Rear End Repairs: Everything You Need To Know

Updated October, 2020
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Repairing your differential can be a costly process. The earlier you catch this issue the easier and cheaper the repair will be. Listen out for noises and look for leaks to make sure you catch the issue before you have to replace instead of repair.

What is a rear differential and how does it work?

Your rear differential connects your back axle to your drive shaft and transmission. It's also responsible for the rear tires rotating at different speeds to allow you to turn without having to turn your rear tires. Without this, your car's turning would feel jumpy rather than smooth.

Signs your rear differential has gone bad

Your rear differential is an important part of your car. Knowing when it's starting to go bad is important in maintaining your car. Here are some warning signs that your differential is beginning to fail:

Leaks

To know if you have a leak look for a grey or light brown fluid underneath the rear of your car. It usually isn't a big deal unless the leak is a symptom of another issue.

Noise

Differential noise may vary depending on the load it's under. In general you want to listen for a noise that sounds like howling. This usually is a sign that your car needs to be taken in right away.

How much do repairs cost?

Once you have found the differential issue you're probably wondering how much the fix is going to set you back. The cost of repairs depends on what the shop has to fix. Here are some of the more common repairs and their associated costs.

Sealing The Differential- $200-$400

These types of repair are common when the seals on the differential's various parts wear down. These repairs are quick and shouldn't take longer than an hour.

Replacing Gears - $1000-$1500

Once you get into replacing parts, especially gears, the price skyrockets. Since they have to open up the differential this repair typically takes longer, roughly around 6 hours.

Replacing The Whole Differential - $1500-$4000

If your differential is bad enough, it may need to be replaced. The process can take days for parts to arrive. You want to do everything you can to avoid this. Prevention is key!

Can I still drive my car with a bad rear differential?

You can, but it's not advised. Continuing to drive on a bad differential can make the problem worse. The differential is important to make sure your car turns properly. If it's faulty or not maintained properly your car's back axle may break. Even if that doesn't happen your car may not turn properly and endanger others.

Don't mask the problem—get your car fixed, now!

Keeping you car maintained is important if you want your car to last a long as it should. While minor problems like rear end repairs may seem small, putting them off can lead to larger, more serious problems. You can fix a leak for a fairly inexpensive price, but if you put off recharging it, a differential can cost you substantially more.

Does my insurance pay for maintenance and repairs?

Insurance companies don't cover regular maintenance and repairs. However, if you have comprehensive and collision coverage, repairs can be paid for if it occurs due to an accident or wreck. Since insurance doesn't cover regular maintenance, it's a smart idea to not put off repair as they can become a bigger, more costly problem. Also, having insurance that offers roadside assistance is essential. In case you find yourself on the side of the road with a damaged vehicle, you can have peace of mind knowing help is only a phone call or click away. If your current provider doesn't offer this service, we can help!

When the time arises, is my insurance going to be enough?

When it comes to car insurance, there are several factors to consider beyond monthly cost. A policy that covers you when you need it, has a low deductible, and offers several discounts can be hard to find - which is why we've done the work for you.

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