Leaky Transfer Case Help!

jackeneses

New Member
Supporting Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2022
Messages
12
Location
Alva, Oklahoma
Just finished I stalling an AA SYE I my 2004 TJ. Everything went smooth except for problems stemming from my own stupidity.

Problem is, when I was reassembling the transfer case I got a little carried away with my impact wrench. Stripped the threads on the middle bottom bolt hole on the transfer case. Bolt is fine, but it just spins inside the housing. I put it all back together and now have a leak.

The leak is about 1 drop every 10 seconds (very scientific I know). I assume it is because there is no pressure on that bolt, even though all the others are tight.

I really want to avoid breaking it all apart again to redo the RTV unless I have to. I’m really hoping I go back out tomorrow and the leak is gone 🙏.

What should I do?

Noob mechanic so if I seem ignorant, it’s because I am.
 
Helicoil. You might not even need to pull the transfer case back out or dissemble it. There’s another style that works good too but I cannot remember the dang name.
Limited-time deal: Orion Motor Tech Metric Thread Repair Tool Kit | HSS Drill Bits Taps Threaded Inserts Installation Tool and Tang Break-Off Tool Set for Repairing M5 M6 M8 M10 M12 Internal Screw Holes, 131pcs https://www.amazon.com/dp/B018LMAXFU/?tag=wranglerorg-20
 
Helicoil. You might not even need to pull the transfer case back out or dissemble it. There’s another style that works good too but I cannot remember the dang name.
Limited-time deal: Orion Motor Tech Metric Thread Repair Tool Kit | HSS Drill Bits Taps Threaded Inserts Installation Tool and Tang Break-Off Tool Set for Repairing M5 M6 M8 M10 M12 Internal Screw Holes, 131pcs https://www.amazon.com/dp/B018LMAXFU/?tag=wranglerorg-20

Thank you! I ordered the kit.

Never installed a helicoil before, anything I should know? Or is it as easy as drill out the hole, thread the new hole, and insert the helicoil?
 
Just remember when cutting new threads; start the new thread cutting with a turn or two then back the tap out to clear the cut metal debris, then insert the tap and cut another turn or two and then back the tap out to clear the cut metal debris. Repeat this procedure until the new threads are cut. Blow out the newly cut threads to ensure there is no debris remaining in the threads or the bottom of the hole.
If you attempt to cut the new threads without clearing the cut metal debris; you risk the chance of stripping the newly cut threads.
 
Like @CharlesHS said in out in out a little bit at a time. DONT go in crooked or give any side ways actions or you’ll snap the bit off then you’ll be in trouble. Been there done that and it’s a bear to correct it.
YouTube might be your friend here to see how it works.
 
  • Like
Reactions: jackeneses
That seems like a stupid good price on a set of metric helicoils, with drill bits & taps. Whenever I need one I kinda need one like NOW and end up paying about that for a single size from Autozone.
 
  • Like
Reactions: TJ Jim
Thought I would update:

Used the helicoil on the transfer case and got it done. I was able to torque down the last bolt.

I did also crack open the transfer case to redo the RTV, thought if I’m going to do it might as well do it right! Somebody told me RTV didn’t need to cure and that was a myth. The first time I didn’t let the RTV cure and probably filled it up only an hour after application. This time I followed the directions and let it cure for a very long time (while waiting for the helicoil kit to come in).

No leaks! Thanks for y’all’s help.

It was a good thing that I took it all back apart too, I noticed that I forgot to put in the snap ring behind the output shaft bearing. I’m stupid and thought it was preinstalled like the bearing, and thought I just had an extra one. 🫠
 
It was a good thing that I took it all back apart too, I noticed that I forgot to put in the snap ring behind the output shaft bearing. I’m stupid and thought it was preinstalled like the bearing, and thought I just had an extra one. 🫠

Sometimes our stupidity
(Overtightening the bolt) saves us from ourselves (snap ring and RTV)!

I know I've done some bone-headed things before in my excitement to get a project wrapped up, but once I realized the small screw-up, it made me step back a re-evaluate everything else I did in the past few hours. I've caught several mistakes I've made that way!

All's well that ends well, but this is a great reminder to go slow and triple check your work before wrapping up an upgrade on the Jeep!

(And of course, now that I typed this out, I'll be posting something dumb I did to my jeep next weekend!😆)

Glad it worked out for you!