1991 Toyota Corolla My newly replaced half-shafts semi-popp

Tiny
SARABROWNS
  • MEMBER
  • 1991 TOYOTA COROLLA
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 99,000 MILES
I just replaced both half-shafts, the tie rod ends, the brake pads, and the rotors on my car. I drove it a few miles, here and there, and it felt. Sloppy. Also, when I turned too sharply or too quickly, the driver's side tire squeeled. I figured I needed new tires and an alignment (the tires are pretty bald, and I figured an alignment would be appropriate after replacing the tie rods and since the car hadn't had one since who knows when). However, I was going down the road at about 25 miles/hr when my speedometer shot up to 50 miles an hour while my car began to slow. There was no loud noise, nothing. My car just began to act like I had just slipped it into nuetral, which of course I had not. I took my foot off the gas and the car slowed almost to a stop. I put it in park and it made a loud whirring noise, then a mild grinding noise (almost like a bad shift in a manual tranny car would sound). I pushed it home, about a block away. When I jacked it up, the half-shaft had come partway out of the tranny on the driver's side, and it even looks like the shaft on the passenger side came out a bit too. At most, maybe 2 or so inches. Tranny fluid had sprayed all over the underside of the car, and there was a trail on the ground. I tried to get the new shaft back out, but it broke off inside the inner boot and I cannot get the dang thing out!

I need to figure out what happened and what I can do about it! Did I somehow not put the shafts in all the way? Then why was I able to drive it around for a couple of days? Why does it look like the passenger side popped out a bit too? If the shaft is not engaged in the tranny, why won't it come out? How is that little clip that strong? Also, the car rolls when in park, so it is not engaging the tranny. Did the fluid just get flung around when the shafts popped out or did I blow something out? Did I get the wrong shaft? I checked the size, but I didn't count the little gears or anything.

Any help would be greatly appreciated! And I am doing this work in my driveway, no fancy lift available!

Thanks, Sara
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Wednesday, June 10th, 2009 AT 10:27 PM

10 Replies

Tiny
BMRFIXIT
  • EXPERT
Tranny not locking because tires are free from it
I do not thing its a tranny problem you have
its an installer error where axle was not pushed all the way in for it to lock on inside the differential
make sure the lock ring is still on the end of the shaft
good luck
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Thursday, June 11th, 2009 AT 6:26 AM
Tiny
SARABROWNS
  • MEMBER
Even when the tires were still attached, right after the car broke down, the wheels/tranny would not lock when I put it in park, yet the shaft was still partway in the tranny. I guess that is the part that is so confusing to me.I pounded the shafts in so they were engaged--I spun the driver's side and felt to make sure the main part of the shaft was right up at the side of the tranny. For the passenger side, there's like this little metal seal looking thing that was right up against the tranny; it couldn't go in any farther! Now it is an inch or two out. What other way am I supposd to check to make sure these things are in all the way!

Also, since I can't get the shaft out of the tranny, would it help to drop the tranny pan and get at the stupid little clip? I'm going to replace the fluid anyways since it is old and nasty and half leaked out.

And would you suggest just pounding the other (passenger) side back in again? I'm worried about having damaged something.

Thanks,
Sara
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Thursday, June 11th, 2009 AT 6:55 AM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
The inner tripod joints have a small "C" clip that holds the axle in the differential.
If you are not carefull, you can bend this clip while inserting into trans.

You will have to remove the tripod axle (the side that goes into trans) and inspect the clip.

MAKE SURE YOU REFILL THE DIFFERENTIAL FLUID WITH ATF. The trans and differential have seperate lubricant supplies.
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Thursday, June 11th, 2009 AT 7:43 AM
Tiny
SARABROWNS
  • MEMBER
Yes, I believe it is that stubborn clip keeping it in the tranny.I installed it "open side down" like my little toyota manual said to.

I am curious, maybe just confused. About different fluids? I thought it was just tranny fluid in the whole tranny? I thought differentials were for rear wheel drive? I know those you fill in a hole in the side of it.

My half shafts are going right into the tranny, that's why I am thinking I should just drop the pan to get to that part of the shaft still in the tranny.I'm off to go buy a big crowbar to try and get it out now (the neighbor I borrowed one from before isn't home!) And if I can't, I send in a pic of the underside of my car.
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Thursday, June 11th, 2009 AT 8:15 AM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
Look under the car, you will see a drain plug for trans and to the rear there is another drain plug for differential. Two seperate fluid supplies.

Since the axles were removed, most of the fluid has drained from differential. IT MUST BE REFILLED after axles are installed.
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Friday, June 12th, 2009 AT 7:24 AM
Tiny
SARABROWNS
  • MEMBER
Yes, I did see that extra plug. But I cannot understand how that would be separate from the tranny. Also, the passenger side shaft clearly had red fluid come out of it. So this fuid would somehow only be on the driver's side? How would that be separate from the fact that the CV axle shaft goes into the transmission, so what is this fluid lubricating? I'm confused! Also, reading through the Chilton's book, it only mentions filling a transaxle by a fill hole for a manual tranny car; mine is automatic. The only mention made in the book for an automatic is filling tranny fluid through the dipstick hole. I've never seen anyone ever fill or even check anything other than the tranny fluid after a shaft replacement. And I don't see a fill hole on the side of the tranny by that extra drain plug.

I'll do a little more research. Please direct me to any resources you may know of that can point out where this fill hole would be.
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Friday, June 12th, 2009 AT 8:53 AM
Tiny
SARABROWNS
  • MEMBER
Ok, I found the fill hole! I had a hard time understanding what you were talking about but I kind of see. The tranny is side mounted and the passenger side does just go right in the tranny, but it is not the "drive" wheel, the driver's side is. I see how there is like that little extra part, kind of like a growth on the side of the tranny, hahaha, where the driver's side shaft plugs in. Got it!

However, I looked in my owner's manual and it refers to a "differential" for the automatic transmission that can hold 1.5 quarts of ATF. BUT I called a couple different toyota dealers and asked the service department and they said it is all one assembly and the fluid is not in separate parts. It's all one transaxle. So I don't know. I have looked through various car manuals and online resources and there is no mention of ever having to fill a separate part of the transaxle.

All I know is, since my mechanics sold their land to be torn down and built into a Walgreens, I have no "real, " in the flesh mechanics to turn to!
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Friday, June 12th, 2009 AT 9:47 AM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
The differential fill hole is on the rear of the differential on the firewall side, it is difficult to get to.

Whoever you talked to at Toyota needs a few more training hours on the older Toyota's.

The differential uses the same lubricant (ATF) as the trans. That's why one would assume it is trans fluid.

If differential is not refilled, it WILL eventually sieze.
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Saturday, June 13th, 2009 AT 7:50 AM
Tiny
SARABROWNS
  • MEMBER
Well, I usually dislike dealing with dealership people. They always seem rude! Neither guy I spoke with seemed like they cared what I was talking about. I get dismissed usually because I am a woman I think. Or dealership people have ego problems:) Thanks for the advice.
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Saturday, June 13th, 2009 AT 8:33 AM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
Ask them to explain the the two drain plugs :).

The fact that you are a female should make no difference. You are a CUSTOMER.

Find a dealership that promotes CUSTOMER satisfaction.
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Sunday, June 14th, 2009 AT 7:48 AM

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