Friday, March 18, 2011

Drive Shaft Squeak

A while back I posted about an odd squeak seeming to come from
the chassis of my LD when moving between about 15 and 30 mph.
It was repetitive, about once or twice per second, and unaffected
by turning, braking, emergency brake application, etc. I'd also had
the wheels removed recently and the rear brakes done, none of
which had an effect. And I don't use wheel covers, having Alocas
instead.

So, after input from many of you and some Web sleuthing the
most likely culprit seemed to be the carrier bearing that supports
the center of the two-piece drive shaft on our Ford E-450s. I went
to a local drive shaft shop (Drive Line Service in Carson City, NV).
The owner/tech slid under the chassis and shook the drive shaft
hard near the carrier bearing. He reported it having too much play
and that he heard a squeak when he did that.

So, two days ago I had him remove the drive shaft and replace the
carrier bearing. He replaced all three u-joints at the same time,
with greaseable units vs. the sealed u-joints that are standard,
and reinstalled the drive shaft.

The result? The SQUEAK IS GONE, hopefully for good this time.
So kudos to Lon who suggested that as the problem and to one
other poster here who mentioned a similar problem on his F-350.

The total cost was $218, which seems very reasonable to me.
YMMV. And I will now need to grease those u-joints occasionally.

So, keep an eye on that drive shaft, especially the carrier bearing,
and maybe have it checked during services after about 60K, which
is the mileage on my LD.

Contributor: Terry Burnes

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