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View Full Version : Need opinions - Rear Dana 44 Axles - Are they good or not????


92xjdean
December 29th, 2009, 10:24
Roaring noise coming from my wifes 98 Grand Cherokee rear D44. Pulled the axles and here is a pic. There are grooves and some pitting. The front one is the passenger side, had 1 groove I can get my whole fingernail in. The back one is the driver side, much worse. Lots of pitting and several grooves. Are they bad enough to replace???? Is there a process to resurface these????
http://i217.photobucket.com/albums/cc170/deancass2000/100_3015.jpg

sjx40250
December 29th, 2009, 10:35
I think you should ask you question on MallCrawlin.com. Its a ZJ or GC forum.

Your groove are probably a result of the seal wearing down the shaft. The Roaring could be the carrier bearings as opposed to the wheel bearings.

D44 is typically a great axle with the expection of the AL housing in the WJ's.

92xjdean
December 29th, 2009, 10:46
I think you should ask you question on MallCrawlin.com. Its a ZJ or GC forum.

Your groove are probably a result of the seal wearing down the shaft. The Roaring could be the carrier bearings as opposed to the wheel bearings.

D44 is typically a great axle with the expection of the AL housing in the WJ's.

I appreciate the response. I'm not registered in the forums you mention nor do I want to register. An axle is an axle as far as I'm concerned, I don't think I should have to ask over there, not to mean any disrespect. I have 2 cherokees as well as 2 Grand Cherokees.......so just pretend the axles are from one of my cherokees :cheers:

p.s. the rear had new carrier bearings installed by the previous owner who said the problem then remained.

stoneattic
December 29th, 2009, 11:31
The D44 used in Grands are different that the D44 used in XJ. The Grand D44 have aluminum center sections and the internals are different. Hence sjx40250's comments about checking ZGC forums.

Rmart30
December 29th, 2009, 11:36
D44A's arent good wheeling axles. Good for stockers or light duty rigs.
Probably 3.73 geared ? Replace it with a 8.8 Explorer axle for about what you would spend rebuilding it.

kastein
December 29th, 2009, 11:38
Um, you guys are all missing the point entirely. He's not putting a D44a in an XJ, it's the one in the GC. Also, it's just a wheel bearing question.

If it isn't the carrier bearings, I'd bet on it being the wheel bearings like you suspect.

EDIT: pick up shafts for cheap at a junkyard, maybe? Those look kinda worn, though I'm by no means an axle expert.

RichP
December 29th, 2009, 11:39
The axles are toast, check the tubes and make sure they are still square with the housing. The D35 in the wifes 97ZJ did the same thing, ended up with having to replace the carrier as well as the gears, I put a LSD in it vs stock carrier, only a $50 price difference :D
If you are going to keep it consider a real D44, the one you have though should be pretty plentiful at the bone yard.

stoneattic
December 29th, 2009, 11:52
Um, you guys are all missing the point entirely. He's not putting a D44a in an XJ, it's the one in the GC. Also, it's just a wheel bearing question.

We're not missing the point, merely pointing out that he may have better luck getting info on that axle from a forum where that axle would be common.

True, it's just a bearing question but that axle may have something odd about it (it's own idiosyncrasy specific to the 44A) that the folks in a GC forum would be more likely to know. But I don't know because I'm only familiar with the axles that came in XJs. :)

(Not really. I have an WJ too and built many 8 3/4" back in my Mopar muscle days, but you get my point?)

RCP Phx
December 29th, 2009, 13:07
You might be able to get a repair kit(speede-sleeve) for it.

92xjdean
December 31st, 2009, 16:21
Hey Guys, thanks for all the input. Here's what I determined and ended up doing. SJX40250 was correct with his comment about the grooves being from the rubber seals, although there were some pitting spots as well. After reviewing the axles closer I found that the area of wear from where the wheel bearings were making contact with the axle were actually in pretty good shape. It's to the left of the grooves in the pic, it's the really shiny spot on the axle.

Anyway, I tore the whole rear end down and went through every piece, wheel bearings, wheel bearing seals, carrier bearings and races. What I found was that the driver side carrier bearing at one point had something work it's way into the bearing and had every single bearing pitted/chewed up on just that side. The previous owner installed new wheel bearings in an attempt to fix the noise, boy you should have seen the nice screw driver marks where he tried pulling out the seals!!! The passenger side carrier bearing looked like new with no wear what so ever.

I bought new wheel bearings, new wheel bearing seals and new carrier bearings. I took the carrier to a machine shop who pressed the new carrier bearings on for $45. I then reinstalled the carrier and re-shimmed it to the required backlash setting. I installed the new wheel bearings and seals and then the axles. Put in some gear lube and took her for a test drive. Everything worked great and no rear end noises what so ever!!!! I have logged around 200 miles on it today and all seems fine. Thanks again for the input.