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Front Axle Issues, need your advise

Discussion in '80-Series Tech' started by Desertmaster, Apr 25, 2003.

  1. Desertmaster

    Desertmaster

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    To All,

    Hope everybody is having a great day.....

    Recently I ran into some problems with my front axle seals (97 LX 450) as I have found out by the help of some of you (old SOR Forum) by draining the front diff. gear oil as most of you recomended, it was mess (dark Greenish/Gray in color) an indication of a broken seals, so I was forced to go to the Lexus Dealer since my mechanic had insured him self and went on disability and their diagnose recomended a front axle overhaul, luckley I have an axtended warrenty that I have purchased along with truck 3 years ago which covered the damage.

    Now a month or so later, I have noticed that the same dirty color of gear oil is seeping through the knuckles (right & Left) enough for me to notice the spoting on my drive way, so I went to the lexus dealer again today and, I have a feeling that I am getting the run around.

    This is what they have changed amonth ago as it is presented on my invoice from them along with the charges:

    Quantity: 1
    Part #: 04434-60051
    Description: Gasket Kit. FR AX
    Charges: $231.77

    Qty.: 2
    Part #: 43405-60070
    Dsecrip.: Shaft S/A. FR AXL (OUTER)
    Charges: $1,192.46

    Qty.: 2
    Part #: 12157-10010
    Descrip.: Gasket. Drain PLU
    Charges: $3.40

    Qty.: 2
    Des.: Gear Oil/LUBE
    Charges: $8.90

    Qty.: 2
    Part #: 90521-34005
    Desc.: Ring Hole. Snap
    Charges: $7.30

    Qty.: 2
    Part. #: 90310-35010
    Desc.: Seal. Type S Oil
    Charges: $21.50

    Total Damage: $1,707.13 prior to tax
    My Liability: $100 only (Thank God)


    Now they are telling me that the inner Shaft is out of business as the C-Clips had caused indetation and because of that the oil is seaping below the seal and finds its way to the knuckles.

    I am very puzzeld with this whole thing, I do not know if the dealer is taking me and the warrteny people for a ride or not.


    You advise is very appreciated.

    Al
     
  2. cruiserdan

    cruiserdan SupportingVendor Emeritus Supporting Vendor Moderator

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    Al,

    Um, WOW. TWO birfields later and you still have a problem.
    It is possible that the inner axle shafts are grooved where the 90310-35010 seal rides. I would want to see those if I were you. It sounds to me as though this could be a parts warranty issue where toyota steps up and pays for the re-do as the job is less than a year old and you obviously have a receipt. If the inner shafts are really that bad it is my feeling that that SHOULD have been caught during the first repair. I suggest that you consider calling the Lexus customer service toll free number if you think the dealer is playing a game. If he is, they can apply GENTLE pressure to him to help you out. The explaination from them as conveyed by you just aint quite right, IMHO.

    Regards, Dan :beer:
     
  3. Beowulf

    Beowulf

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    Al,
    First, thank your lucky stars you have the extended warranty because it sounds as if they have to go back in there one way or the other.

    Unless they have opened it up, it would be impossible to detect what Dan suggested as a possible problem.  "It is possible that the inner axle shafts are grooved where the 90310-35010 seal rides."  If, in fact, these are deeply grooved, letting oil past the seal, then they have to be replaced. I agree with Dan; if the axles are gooved, it is highly unlikely the problem happened in a 1 month timeframe.

    There is another explanation that would also be impossible to detect without opening up the knuckle.  They mentioned something about the C-clips causing an indentation. I don't buy the "indentation" part of their diagnosis BUT if the the C-clips holding the inner axle to the birfield/stub axle were not properly installed, then that would explain the leaking.

    I am not referring to the outer C-clip that positions the birfield in the outer flange.

    What happens (C-clip problem) is the inner axle has some lateral (in-out) movement. The C-clip holds it in one position so that a "shoulder" on the axle (raised part) where the seal rides stays under the seal.  If the axle moves in and out then diff fluid gets past the seal and .... you can see the results.

    Keep us posted on the outcome!
    -B-
     
  4. landtank

    landtank SILVER Star

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    Ah...the c-clips aren't anywhere near the inner oil seal. I'd get customer service involved before turning the truck back over to these guys.
     
  5. cruiserdan

    cruiserdan SupportingVendor Emeritus Supporting Vendor Moderator

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    Um, Rick,

    I was trying to politely say BOTCHED JOB. I guess you saw right thru me, huh? ::)
     
  6. Desertmaster

    Desertmaster

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    Hey Guys,

    Thanks for your thoughts and directions.....

    Unfortunatley, the truck is in their hands and it is after 5:00 PM here on the eatern seaboard, I will have to give them a call tomorrow morning and take a ride to do what C-Dan had said (inspect the parts with my own eyes), but please be patient with me as I need you to clarify few things before I see them tomorrow:

    1- The 9030-35010 Seal could not had caused the grooving in such a short time, and if it did over the course of the 86K miles that the truck has, it should have been caught the first time.

    2- If the C-Clips holding the inner axle to the birfield/stub axle were not properly installed, then that would explain the leaking.


    Keep in mind I did not have the leaking problem to start with, it was heavy steering and a rubber burning smell like that lead some of you to point me towards the front-axle as it was the issue as I explained above.


    Please confirm with me on the two pointers above as I stated, I had the feeling that I am being taken, I will await you rresponses so I can proceed tomorrow morning with my actions.

    Thank to all of you for your great help.

    Al
     
  7. cruiserman

    cruiserman

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    The other half of the axle seal leakage is cleaning out the clogged axle housing breather hose and tossing the breather cap. You can extend the breathers if you like.

    Why did they replace the birfields :eek:? You would have been ahead if you had kept the old ones as spares.

    You haven't been taken as you paid only $100 for the repair. Your average Toyota dealer doesn't do much work on Land Cruisers, unfortunately.

    It's possible they tweaked the seals while re-installing the axles. Very easy to do that. IMO the problem is a clogged breather hose and possible tweaked seals. The other possibility is that the mechanic is fresh from the Land Rover dealer and put gear oil in the knuckles :D.
     
  8. landtank

    landtank SILVER Star

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    Al at this point I'd keep quiet and let them do their thing. I've been in service for 20 years and I'd guess that they realise what the hell went wrong, picked up a shovel and started back peddling. This isn't all that uncommon unfortunately even outside the auto industry. If they want another 100.00 then I'd start in on them.
     
  9. cruiserdan

    cruiserdan SupportingVendor Emeritus Supporting Vendor Moderator

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    I agree with Rick. Don't start jumping up and down 'til they start reaching for your billfold.
    Yes seal grooves can be worn in the inner axles over an extended period of time. When I did mine a 92,000 miles there was no sign of a groove.
    If the inner/outer axles were assembled incorrectly it could leak.
    &nbsp:Do politely ask to see what they say the problem is and inquire about how they plan to fix it. Let us know what they say. I'm curious as hell now.

    Good luck, Dan

    PS, It's too bad we can't get Beo, Jim, Rick, Robbie and me as well as a few names I have mis-placed and all show up on the bus togther to look at it. That could be fun.......
     
  10. semlin

    semlin rocker

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    Al, be very grateful you had a warranty. Not a lot of wiggle room for the Lexus guys on this one because both knuckles are doing it. Surely they either re- assembled it wrong making the same mistake twice or else overfilled everything and blew the seals. Either way, you need a do-over and you should not be paying a dime.

    By the way, I don't notice any new bearings in that invoice. Given your symptoms and the fact they replaced both birfields, this surprises me a little. If they do a do-over, you might want to spring for new bearings all round. I just had my bearings repacked and told the mechanic he could choose not to replace the bearings if they were 100% ok. I'm already regretting that decision since he didn't replace any of them and now I don't know if I believe him!
     
  11. Beowulf

    Beowulf

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    Al,

    >> You haven't been taken as you paid only $100 for the repair.  <<

    Agreed.


    >> I agree with Rick. Don't start jumping up and down 'til they start reaching for your billfold. <<

    Agreed.

    When you go in, let them know you're interested in the failure from a technical stand-point.

    "I'm starting to learn more about my truck and plan to start doing some of my maintenance. This is a good opportunity to see a failure and review the results with some friends."

    Take some pics of the bad parts for us and we can better explain #1 & #2.  Things can go wrong with any procedure; we've all had to go back in and fix our own screw-ups.  

    Heck, they may have tried the MAF kit for all we know.  :G (Just kidding, that's a little inside joke....)

    Again, don't be mad. You have 2 new birfields, maybe 2 new axles, a front end service (twice), I'm sure they had to repack the front wheel bearings also. You're only out $100 so be VERY, VERY, happy!

    -B-
     
  12. cruiserdan

    cruiserdan SupportingVendor Emeritus Supporting Vendor Moderator

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    Great point Simon. :bow:

    The trunion bearings at least.......
     
  13. Desertmaster

    Desertmaster

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    Hey Guys,

    Thanks again for your input.....

    I just got off the phone with Lexus Customer Service, I have described the issue to them as I was told and conveyed to them what I have learned from you so far.....

    The lexus rep. gave me the choice whether They should contact the dealer or not as I belive he got the sense that the problem should have been observed/diagnosed on the first attempt, I opted not to have them contact the dealer yet, until I confirm things tomorrow of Monday.

    The Rep promised that he will contact me early Tuesday morning if he does not hear back from me by Monday.

    He also confirmed that the dealer should eat the coast of the work again if for any reason the extended warrenty for some odd reason does not, and that goes for my deductible ($100).


    But I am heading out to the dealer tomorrow morning I will be on their doors by 7:00am as I need to look at the worn part as they said and I need to verify that the birfields were actually replaced, because when I looked at them the other day to inspect the leak I could have sworn that they had some wear lines in one them, but I will find out tomorrow as when it comes to completing or finishing a lousey job, I really lose it, as I have zero tolerance for for this type of work.


    I think if the birfields were really not replaced, they will have to answer to Lexus as I will proceed not by phone but in writting to the regional DM in regard to the way they operate.


    This is what is going on so far.


    C-Dan, I would love to barge into their shop with you guys on my wings as I belive at that point they would not know what hit them, then I would have treated you all for lunch and drinks, what the heck you have been saving me alot of $$$$ and sanity so far.

    C-Man,
    Yes they claim they changed the birfields due to serious wear and tear (quote on quote). But tomorrow I will know for sure.


    Semlin,
    They said the bearings are in great shape, and this is the only item in my openion that they could have replaced without me complaining, but will see what I can get out them in the next few days as I start to uncover their shabby opertaion



    Al
     
  14. cruiserdan

    cruiserdan SupportingVendor Emeritus Supporting Vendor Moderator

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    And drinks?

    What time?................. :G

    It may be cheaper to pay for the whole repair......

    Remember, DO NOT BLOW UP on the first pass. "Speak softly and carry a big stick"

    The best of luck to you............Dan :beer:
     
  15. Desertmaster

    Desertmaster

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    C-Dan,

    As you said: &nbsp:DO NOT BLOW UP on the first pass. "Speak softly and carry a big stick

    I promise you I will remember that tomorrow or throughout the whole process.

    As far as the Drinks and Lunch, I was thinking few folks but not a whole lot as the budget can not take as much, but when you are or others coming up to my neck of the woods (Cape Cod, MA), give me a shout and we will get together.

    Me and Rick (landtank) will be getting together in the near future to do our breathers together, see if you want to come up and give us hand in an exchange for drinks and lunch, what do you think ???? Rick don't you agree ????



    I will keep you guys posted,

    Sorry about sounding a bit pissed off in my previous reply. C-Dan I think I will pass on that big stick when I see them tomorrow.


    Talk to you later

    Al
     
  16. landtank

    landtank SILVER Star

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    Abosolutely, however right now I'm chained to my basement with a renovation job and being worked like a rented mule.
     
  17. Desertmaster

    Desertmaster

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    Hello Everyone,

    On Saturday, I ended up at the dealer's shop and without having the assigned mechanic nor the service manager looking over my shoulders, I inspected the Inner Axles with my lexus service rep. looking on, belive it or not I found nothing on them that you might refer to as indentation, or any type of wear, I did not say anything what so ever to the customer rep, thanked him for his time and I was off to go.

    This morning they proceeded with a phone call to the extended warrenty people, and long and behold they did not buy it either, so they are sending down their regional rep to inspect the damage they are referring to, I also asked my lexus service rep. if he will allow me the time to meet with the mechanic this afternoon to have him point out the damage to me for my own info.


    Thanks Al
     
  18. Desertmaster

    Desertmaster

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    Hello again,

    The dealer had showed me 2 grooved areas on the inner shafts / Axles right and left right behind the outer axles, the mechanic said they are suppose to be smooth no grooving should be there what so ever, the question I have is:

    Are there any groove in the inner shaft / axles for the c-clips to ride on, or the c-clips should not ride on the axle period ????

    Please let me know.

    Thanks

    Al
     
  19. landtank

    landtank SILVER Star

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    I don't have first hand knowledge of the shafts but according to the FSM there should be 2 grooves on the inner shafts near the birfield that snap rings (c-clips) are supposed to be placed. These groves would be very straight and have a square bottom to them as they would be machined in.
     
  20. cruiserdan

    cruiserdan SupportingVendor Emeritus Supporting Vendor Moderator

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    Al,
    How deep is the "groove"? If it is right at the inside of the birfield it would not ride in the seal. The 80 series front inner shaft does not show an inner snap ring for the birf to bottom against, just the round one on the outer end of the shaft.

      Dan