Rear Axle Seal leak? - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old Aug 22nd, 02, 03:10 PM Thread Starter
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Location: Overland Park Kansas
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I just had my 12bolt rearend rearbuilt and drove it to a local Chevelle show here in KC. When I got home I noticed that the inside of the rear tire was covered in oil. I had axle saver rear bearings put in when it was rebuilt. I put the 69 up on jack stands and took off the wheel and drum. There was gear oil over all the brake shoes and pretty much everything else. I looked at the back of the axle flange where the studs go thru and it was dry. I was thinking that if the seal was bad the oil would have been all over this area. I did notice a lot of oil at the bottom of the seal where it goes into the axle housing.I wiped all of the oil off and started my car and put it in gear to turn the rear wheels and went back to see where it was leaking. No oil was coming out anywhere. I was thinking if the seal was bad oil would be dripping out. Has anyone ever had oil leak out between the outer seal and the rearend housing? Is there a way for me to tell where the oil is coming out other than the way I tried? I hate to replace the seal if it is notleaking. HELP!!

Thanks in advance,

[This message has been edited by GregSS396 (edited 08-22-2002).]
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old Aug 22nd, 02, 03:15 PM
David Pozzi
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I've seen these special bearings leak before, and it's been reported by people here too.
I don't know if it is leaking between the bearing shell and housing, or the seal to shaft area.

About all I can recomend is replacement axles and std bearings and seals.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old Aug 22nd, 02, 03:25 PM Thread Starter
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I was trying to avoid the expense of new axles that is why I went with the repair bearings. If the seal is good and it is leaking at the housing, is it possible to use some type of sealer to seal the leak? Just a thought.

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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old Aug 22nd, 02, 04:35 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Williamstown,PA
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Make sure your rear housing vent isn't clogged shut before you do anything else. The heat will pressurize the gear oil and push it past the seals. To check the seals for leaks you usually have to tilt the rear a little to get the oil to run down the tube.

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old Aug 22nd, 02, 05:16 PM Thread Starter
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How do you tell if the vent is clogged? Do you take it out to check it, or can you tell when it is in the rear end?

Thanks again,
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 02, 11:06 AM
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You have to drive it to slosh the diff lube back and forth through the axle tubes (or tilt the car); the "saver" repair bearings are famous for leaking. I think the only cure is new axles, bearings, and seals.

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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 02, 01:24 PM
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This type of bearing leaks a lot. I have used several of them and had to replace many of them because of leaks. If you can afford new or better used axles, then I suggest that you replace them. If you are stuck with the axles that you have then you need to check a few things on the bearings. First is the seal itself. I have seen many of them with the outer lip turned in. The lip is so small that when pushing the axle in, the outer lip hangs and turns itself inside. If this is what is wrong with yours then you may be able to turn it back out and save it. If it is leaking around the outside of the bearing then you need to remove the bearing and clean the housing end well. You will have to get a new bearing because you will destroy this one when you drive it out. Put some RTV sealant around the inside of the housing end and drive the new bearing in. This will seal any scratches in the housing that may be seaping oil. If the axle is rusty or pitted where the new seal is running then you will have to replace the axle. If all of this fails then you need new axles.

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[This message has been edited by big gear head (edited 08-23-2002).]
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