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I pulled into a rest area and noticed this puddle of oil on the outside duel on the passenger side. My first thought is a hub oil leak. Does anybody think it might be something else? Can I limp 200 miles to a repair shop?

IMG_3262.jpeg

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Since it is collecting on outside of the wheel, it is gonna be a bad axle seal. Easy to fix where you are, mobile tech or any tech. Whether you can continue 200 miles, depends how much already leaked out, looking at the wheel dirt, it may have been a while. May want to check the level in differential. 

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Take the cover off and make sure the smaller nuts in the smaller diameter axle end are tight, heck, check the lug nuts also.  Usually a paper seal in there, that gets crushed tight, so it won't take any movement.  Wouldn't hurt to lift that end off the ground and use a crowbar to make sure the bearings are tight without taking anything apart. 

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With the amount of oil in the rear axle, it would take a large leak over a long time to lower the level to the point of damage.
Unless you've been seeing this leak for a while, I think you'll be ok for a couple hundred more miles.

It would be a good idea to check the bearings for looseness beforehand. Losing a wheel hub wouldn't be fun. 😧

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I'm not worried about the differential running out of oil. I'm worried about the wheel bearings running out of oil, and more importantly, what's going on in there to cause the leak, that could escalate fast without enough oil.  At least take some sloping turns to keep the oil distributed side to side, and remove the cover, as long as it's leaking you're ok, when it stops leaking you're in trouble. 

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On the rear axle the oil in the main gear housing is what supplies the oil for the outer bearings.  I'd check to see if you can see any oil on the inside of the hub. 

I'd fill up the oil in the main house before you drive. 

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55 minutes ago, jacwjames said:

On the rear axle the oil in the main gear housing is what supplies the oil for the outer bearings.  I'd check to see if you can see any oil on the inside of the hub. 

I'd fill up the oil in the main house before you drive. 

I would as well ! That's a pretty big leak, and worth checking if the nut's on the axle are tight before moving on!

Assuming it's the axle end gasket, I'd expect to see big pieces of it missing.

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Yes, the outer axle bearing is lubed from the differential oil.  That's why it's important to maintain the correct oil level.  

This differential axle oil leak is very common.  The chrome center cover comes off by removing every other lug nut.  This is a very easy repair except it takes 400 ft lbs to remove a lug nut.  

The coach weight is supported by the full floating axle bearings, but I jack the side up to avoid losing more oil.    

Then you remove the axle retaining nuts and the axle just slides out.

Scrape the old paper gasket clean on both the axle and the hub.  You can install a new paper gasket and it will eventually leak again.  Or you can use some Ultra Grey gasket sealer and seal it permanently.  The only downside is it makes the axle more difficult to remove next time.  

Then make sure you top off the differential gear oil. 

Good luck! 

Rear hub with axle removed 2.jpg

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15 hours ago, vito.a said:

Yes, the outer axle bearing is lubed from the differential oil.  That's why it's important to maintain the correct oil level.  

This differential axle oil leak is very common.  The chrome center cover comes off by removing every other lug nut.  This is a very easy repair except it takes 400 ft lbs to remove a lug nut.  

The coach weight is supported by the full floating axle bearings, but I jack the side up to avoid losing more oil.    

Then you remove the axle retaining nuts and the axle just slides out.

Scrape the old paper gasket clean on both the axle and the hub.  You can install a new paper gasket and it will eventually leak again.  Or you can use some Ultra Grey gasket sealer and seal it permanently.  The only downside is it makes the axle more difficult to remove next time.  

Then make sure you top off the differential gear oil. 

Good luck! 

Rear hub with axle removed 2.jpg

While I was in there, I'd check the seal for leakage, and check/adjust the bearing preload as well.

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