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Rear diff / CV joint gone?


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hi there,

my much loved freelander died on the way to work yesterday morning.

had only gone about 5 miles when noise started from rear of car, in the time it took to find a safe place to stop the noise had increased and there were screeches and crunches, and could feel the car trying to stop if that makes any sense.

got recovered back to home. reversing off the transporter onto the drive it was 'bumpy' as well as noisy.

recovery guy said may just be Cv joint or water in the gaitors or something. had a look underneath there appears to be an oil leek from the rear diff.

If anyone has any idea's or suggestions it would be of help.

I have heard of people converting freelanders to 2wd for the summer by removing the propshaft. it is an option for me to remove the prop saft and the 2 rear drive shafts?

I am no mechanic, i am a chef! but in the past i have manged to discs and calipaers and brake pads. I own the correct haynes manual and rave cd. i can follow instructions!

any help would be gratefully recieved, i really want to avoid having to take it to a garage.

thanks in advance


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You can remove the propshaft simply by unbolting each end, plus the vcu support brackets in the middle. It's a simple job.

However, if your differential is gone, then I doubt that will really help, though it's definitely worth doing first. You would need to remove the rear driveshafts as well (so the rear wheels spin independently of each other) and I'm not sure if that's entirely straightforward or not. Someone else will hopefully enlighten us.

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It might be worth checking the rear brakes aren't sticking as well? Cheaper than a diff! How much of an oil leak does your diff have?


Update :

I have jacked up 1 rear wheel and had a go at turning it (handbrake off and in 1st gear) cant make the wheel turn more than a couple of degrees either way. rocking the raised rear wheel i have noticed the whole diff rocking as well, so i am thinking the diff mounts are loose or broken on top of everything else. After a trip under the rear of the car i can also see damage as the prop shaft enters the rear diff and also damage to the underside of the car above the joint between the rear propeller shaft and the diff/final drive.


phot 1

photo 2

there appears to be oil everywhere on the rear part of the diff and also on the cross member to the rear of the diff. so i guess it is empty and ran dry.

thanks james

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Looks like the 3 rear diff mount rubbers have got so worn they've allowed the propshaft to hit the bodywork. That may well have damaged the flange bearing and oil seal.

I think you may have no choice but to take the propshaft and diff out completely, and run it in front-wheel drive mode. The rear diffs aren't that expensive to replace, but the chances are your VCU has seized, and you may also have damage to the IRD unit (the bit on the back of the engine that drives the propshaft).

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thanks for all your replies.

I have removed the diff and it is knackered.... i suspect the viscous coupling failing was the orginal cause. I have taken off the rear propshaft as well and the rear drive shafts. took for a test drive and was ok but now the rear hubs are loose..

think i am going to get rid... shame cause it was just serviced in december and had a new clutch as well....

thanks for you help though guys...


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