Step 13: Create a Seal Pressing Tool and Press Them Seals

This next step is the hardest. You need to make yourself a tool to seat the axle seals. Take your seal to your nearest hardware store and find something that will fit inside the circumference of the axle seal but is still wide enough to sit on the inside lip of the seal. For us, this was a 1-1/4" piece of PVC joiner.

The original idea, pictured first and second, was to use an all-thread metal rod (1/2") and nuts and washers to push the PVC joiners apart from the inside and force the seals into place. However, it was very difficult to get the contraption and the seals into place correctly. And once we started tightening the bolts, the washers started to give. I imagine that if we had used more washers (3 maybe..) it might have worked, but it was still difficult to get the to sit straight.

What we ended up doing was cutting the rod in half, so we had one half of the original tool, and then getting a 48" long piece of 1/2" metal pipe. We tripled the washers on the single usable end, slid the pipe through the axle tubes over the end of the tool, and hammering the seals into place. The actual tool used is the third picture and hammering into place is the fourth.
Great instructable! IMHO the outer seals were the most important thing for the reader to take away from this. They are infinitely easier to change than the inner seals... It's almost a "why didn't the factory do this?" thing! I imagine someone swamping with bad inner seals could just as easily get some aggregate -inside- the differential and possibly lunch the ring & pinion.
You can also press the new seals in by using a socket and a long extension or pipe. find a socket that fits the seals (cant remember what size i used) and then place it over the seals like you did with the tool you made in the picture and then drive them in gently the same way. Helps to have someone who can watch was is happening to hold the socket or work the hammer to press them in. Great Instructible! Same process on a Wrangler TJ <br>
Thanks! From what I read on the web, a 1-7/16 socket is the size to use. We went the homemade route because we thought it'd be cheaper. Dunno if that's actually the case. :) Also, +1 to your comment about having another person. I had a couple of friends helping and it makes all the difference!

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More by Husafan: Replacing the Front Inner Axle Seals on a '99 XJ Dana 30 Axle. I made it at TechShop.™
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