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GTR0419 01-28-2011 07:54 AM

Help With "Whining" Noise From Rear???
Wow, that title is full of potential punch lines...

I have 2001 Dodge Ram 1500 2WD 5.2L Sport Club Cab with about 80k. Back around Thanksgiving I noticed a ďwhiningĒ noise that seemed to be coming from the rear of the truck. At the time I couldn't be sure about the location because I could only hear it at highway speeds. I immediately started to freak because Iíve heard these trucks have inherent tranny issues. So, I took the truck to a local mechanic. He heard the noise when driving the vehicle, but once he put it in the airÖno noise. He checked everything obvious that didnít require taking things apart (at least he said he did and I have no reason to believe otherwise as he comes highly recommended) and could not find anything. He didnít want to guess, didnít charge me for his time, and said weíll need to let it get worse/ louder and try again.

Now itís worse.

Like I said, the noise is a ďwhineĒ similar to the sound some vehicles make in reverse, canít really be heard until 20MPH (use to be highway speed, then 30MPH, so itís definitely getting worse) and changes pitch with speed. Talked to tranny guy and he doesnít think itís the transmission since there are no slips, pops, hesitation, can only be heard under load, and fluid level is good and clean. Fluid, filter, flush have been done twice in 80k. Most of the research Iíve done online points to the pinion bearings. However, the noise does not go away when you let off the gas at speed. It is present throughout the speed range and as I said does change pitch according to speed.

So, what do I do? I donít want to drive it and risk having to rebuild a rear end if one of the pinion bearings go, but donít like guess work either. Should I just bite the bullet and pay $500~ to get the bearings replaced and see what happens?

Thoughts, advice, and opinionsÖThanks!

RamTech 01-28-2011 08:18 AM

It's worth tearing down the rear end to inspect the bearings, given the circumstances.

98redbull2 01-28-2011 08:22 AM

these trucks are also knows for their rear ends going out, maybe not so much going out but the gear lash from the factory must have not been correct and the gearsets wear out pretty quick. I think that wining noise is your rear end. mine have allready replaced with correct lash and adjustment and lasted twice as long as the stock set, my truck has allmost 260,000 miles on it and the ring and pinion got replaced i think 140,000 miles ago. my brothers ram truck also has a rear end wining and his has only 135,000 miles. with that in mind see what you can find. i hope it helps.

mdbasser 01-28-2011 12:44 PM

similar problem on my 96 1500. Turns out the pinion bearing was going bad and chewed up the race. While driving hit the gas and then let off, it it is louder when hitting gas the less when letting off could be this problem.

Dodger98 01-30-2011 10:57 AM

rear end
i had this problem, mine turned out to be the bearings were bad

i ended up swapping my 3.55 for 4.56 with all new bearings....just as quiet as can be

hopefully this helps

96RamC 02-07-2011 04:26 AM

Def sounds like the rear end, mine had the same issue and i just replaced everything. luckily moesperformance had a deal goin on for gears, limited slip and a master install kit for only 723 shipped to my door, mechanic charged about 115 to install it.

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