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Old 01-27-2008, 10:38 AM   #1
newrexracer
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Unhappy Differential binding?

This is now starting to be a recurring problem. Over the summer I put new wider (7.5in) Rota wheels with bf Goodrich kdw tires on my 05 WRX. After doing a little sliding around in a parking lot, there was binding in the diffs or so it felt like that, when turning at low speeds it feels like I had locked differentials, but instead of the wheels hopping all I hear is a clunking from inside something, my guess the diff. I took the car to Subaru and by the time it got there it seemed to be fine. My guess was I heated up the diffs and they began to bind, but after cooling they were fine. Last night I went out with a friend to do a little snow drifting and after a nice 30min session I drive home and ONLY when turning tight corners, I get the binding/ clunking again. It sounds AWFULL. Please post any suggestions or anything at all im very nervous. care drives compleetly normal in a stright line.
Thank you
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Old 01-27-2008, 10:44 AM   #2
potsy
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Different gear ratio to front? Lsd wants to stay locked when turning, ---i've had lots of 4wd's--possible it's not unlocking at low speeds when turning like it is supposed to.
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Old 01-27-2008, 12:18 PM   #3
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what would cause that and shouldi stop driving the car?
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Old 01-27-2008, 12:56 PM   #4
flstffxe
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sounds like a binding viscus coupler. Check book time.
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Old 01-27-2008, 06:32 PM   #5
newrexracer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flstffxe View Post
sounds like a binding viscus coupler. Check book time.
viscus coupler? could you go a little more in depth, im not fermiliar with this sorry.
thanks
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Old 01-27-2008, 07:10 PM   #6
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viscous coupler in the center diff (if a manual) or lsd in the rear if you have limited slip. as the fail they bind up due to the indifference in speed between the inside wheels and the out side wheels in a turn. If it is indeed a failing viscous coupler you may be able to free it up temporarily by driving in real tight circles a few times. However it is still a failed/failing coupler. year/model and trans type would help narrow it down too.
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Old 01-27-2008, 07:12 PM   #7
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well ill look into that thanks. it is an 05 WRX (NOT STI) 5speed manual
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Old 01-28-2008, 12:24 PM   #8
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yea it does sound like a center, we had one in the shop i work at not to long ago that had similar problems. my boss got a new center for $400 i think it was
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Old 01-28-2008, 04:23 PM   #9
flstffxe
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most likely the center diff/viscous coupler
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Old 01-28-2008, 04:29 PM   #10
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My rear diff did this for about a week until it finally gave out. It got progressively worse until it finally locked up. It started out binding up every once in a while in sharp turns then it would do it every time I would turn and then finally it just locked up and the car came to a hault rather quickly.
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Old 01-28-2008, 07:09 PM   #11
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damn, so how exactly can i check to see if it is my rear or center diff? what would need to be replaced?
thanks for all the info and please keep it comming
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Old 01-28-2008, 09:23 PM   #12
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Rear one is easy. You drain the fluid out of it. If there are big metal chuncks on the drain plug then its a good chance it is blown. If there aren't any then it's your center diff.
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Old 01-28-2008, 09:57 PM   #13
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awsome sounds easy enough, thanks alot jbwrx
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Old 01-29-2008, 06:49 PM   #14
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i was also wondering, is daily driving the car bad for the diff or only aggressive driving
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Old 01-29-2008, 08:54 PM   #15
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its not really the driving (unless u just drop the clutch at every green light) so much as how much power. the R160 thats in the wrx's is not as strong as the R180 thats in the sti.
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Old 01-30-2008, 08:49 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by romanlynch View Post
its not really the driving (unless u just drop the clutch at every green light) so much as how much power. the R160 thats in the wrx's is not as strong as the R180 thats in the sti.
power really wouldn't mater. It is the turning and wheel slippage that causes an indifference in speed on the two sides of the v.c. that is failing. Any time there is a indifference in speed the v.c. is the only place it can take up that difference.

wiki
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viscous_coupling_unit

If a front wheel slips the center v.c. takes the load as both rear wheels are rotating at the same speed. If a rear wheel slips the rear diff/v.c. takes the load plus the center, One rear wheel is rotating faster then the other(loads the rear v.c.) and this in turn loads the center as the rear drive train is moving faster then the front causing the center to have a indifference of speed on both sides.

The OP can travel in a straight line as long as he wants if a wheel doesn't loose traction. It is the turning the car or slipping wheel that does the damage. The turning does it because the inside wheels in a turn travel a shorter distance, less rotations then the out side wheels.
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Old 01-30-2008, 12:54 PM   #17
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my comment was more in referance to the rear diff, if he has say 300ish wtq and drops the clutch all the time then he runs a higher chance of breaking things including the rear diff. when i bought my car i changed the rear fluid and had chunks of the spider teeth fall out. i dont know what all the kid before me had done or his driving habits but it still happened.

and i understand how the rear/center diffs work with the change in wheel speed side to side, thats why i commented on making small circles in a parking lot to get the center warmed up enough to start acting up.

edit: i got my threads confused, i was in another thread that was similar to this one. sorry

Last edited by romanlynch; 01-30-2008 at 12:59 PM.
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Old 01-31-2008, 10:24 PM   #18
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So is this something i can replace on my own or would i have to take it to the dealership. i would rather not take it to the dealership because i just don’t like there work but i will if necessary. Also about how much would i cost to fix. can i just fix the viscous coupler or do i need to replace the entire rear diff? it will be going on a lift tomorrow so i will be able to determine if it is the rear or the center.
Thanks again keep the great info coming
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Old 02-01-2008, 05:45 PM   #19
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bump for a little more info PLEASE
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Old 02-01-2008, 08:22 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newrexracer View Post
So is this something i can replace on my own or would i have to take it to the dealership.
Depends on how comfortable with this type of repair. I honestly wouldn't put it in the category of a noob (for lack of a better word) repair, some previous drive line knowledge should exist.

Quote:
Originally Posted by newrexracer View Post
Also about how much would i cost to fix. can i just fix the viscous coupler or do i need to replace the entire rear diff? it will be going on a lift tomorrow so i will be able to determine if it is the rear or the center.
Thanks again keep the great info coming
If it is the center about $400-$500 for just the viscous coupler. link \/ \/
http://www.subarupartsforyou.com/cp_partlistbymod.php?subcat=Differential&model=Imp reza
You should be able to find the rear on that site also, some where.
It should be fairly obvious to tell which is binding if you listen to it.
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Old 02-02-2008, 02:33 PM   #21
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well when launching it feels like the rear wheels are hopping which would make me thing it was the rear diff but then when i turn if feels more like its underneathe me or actualy the front.
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Old 02-04-2008, 07:44 PM   #22
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I am taking my car into the dealership Friday. i was wondering before i have them tear apart my center diff is there any way to make sure its the viscus coupler other than checking the rear diff for metal. or with all my symptoms is it pretty much obvious. Just don’t want to have them tear it apart and not find anything. Thanks again for all the info
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Old 02-04-2008, 07:56 PM   #23
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you should fill out your profile for future reference...

don't touch it yourself or have any independent shops do so if you want to have a standing chance of having whatever it may be repaired under warranty.
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Old 02-09-2008, 07:09 PM   #24
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so the diff fluids have been changed, front and rear and no metal shavings cuz dark fluid. now all i smell is diff fluid in the car, is this normal? im guessing the oil just needs to be worked in or there is leftover fluid burning off somewhere.
anyone?
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Old 02-10-2008, 03:01 PM   #25
FuJi K
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You know, I WISHED the rear VLSD was stronger than the stock one that comes with the car. Driving at the limit I can feel a HINT of the diff working. It really works well when you're on loose surfaces i.e. snow, gravel.

$500 for an OEM one, might as well go KAAZ for a REAL one. Big difference if you have driven with them. I just have my welded ones to mess with and I LOVE THEM!

Here's the stock VLSD working in sand
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