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Just another rear diff thread. Except this one is as real as it gets

1438 Views 20 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  HRTKD
Hello TT it has been a while. Here is a small background story on said truck: 04 4x4 6"RCX 35" toyo mt 142k miles I am the second owner. Passenger back seal where the brake is was wet but according to 3 nissan dealers it wasn't something i should be concerned about as it wasn't actually leaking. Traction bars. Driveshaft spacer were also added.

Black friday I cruise by my local bank for a deposit and while heading back out into traffic i notice a horrible noise from the rear like a clunk clunk rip bang ding clunk and the diff light flashed at me 2 or 3 times. I pulled over into the first neighborhood hopped out looked around nothing "looked" broken so i got back in proceeded to drive in that neighborhood and heard the noise again. Sounded like the front and the rear. SO i got a tow up to nissan on a flatbed. After a literally 2 day wait i get a phone call...Rear diff is blown, front diff might be blown, transfer case is blown, etc etc. $7800 i was quoted to fix this.

in the meantime of waiting for nissan to see what happened to my poor baby I went across the street to the Chevy dealer and bought a new 2017 Silverado 1500.

So I want to know what would you guys do?? rebuild the titan front and rear diff and keep the Titan and have 2 car insurance payments and 1 car payment(rado) or sell the titan for probably $4k. Ive been leaning towards selling but I know what a beast she would be with a truetrac.
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I would be working on my own "second opinion" before selling the truck for 4k.

Rear diff is a known failure point, sure, but I would look at the parking brakes to make sure the noise from the back wasn't the brake shoes delaminating. If the brakes failed and took out the axles, then I could see the dealer not wanting to replace parts - they seem to like to replace the entire rear axle as an assembly. Quicker for them, expensive for you.

I'm really skeptical that the transfer case would be bad, unless it was already damaged, coincidental to the rest of the story. Same for the front diff. Perhaps the Nissan shop was a bit overzealous in their diagnosis? I would want to be sure...

Good luck!

To be clear, its not the rear service brakes that I'm talking about... the parking or e-brake shoes are the failure prone item. When they go, they can cause axle damage, to the ABS tone ring and so on. Many have reported that even AutoZone or similar parking brake/e-brake parts are better quality than the OEM parts. Go figure.
You may not be able to see /tell much without pulling the wheel and rotor, unfortunately, but the spin test is worth a try.

If you can safely crawl under the truck, you can also give the pinion bearing a quick check. With the truck in neutral, parking brake set (hopefully they still work for this check), grab the companion flange (where the driveshaft connects to the diff) and see if you can get it to move / wiggle. If it does, it's a good indication that the bearing is worn, and a rear diff rebuild with all new bearings is in order (especially if planning a TrueTrac install).

TrueTrac is a great upgrade, but getting the setup correct takes a good shop (or very skilled DIY'er). For a very recent thread on an install that didn't go as well at the outset as expected, take a look at this. . We are still hoping for the best on that one, as the install shop seems to be standing by their work, from what the OP has said.

The axles got an upgrade in late 2007. One option you may want to consider is finding a newer, lower mile complete rear axle at an auto recycling yard (aka junk yard).

Good luck!
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I am in jacksonville, FL. Truck is under storage insurance for like $20 a year and it just sits in the street. I will probably sell it besides what I have listed here there is many other things wrong with it like ac fan knob is broken, headlights foggy/ugly, only 2 minor dents, roof is starting to fade, always had a power steering pump issue, new belt, etc.
OK, you convinced me... time to let it go. PR is right, will take $$$ to fix, even if the front diff and transfer case aren't shot. If they are, then $$$$.

Sorry, man.
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