View Full Version : Truck maintenance
11-09-2001, 08:57 AM
Just wondering how often you guys change certain things..
Universal joints, manual tranny fluid, rear end fluid, Transfer case fluid,etc,, And what other things and intervals you use..
I just replaced all the u joints and fluids in my truck and people said it was a waste.. the u joint shop said the joints were fine can go for 100k plus with out worries ? I figured better safe than sorry.. ??
The truck only has 65K miles on it but pulls a 6500lb trailer every day, plus if it has clippings in the bed .... Thought it was reasonable preventitive maintenance.. What do you think ?
Fluids, filters, timing belt I would change at recommended
intervals, but anything else I would replace as needed.
11-09-2001, 12:53 PM
I agree - u-joints usually get noisy or vibrate before failing, also you can twist the driveshaft and feel for looseness.
Agreed again here - service at the recommended intervals (keep in mind that pulling the trailer every day would be considered "severe service" or however it's worded in the service manual) and replacement of parts as necessary.
I wouldn't say changing the U-joints was a complete waste, though: now you're starting with a "clean slate".
HJ is right, U-joints will let you know when they are getting tired. Just had them done on the welding truck, they were making a noticeable "clunk" when launching/shifting but were in no danger of catastrophic failure.
Now, if you ignore the warning signs the U-joints give you, that's a different story!
11-09-2001, 08:36 PM
I do not change non,maintance items without a reason.I would have left the U-joints alone.IMO,the factory ones are the best,the new ones you had put in,are probably not as good and wil wear out much faster than the originals.If you had a vibration,or U-joint was loose,then Id replace it.My 89 GMC 2500 ld still has the original U-joints in it,155K miles,towing,plowing,hauling a V-box.They are still good,why change them.
11-12-2001, 09:04 PM
I have a 93 Ford F150 2X4 that currently has 211,000 miles on the clock.
I bought it new in June of 93 and have always did the oil changes at 5,000 using Kendall 15W40 oil, Wix fuel, air, oil, tranny filters.
My initial u-joints went 125,000 and I have only gotten about 25,000 out of each of the replacements.
The initial shocks went 85,000 and I replaced the replacements at 190,000, I put air shocks on the back because I carry my son's pulling garden tractor back there and two more on the trailer, the tractor with their weights are 1500 pounds each. I replaced the front coil springs at 190,000 because they were both broken (listed about 15 degrees to starboard).
I change the tranny oil and filters every 50,000. Antifreeze every three years. I pull and pack the front wheel bearings once a year and replaced the rear ones at 190,000.
I replace the spark plugs every October because up here the winters are hard on them. Plug wires every three years along with the cap and rotor.
I still have all the original hoses, serpentine belt (I carry a spare but I want to see just how far this one will go), alternator, etc. The starter went out at 195,000 miles and then the replacement at 208,000.
I did replace the oil pan ay 170,000 because the right side rusted out.
Ford replaced the fuel pressure regulator under a recall.
My 16 year old son gets the truck when it hits 222,222.2.
She has never made me walk anywhere and I figure I got my moneys worth out of her by now.
11-13-2001, 08:26 AM
With U joints going bad.... Only experience I have had was that on several occasions the joints just came apart on me without warning.. no vibration, no noise ?? Just all of a sudden bam and down the road it went.. The last time it happened on my jeep it pretty much totaled it out.. The shaft was so shoert that it wraped around and hit the frame and tore up the drive train.. Big damage.. Bent the output shaft on the trans case, and craked the housing.. Actually ripped the transfer case from the transmission... Braking apart the transmission case.. and ripping a motor mount apart.. along with the motor dropping the fan cutting the lower hose and tearing up the radiator.. Etc etc.. So because of this I am a little paranoid with U joints..
The joints I used to replace the originals , were the originals .. I baught SPICER joints. the solid non greaseable ones. They dont require gressing cause they are permanently sealed and have no holes inside to weaken them...
Thanks for the input guys.. I do have to adjust my intervals a little..
I change the tranny fluid and filter every 15K miles, Oil every 5K with synthetic.. ( getting really expensive. ) and plugs caps and rotors get changed every year with platinum plugs.. and the wires every three yaers.. what else... Oh so the diff fluid every 60K ish.. SHocks... The factory rears blew out at like 30K so I replaced with some hecthorn gas pressurized and havent' had a prob since.. the fronts one of them blew out maybe at 40k or so.. and replaced with triples (skyjackers ) nitro charged.. Still has decent ride quality and excellent control... Dreading when I have to change all of those.. 6 shoks up front.. Ughh..
I also change the belts and hoses every three years, just to be safe along with the AF ...
11-14-2001, 04:36 AM
Use good replacement parts. A cheap part may put you back on the road but it will leave you on the side of the road just as fast.
I have had more than my fair share of cheap replacement parts. 3 alternators in two years on an 87 mustang
1 of those bad out of the box
1 bad staarter out of the box. 78 ramcharger.
1 bad distributor out of the box. 78 ramcharger.
1 bad a/c compressor (leaking at shaft) lasted
two months on a 94 protege.
1 carburator, 2 months. 78 ramcharger.
All of this within the last 5 years. I go to the dealer now to get any electrical or mechanical parts. The time spent on doing work twice or having it done twice just isnt worth it.
There are some good parts sold at the discount parts stores. But anything that is labor intensive or will down a vehicle at any given time is worth the extra dollars in the long run.
11-14-2001, 05:22 PM
Eric,you are so right about the quality of parts anymore.Ive had to redo so many jobs because of poor quality parts,this hurts in 2 ways,it makes me look bad,and Im tired of poosing my time redoing them.If I do EFI fuel pumps,I wont buy an aftermarket pump anymore,factory only,who wants to drop tha tank again 3 months later,when its towed in?,not me.Id rather pay 120 bucks from them ,than 45 dollars form Napa,and have to assemble all the adapters, for the particular vehicle it is going into.Electrical parts are the biggest problem areas for parts IMO,with water pumps,and cheap bearings /seals coming in second.
12-31-2001, 02:17 AM
When the u-joints went, was the jeep jacked up? Did it have a lift kit? I would assume it did, judging by the number of shocks that you speak of.
Just some advice, check your drive shafts for binding. All it takes is the drive shaft to get pressed to hard, such as coming down from cresting a hill, and you will be looking at a lot of damage.
Worse yet, you could kill someone. I had a driveshaft from a raised F-150 penetrate the front of the family mini-van. Lucky for me, the good Lord was looking out for me and the driveshaft came down from about a 4 foot bounce before it went in. Nearly totaled the van.
In this situation, the u-joints were still intact on the drive shaft, it was the axle yoke and casing that busted into many pieces. The guy was really nice about it, as was I. His insurance company said it was an act of god. I thought about it and realized it was an act of negligence. The shop that prepared his truck did not fit the drive shaft correctly. At first my insurance company was going to just pay and go on. When I explained what I saw and what I heard, they went after his insurance company.
i agree with good maintenance and repair as needed.
at one time i could count on needing a new clutch in every
60- 70 thousand miles . this new stuff is different.
i suspect we can thank the japenese for raising the standard.
jmho later tm.
01-07-2002, 01:28 PM
Just as in mowers, there are high quality and low quality. U-Joints are no exception. Most shops will put in cheap replacement parts which allows them more profit. Most people who know U-Joints know that the racing joints are much stronger than OEM and will normally outlast the vehicle. Trying to compare one persons vehicle with 300,000 miles who never changed his U-Joints is ridiculous. Driving habbits, transmission type, load, and other factors will cause one U-Joint to fail where another won't. I have seen U-Joints fail without warning. Sometimes the bearing will overheat and break the yoke. Sometimes they can just fall apart. For the most part, when the bearing gets dry, they start to make noise. Many of the replacement U-joints have no grease zerk fitting. The racing U-Joints have grease zerks. Always try and buy the best U-Joint you can. Make sure it has a grease zerk.
01-13-2002, 04:47 PM
im with wangel....get a good qaulity joint with a zerk and keep it greased with a high qaulity grease......im a mechanic for a trucking company and our trucks get greased every week ....its rare that we replace a joint in the trucks 450,000 mile trade cycle , on my personal vehicles i replace my batteries at 4 yrs because i have better things to do than replace it in a parking lot at 10 pm when its 10 below, in the fleet we replace alternaters, water pumps, batteries, starters, based on the the number of running hours whether they are bad or not......a 200.00 alternater is cheaper than a load of cattle.
maintnance is everything ....my 92 ranger has 125k on the clock yet looks and runs like new, same for my 91 cutlass cierra with 188k on the clock......thanks ......brad
01-14-2002, 07:05 PM
The shop I deal with for driveline parts recomends solid U joints.. over the usual Greasable ones.. They are sealed and dont require any greasing... The greasable ones are drilled inside , thus reducing the strength of the joint... So I went with the solid ones.. they are dana / Spicer ones and are about twice the cost of the greasable type...
Small time... The jeep was lifted but the angle s of the shafts were all correct.. The cause of failure was a defective joint ! It gave no warning.. Just badda bing and it was over.. sucked getting stuck on the palisades parkway in NY.. anyway... I am planning on putting in driveshaft loops in all of my Trucks over the next few months.. Just to prevent the shafts from causing more damage and going throug h what I had to with my Jeep... It's been off the road for 5 years now and finally just about ready to get resurrected....
Thanks for all the feedback .....
01-14-2002, 08:38 PM
From my experience, the greasable joints, when lubed, usually expel grease from a seal while leaving another bearing semi-dry, therefore failing sooner than the sealed types.
In the past 20 years Ive replaced a total of two U-joints, both greasable ones that had been previously replaced by someone else, and both on high-mileage (over 150k) vehicles.
01-14-2002, 10:20 PM
The solid u-joints are better than the greaseable ones.The seals are much better,as well as being stronger,the problem with greaseable ones is that no one ever greases them,and they dry out,they need to be greased every few thousand miles,most quicklubes,and shops do not look forthem,and they get dry,most DIY guys forget about them.
01-15-2002, 05:30 PM
i guess the last two posters do have a point .....come to think of it freightliner and volvo are offering sealed drivelines, slack adjusters, shakle pins, and some steering components, i havent heard anything bad about them yet.....but time will tell.....brad
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