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Jims 03 Safari AWD

14095 Views 153 Replies 21 Participants Last post by  NoQuarter
Took a 6 hour road trip to pick up this 2003 AWD Safari with 123k miles.
This trip I got 16.8MPG and afterwards I checked the tire pressures, and they were about 20PSI!

I filled the tires properly and took another 6 hour trip today and netted 17.6 MPG! Pretty happy with that.

After the drive home without incident, we started the cleaning process and general maintenance.

Passenger side headlight was dim and both corner lights were out. Drained the water out of the light housing, dried out the bulb socket, replaced both corner bulbs now all the lights work and the headlight works properly. The water was causing a current draw (I think) thus dimming the headlight bulb.

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The lower body is all rusted out and the plan is to cut them out and weld in replacement panels
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The engine bay was nice and clean with no evidence of oil stains anywhere
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Had a pleasant surprise when I checked the coolant. The cap is pretty skanky, but the coolant looks fresh
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Same with the brake fluid. The reservoir looks like it has some left over smudge, but the fluid looks fresh.
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I had some drips from the rear diff and finally got a good look under there. The pinion seal is leaking, and the oil is slinging all over. Took it on another road trip today despite the leak and it got.... interesting. I now have oil mist all over the rear doors it got so bad. Didn't smell too good with the oil on the exhaust pipe.
Turns out... someone left a hose attached to the fill hole so they could keep the oil topped off :eek:
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I'm going to get it all cleaned up and replace 7, 18, and 19. Clean out the inside of the diff, inspect it and take it from there.
I will also order new drain and fill plugs once I figure out where to find those.

edit: it seems there are no drain plugs on these, but the fill plug I found at AutoZone thanks to @AstroWill Linky!!

Any tips/advice for this project is appreciated :cool:

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Any tips/advice for this project is appreciated
Replacing the seal is quite easy, the important part is tightening the pinion nut correctly. You can do it the 'right way' and use a bar type torque wrench and adapters to measure the rotating torque before and add 3-5inlb when re-installing, but requires removing more items. Second choice is you can mark the position of the nut and count the threads and install to the same position after. Both work, one is more accurate than the other.
Wait, rust free slider and rear barn doors? Isn't your slider rusted?
Let me know if you have any ideas here. Looks like I may need to cut off mine then use a nut/bolt install?
Sounds as good as any plan. I have seen some of the welds crack on them and get repaired with a nut/bolt.
Grabbing the ball joint/ pickle fork to use as a pry tool made all the difference.
That looks like it fit perfectly!
WTF Jim, why does that look brand spanking new? LOL Relocating the joint?

It's those bottom ones that are a PITA. Oh and where is your video?
Feedback, comment please! Gonna be too late for your better ideas pretty soon :)
I like it, looks like it barely sticks out!
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