Our 2000 Mustang GT has been making that washing machine sound, so I thought it would be wise to check the fluid in the rear differential, since it's over the 120,000 mile mark. It's usually good to check the fluid in the rear axle every 20-30K miles, since failure to do so can lead to a very expensive repair, and alot of frustration.
After checking the fluid and deciding that it was time to flush it out and replace it, we got the car on jackstands, removing the two rear tires for better clearance.
Removing the rear differential cover wasn't too hard, which then exposed the gears that happen to look like a large meat grinder. (Comforting thought, huh?) Funding doesn't allow for upgrades only maintenance, so the stock gears remain in the car. One day, though, these will be upgraded.
While the fluid and gunk was draining out into the drip pan below, I set out to clean up the cover with aluminum wool after scraping the old sealant off. Both inside and out, the cover cleaned up nicely...nothing beats a little elbow grease!
It was time to seal and bolt it back onto the car. After waiting about 10 minutes for the sealant to cure, store brand 80 W 90 was poured in until the oil seeped out of the filler plug, telling me it was FULL. Overall it took almost 2 qts. of oil, but in the event yours is different, get 3 qts. just to be safe.
The tires were put back on and it was time for a test drive down the road.
Total Investment: $28.00 for 3 qts. 80 W 90 Rear Differential Fluid, and $6.00 for Hi Temp. Sealant.