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Kevin C.
Kevin C., Subaru Master Tech.
Category: Subaru
Satisfied Customers: 1727
Experience:  34 years of Subaru service experience, ASE Master Technician.
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I have a Subaru Outback limited edition 1998 which I have

Customer Question

I have a Subaru Outback limited edition 1998 which I have been having trouble, with the rear dif. I have at present had three replacements and now planing to have 4. However I am a retired person and would like to know if I can disconnect the rear dif, the offending one and only run with front wheel drive.
The mechanic here said it couldn't be done. But I think it could be an option. I have had two previous Subarus and have had the CVs replaced and had to switch to 4x4 when the VC finally stopped and I was able to continue driving for some time. Can something similar be done for this one mechanically. I drove it home after it nearly caught fire only 7 hours after the last dif replacement with some noises from the dif.
Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Subaru
Expert:  I. Silva replied 12 months ago.

Hello...welcome and thank you for using Justanswer.

Yes, it is possible .

In the engine bay fuse box there is an open slot for a fuse ,it is marked as FWD , just put a use into that slot and you should be on FRONT WHEEL DRIVE ,ONLY.

Good luck.

Let me now.

Thank you very much.

Customer: replied 12 months ago.
Thank you i will copy your response and show the mechanic here. What then happens to the damaged back axle.(dif) Can it be replaced with a floating axle without the gears?
Expert:  I. Silva replied 12 months ago.

Hi there...first I apologize that I misread that you are located in Australia ,I am in USA and sometimes the vehicle years make difference from US and Australia , so the fuse for the FWD on your vehicle may be on the fuse box or by the wiper motor on the passenger side.

You cannot eliminate the dif. or remove any parts from inside of it .

You need you rear axles to keep your wheel bearing in place ,need the carrier in the dif to hold the axle shafts and you cannot remove the rear drive shaft once it slides into the transmission .

About the difs going bad one after another ...make sure they have the same ratio as the original of the vehicle or it will burn out again.

Good luck.

Let me know.

Thank you.

Customer: replied 12 months ago.
That is my whole concern another replacement. Will it be safe to continue driving then with the gears still in the old dif. I will give this message to the mechanic perhaps it could help. Thank you
Expert:  I. Silva replied 12 months ago.

Hi there....I don't really know what went bad on your diff , bearings ,gears ???

If it's making a lot of noise you better off not drive the vehicle,there is always a chance where the diff can lock up.

The only way you can get the diff to be free from drive shaft and axles is removing the ring gear off the carrier but once again I don't know if the problem are the bearings.

To remove the ring gear ,you will need to remove the diff out of the vehicle and open it ,it will be lots of labor time ...I really think you better off get another diff (the right one for this vehicle ) and get it fix the right way.

Good luck.

Let me know.

Customer: replied 12 months ago.
ok thank you
Expert:  I. Silva replied 12 months ago.

Hi there ,have you spoke to your mechanic or decide witch way to g on your vehicle problem ?

Let me know if need any further info.

Thank you very much.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Thank you I have given him your suggestion and am waiting on his decision or thoughts
Expert:  I. Silva replied 11 months ago.


Let me know.

Thank you.

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