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Hi, I'm still recovering from the shock of the replacement cost for my 2007 rear end replacement! $3000, including towing.
Only 95k and the thing did two big CLUNKS, started smoking, then quit while driving 65mph and headed for a vacation in Minnesota.
I've owned probably 15 cars in my life and NEVER had a single differential or transmission problem with any of them. Chevy, Ford, Honda, Toyota, even a Fiat, for god's sakes.
How could this happen when this car has been babied it's entire life? Never strained the drive train in any way.
The mechanic speculated that a nearly seized up U-joint may have contributed. He says I'll need the entire driveshaft replaced too since the U-joint alone not available. He did get it freed up with penetrating oil.
I've lost my faith in the Toyota brand.
Anybody out there have similar tales to tell?
 

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I think your mechanic is correct. Rear u-joint was siezed. This will take out the coupler and if left long enough in that shape will take out the rear diff.
I don't think anyone is a fan of the nonservicable driveshafts. I honestly would not put that driveshaft back in.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I think your mechanic is correct. Rear u-joint was siezed. This will take out the coupler and if left long enough in that shape will take out the rear diff.
I don't think anyone is a fan of the nonservicable driveshafts. I honestly would not put that driveshaft back in.
Thanks! Mechanic claims to have freed the U-joint up, but I'm worried about it. Any idea what a new driveshaft might cost?
 

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Rock auto has them for $416. I can understand your frustration, this is an expensive repair.

I would advise anyone to think long and hard before purchasing an AWD Sienna and consider if it really makes sense from an economic standpoint. A FWD will do everything an AWD can do with a good set of snow tires on the FWD.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Rock auto has them for $416. I can understand your frustration, this is an expensive repair.

I would advise anyone to think long and hard before purchasing an AWD Sienna and consider if it really makes sense from an economic standpoint. A FWD will do everything an AWD can do with a good set of snow tires on the FWD.
Thanks. That's an interesting comment and something I've thought about as well. I even asked the mechanic, before I agreed to replace the rear end, if he could detach the drive shaft and I could run without the rear wheels powered. He considered it but thought it may lead to other problems. $3,000 later, it seems it's still not over! How difficult to install the driveshaft?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Salvage yard? Of course, have your mechanic service the u-joints before a used part is installed.

car-part.com:

2004
Rear Drive Shaft
Toyota Sienna
OFF ON SHELF-LOCAL-NO SHIP
213066
$165​
Automotive Recyclers USA-MN(Rochester) Request_Quote 507-289-1274 / 800-657-4403 Request_Insurance_Quote
I'm worried about installing a 2004 driveshaft, when my 2007 driveshaft with only 95,000 miles, just failed, and I've got $3k invested in a brand new differential.
 

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Once upon a time U-joints had zerk fittings in them, but some don't. Penetrating oil is a help, but not a substitute. Once the cups go dry the needle bearings begin to scuff and pulverize, and at that point the end is near....

One of my favorite cars ever was a 1979 Datsun 810 2-dr coupe we bought new (the sedan of Z-cars) and drove to nearly 200k by 1990. The rear semi-trailing arm half shafts had zerks (4 total), but the center 2-piece driveshaft did not and the u-joints were welded in place. When the needles turned to dust and the whole thing shook, it was a matter of replacing the entire assembly at a prohibitive cost. It's the kind of failure that is totally preventable for the want of a $5 part, and can destroy your faith in a brand.
 

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Once upon a time U-joints had zerk fittings in them, but some don't. Penetrating oil is a help, but not a substitute. Once the cups go dry the needle bearings begin to scuff and pulverize, and at that point the end is near....

One of my favorite cars ever was a 1979 Datsun 810 2-dr coupe...
A classic. "The poor-man's BMW" I remember it being called.
 

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I snapped the driveshaft in my 04. I changed it myself with an aftermarket one. It wasn’t a terrible job. You need to raise the whole van. The hardest thing was getting the rusty bolts out of the support bearings. The driveshaft is one long assembly so it’s a bit tough to handle alone but I did it and I’m no kid.
 

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A classic. "The poor-man's BMW" I remember it being called.
It had a slight case of "Japanese Monster Movie" over styling, but technically it was an incredible vehicle for 1979. We traded in our 1972 Mercury Montego MX Brougham 2dr on the Datsun 810 coupe, and it was like moving from a Model T to a spaceship. IIRC, ours was serial number 22xx out of a production run of 2500 +/-. It was a rare bird indeed.
 
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