Finding a good differential shop can be challenging. It’s not just about finding someone who is trustworthy and cares about the quality of their work. They also need to be competent and have experience working on differentials, which takes a certain level of expertise.
What’s the Purpose of the Differential?
The differential is part of a vehicle’s front or rear axle assembly, playing an important role in how it makes turns. The differential was made to drive a pair of wheels, at the same time making it possible for them to rotate at various speeds. This functionality supplies proportional RPMs between the right and left wheels. In other words, the differential distributes an equal amount of torque to both wheels. This allows the wheels to respond to provide resistance or traction.
How Many Differentials Does My Vehicle Have?
Vehicles have front and rear differentials. Whether or not your vehicle has one or two differentials is dependent upon how the wheels are powered. If it’s a rear-wheel drive vehicle, it uses the power of the engine to move the rear wheels. This means the vehicle only has one differential attached to the rear axle. Four-wheel or all-wheel drive vehicles are built to help the engine send power to all four wheels, which means they have a front and rear differential.
Front-wheel drive vehicles are more likely to have a transaxle, instead of a differential. A transaxle functions as both the differential and the transmission. The differential on rear wheel drive vehicles is located in the rear end area of the vehicle.
How Do You Know when your Differential Needs Repair?
Signs that you should take your vehicle into a differential shop for inspection include the following:
- A vibrating feeling that increases with the vehicle’s speed
- A whining or howling sound when accelerating over large or small speeds
- Whirring sound when decelerating
- A clunking sound when the vehicle starts moving, or after a few feet
- Whirring or rumbling sounds at speeds over 20 MPH, sometimes changing as you make a turn
It’s important to have maintenance performed on any vehicle, whether it’s oil changes, having the belts checked, fluids topped off, tire rotations, etc. Having the differential fluid checked out is no exception.
Differential oil is used to lubricate them and manual transmissions, playing a vital role in protecting them, keeping them functioning smoothly. Differential fluid gets contaminated and dirty over time. If you continue to drive with contaminated differential oil, it can put avoidable wear on components, eventually causing permanent damage. Similar to any component in the vehicle, well-lubricated differential parts equal optimal performance.
There are a lot of interlacing bearing and gears inside a differential that rely on each other in order to operate. Front, rear, and limited slip differential (mostly used on performance cars, SUV’s, etc.) all require oil for lubrication and to keep the differential components cool. You should have your differential fluid changed every 30,000 miles (not exceeding 60,000 miles) by a trained differential shop technician.
Differential Shop Near Me
If you’re looking for a differential shop near Phoenix, Scottsdale, Mesa, and Tempe, contact us today.