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Front dif bushings and oil leaks

MilamJR

Well-Known Member
Messages
789
Location
Alabama
My front dif bushings on my 04 H2 need replacing. I have purchased some new ones for Outfitter Design. My local 4X4 shop does not want to install them until I get the small oil leaks repaired. They say that the new bushings will fail due to the oil leaks. So I took it to a local garage who said that I have very small leaks from the rear main seal, oil pan gasket and valve covers and they recommend that I do not fix them due to the mileage and cost. I would like to hear others view on what they would do and why.


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TonkaTank93

Active Member
Messages
30
Location
VA, USA
These 6.0 LQ4 engines commonly go upwards of 250k if properly maintained. Even then, they're repairable and will serve well for years to come. There's some benefits to being underpowered pigs.
 

MilamJR

Well-Known Member
Messages
789
Location
Alabama
I am north of 170,000 miles and it runs fine. Enough power to take me anywhere I want to go. Lot of expense in pulling the transmission to replace the rear mail seal. If anyone thinks that is the right decision I would like to hear their reasoning.


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TonkaTank93

Active Member
Messages
30
Location
VA, USA
Oil pan gasket is pretty easy to fix. Just remember to drain your oil before you start loosening the bolts.

Valve covers aren't terribly difficult aside from having to actually get into the engine bay.

Another option is to go the route I usually do. Have the shop install them with no warranty. My shop back home gets all my vehicles when they're due for service and I can verify their quality of workmanship -I have a background in automotive work-. With that said, they will install just about anything I bring to them to put on my truck but if it's not OEM, they won't warranty it because they can't verify that its not going to crop out as soon as I drive away.
 

Iwillnc

Well-Known Member
Messages
232
Location
NC
So I’m actually in the same position when mine were installed I’m around 176k miles, my engine leaks some oil and yes it does go onto the bushing. I think the new bushing design is better capable of handling the oil than the old rubber but I still need to take care of it as it is definitely on my new bushings

Personally my plan is to drop my diff pull the pan and front end off the engine to replace the oil pump and seal everything back up with new seals.

I don’t believe my rear main is the culprit. I believe I have leaks from the front main(is oil pump itself) the oil pan and oil coolant lines.

Regardless the new bushing design is a hell of a lot easier to replace than the originals if it comes down to that. I don’t think it will I think the new design will not be troubled by the oil.
 

Iwillnc

Well-Known Member
Messages
232
Location
NC
Pulling the engine/trans is an arseload of work. I would be triple checking to be sure it was the culprit before diving into that


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MilamJR

Well-Known Member
Messages
789
Location
Alabama
Oil pan gasket is pretty easy to fix. Just remember to drain your oil before you start loosening the bolts.

Valve covers aren't terribly difficult aside from having to actually get into the engine bay.

Another option is to go the route I usually do. Have the shop install them with no warranty. My shop back home gets all my vehicles when they're due for service and I can verify their quality of workmanship -I have a background in automotive work-. With that said, they will install just about anything I bring to them to put on my truck but if it's not OEM, they won't warranty it because they can't verify that its not going to crop out as soon as I drive away.

Thanks for the feedback.


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MilamJR

Well-Known Member
Messages
789
Location
Alabama
So I’m actually in the same position when mine were installed I’m around 176k miles, my engine leaks some oil and yes it does go onto the bushing. I think the new bushing design is better capable of handling the oil than the old rubber but I still need to take care of it as it is definitely on my new bushings

Personally my plan is to drop my diff pull the pan and front end off the engine to replace the oil pump and seal everything back up with new seals.

I don’t believe my rear main is the culprit. I believe I have leaks from the front main(is oil pump itself) the oil pan and oil coolant lines.

Regardless the new bushing design is a hell of a lot easier to replace than the originals if it comes down to that. I don’t think it will I think the new design will not be troubled by the oil.

I am certainly leaning towards just replacing the bushings and let it ride until the engine or transmission need to come out for a rebuild.

Any experience on the labor cost to have the bushings replaced?


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Iwillnc

Well-Known Member
Messages
232
Location
NC
I have no idea, they didn’t charge any extra since they did my gear swap and the diff was already out. They were definitely hesitant to do the change for risk of damaging the diff.

I’m not going to tell you there’s no risk from the oil being on the new bushings as frankly I don’t know the properties and how they would interact - but as long as the new style is being produced they are a hell of a lot easier to change out than the old style.

If your not regularly leaving oil droplets where ever you park then I wouldn’t worry about it at this time personally.
 

MilamJR

Well-Known Member
Messages
789
Location
Alabama
I have no idea, they didn’t charge any extra since they did my gear swap and the diff was already out. They were definitely hesitant to do the change for risk of damaging the diff.

I’m not going to tell you there’s no risk from the oil being on the new bushings as frankly I don’t know the properties and how they would interact - but as long as the new style is being produced they are a hell of a lot easier to change out than the old style.

If your not regularly leaving oil droplets where ever you park then I wouldn’t worry about it at this time personally.

It is not marking its territory. The oil does drip down on the tailpipe when the engine is cold so you do smell the oil burning for a short time when you drive it but it goes away. The other question that I have is should I worry about water getting in the oil when I take it off-road?


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Iwillnc

Well-Known Member
Messages
232
Location
NC
It is not marking its territory. The oil does drip down on the tailpipe when the engine is cold so you do smell the oil burning for a short time when you drive it but it goes away. The other question that I have is should I worry about water getting in the oil when I take it off-road?


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Interesting, my oil has never gotten on the exhaust (I have stock setup). I wouldn’t be worried about water getting in the engine as the oil system should have a positive pressure anywhere it’s leaking out - else it wouldn’t likely leak.

If some condensation gets into the oil I imagine you would notice checking the oil. OR it should get sent out the PCV into the throttle body and burned off.
 

MilamJR

Well-Known Member
Messages
789
Location
Alabama
Interesting, my oil has never gotten on the exhaust (I have stock setup). I wouldn’t be worried about water getting in the engine as the oil system should have a positive pressure anywhere it’s leaking out - else it wouldn’t likely leak.

If some condensation gets into the oil I imagine you would notice checking the oil. OR it should get sent out the PCV into the throttle body and burned off.

Good point. Should not be a problem unless the engine shuts off.

I think the biggest culprits to the front dif bushings were their age and coolant that was leaking down for a while until I found and repaired the problem. I am sure oil didn’t help but probably not as much of an issue as the other two.


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Iwillnc

Well-Known Member
Messages
232
Location
NC
Same here, age was a big factor but the oil on my old ones definitely hastened their demise. I knew my front diff was too loose for several years before the fix as I could hear it over bumps and constant front end checks left no other possible source.

Your going to see a nice difference in your truck with the new bushings it should feel 10 years newer and more solid.
 

JPaul

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,362
Location
Way up north, UT
Aren't the OD bushings for the H2 Delrin, just like the ones for the H3? Delrin resists motor oil, gasoline, etc pretty well. Urethane bushings on the other hand might not fare too well, but even then I doubt they'd be ruined quickly.

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MilamJR

Well-Known Member
Messages
789
Location
Alabama
Aren't the OD bushings for the H2 Delrin, just like the ones for the H3? Delrin resists motor oil, gasoline, etc pretty well. Urethane bushings on the other hand might not fare too well, but even then I doubt they'd be ruined quickly.

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4WP is going to charge $400 to install so all in cost is about $600. Probably could do that 2X and still be cheaper than replacing the rear main seal.


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