Should I be Concerned Axle Play- Axle C Clip

ed1948

ed1948

Royal Smart Person
Aug 6, 2016
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#1
I have noticed this rear axle end play clunk is louder than last year. Driving over ruts and cracks in the road occasionally the axle makes a clunk sound. The same sound it makes, when jacked up, by moving the wheel in and out. When the axial play is compared to the other side, the noisy axle has a little more movement but it is within spec(don't recall the number when measured last year.) I have not had a look at the C clip and axle end. Would the colder temperatures make a difference in the loudness of the clunk?
 
TURNA

TURNA

Comic Book Super Hero
Jul 24, 2009
4,497
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#2
If you are worried about the c-clip just replace it.
It is a pretty easy process. While you are at it replace the axle seal as well.
 
O

oldsmobile joe

G-Body Guru
Nov 12, 2015
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#3
Would the colder temperatures make a difference in the loudness of the clunk?
yes, sound travels better, there for louder, in cold weather
 
pontiacgp

pontiacgp

Canadian Prime Minister
Mar 31, 2006
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#4
Unless you race the car regularly the C clips usually outlive the car. I would look at the shocks and bushings in the control arms to see if they are causing the noise. You might also want to check the used tire and jack are not moving around.
 
motorheadmike

motorheadmike

Comic Book Super Hero
Nov 18, 2009
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#5
Depends. What is your axle endplay at the axle flange (brakes removed)? You are probably supposed to be in the .75mm (.030") range.

https://www.drivetrainshop.com/GM_7_5_7_625_s/108.htm

http://www.demandaam.com/resources/pdf/file-20150309163519.pdf
rearend-jpg.86807


I recently went through this and tightened up the backlash on our TBSS chasing what I thought was a clunk in the R&P - it wasn't. I also ordered new C-clips (yet to be installed) even though the stock ones are showing moderate wear - flipping them over was enough to restore most of the tolerance of the wear surface against the spider gears. However, it seems that as the clutch packs wear this can increase the axle play tolerance as it causes the c-clips (which ride against the spider gears) to move outward away from the cross-pin. This could contribute to the clunk. I have also looked at the swaybar endlinks (and one is a bit sloppy), and checked the torque on the shocks.

But, at nearly 200K kms (in our case) it could just be well worn control arm bushings - as suggested.

Your best bet it is to nut and bolt the suspension - since checking the torque on things is free. Then, unfortunately, you'll have to systematically take things apart and replace them. Or cut off your mufflers and live with it.
 
joesregalproject

joesregalproject

Royal Smart Person
Nov 4, 2012
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Pittsburgh, PA
#6
I just went through this with my Ford truck. I was getting a ton of clunking around corners. Is your rear axle a limited slip? The clutches might be worn out, and not the C Clips.

In my case the clutch packs were assembled incorrectly, which was causing the axle end play. It was a pretty easy fix and I replaced the axle seals and axle shaft bearings while I was there.
 
ed1948

ed1948

Royal Smart Person
Aug 6, 2016
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Toronto
#7
It happens while driving straight. Maybe I'm wrong, it is the same as when the axle is moved in and out.
Re: Motorhead....thanks for posting the specs in metric:banana:
 
pontiacgp

pontiacgp

Canadian Prime Minister
Mar 31, 2006
22,877
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Kitchener, Ontario
#8
First thing I would check is the lower shock bolt. I have seen them elongate the hole if the bolt isn't really tight
 
ed1948

ed1948

Royal Smart Person
Aug 6, 2016
1,116
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Toronto
#9
Thanks for reminding me...I should check nut and bolt torques first
 

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