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E46 Xi Forum
The E46 XI was produced from 01-05 in sedan and touring body styles. Powered by either a 2.5L inline 6 in the 325xi or a 3.0L inline 6 330xi. Discuss all thing about BMW AWD E46 'Xi' here.

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Old 11-18-2012, 07:48 AM   #1
76m2002
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Front Diff seal leak

I've got a leak coming from the front diff on our 2001 325xiT. It is at the output flange on the passenger side, where the front passenger-side axle plugs in to the flange. It is definitely leaking diff fluid, as Redline 75w90 gear oil smells quite different than engine oil or CV joint grease.

Is there a seal here that I can replace? Like part #7 in the realoem diagram? Anyone done this while the diff is on the car?
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Old 11-18-2012, 08:48 AM   #2
325xittt
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Its not to hard to do. I've replace 4 on the car. No need to remove the diff housing to do this. Find a good DIY on this site for the axle removal. Pop out the seal and replace with a new one. I'd drain the diff fluid and fill with new while you are at it. Also would be a good time to consider replacing CV boots. You will need a new axle end nut at the hub.
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Old 11-18-2012, 10:37 AM   #3
djantlive
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I had a diff leak that was fixed with a spray on rubber sealer from home depot. It was easier than taking the diff apart and worth a try. Just clean the diff real well with brake cleaner so the sealer gets a good surface to bond to. If it doesn't work, you can peel or scrape off the rubber coating easily.
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Old 11-19-2012, 05:30 AM   #4
76m2002
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Thanks for the good news. I've never replaced one of these seals. Is it straightforward? I the seal just a cap that I pry off and hammer in a new one?
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Old 11-19-2012, 05:55 AM   #5
325xittt
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Yes the seal is essentially a cap. Pry/Pull it out, and tap a new one back in.
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:33 AM   #6
76m2002
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 325xittt View Post
Yes the seal is essentially a cap. Pry/Pull it out, and tap a new one back in.
Thanks!
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:46 AM   #7
Rickna
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Make sure that the seal is square to the housing as you are installing it. Use a seal driver or rubber/wooden mallet.
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