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[b]1998 Chrsler Town and Country Lxi, AWD Driveshaft [/b]
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BW Offline
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Post: #1
[b]1998 Chrsler Town and Country Lxi, AWD Driveshaft [/b]
Hello moderators and guests,

I have a 1998 Chrysler Town & Country van with AWD, 3.8L engine, extended body. The drive shaft (not drive axle) which connects the forward transfer case to the rear differential has two universal joints covered by rubber boots. The front boot has gone bad and is spreading the grease across the bottom of the van. The Dealers say that the entire driveshaft has to be replaced (retail $600.00) Sad . :?: Does anyone know if it can be rebuilt rather than replaced? If so please let me know.

Thanks.

BW
07-24-2004 03:53 PM
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I don't know much about that arrangement but, I seriuosly doubt that the whole assembly needs replaced. I could see it, if it had been dry for a long time, or some debris or foreign material had gotten into the u-joints. But, if the problem is recent and those problems don' t exist, I see no reason to replace anything other than the seal(s). Check local parts stores to see if you can buy there, if not then you will have to get from a dealership, and that means more $$$. I also suggest buying or borrowing a service manual for that vehicle. It will give you specific information for that particular system. Factory manuals are better, but a Haynes manual would suffice. An interesting note: Most rear wheel drive vehicles dont even have a boot or seal around the u-joints, and they never seem to have a problem. It's possible that you may not even have to replace anything, but I would check with a local mechanic or research a manual before making that assumtion.
07-26-2004 03:54 PM
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BW Offline
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Thank you for the tips Guest

I do have a manual which I thought had the pertinent information but does not. I agree that the best manual is the actual service manual that the dealerships use. I'll try to get a copy of the section dealing with this part or the whole manual. In the mean time I've found a couple of places that "say" they can rebuild the driveshaft but in speaking to them on the phone I get the impression they are'nt quite certain they know exactly what they're getting into. I'll know for sure in a week or so. I'll post the result then. Thanks again.
07-27-2004 02:04 AM
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S_Fleming Offline
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RE: AWD Driveline
I have an AWD 1998 Town & Country LX. A few years ago the driveline went bad and we had a terrible vibration driving across nothern Nevada. I purchased a used one through a wrecking yard and it's been fine for the past several years.

Since that initial failure, or shortly thereafter, I've heard a "clunk" when shifting from park to reverse to drive. I thought it was the used driveline, and even had mechanics tell me that a couple times; nothing to worry about. That has also been the status for several years.

Last week it felt as if the transmission was failing so we had the van towed to a shop. It turned out that "clunk" I've been hearing was the transfer case. When original the driveline started to fail and vibrate, it ruined the front bearings into the transfer case. Now the whole case had failed.

Word to the wise, if you're replacing a bad driveline, make sure your transfer case was not damaged.

Circling back to that driveline, I kept the original one in case they would be rebuildable one day. So far that day has not come. I don't know of any shop that can do it. (If anyone knows of one, I'd love to speak to them.)

While replacing the transfer case, we discovered that the front boot on the driveline was missing. (These drivelines are not designed to be serviced and the boot is not something that can be easily replaced.) Since the joint was still good, even without a boot for so many years, I purchased a split boot from O'Reily Auto Parts--one that can be installed without taking off the CV joint. The boot ends were too large so we built up the driveline with tape. I cleaned around the joint, then fit and "glued" the split boot together. (It's very important to do this in a grease-free environment so the boot will stay sealed.)

Once the boot's seam had cured, I filled the joint full of new grease and sealed it off with hose clamps. So far so good. I hope to get many more years of good use from the driveline now that it's re-sealed.
12-23-2011 11:50 PM
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tac Offline
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RE: AWD Driveline
(12-23-2011 11:50 PM)S_Fleming Wrote:  I have an AWD 1998 Town & Country LX. A few years ago the driveline went bad and we had a terrible vibration driving across nothern Nevada. I purchased a used one through a wrecking yard and it's been fine for the past several years.

Since that initial failure, or shortly thereafter, I've heard a "clunk" when shifting from park to reverse to drive. I thought it was the used driveline, and even had mechanics tell me that a couple times; nothing to worry about. That has also been the status for several years.

Last week it felt as if the transmission was failing so we had the van towed to a shop. It turned out that "clunk" I've been hearing was the transfer case. When original the driveline started to fail and vibrate, it ruined the front bearings into the transfer case. Now the whole case had failed.

Word to the wise, if you're replacing a bad driveline, make sure your transfer case was not damaged.

Circling back to that driveline, I kept the original one in case they would be rebuildable one day. So far that day has not come. I don't know of any shop that can do it. (If anyone knows of one, I'd love to speak to them.)

While replacing the transfer case, we discovered that the front boot on the driveline was missing. (These drivelines are not designed to be serviced and the boot is not something that can be easily replaced.) Since the joint was still good, even without a boot for so many years, I purchased a split boot from O'Reily Auto Parts--one that can be installed without taking off the CV joint. The boot ends were too large so we built up the driveline with tape. I cleaned around the joint, then fit and "glued" the split boot together. (It's very important to do this in a grease-free environment so the boot will stay sealed.)

Once the boot's seam had cured, I filled the joint full of new grease and sealed it off with hose clamps. So far so good. I hope to get many more years of good use from the driveline now that it's re-sealed.

Great reply - good info the the do it yourselfer!

Tom C

Administrator: www.10W30.com Auto Shop Forum
02-04-2012 11:38 PM
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