove/Replace Front Diff, '99 Hoe

Discussion in 'Tech Info' started by ravingmadman, Sep 1, 2009.

  1. ravingmadman

    ravingmadman Chief Knuckle Buster

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    If you're reading this, I feel sorry for you, you poor, poor bastard. My Hoe has a 4" procomp suspension lift, results may vary.

    Required Tools:
    *friend to hand you tools and drink your beer. Minor lifting may be required.
    *standard socket set
    *metric socket set
    *flat head screwdriver to disconnect wiring harnesses
    *crescent wrench, or matching standard/metric end wrenches
    *hydraulic bottle jack, or torsion bar key remover tool thing
    *jack stands
    *jack

    REMOVAL:
    - Put the truck in park, set the parking brake
    - drink beer
    - jack up the front end, rest the frame on jack stands, remove tires
    - disconnect lower shock mount, push shock up
    - remove the 6 bolts on axle flange holding the half shaft/CV Joints, and tie the half shafts up out of the way. Do both sides.
    - remove the 2 bolts on each side of the straps holding the u-joint to the diff, and tie the driveline up out of the way.
    - remove the wiring harness from the rear passenger side of the pumpkin.
    - remove breather tube from driver's side of the diff, leave it attached to the hoe. I used a pair of pliers, and just yanked on it. Golden.
    - drink beer, take a deep breath
    - loosen the 2 bolts on passenger side of the diff
    - loosen lower bolt under diff
    - loosen upper bolt above diff
    - loosen bolt holding the upper diff bolt bracket to frame (aftermarket equipment?) and rotate it up, out of the way.
    - drink beer
    - put the jack under the diff, lift it enough to fully support it on the jack. Remove the bolts one by one, while moving the diff up and down on the jack. Have your buddy put their beer down, and help you with the jack for about 10 minutes here.
    - remove passenger side, upper, and lower bolts completely
    - raise the diff up and over the lower bolt flanges, turn steering all the way left or right & rotate the diff, top forward, to gain clearance. This is the hardest part.
    - rotate the passenger side of the diff forward and down, lower the diff out of vehicle on the jack. It might fall, like mine did, but the fall didn't damage it.
    - drink beer, high-five your buddy.

    Reinstallation is pretty much the exact reverse of this, and actually went much easier. Getting it out took about 1.5 hours, using the manual's piss-poor instructions, getting it in took about 15 minutes.

    Hope this helps some poor bastard.
    :drunk:
     
  2. destroyer1362

    destroyer1362 A work in progress

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    You may want to include removing the 4x4 actuator bc if the diff falls, like both of ours did, you could smash that little $70 piece plastic. Great post btw, and having a beer while doing this would definitely help the process :happy160:
     
  3. Rick 98Tahoe

    Rick 98Tahoe TYF Newbie

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    I'll be doing this today, thanks for the write up ahead of time. I'll have to post back on how it goes.
     
  4. 99COOP

    99COOP Retired

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    have fun, i went through the same as the other two did as well
     
  5. T-Bagg

    T-Bagg The Esca-Hoe driver.

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    Hopefully I don't have to replace my diff. But I've sheared off my intermediate shaft(I think that's what it's called) coming out the passenger side of the differential. The flange that bolts to the CV broke off and then the CV shaft detonated. How do I pull and replace that shaft? If I can in fact pull that shaft.
     
  6. destroyer1362

    destroyer1362 A work in progress

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    You should be able to. I have a rebuild guide on PDF. PM me your email if you want it, and I'll see if I can find it for ya.
     
  7. T-Bagg

    T-Bagg The Esca-Hoe driver.

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    Thanks, but I talked to a local differentials shop here in San Diego and they told me how to pull it. The correct nomenclature for the part I broke is the front drive axle. The guys at this shop and at the GM dealership told me I was the first person they have heard of breaking that. GM doesn't even make the part of keep it in stock anymore.
     
  8. kitester

    kitester TYF Newbie

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    Hi to all...

    I am new to this forum but it seems to have a lot of good info on it.

    I just bought a 97 Yukon 4x4. Can anyone tell me if the front diff is the same as Tahoe? There is a noise that seems to be coming out of the front drive shaft housing. I was told it was a bering and that I might as well replace both the inner (carrier?) and outer bearings at the same time. How much of a special task is that and will I need special tools? Do I have to drop the diff out to do it?

    Thanks in advance...

    Paul
     
  9. Victor 2003

    Victor 2003 TYF Newbie

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    I fought that front diff for two f ing hours then I finally found your post the diff fell out and hit the floor beer and a friend is a definite must thanks
     

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