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Old 05-23-2012, 04:44 PM   #1
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Rear Axle Lube Check

OK all you chassis smart guys, I have a question. The book says to check the rear axle lube level with the coach on level ground. My question is, can you check the lube level with the coach leveled on the leveling jacks (air bags deflated) or do you you have to get it on level ground and on the suspension (air bags inflated)? Want to do this right and appreciate any help.
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Old 05-23-2012, 05:25 PM   #2
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Either way as long as the ground is reasonably level. If the coach is on inflated bags or on level jacks, the rear wheels will be on the ground in each case. If the coach is on side to side level ground, an excess of axle lube will not be flowing out to either wheel, so you'll get a correct reading in both cases. Don't get too anal about it. As long as it's reasonably level and you get a bit of flowback from the fill port, you're fine.
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Old 05-23-2012, 06:32 PM   #3
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Good advice from Pigman1. Differentials aren't all that big and you'd have to be seriously out of level for it to make much difference. Really, a good leak inspection is all you need to do. Gear lube doesn't evaporate, so if there are no signs of leakage, it's probably full.
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Old 05-23-2012, 06:39 PM   #4
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Good advice from Pigman1. Differentials aren't all that big and you'd have to be seriously out of level for it to make much difference. Really, a good leak inspection is all you need to do. Gear lube doesn't evaporate, so if there are no signs of leakage, it's probably full.

You'd have to worry more if it's unlevel front to back. Since the plug is usually in the center of the differential side to side won't matter as much.
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Old 05-23-2012, 06:50 PM   #5
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Have to agree with all. If the coach is somewhat level, if sticking your finger in the hole and you come back with oil, you're good to go.
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Old 05-24-2012, 12:13 PM   #6
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If your Freightliner has a Meritor differintial, remember that you are supposed to change that fluid annually. If you use synthetic instead of dino fluid, you are good for three years. This is what we were told by Mike Cody at Camp Freightliner in Gaffney this spring. If you don't know what differintial it is, call the Freightliner help line with your VIN. It is amazing what they can tell you about your coach. I even got the name and address of the previous owner.
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Old 05-24-2012, 09:29 PM   #7
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You'd have to worry more if it's unlevel front to back. Since the plug is usually in the center of the differential side to side won't matter as much.
Never seen a plug in the center on a DP. Fords & WCC's are slightly to the right.
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Old 05-24-2012, 09:39 PM   #8
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Agreed with all posters. I have checked differentials with the vehicles sloped in either direction. If the fill plug is on the lower side, work it loose and if it starts to bleed at all through the threads, tighten. If the plug is higher then level, poke your finger in and check for fluid, or if in doubt, fill till it bleeds and then cap. A few ounces will not hurt. Been building cars for years and no issues.
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