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No drive

hummedout

Active Member
Messages
40
Location
Dallas
Sounds like the front diff is smoked...or possibly a CV shaft. Drain the fluid and look for chunks or shavings on the magnetic drain plug.

The H3 is a full-time 4WD, and therefore both driveshafts spin all the time. In 4WD-Street mode, the transfer case will send the power to axle with the LEAST amount of resistance. In your case...that would be the front axle (broken = no resistance). If the front driveshaft spins, and the vehicle does not move...then the problem is definitely downstream of the transfer case (in the front axle somewhere). What you say is true. You should be able to shift to 4HI-lock mode and at least move the vehicle. But that can sometimes be difficult to do with a broken front axle. That grinding you describe when going into PARK is because the front driveshaft is free-spinning. You need to shut the vehicle off to shift transfer case modes!!! The t-case requires some time to engage...it is not instant. Try rolling the vehicle very slowly (under 2mph), with the motor off, ignition on...and press the 4HI-Lock button. This should engage the 4HI-Lock mode and send power to the rear axle. DO NOT attempt to put the trans into park in 4WD-Street mode...that grinding sound is the PARK pawl. If you continue to do this you will need transmission repair.

I currently have a used drop-out front axle in perfect condition. Its aluminum case, single-track, 4.56 geared. 155k miles. No issues...plug & play. $550 plus shipping.
Appreciate info ,here's what's confusing me is I have encoder motor off,shift shaft I turned counter clockwise fully,and rear shaft n front shaft spinning,pulled back and went forward.havevto get fluid in front diff n check tc fluid before I go around block,
Thanks for heads up on the park(pawl) thing,I don't need extra problems
 

hummedout

Active Member
Messages
40
Location
Dallas
When it broke ,the next morning I drained all of 3 tablespoons of front diff fluid(had none in it) now the smoke from last nite makes sense, it was diff fluid.
Added one bag of fluid and went around block,fluid was gone,bad leak,I hadn't even looked past the big puddle.
I'm gonna pull diff plate off and drop to inspect transfer case maybe this weekend..
 

hummedout

Active Member
Messages
40
Location
Dallas
Sounds like the front diff is smoked...or possibly a CV shaft. Drain the fluid and look for chunks or shavings on the magnetic drain plug.

The H3 is a full-time 4WD, and therefore both driveshafts spin all the time. In 4WD-Street mode, the transfer case will send the power to axle with the LEAST amount of resistance. In your case...that would be the front axle (broken = no resistance). If the front driveshaft spins, and the vehicle does not move...then the problem is definitely downstream of the transfer case (in the front axle somewhere). What you say is true. You should be able to shift to 4HI-lock mode and at least move the vehicle. But that can sometimes be difficult to do with a broken front axle. That grinding you describe when going into PARK is because the front driveshaft is free-spinning. You need to shut the vehicle off to shift transfer case modes!!! The t-case requires some time to engage...it is not instant. Try rolling the vehicle very slowly (under 2mph), with the motor off, ignition on...and press the 4HI-Lock button. This should engage the 4HI-Lock mode and send power to the rear axle. DO NOT attempt to put the trans into park in 4WD-Street mode...that grinding sound is the PARK pawl. If you continue to do this you will need transmission repair.

I currently have a used drop-out front axle in perfect condition. Its aluminum case, single-track, 4.56 geared. 155k miles. No issues...plug & play. $550 plus shipping.
Where do you live n how much is shipping
 

4speedfunk

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,212
Location
Tardville
Pic of the front diff here…
 

hummedout

Active Member
Messages
40
Location
Dallas
So I removed front diff cover, big chunks,what is the gear that turns the the two driveaxles,immediately following shaft from tc?
It won't hold fluid either.
So do you repair n replace gear n new seals?or get used front diff?
 

4speedfunk

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,212
Location
Tardville
Yes. Fix. Repair. Replace. Whatever. I keep most of the parts in stock to fix the stock IFS front diff. I also get used ones quite frequently.

If it is so bad it won't hold fluid...I would say that's an 8 or 9 on the f'd up scale. The pinion gear is ground down to nothing, and the pinion bearings are probably missing entirely. This will allow you to grab the front driveshaft and rattle the pinion in place. The pinion seal is useless at this point. I have seen this kind of damage before. It will need a complete rebuild...probably a grand or so (bearings, gears, seals, everything). Its usually cheaper to chuck it in the dumpster and bolt-in a good used unit. Especially since you are not wanting a locker, cast-iron version, or anything rare. Aluminum 4.56 single-track diffs are everywhere.
 

hummedout

Active Member
Messages
40
Location
Dallas
Yes. Fix. Repair. Replace. Whatever. I keep most of the parts in stock to fix the stock IFS front diff. I also get used ones quite frequently.

If it is so bad it won't hold fluid...I would say that's an 8 or 9 on the f'd up scale. The pinion gear is ground down to nothing, and the pinion bearings are probably missing entirely. This will allow you to grab the front driveshaft and rattle the pinion in place. The pinion seal is useless at this point. I have seen this kind of damage before. It will need a complete rebuild...probably a grand or so (bearings, gears, seals, everything). Its usually cheaper to chuck it in the dumpster and bolt-in a good used unit. Especially since you are not wanting a locker, cast-iron version, or anything rare. Aluminum 4.56 single-track diffs are everywhere.
Ok so I'll buy a front diff used and put it in,wonder why I can't make the rear wheels stay active?
Removed encoder motor and rotated shaft,was able to get it in 4high locked and 4 wheel low,but it just hops into neutral or 4 high locked for whatever reason,no noise or anything just goes to neutral,well park won't hold it still ,using parking break,why would it not manually stay in a 4 wheel locked mode high or low?
 

4speedfunk

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,212
Location
Tardville
You probably have t-case issues as well. Even with proper maintenance and no abuse, most plastic shift forks will begin to fail at 150k miles. Failing shift fork symptoms are often masked by the full time 4wd. You might notice some binding or lazy shifting between modes but, rarely will you get stranded. This is because whatever mode you get stuck in…will still move the vehicle down the road.

However once the front is disconnected (on purpose or by failure), then t-case problems are revealed. It become super obvious that the t-case will not stay where you put it, and if it slips back into 4HI-street mode…you’ll go nowhere. That could be what’s happening on your rig.
 

hummedout

Active Member
Messages
40
Location
Dallas
You probably have t-case issues as well. Even with proper maintenance and no abuse, most plastic shift forks will begin to fail at 150k miles. Failing shift fork symptoms are often masked by the full time 4wd. You might notice some binding or lazy shifting between modes but, rarely will you get stranded. This is because whatever mode you get stuck in…will still move the vehicle down the road.

However once the front is disconnected (on purpose or by failure), then t-case problems are revealed. It become super obvious that the t-case will not stay where you put it, and if it slips back into 4HI-street mode…you’ll go nowhere. That could be what’s happening on your rig.
That's exactly what's happening, I'll manually put it in lock n for whatever reason it goes to neutral again.
I got used front diff,no leaks everything rotates,how hard is this to replace
 

hummedout

Active Member
Messages
40
Location
Dallas
Bought a used one that has no leaks n seems to be fairly good,everything spins together,how hard is this to replace?
 

jcam

Member
Messages
12
Location
Pennsylvania
I just had the same exact thing happen to my 06 today. I was off roading at Rausch Creek a couple weeks ago and heard some clicking coming from the front left while accelerating. We thought it was surely a cv shaft. Changed that but still clicked. Found the front drive shaft boot was almost completely gone at the cv joint by the transfer. Changed the drive shaft but still made the clicking noise while accelerating. Drove to a mechanic uncle of mine who said it's probably the front diff. On the drive home, about 300 yds from the house, it broke with all the same symptoms as described as hummedout. The only difference in symptoms, from what I understand of his symptoms, is that mine WILL stay in high lock. The front drive shaft spins, the rear doesn't just like hummedout. Good thing I had a spare H3 to pull this one back to the house 🤣.
I'll keep everyone posted as I diagnose and repair this thing. Any advice is appreciated. And good luck hummedout. I hope I'm helping your thread, not distracting from it.
 

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jcam

Member
Messages
12
Location
Pennsylvania
I just had the same exact thing happen to my 06 today. I was off roading at Rausch Creek a couple weeks ago and heard some clicking coming from the front left while accelerating. We thought it was surely a cv shaft. Changed that but still clicked. Found the front drive shaft boot was almost completely gone at the cv joint by the transfer. Changed the drive shaft but still made the clicking noise while accelerating. Drove to a mechanic uncle of mine who said it's probably the front diff. On the drive home, about 300 yds from the house, it broke with all the same symptoms as described as hummedout. The only difference in symptoms, from what I understand of his symptoms, is that mine WILL stay in high lock. The front drive shaft spins, the rear doesn't just like hummedout. Good thing I had a spare H3 to pull this one back to the house 🤣.
I'll keep everyone posted as I diagnose and repair this thing. Any advice is appreciated. And good luck hummedout. I hope I'm helping your thread, not distracting from it.
 

jcam

Member
Messages
12
Location
Pennsylvania
Update.....front dif is fine, intermediate shaft is fine with no metal pieces in the shaft housing. CV shaft is stuck in the coupler (I think that's what its called). See picture. So I'm thinking the problem lies in the coupler or the carquest(not AC Delco) CV shaft. It was about 3/16 shorter, compressed, than the old CV shaft that I removed. The clicking noise actually did get worse when I put the new CV shaft in.
I also snapped the bolt that holds the coupler to the frame. I have no idea how I'm going to solve that problem yet. Good times.
Hummedout, did you get your dif replaced? I was thinking about going that route until I saw the dif was ok.
 

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jcam

Member
Messages
12
Location
Pennsylvania
I got the CV shaft out of the coupler with a little hammering from the inside on the end of the shaft. The c clip was really hanging on. I can't find anything wrong with any part. All seem to be in good shape. Clean oil, no shavings or chunks of metal anywhere.
With intermediate shaft removed and passenger front tire jacked off the ground, I start it and put it in drive and everything seems to be working properly in the dif. Pinion spins ring, spins spiders, spins side gears both in the same direction. But the passenger CV shaft and wheel don't spin. ????No grinding noises either. With engine off, I spin passenger wheel which spins side and spider gears but not the ring gear. I think this is all correct. What am I doing wrong? Or missing?
 

hummedout

Active Member
Messages
40
Location
Dallas
I got the CV shaft out of the coupler with a little hammering from the inside on the end of the shaft. The c clip was really hanging on. I can't find anything wrong with any part. All seem to be in good shape. Clean oil, no shavings or chunks of metal anywhere.
With intermediate shaft removed and passenger front tire jacked off the ground, I start it and put it in drive and everything seems to be working properly in the dif. Pinion spins ring, spins spiders, spins side gears both in the same direction. But the passenger CV shaft and wheel don't spin. ????No grinding noises either. With engine off, I spin passenger wheel which spi ,ns side and spider gears but not the ring gear. I think this is all correct. What am I doing wrong? Or missing?
Hey guys,I bought used diff and let a customer of mine install it,they got it in and called me and said transmission is out!
What's the chances that his mechanic is just not knowledgeable about Hummers awd,I didn't have no issues with tranny,not once and he'd saying it goes a min and pops outta gear, sounds like tc issues,I'm trippin cause everybody wants 1200$ and up for used tranny!
How was it fine and now broke,I'm praying mechanic just isn't experienced with ,awd fwd
 

hummedout

Active Member
Messages
40
Location
Dallas
Hey guys,I bought used diff and let a customer of mine install it,they got it in and called me and said transmission is out!
What's the chances that his mechanic is just not knowledgeable about Hummers awd,I didn't have no issues with tranny,not once and he'd saying it goes a min and pops outta gear, sounds like tc issues,I'm trippin cause everybody wants 1200$ and up for used tranny!
How was it fine and now broke,I'm praying mechanic just isn't experienced with ,awd fwd
Damn damn damn the hell
 

jcam

Member
Messages
12
Location
Pennsylvania
Hummedout, I'd check the shifter cable and linkage that attaches to the shift lever on the side of the transmission. If that got bent or moved during all the work under the vehicle or if the nylon insert that pops onto the shift lever is worn out, it might not be fully going into gear in the first place. It does seem unlikely that a working transmission took a dump after a dif was installed. There's my 2 cents.
 

Doc Olds

Well-Known Member
Messages
135
Location
Boat Town MI
I got to say, reading your posts, they are all over the map chasing you tail. You failed to answer many questions others with experience were asking you, never told us how many miles are on it, and your Trans did go out. "No drive in any gear mode."

How many miles? Pretty obvious to me, your Trans needs a rebuild.
 

hummedout

Active Member
Messages
40
Location
Dallas
I got to say, reading your posts, they are all over the map chasing you tail. You failed to answer many questions others with experience were asking you, never told us how many miles are on it, and your Trans did go out. "No drive in any gear mode."

How many miles? Pretty obvious to me, your Trans needs a rebuild.
I am busy asf,I got on here to learn and did,so chasing tail Maybe, chasing my tail is a negative.
Stuck to subject Mr messy ,I'm not in here for social status.
Ok I replaced front diff ,well I traded electrical work for the repair,on way home sun I guess one of the original cv axles lost the band n blew grease everywhere,
I replaced with a Napa one,everything ha been great but I already noticed the binding in sharp turns,
Wtf ,these things are not daily drivers and a money pit on top of that.219,000 miles messy, no idea of history,I know when I got it it had been tweaked on and was loud n obnoxious.

There cool asf, but bulletproof?hell to the no,hill climbing beast but on trips over 39 miles,leave it at home,I'm scared to let my wife drive it,she's hard on shit
 

Doc Olds

Well-Known Member
Messages
135
Location
Boat Town MI
Thank you for your reply. Your miles are beyond the expected life of the 4L60E Transmission in a heavy FT 4X4 H3 (you/we do not know the history of when/if it was ever rebuilt/replaced) so as I suspected, your Trans needs a rebuild.

I've been driving and H3 continuously since Feb 2007. My current 09 H3 Alpha Off Road has performance and off road mods and has been 100% reliable. If you buy a used 15 year old vehicle with high miles, if the prior owner(s) had no clue what maintenance is about, there is going to be a lot of work to do to make up for age, miles and lack of care. You have started down that path, just keep after it and you will have your daily driver.

Best of luck.
 

rascole

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,587
Location
Bellflower, CA
Ok I replaced front diff ,well I traded electrical work for the repair,on way home sun I guess one of the original cv axles lost the band n blew grease everywhere,
I replaced with a Napa one,everything ha been great but I already noticed the binding in sharp turns,
Wtf ,these things are not daily drivers and a money pit on top of that.219,000 miles
When it is binding, do you hear any noise? Clicking type noise points to a bad CV, NAPA is crap as are almost all aftermarket CV's. If there is no noise when steering wheel is straight, the likely culprit is TC is stuck in 4H Locked. Ditto what Doc Olds said the tranny is well beyond normal life expectancy.
 

Can007

Well-Known Member
Messages
360
Location
Palmdale, CA
Man, oh man… this is a difficult post to read, but interesting.

First, I am sorry you are having to deal with this. Unfortunately, these happens things.

Second, everyone here is routing for you. The experience the folks in this forum is insane. Take what you want, need and I am sure you will figure it out. Part of the journey is learning and having fun building your rig.

Lastly, I can’t wait to hear what’s next. I hope you fix it!
 
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