Socket Size for draining the F/R Diffs?

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What size socket do I need to purchase for draining/refilling the front/rear diffs and the transfer case. My current Craftsman 3/8" set only goes up to 13mm.

I'm up for buying a heavy duty set from Sears, just want to make sure that I buy the right tools.

Thanks
 

scottm

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My OEM drain plugs are flush with the steel ring aroung the plugs, why switch to "low profile"? The allen head plugs on my VW/Audis get plugged with crud even driving on the road. I've stripped out allen heads before, the big hex seems more robust to me, especially protected by that steel ring.
 
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The mentioned crudded up hex plugs are the reason I pressure wash the underside of my cruiser before I do any work underneath it. I like being able to see what I'm doing and not get crud in and on everything. Even if you just take 20 min and hit each one of the drain + fill plugs it makes life easier.
 

scottm

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Sure would be nice to work under a clean truck every time. How long 'till it stops dripping on you? I like to see where grease has been dripping/slinging, maybe wouldn't clean it every time. Allen heads need to be pretty clean to get a good grip, not a plus in remote locations in the dark. My VW/Audi diff & tranny plugs used huge allen sizes, I had to get a set of large wrenches. Little ones like I see in the pic above would've twisted or stripped with all the torque I sometimes needed, even with regular servicing. Of course those were tapered plugs, not copper-gasket, straight-thread like we're using. I'll be carefull with my hex heads, replace them if they get beat up, but don't think I'll switch to allens.
 

REDDER1

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I actually need advice on my front & Rear DIFF Drain plugs. I tried to loosen the drain plugs and the socket keeps slipping off. They are on there tight..and i dont want to strip them.

Any advice on what i should/can do to get them loose w/out damaging them? I guess once they are out i should look into getting new ones?

thx,
-joe-
 
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Today I had one VERY boogered up 30 yr old front diff fill plug, a 6 point socket wouldn't take it off. Took a monkey wrench to it, 5 seconds and it was off. If things are bad, and you have to replace it anyway, monkey wrenchs with the serrated claws work quite well.
 
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Bailey,
Unfortunately a monkey wrench or a crescent or vice grips or anything other than a socket won't work on 80 series diffs. Take a close look at the picture that Chris posted and you will see a ring welded onto the diff. No way to get a monkey wrench on that bolt.
-B-
 
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Chris,

>> All Pro Off Road sells them for $4 each. <<

My Toyota dealer sells the OEM hex plugs for less than $2 each. I haven't bought any because I'm like Scott and have had problems with hex plugs stripping. Are the ones you sell made of a harder material or something?

-B-
 
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Joe-

Soak them with some PB Blaster one day, then take them off the next, mine were extremely tight, I soaked them, waited 24 hours and was able to get them off (of course with a little help from a hammer on the end of the wrench).
 
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Bailey,
Unfortunately a monkey wrench or a crescent or vice grips or anything other than a socket won't work on 80 series diffs. Take a close look at the picture that Chris posted and you will see a ring welded onto the diff. No way to get a monkey wrench on that bolt.
-B-
I'm not talking about the drain, the 40 series have that ring as well. I was talking about the fill plug, which for some reason seems to be boogered up more often than the drain plug.
 
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One of my diff bolts was really tight, too...a 18" craftsman breaker bar and 6-pt 24mm sockets did the trick. The particular sockets I'm using are S&K impact sockets which (they claim) grab the sides of the bolt rather than the corners. And if the 24mm bolt is really stubborn, I suppose you could just use an impact wrench if you have access to one.
 

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