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Old 09-23-2021, 08:22 PM   #1
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Location: Kirby, Lake Greeson, Arkansas
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F-53 rear axle flange leak

I have a 2017 Winnie Suncruiser 37 F on an F53 chassis. I have a leaky, oily problem showing up on my outer rear wheel.

From looking at the online warranty info, it appears that rear axle seals, bearings & all are warranted for 5 years/60,000 miles. It has been 4 years, 4 months since this rig was first purchased; leaving about 8 months of warranty . . . And I just have 20,250 miles on the rig.

When I called the Ford Truck Service Center that would be the closest dealer to handle warranty work, about a hundred miles away, I mentioned the warranty, but the service tech would not commit to saying that it would be covered by the warranty!

The Service Tech says I have to commit to paying up to $150/hr shop rate for diagnosis, and it may or may not be covered by warranty . . . And he would not say anything further.

What gives? Why can they not tell me in advance that this is not a warranty issue? I feel like I am being rooked into paying for warranty work. I know it has not been worked on and botched up by some jack/leg, and it has not had a damaging impact in an accident.

What kind of risks do I open myself up to financially, taking it in for warranty work, and then being told after the fact that warranty wonít cover it?!?
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Old 09-23-2021, 08:45 PM   #2
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Any shop can replace that seal ( gasket ) in 30 minutes.

What you spend in gas will probably cost more then the job. Get an estimate from a local shop.

With the right standard tools you can pick up a seal and replace it yourself.

Chock the wheels because the parking brake won't hold with the axle shaft out.

You will need to top off the rear differential after driving the opposite side up 5 inches to spill the gear oil back in the hub, for 5 minutes.

Level it back out and top off.
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Old 09-23-2021, 09:29 PM   #3
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Like TB said, if it’s really just the drive flange, it’s an easy fix. There’s a thin steel gasket with “rubber” coating on both sides between flange and hub. Any NAPA should have one. If it was hub(wheel) seal leaking, you would have to look inside the brake drum to see the leak. Very few times that I’ve dealt with hub seal it showed gear oil on the outside of the wheel.
The dealer can’t say it’s one or the other without seeing it, but if the service writer knows anything, he/she should be able to take a quick look and make a pretty accurate call. Don’t know why they would say you have to pay first.
You can do this. Save yourself some headache and boost your confidence. Get your 1/2” drive ratchet, a 9/16” socket. Chock any wheel so you can release the parking brake and put trans in neutral so there is no force on the flange. Undo 8 bolts, give the axle a whack, it will pop loose and you can slide it out. A few ounces of gear oil will come out, so put a small catch pan under the flange.Take the steel gasket to NAPA and they can match it up. Heck, I’ve used silicone gasket maker on many of those when no new gasket available.
When you are putting axle back in you may have to rotate it a bit so the inner splines will line up. After everything is tight, find a slope or jack up the opposite wheel so some oil will run from the center out to the hub and refill it. Then park on level ground, pull the fill plug from the “pumpkin”, check the oil level. If it’s within 1/2” of the hole, you’re fine. Add some if you wish.
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Old 09-24-2021, 11:56 AM   #4
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Thanks, Guys. In the best of times, I would not hesitate tackling this job, but Iím still hobbling pretty good from knee replacement.

I hate paying out of pocket for work that should be covered by warranty, but all things considered, taking and leaving the rig, and going back, and their totally a$$#01e attitude about whether it is a warranty issue . . . Iím going to use a local shop, that I have confidence in, that charges about 1/3 the Ford Shop rate!

So, counting fuel costs, to say nothing of convenience, Iíll about break even!
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