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Checking u-joints and bearings


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I've had a steady clicking sound for a few weeks now, only when moving, I think it's a bad u-joint. How can I pinpoint which one is suspect?

 

I also think I have a bad bearing somewhere, I can hear a wheeze/squeel, also only while moving. I think the test for this is jacking up each wheel and checking for play? Or is that ball joints?

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I've had a steady clicking sound for a few weeks now, only when moving, I think it's a bad u-joint. How can I pinpoint which one is suspect?

 

I also think I have a bad bearing somewhere, I can here a wheeze/squeel, also only while moving. I think the test for this is jacking up each wheel and checking for play? Or is that ball joints?

For U joints just check for free play in them, You will be able to feel the play.

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Checking for play back and forth in the wheel is with ball joints. To check axle ujoints, jack the wheel up that you want to test, put the tcase or trans in neutral and spin the wheel listen for where the noise is coming from. Place your hand on the cap and spin the tire one way to the other and see if you can feel play. If you can't pinpoint it this way, remove the front driveshaft and go for a drive, is the noise gone, or is it still there? If its still there its one of the two axle ujoints, and if the noise is gone it could be one of the three ujoints in the front driveshaft. ALSO: VERY IMPORTANT CHECK, if the noise is gone with the driveshaft out, check for play in the splined portion of the driveshaft, if you can move the transfer case side and the axle side seperately any tiny amount AT ALL, the shaft needs to be replaced. I had this noise on my truck about a year ago and it was caused by play in the splines in the front shaft, i replaced all the joints in the driveshaft and then found that the play in those splines was causing my noise. spline noise sounds exactly the same as a ujoint noise.

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Checked em as best I could, jacked up each wheel and gave it a spin, I couldn't hear anything clicking. The caps all looked in good shape. Spun the driveshaft, no play that I could see, no clicking I could hear, just the gears catching inside the case. The spline connection was perfectly tight too. :dunno:

 

I may still pull the driveshaft someday but I have such little free time to play around.

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Assuming that Big Ton is a 4wd.........

 

Grab onto the front drive shaft and twist it, and push it up and down, the slip joint ends up with some play and that's where your clicking sound might be coming from.

 

I have the same clicking sound on my '89, and found the play in the slip joint, after Cherokee pointed that out to me :D

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I'll try again but it doesn't seem like there's any major problems so I may just leave it. If there's a chance of the driveshaft exploding, then I'll rethink it, or yank the shaft and go 2wd with a low range :D . I don't wheel it, it's a short trip daily driver and occasional tow rig.

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I took the driveshaft out and went for a ride, the clicking is still there. All the u-joints on the shaft were in good condition as was the slip. Gonna have to take a closer look at the axle joints and check around the wheels for anything that may be hitting them as it turns.

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