T-Shirts

Order your offical Jeep Wrangler TJ Forum t-shirt today!

Click here to order!

Jeep Wrangler TJ Forum T-Shirts

Screwed up big time towing my Jeep


Bob.Gibson

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Sep 8, 2019
Messages
141
Location
New Zealand
My 2005 TJ has a 42RLE transmission.
I have recently been towing it on an A frame.
Prior to towing I always put the transfer box in N and the Auto trans mission in N and have towed it many times like this. Some times up to 500 miles at speeds up to 60mph.
When I arrived home after this last trip I noticed oil spots on the rear window door and tyre. Upon investigation I found out that the Transfer case and transmission had blown apart.
What did I do wrong?
 

JeepOnDecision

TJ Enthusiast
Supporting Member
Joined
Nov 5, 2019
Messages
257
Location
Erie, PA
 

rouxbicon

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Aug 17, 2018
Messages
195
Location
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
My 2005 TJ has a 42RLE transmission.
I have recently been towing it on an A frame.
Prior to towing I always put the transfer box in N and the Auto trans mission in N and have towed it many times like this. Some times up to 500 miles at speeds up to 60mph.
When I arrived home after this last trip I noticed oil spots on the rear window door and tyre. Upon investigation I found out that the Transfer case and transmission had blown apart.
What did I do wrong?
If they literally "blew apart" the front driveshaft double-cardan joint probably seized
 

mrblaine

Crew Member
Supporting Member
Joined
Nov 20, 2015
Messages
19,287
Location
Quail Valley, CA
My 2005 TJ has a 42RLE transmission.
I have recently been towing it on an A frame.
Prior to towing I always put the transfer box in N and the Auto trans mission in N and have towed it many times like this. Some times up to 500 miles at speeds up to 60mph.
When I arrived home after this last trip I noticed oil spots on the rear window door and tyre. Upon investigation I found out that the Transfer case and transmission had blown apart.
What did I do wrong?
Not familiar with A frame but I'll assume you meant a tow bar and all four tires were on the ground. If that is true and the whole left side of the T-case exploded, then as stated, the front drive shaft Double Cardan locked up. Since it is angled down to the front pinion, locking up makes it spin around at an angle which destroys the case on the transfer case.

FYI, the auto trans is supposed to be in Park, not neutral.

Is the transmission actually damaged?
 
  • Like
Reactions: pc1p

WallyWest

TJ Addict
Joined
Nov 6, 2019
Messages
1,739
Location
PA
Standard practice with an auto is leave it in park, transfer case in neutral. But AFAIK the transfer case is the important part, get that right and it doesn't really matter what you have the transmission in.
 

Apparition

LS delayed
Supporting Member
Ride of the Month Winner
Joined
Jan 17, 2020
Messages
16,227
Location
Twin Cities, MN
Pictures are almost always needed and sometimes This thread is worthless without pics is a requirement but "love" isn't something I'd connect to seeing pictures of this.

I do love seeing pictures of train wrecks but pictures of this, not so much.
I present old footage from the Iowa State Fair

ValidShockingJavalina-max-1mb.gif
 

Jerry Bransford

TJ Guru Moderator
Staff Member
Supporting Member
Joined
Nov 9, 2015
Messages
22,106
Location
Escondido California
That the transfer case literally came apart makes me think, as above, the front driveshaft's CV joint seized which is known to do that. And yes, per your owner's manual, your transmission should have been in Park, with the transfer case in Neutral. The transmission is prevented from spinning without proper lubrication by being in gear or in Park while fiat towing.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Kiwi TJ

mrblaine

Crew Member
Supporting Member
Joined
Nov 20, 2015
Messages
19,287
Location
Quail Valley, CA
That the transfer case literally came apart makes me think, as above, the front driveshaft's CV joint seized which is known to do that. And yes, per your owner's manual, your transmission should have been in Park, with the transfer case in Neutral. The transmission is prevented from spinning without proper lubrication by being in gear or in Park while fiat towing.
Fiat hasn't owned Jeep that long.
 
Last edited:
OP
Bob.Gibson

Bob.Gibson

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Sep 8, 2019
Messages
141
Location
New Zealand
Thanks for the many replies and sympathetic words. Yes I was flat towing with alkl wheels on the ground.
I accept that I have made a mistake in having the auto trans in N but am curious why it blew apart this time and not the first time I tried.
I have not yet contacted my Insurance company. Has anybody been able to make an insurance claim for this type of damage
Here are a few pic taken as soon as I discovered the issue. I will post more later today why I have the bottom plate removed
IMG_3768.jpg
IMG_3769.jpg
IMG_3770.jpg
IMG_3766.jpg
IMG_3768.jpg
IMG_3769.jpg
IMG_3770.jpg
IMG_3766.jpg
 

Apparition

LS delayed
Supporting Member
Ride of the Month Winner
Joined
Jan 17, 2020
Messages
16,227
Location
Twin Cities, MN
Thanks for the many replies and sympathetic words. Yes I was flat towing with alkl wheels on the ground.
I accept that I have made a mistake in having the auto trans in N but am curious why it blew apart this time and not the first time I tried.
I have not yet contacted my Insurance company. Has anybody been able to make an insurance claim for this type of damage
Here are a few pic taken as soon as I discovered the issue. I will post more later today why I have the bottom plate removed
View attachment 286456View attachment 286457View attachment 286458View attachment 286459View attachment 286456View attachment 286457View attachment 286458View attachment 286459
I think your transfercase may need replaced, wow.
 
  • Haha
  • Face Palm
Reactions: Alex01 and Plumber1

freedom_in_4low

Sacred Order of the Coil Spring
Supporting Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2019
Messages
3,092
Location
Edmond, OK
the destruction to the transfer case is impressive in it's totality, but I agree with others, I don't see any damage to the transmission.

My mind is going wild trying to picture what was happening just going down the highway AFTER the case broke.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Apparition

freedom_in_4low

Sacred Order of the Coil Spring
Supporting Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2019
Messages
3,092
Location
Edmond, OK
I accept that I have made a mistake in having the auto trans in N but am curious why it blew apart this time and not the first time I tried.

I believe the two are unrelated. The front CV joint could have just as easily seized while you were driving it and had the same result, and was not related to the transmission being in neutral - though you'd have had warning and probably stopped if you'd been in the drivers seat because I think that joint usually starts making noise before it fails.