Washita Offroad park vs. Transfer case

IsaiahBarnfield

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So I took my stock liberty with 245/70/r16s out to Washita Off Road Trails in Farmington MO last weekend. I must say I was extremely impressed with what the liberty could do. We went mudding and we went on a 10 mile trail up a rocky hill/mountain. It was amazing to see the obstacles that I could cross and the steep rock faces I climbed in the liberty. One problem arose though. It was my first time off roading, and I had my Jeep in 4x4 high the entire time. I don't know if I messed something up not being in 4x4 low. On the course I heard a loud clicking like a giant baseball card in a spoke. There was nothing visible on the vehicle so I started driving out of the trails and a few seconds later it stopped. Every time I drove through deep mud it started again, but would subside once I drove on clean ground for 100 feet or so. Now three days later, my jeep still makes popping sound if 4x4 is engaged, but not always. Sometimes it just has a low humming drone if 4x4 is engaged. Does anyone have any idea what this could be. Posted some fun pics by of the jeep on the trails.
 

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TwoBobsKJ

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Great pics - that's the way to enjoy a Libby! :smokin:

I'm sure the clicking sound is the CV joint on the rear of the front driveshaft - the one at the transfer case. Very typical for it to go bad. Take a look at it - the boot is probably toast and it's very easy to see the bad boot. Less than $100 to repair yourself - do a quick search on here and you'll find links to a site that sells the CV. I'd link to it now but I'm typing on my phone and don't have the site in my bookmarks. Last time I looked the CV was only $65 before shipping!

Let us know what you find...

Bob
 

IsaiahBarnfield

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I have 161,000 on it right now and it wheeled all day without overheating or anything (except this CV problem which could have been my user error). It didn't do it at all until after I went on the trails in 4x4 high all day though.
 

IsaiahBarnfield

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Ok so I looked at the CV boot. It seems to be fine. The place where the shaft goes into the transfer case looks a little wet like the end of the CV joint, but its not dripping or anything. The rubber boot is not torn or hanging off or anything. I don't know how much play is supposed to be in the drive shaft, but I can turn it back and forth with my hand with about a half inch or so of play in it. I really don't know how to diagnose what else it could be. It only makes the sounds when it is in 4x4. Also there is a steady metal on metal swirling sound that is constant in 4x4. The clicking sounds some and go. I hope I don't have to pay a dealership to look at it. Thanks in advanced if anyone can think of anything.
 
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JeepJeepster

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Sounds like you're looking at the wrong boot. There is a boot on the front of the driveshaft that's easily visible. The boot on the rear of the driveshaft is receased and harder to see. If you lay down with a flashlight you'll be able to see it fairly easy. There are some good pictures floating around here.
 

IsaiahBarnfield

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It doesn't vibrate but it makes a swirling metalic sound, like if my brake pads were worn down to the metal. It only makes the sound when 4x4 is engaged, but it stops if I let off the gas and coast even in 4x4. It seems like other posts I've searched say that the CV joint makes nasty sounds in 4 wheel drive and in 2 wheel drive, but like I said, mine only does it in 4 wheel drive. I don't exactly know which joint to look at. I think there are CV joints on the shafts that run to each wheel and CV joints on the front drive shaft. Sorry for being such a newb.
 

IsaiahBarnfield

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I never have. I just bought the Jeep about a month ago. Does anyone know a ballpark estimate of how much a transfer case service would cost?
 

TwoBobsKJ

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I never have. I just bought the Jeep about a month ago. Does anyone know a ballpark estimate of how much a transfer case service would cost?

Two quarts of ATF+4 will run you about $15 or so - then about 30 minutes of your time. It's super easy to do yourself - check the How-To section for a step by step.

If you go to the dealer you're looking at $100 or so - and they're going to (correctly) suggest you do the front and rear differentials too. But those are just as easy as the transfer case.

You'll gain a lot of pride in your Jeep if you do the project yourself. Plus it's a 'Jeep thang!' :killit:

Bob
 

IsaiahBarnfield

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I think I'll go out and get the stuff today. I am working my way up slowly to doing more stuff on my own, and this seems like a good step in the right direction.
 

IsaiahBarnfield

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So I took another look at things today when I was going to get the stuff to change the transfer case fluid. I looked and where the front drive shaft connects to the transfer case, there is no rubber boot. Is this normal? It looked kinda ugly and black where it connected too. There is definitely a boot where the front shaft connects to the front differential, but not on the rear of the front drive shaft.
 

TwoBobsKJ

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Porkchop is right - it's time for some work under your Libby. :smokin:

Here is a link to the How-To for changing the rear CV joint. Pretty straightforward, maybe an hour or so. The only thing I will add is that I disconnected the shift cable bracket for the transfer case to make it a bit easier to remove the shaft - just gives you a bit more room. One 15mm bolt and it lifts up and away a few inches.

Here's where I got my CV joint. And it's now 15 bucks CHEAPER than when I bought mine 6 months ago! :party52:

Bob
 

mdmaroon

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I've never taken an American 4X4 off road without breaking something, and I've owned four of them. Totally normal. Expect little pieces to start falling off with a jingling noise in the next few days.
 
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