Removing a stubborn diff fill (or drain) plug

-Spike-

 
Joined
May 26, 2005
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7,299
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Phoenix
I figured I'd share my experience with you guys just in case it might help somewhere down the road.

I tried to remove my rear diff fill plug (stock) and ran into trouble. It looked like it had been abused by a PO or lube shack in the past- corners rounded off and such. I couldn't get a socket to stay on it, so I went to the impact and rounded everything off. I then (calmly) got a cold chisel and began removing metal from the bolt. I was trying to turn it, but it was just breaking off chunks. I wasn't quite as calm by this time. I'd heard of someone having this problem who welded a bolt to the plug, so I got out the grinder, flattened the plug head, and welded a huge-headed bolt right on there. I went inside and surfed while it cooled, then I got my big six-point socket, wrench, and breaker bar, looking for a fight and ready to beat the crap out of it. I checked to see if the bolt was still hot (it wasn't), and then proceeded to turn it out by hand.

I had actually considered heating the housing before welding, but figured it wouldn't work. Sometimes I overlook the easy solution. I think a mapp gas torch would have made this job a lot easier- hopefully I can save someone some frustration with this story.

-Spike
 

-Spike-

 
Joined
May 26, 2005
Messages
7,299
Location
Phoenix
Yep, the front diff fill plug was stuck as well, and the torch did the job rather easily.

-SPike
 
Joined
May 1, 2005
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West Palm Beach, Florida
-Spike- said:
I'd heard of someone having this problem who welded a bolt to the plug, so I got out the grinder, flattened the plug head, and welded a huge-headed bolt right on there. I went inside and surfed while it cooled, then I got my big six-point socket, wrench, and breaker bar, looking for a fight and ready to beat the crap out of it. I checked to see if the bolt was still hot (it wasn't), and then proceeded to turn it out by hand.
-Spike
This method also works well when you lose the keyed socket for locking lugnuts. Don't ask me how I know. :mad:
 

Riad

 
Joined
Mar 18, 2005
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1,822
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Charles Town, WV
Yeah, I used my impact wrench. Pulled the trigger at one/two seconds interval and it came loose. Then replaced all the diff plugs for both diff. At least I don't have to deal with that anymore..
 
Joined
Mar 24, 2005
Messages
120
Location
Knoxville, TN
Yep. Had that happen on the rear fill plug...glad I'm in the habit of removing the fill BEFORE the drain.

Anyway, after some heat and the next smaller socket, I got it loose with the breaker bar. I'm not sure mine had ever been off. It looked like the wonderful rubberized undercoat hadn't yet been disturbed.
 

MLX450

 
Joined
Apr 10, 2005
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630
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WA
Yeah i rounded my rear fill plug. Since i didnt have an air compressor i bought a manual impact with a six point socket at sears......
 

flintknapper

SILVER Star
 
 
Joined
May 22, 2004
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6,317
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Deep East Texas
Lots of ways.

For those who do not wish to drag out the welder....(and if heating doesn't work), you can take an angle grinder and grind two "flats" (one across from the other) on the plug...and then use a small pipe wrench to remove it.


When replacing the plug remember: Anti-Seize is your friend!
 

MLX450

 
Joined
Apr 10, 2005
Messages
630
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WA
After removing the plug i replaced it with a SOR hex plug. Nice and not expensive.
 
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