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What Is the Differential?

Your car’s inside wheels turn at a different speed than your outside wheels. This difference is handled by your differential which is a set of very heavy duty gears in the rear of your car if it’s a rear-wheel drive, or by your transaxle if it’s front wheel.

These gears must have lubrication or they can wear down. And that can cause some pretty serious problems. For example, sometimes differentials can freeze up while driving them. This can be dangerous because you can lose control of the car. Additionally, it can cause damage in other components such as your axle or transmission.


What Needs to Be Done?

As part of our normal maintenance inspection, we check your differential’s oil level and its protective qualities. If we see it is running low, we’ll top if off and look for the cause – is it normal or is there a leak? But periodically, you should have this fluid replaced with fresh oil to maintain the best protection. Consult your owner’s manual for a suggested interval or talk to our service advisor for the best interval for your car and driving habits.

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