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1997 Chrysler Town & Country LXi AWD
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In the 3rd gen factory service manual, the procedure to replace the rear wheel bearing/hub assemblies on an AWD calls for removing and reinstalling the rear half shafts. It says I need to compress the inner [CV] joint to remove it from the rear driveline module. instructions for removal are as follows:

Remove driveshaft from rear drive line module and hub/bearing. Driveshaft is removed by first
compressing the inner joint on the driveshaft and
removing it from the drive line module. Then, slide
the outer joint of the driveshaft out of the hub/bearing.

Likewise, for reinstallation, it says I need to compress them again to get them back onto the RDM:

Install driveshaft in hub/bearing and on output
shaft of rear drive line module. Driveshaft is
installed by first sliding the outer joint of the driveshaft into the hub/bearing and then compressing the
inner joint on the driveshaft and installing it on the
output shaft the drive line module.

I'm a little confused about what they mean by compressing the inner CV joint.

I decided to watch a video on replacing the rear half shafts on a BMW E36 as they appear to be attached to the rear diff in a similar manner. However, the process seemed quite straightforward in the video while it sounds more complicated from the language used in the manual.

I plan on reusing the half shafts since they're still good so I want to make sure I know what I'm doing.
 

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3rd gen > all others
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They are just your typical plunge-joints like all inner CV joints are. You push the end inwards towards the shaft to shorten the overall length, to squeeze the stepped-up center of the end of the joint into the flange on the rear differential. Then line up the holes in the 2 flanges and put the bolts in.

I've removed a lot of these shafts from AWD vans at the junkyard over the last year, along with the driveshafts.
 

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Registered
1997 Chrysler Town & Country LXi AWD
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200 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
They are just your typical plunge-joints like all inner CV joints are. You push the end inwards towards the shaft to shorten the overall length, to squeeze the stepped-up center of the end of the joint into the flange on the rear differential. Then line up the holes in the 2 flanges and put the bolts in.

I've removed a lot of these shafts from AWD vans at the junkyard over the last year, along with the driveshafts.
I guess you wouldn't need any special tools and just your hands, right?

Also, in the BMW video I watched, the mechanic marked the half shaft and diff output shaft with a paint pen so he could line them back up during reinstallation. Is this necessary?
 

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3rd gen > all others
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Yup, just by hand as it is just a small coil spring inside. Not a bad idea/practice to mark stuff if it's going to be reassembled later, to avoid introducing a possible new vibration. Shouldn't really matter in this case, but why introduce a possible new problem if it can be avoided, right?
 

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1997 Chrysler Town & Country LXi AWD
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200 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yup, just by hand as it is just a small coil spring inside. Not a bad idea/practice to mark stuff if it's going to be reassembled later, to avoid introducing a possible new vibration. Shouldn't really matter in this case, but why introduce a possible new problem if it can be avoided, right?
The only sources of vibration that have been identified are rear wheel bearings, engine mounts (possibly transmission mounts as well) and cupped tires so I'm really hoping that's everything. At least the driveline has been inspected and found to be in good shape. I know it's due for service with the next oil change so I'm wondering how much it'll be, considering there aren't drain plugs for a lot of stuff (requiring the old fluids to be pumped out).

Speaking of engine/trans mounts, how many are there in total, where are they located and what are the original part numbers? From my search, it was implied by RockAuto and other sites that 2WD and AWD vans had different mounts and it seemed like only some mounts are available from any source.
 
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