Chrysler Full-Size Trucks 1997-2000 Repair Guide

Rear Driveshaft and U-Joints

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



This procedure applies to vehicles with one and two-piece driveshafts. Also note that two types of U-joint bolt-ups are used. One uses small clamps to join driveshaft and yoke; the other uses a flange-and-yoke bolted directly together.


NOTE
Do NOT allow the shaft(s) to drop or hang from any U-joint during removal. Attach the driveshaft to the vehicle underside with wire to prevent damage to the joints.

  1. Place the transmission in neutral.
  2.  
  3. Raise and safely support the vehicle securely on jackstands.
  4.  
  5. With two-piece axles, mark the position of the center support bracket on the frame crossmember. Unbolt and remove the support bracket bolts.
  6.  
  7. Matchmark the driveshaft and the rear axle drive yoke.
  8.  
  9. Remove the rear U-joint clamp attaching bolts and both clamps from the rear axle yoke, if fitted. Some models may have a yoke bolted directly to the flange. Remove the bolts if this type is fitted.
  10.  
  11. Use a suitable prybar to gently pry the U-joint out of the yoke.
  12.  
  13. Wrap the U-joint caps with tape to prevent them from falling off the U-joint.
  14.  
  15. Pull the driveshaft to the rear until the slip yoke clear the extension housing.
  16.  


NOTE
Fluid may run from the rear of the extension housing when the shaft is removed, so position a suitable drain pan under the area. Extension housing plugs are available to prevent a constant stream of fluid from escaping the transmission (see illustration).


WARNING
It is very important to protect the external machined surface of the slip yoke from damage during and after driveshaft removal. If the yoke is damaged, the transmission extension seal may be damaged and therefore cause a leak.

  1. On two-piece driveshafts:
    1. Slide the rear half of the shaft off the front shaft splines at the center bearing. Remove the rear half.
    2.  
    3. At the transmission end of the front half, remove the bushing retaining bolts and clamps, after matchmarking. If there is a driveshaft brake, there will be flange nuts.
    4.  
    5. Use a hammer and punch to tap the slinger away from the shaft to provide room for a bearing splitter.
    6.  
    7. Press off the bearing.
    8.  

  2.  

To install:

  1. Lubricate the front yoke of the driveshaft with transmission fluid and insert it into the transmission.
  2.  
  3. Install the center bearing support bracket bolts. Leave final tightening to the end of the procedure.
  4.  
  5. On models with a U-joint clamp, align the U-joint with the rear axle drive yoke and position the U-joint in the yoke. Install the yoke clamps and tighten 1 / 4 in. bolts to 14 ft. lbs. (19 Nm) and 5 / 16 in. bolts to 25 ft. lbs. (34 Nm).
  6.  
  7. On models with a flange-and-yoke setup, tighten the bolts to 80 ft. lbs. (108 Nm).
  8.  
  9. Tighten driveshaft brake flange nuts, if fitted, to 35 ft. lbs. (47 Nm).
  10.  
  11. Tighten the center bearing bracket bolts to 50 ft. lbs. (68 Nm), ensuring that the bracket is aligned with the marks made on removal.
  12.  
  13. Lower the vehicle.
  14.  



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Fig. Driveshafts are balanced and must be matchmarked with the differential yoke for installation reference. Mark yoke, cross and shaft



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Fig. Loosen the U-joint clamp bolts . . .



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Fig. . . . and remove the clamps from the yoke



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Fig. Two types of mountings for two-piece driveshafts. Mark bracket for position on crossmember before removal



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Fig. Driveshaft connection with clamps



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Fig. Flange-and-yoke driveshaft connection



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Fig. Remove the U-joint from the rear yoke. It may be necessary to use a prybar to free the U-joint



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Fig. Slide the driveshaft back until the sliding yoke clears the extension housing seal.



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Fig. This plug can be used to minimize oil loss

U-JOINT REPLACEMENT



Refer to the "U-Joint Replacement" information for the 'Front Driveshaft'.

DRIVESHAFT BALANCING





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Fig. Install a screw clamp with the screw at any position



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Fig. If the vibration decreases, install a second clamp



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Fig. If the second clamp causes additional vibration, rotate the clamps in opposite directions

Unbalance

Propeller shaft vibration increases as the vehicle speed is increased. A vibration that occurs within a specific speed range is not usually caused by a propeller shaft being unbalanced. Defective universal joints, or an incorrect propeller shaft angle, are usually the cause of such a vibration.

If propeller shaft is suspected of being unbalanced, it can be verified with the following procedure.


NOTE
Removing and re-indexing the propeller shaft 180º relative to the yoke may eliminate some vibrations.

  1. Raise and safely support the vehicle securely on jackstands.
  2.  
  3. Clean all the foreign material from the propeller shaft and the universal joints.
  4.  
  5. Inspect the propeller shaft for missing balance weights, broken welds, and bent areas. If the propeller shaft is dented or bent, it must be replaced.
  6.  
  7. Inspect the universal joints to ensure that they are not worn, are properly installed, and are correctly aligned with the shaft.
  8.  
  9. Check the universal joint clamp bolt torque.
  10.  
  11. Remove the wheels and tires. Install the wheel lug nuts to retain the brake drums or rotors.
  12.  
  13. Mark and number the shaft 6 inches (15cm) from the yoke end at four positions 90º apart.
  14.  
  15. Run and accelerate the vehicle until vibration occurs. Note the intensity and speed the vibration occurred. Stop the engine.
  16.  
  17. Install a screw clamp at any position.
  18.  
  19. Start the engine and re-check for vibration. If there is little or no change in vibration, move the clamp to one of the other three positions. Repeat the vibration test.
  20.  
  21. If there is no difference in vibration at the other positions, the source of the vibration may not be propeller shaft.
  22.  
  23. If the vibration decreased, install a second clamp and repeat the test.
  24.  
  25. If the additional clamp causes additional vibration, rotate the clamps ( 1 / 4 inch above and below the mark). Repeat the vibration test.
  26.  
  27. Increase distance between the clamp screws and repeat the test until the amount of vibration is at the lowest level. Bend the slack end of the clamps so the screws will not loosen.
  28.  
  29. If the vibration remains unacceptable, apply the same steps to the front end of the propeller shaft.
  30.  
  31. Install the wheel and tires.
  32.  
  33. Lower the vehicle.
  34.  

Run-out
  1. Remove dirt, rust, paint, and undercoating from the propeller shaft surface where the dial indicator will contact the shaft.
  2.  
  3. The dial indicator must be installed perpendicular to the shaft surface.
  4.  


NOTE
Measure front/rear run-out approximately 3 inches (76mm) from the weld seem at each end of the shaft tube for tube lengths over 30 inches (76cm). Under 30 inches (76mm), the maximum run-out is 0.20 inch (0.50mm) for the full length of the tube.

  1. Measure run-out at the center and ends of the shaft sufficiently far away from weld areas to ensure that the effects of the weld process will NOT enter into the measurements.
  2.  
  3. Replace the propeller shaft if the run-out exceeds 0.020 in. (0.50mm) at the front of shaft, 0.025 in. (0.63mm) at the center of the shaft or 0.020 in. (0.50mm) at the rear of the shaft.
  4.  

 
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