Differential Service and Repair

When taking a turn in your vehicle, the outside wheels have a little farther distance to go than the inside wheels. Because of this, the outside wheels need to turn a little faster to account for the distance and keep the tires from slipping. 

This mechanical balancing act is achieved by your differential. It’s important to keep your differential serviced, as a faulty differential can cause heavy vibrations and trouble taking corners. 

The differential contains a special lubricant called differential fluid. Differential fluid helps keep the system of gears turning smoothly and without resistance. 

Symptoms of a Bad Differential

  • Vibrations
  • Grinding Differential Gears
  • Whining Noises
  • Reduced Handling
  • Accelerated Tire Wear

Car differential

Differential Services

When you take a corner in your car, the outside wheels have a slightly longer distance to go than the inside wheels. That means that the outside wheels have to turn a bit faster than the inside. The mechanical wizardry that makes this possible is called the differential. It is important to make sure that your differential is checked regularly so that you never deal with this function not functioning properly during your drive.

Front and Rear Differential

Whether or not your car has one or two differentials depends on how the wheels of your vehicle are powered. If you have an all-wheel or four-wheel drive vehicle your car is built in a way that allows the engine to send power to all four wheels, so you will have both a front differential and rear differential. If you have a front-wheel drive vehicle, instead of a differential you will likely have a transaxle that functions as both the transmission and the differential.

Differential Fluid

Inside your differential you’ll find lots of interlacing gears and bearings. These gears all rely on each other and a lubricant called differential fluid to keep the differential transferring power smoothly and seamlessly. Front differential, rear differential and limited slip differential (LSD) all require gear oil to lubricate and keep the differential drive components cool.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms it’s a good indication that you may already have a problem, or are well on your way to having a problem with your car’s differential. We recommend reaching out to Lake City Auto Care if you notice more than one of these symptoms happening to your car.Since a vehicle cannot function without a differential, we would recommend getting your differential inspected, and the differential fluid changed, as a part of your regular vehicle maintenance routine.
How often differential service is required will vary from car to car based on vehicle make, model and mileage. To learn more about your vehicle’s recommended differential service interval, consult your vehicle owner’s manual or contact a certified technician at your nearest Lake City Auto Care Shop.

Differential Service at Lake City Auto Care

If you’re experiencing any of the listed symptoms, we recommend taking your vehicle to a professional immediately. Luckily, Lake City Auto Care has you covered in the Coeur d’Alene, Hayden, and Rathdrum areas. Our ASE-certified technicians will inspect and service any kind of differential. The frequency of differential service varies based on make and model, but we recommend getting it done as part of your regular service routine. Whether it just needs a fluid replacement, or something else, our technicians will make sure that your car is safe and comfortable taking corners.

Schedule an Appointment Today!

Don’t let your differential issues turn into more problematic and expensive issues down the line. Call or schedule an appointment online today to have our team take a look at your vehicle! We look forward to seeing you!

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We stand behind our work 100%. That's why we offer a five-year, 50,000-mile warranty on all services and repairs. You can rest assured that when you bring your vehicle to us, we've got you covered no matter what happens down the road.

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