Rear differential oil leak - Jeep Commander Forums: Jeep Commander Forum
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-19-2015, 03:05 AM Thread Starter
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Rear differential oil leak

Hello everybody,

recently im using my commander less and less and i realized that the rear differential cover is oily and dirty.

I'm pretty sure im loosing oil from it so i would like to know:

1. there is any indicator and/or dash sign to inform me that the level of the oil is critically low? Otherwise how i can control the level?

2. it's normal that, after 95,000 KM the rear differential cover look like the once posted?

3. To avoid damages you suggest me to full periodically the differential? NAy suggestion about the right oil?

Thanks a lot in advance
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Present: 2007 Jeep Commander 3.0 L CRD - 2" lift kit - full led interior lights - 6000K HID low beam - 4500K HID fog lights - black HULK wheels - custom side exhaust system - DPF removed - matte black front grille (plastidip) - extra HP and torque chip tuning.
Previous: 2003 Jeep Cherokee/Liberty 2.8 L CRD - custom exhaust system - front bar protection - custom rear tail light - sold at 110.000 KM
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-19-2015, 06:16 AM
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Join Date: May 2009
Location: Cleveland TN
Own a Commander?: Yes
Model year: 2006
Trim Package: Limited
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If 4WD - system: QD-II
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Remove the rubber plug on the right side middle of the picture and put a finger in the hole, the oil should be up to the bottom of the hole. The oil to use depends on the axle - is it a QuadraDrive QDII or QuadraTrack QT? From the picture it might be QDII with 12 bolts in the cover? can not see all the bolts. The oil is different for each type.

06 Commander Limited Hemi - QDII,
Past -89 Comanche, 98 Grand Cherokee (2WD), 2000 Cherokee, 05 Grand Cherokee Limited 4.7
Had to replace the brakes - they opened more gas stations in town
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-19-2015, 07:47 AM Thread Starter
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thanks a lot, i ll try it tonight.

My jeep is 3.0 CRD and i guess is Quadra Track II. So i ll look around for the right oil to use on mine.

Thanks again.

P.S= so i assume there is no dash light to notify when the level is too low? And is it normal that some oil is leaking out or is maybe time to open the differential and place new "glue" to make it oilproof?

Present: 2007 Jeep Commander 3.0 L CRD - 2" lift kit - full led interior lights - 6000K HID low beam - 4500K HID fog lights - black HULK wheels - custom side exhaust system - DPF removed - matte black front grille (plastidip) - extra HP and torque chip tuning.
Previous: 2003 Jeep Cherokee/Liberty 2.8 L CRD - custom exhaust system - front bar protection - custom rear tail light - sold at 110.000 KM
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-19-2015, 08:12 AM
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You need to open up your Owner's Manual (OM) and read it.

1. There is a diagram of the Dash Lights pointing each one out and explaining them.
1.a. You'll find there is no warning lights for any fluid levels, elsewhere in the OM it will talk about how to check the fluid levels in your vehicle. Most vehicles do NOT have dash lights to tell you the fluid levels and people often mistake the low oil pressure light to mean low oil level (its NOT and its indicating a much more serious problem than low oil level). Other than Washer Fluid and Fuel Level of course.

2. No, that does NOT look normal, normally you may find a little bit of wetness around the seals or plugs, but the photo looks like more than normal, would concern me and I would check the fluid level and top it off or fix the leak.

3. The OM will list a fluid change interval for the Axle's. The OM will list the proper fluid to use for the axle. You just have to open it and read it.

NOTE: many OM's set one or the other extreme for axle fluid change, normal duty - life of the vehicle, severe duty - every 15k miles (~30k Km). Normally I use the severe duty schedule for maintenance, but I don't tow or off road enough to submerge the axle in water, so I use a little common sense and pick a change interval some where in between the two extremes. Personally I change it every 30k - 50k miles.

NOTE: when checking the level for the fluid, you pop out that rubber plug, like already suggested but the proper level is actually 1/4" below the bottom of the plug, up to the bottom of the plug is generally considered acceptable (i.e. NOT overfilled). 1/4"? Stick your finger in the hole only up to the first joint and bend the tip down, if it touches oil before you've bent it down at the first joint as far as possible, you're good, if it can't touch oil, you're low on oil.

LEAK Fix? Leaking oil will drain to the lowest part of the axle before dripping off, so that bottom edge of the axle being so wet with oil can be deceiving, it might be leaking from somewhere else and NOT from the seal at the bottom of the cover like it appears, so look it over and see if its NOT actually from another source. Another area that could leak is the seal at the pinion, where it bolts to the drive shaft.

The GLUE you speak of is RTV (Room Temperature Vulcanizing) Silicone Sealant. If the leak is from between the pan and axle, you can pull it off (draining the fluid), check the pan/cover is NOT damaged and clean off the old RTV Silicone with a wire brush. Buy a new tube of RTV Silicone and follow the instructions on the package for the new RTV Silicone to reattach the cover and reseal it. Then fill with the proper fluid.


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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-19-2015, 08:26 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks a lot to everybody for the all the instruction!! they are so helpful... asap i ll try to check the oil level and i ll let you know.

Meanwhile i can simply say thanks a lot again!!

Present: 2007 Jeep Commander 3.0 L CRD - 2" lift kit - full led interior lights - 6000K HID low beam - 4500K HID fog lights - black HULK wheels - custom side exhaust system - DPF removed - matte black front grille (plastidip) - extra HP and torque chip tuning.
Previous: 2003 Jeep Cherokee/Liberty 2.8 L CRD - custom exhaust system - front bar protection - custom rear tail light - sold at 110.000 KM
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-23-2015, 01:23 PM Thread Starter
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hello everybody,

today finally i checked the level of oil. Sticking my little finger into the differential i touched the oil after more or less 1-1,5 inches. I guess i have to add some.... now i have to buy some...

Present: 2007 Jeep Commander 3.0 L CRD - 2" lift kit - full led interior lights - 6000K HID low beam - 4500K HID fog lights - black HULK wheels - custom side exhaust system - DPF removed - matte black front grille (plastidip) - extra HP and torque chip tuning.
Previous: 2003 Jeep Cherokee/Liberty 2.8 L CRD - custom exhaust system - front bar protection - custom rear tail light - sold at 110.000 KM
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-24-2015, 11:05 AM
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Look up the fluid you need in the Owner's Manual.
You have QTII, which has limited slip differentials, so it will require an additive friction modifier.


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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-24-2015, 04:12 PM
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Mine has a slow leak from the front pinion seal. Basically where the drive shaft from the transmission meets the diff. I got a heap of grass caught in there one day and I guess it damaged the seal or there's still some grass in there I cant get out. But like Mongo said it runs down and backwards making it difficult to see exactly where it is leaking from until you clean it all up.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-27-2015, 08:17 AM
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First you need to remove the grass and dirt with a fine screw driver or pick. This may work and no further action required. On my Aussie Commander I removed the prop shaft and rear yoke and found a groove had been made into the cast steel yoke face where the seal sits against. An easy fix is to tighten the seal by tightening the seal spring tension. Or you buy a new diff yoke and a new seal. I still run the same seal from new but just shorten the spring by trimming 1mm off the total length off spring and it's been prefect for 18 months.
Total cost AU$00.00

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-18-2015, 06:17 PM
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QDII has LSD, but QTII does not. QTII does not need friction mod, QDII does.


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~XKs LEAD THE WAY.~ 2006 Commander Hemi Limited. Superchips 3872 Flashpaq. TRAIL RATED with the QDII. Modified Rusty's lift(3.5"+) Bilstein 5100/5125 struts/shocks. 1.25" wheel spacers, 255/75/17 BFG M/Ts, 4.75# D-rings, 4xguard Matrix brushguard. Smittybilt XRC 9500. DIY engine skid, bump extensions. RAGE Racks low-pro Stingray roof rack
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