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2000 GMC Safari AWD
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So a few hours and a few hundred miles after buying my van, heard a LOUD THUMP THUMP THUMP THUMP on the highway. Pulled off. Wheels looked fine, some play in the CV so I towed it home from there.

After inspection, there's A LOT of play on the passenger side CV where it meets the front diff, and play matches the sound, so I'm thinking the needle bearing in the front diff blew out. This seems to be a very common failure point for AWD.

Front end rebuild is in order. While I'm pulling everything out, is there either a heavy duty rebuild kit or a front diff swap that improves reliability?
 

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I have a cast iron front diff. Mine came out of a Chevy Envoy. Some guys find them in manual shift blazers. They are a little difficult to find, but they are out there. I also had a limited slip locker built for Mine, for a little added traction. The Envoy. One was not a direct bolt in but. By borrowing a few parts from the original aluminum diff it all works
 

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A pic of the beginning. Side by side shiny aluminum vs dirty cast. Had to change front yolk, shifting diaphragm was removed, new seals paint few other parts then it bolted in place.
 

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I think the envoy was a 96. Bought from a guy who. Cruises junk yards so not sure. At the time he had two one was from a blazer for 300 clams and the other from an envoy. 200 clams (if I. remember right ) the envoy had a vacuumed diaphragm on it and as stated needed parts from the Astro diff. The envoy had a two piece axel housing where the Astro has a one piece. Mark I thought I did a write up when I did this, because that’s where I found the pics. But I live in a zone non computerized zone so I may have not. Anyway then I sent it to Jeff in Georgia and had him install an LSD locker and go through it. In the end I have 900 ish dollars in it. Some of you guys could do it cheaper I just don’t know enough about the special LSD lockers for these smaller diffs. Mike at Journey has done several. He would know more than I would. Getting long winded mark ill pm ya.
 

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Goes to show ya how much I know. Guess it must have been a 2006. As stated bought from a private seller. Maybe he was enjoying my ignorance. Have decided to start looking for another one.
 

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1992 Astro - Silver / Gray / 4 Wheels
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Wiki says:
The GMC Envoy is a mid-size SUV, manufactured and marketed by General Motors for model years 1998-2009 over two generations.
 
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