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2006 Commander 3.7 Full time 4wd.
On a trip over the weekend, I started getting a noise from the rear end that sounded like warning tabs on brakes. I thought it odd because I just did the breaks over the summer. Stopped and crawled around underneath and saw nothing obvious. Brake pads looked good and everything was tight. Drove it all weekend on my trip and the noise would get quiet and then get noisy. Took both rear tires off and inspected everything again(I didn't have tools) and all looked good. Since it was driving perfectly fine, I concluded it must be something loose/broke on the E-brake assembly inside one of the rotors. Drove it home and drove it to work every day this week, still driving perfectly fine. Yesterday on my way home, the noise all of a sudden got really loud, popped a few times, the traction control, abs and ECS lights all came on, followed immediately by some more very loud and expensive sounding pops and grinding, accompanied by a bad vibration until I could get pulled off the road. I haven't torn into it yet, but I'm pretty sure it's the rear carrier bearing/diff/ring and pinion. My questions are..... 1)Anyone else have this problem before? 2)Better to rebuild the rear-end or just buy a used rear and swap it out? 3) Do all the 3.7 full time 4wd Commanders have the same rear-end or are there different ones? 4) If there are different ones, how can I tell by looking at them what they are to make sure I get the right one? Any information would be much appreciated.:sick:
 

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Have you checked driveshafts? U-Joints in driveshafts could act this way.

There is a recall out on Chrysler Trucks, not sure if it covers the Commander for the Pinion Nut being machined incorrectly and allowing it to back out and have the pinion drift that could result in damage and sudden stoppage.

All Commanders had the same axles regardless of the engine/transmission. The Chrysler Corporate Axle. There is an optional axle front and rear for the ELSD that only comes with the QDII. The ELSD axles are the same axle just a little bigger carrier to fit the wider differential fitted with the gearotor pump and mounts an electromagnetic trigger.

The ELSD axles, having a wider carrier will have 2 extra bolts in the cover pan, than the standard corporate axle.

The ELSD, the E stands for electronic, needs the QDII electronics to work, I would avoid getting that, since you'll never get it to work for less than just buying a Commander equipped with QDII. Likely it would just create problems trying to retrofit it to a Commander it is NOT intended for.

The 2005-2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee should have the same axles and driveshafts, BUT I'm NOT positive on that, you'd want to check it out before actually purchasing. i.e. compare part numbers.
 
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