Chrysler Full-Size Vans 1989-1998 Repair Guide

Driveshaft and U-Joints

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



See Figures 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5



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Fig. Fig. 1: Driveshafts are balanced and must be matchmarked with the differential yoke for installation reference



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Fig. Fig. 2: Loosen the U-joint strap bolts ...



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Fig. Fig. 3: ... and remove the straps from the yoke



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Fig. Fig. 4: 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. Fig. 5: Carefully remove the front yoke from the transmission

Do not allow the propeller shaft to drop or hang from any U-joint during removal. Attach the propeller shaft to the vehicle underside with wire to prevent damage to the joints.

  1. Raise and safely support the vehicle securely on jackstands.
  2.  
  3. Matchmark the driveshaft and the rear axle drive yoke.
  4.  
  5. Remove the rear U-joint attaching bolts and both strap clamps from the rear axle drive yoke.
  6.  
  7. Use a suitable prybar to gently pry the U-joint out of the yoke.
  8.  
  9. Wrap the U-joint caps with tape to prevent them from falling off the U-joint.
  10.  
  11. Fluid may run from the rear of the extension housing when the shaft is removed, so position a suitable drain pan under the area.
  12.  

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

  1. Remove the driveshaft from the transmission or transfer case.
  2.  

Extension housing plugs are available to prevent a constant stream of fluid from escaping the transmission.

To install:
  1. Lubricate the front yoke of the driveshaft with transmission fluid and insert it into the transmission.
  2.  
  3. Align the U-joint with the rear axle drive yoke and position the U-joint in the yoke.
  4.  
  5. Install the yoke strap clamps and tighten the 1 / 4 inch bolts to 14 ft. lbs. (19 Nm) and the 5 / 16 inch bolts to 25 ft. lbs. (1 Nm).
  6.  
  7. Lower the vehicle.
  8.  

U-JOINT REPLACEMENT



See Figures 6, 7, 8 and 9



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Fig. Fig. 6: Typical U-joint components



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Fig. Fig. 7: Some U-joints use circlips to prevent the caps from moving in the yoke



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Fig. Fig. 8: Removing the U-joint from the yoke



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Fig. Fig. 9: Install the U-joint in the yoke

  1. Remove the driveshaft from the vehicle.
  2.  

Do not clamp the driveshaft tube in a vise. Clamp only the forged portion of the yoke in a vise. Do not overtighten the vise jaws.

  1. Clamp the yoke in a vise and remove the bearing cap retainers.
  2.  
  3. Place a socket which has an inside diameter larger than the outside diameter of the bearing cap, against the yoke around the perimeter of the first cap to be removed. Place a socket which is slightly smaller than the cap, on the cap, opposite the cap to be removed. Then position the yoke in a vise.
  4.  
  5. Compress the jaws until the smaller socket has driven the other cap into the larger socket.
  6.  
  7. Release the jaws and remove the cap that is partially out of the yoke.
  8.  
  9. Repeat the procedure for the remaining cap(s).
  10.  

To install:
  1. Clean and remove and rust from the yoke bores and lubricate lightly with suitable lithium based grease.
  2.  
  3. Position the spider cylinders in the yoke bores. Insert the seals into the yoke bore and against the spider cylinders. Tap the bearing caps into the yoke bores far enough to keep the spider in place.
  4.  
  5. Place the socket that is slightly smaller than the cap against the first cap and position the assembly in a vise.
  6.  
  7. Compress the jaws to force the bearing caps into the yoke bores far enough so the retainer grooves are visible.
  8.  
  9. Repeat the procedure for the remaining caps if necessary.
  10.  
  11. Install the retaining clips.
  12.  
  13. Install the driveshaft assembly to the vehicle.
  14.  

DRIVESHAFT BALANCING



See Figures 10, 11 and 12



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Fig. Fig. 10: Install a screw clamp with the screw at any position



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Fig. Fig. 11: If the vibration decreases, install a second clamp



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Fig. Fig. 12: 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.

Removing and re-indexing the propeller shaft 180relative 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 six inches (15.24cm) from the yoke end at four positions 90 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.
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  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.
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  21. If there is no difference in vibration at the other positions, the source of the vibration may not be propeller shaft.
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  23. If the vibration decreased, install a second clamp and repeat the test.
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  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.
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  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.
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  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.  

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 (76.2cm). Under 30 inches, the maximum run-out is 0.20 inch (5.08mm) 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 0.010 in. (0.25mm) at the front of shaft, 0.015 in. (0.5mm) at the center of the shaft or 0.010 in. (0.25mm) at the rear of the shaft.
  4.  

 
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