F150: Installing a Mag-Hytec Differential Cover
By Michael Zimmers
30 July 2004
My 2001 F-150 has seen mostly tame street use in its first 49,000 miles, but a planned trip into the Sierra Nevada mountains during the end of summer was going to change this. Envisioning very high air temperatures, steep hills and other challenges to keeping a drivetrain cool, I decided to install a finned aluminum differential cover.
After poking around online for alternatives, I settled on the Mag-Hytec cover, for a few reasons:
- I liked the pictures of the product on their website, www.mag-hytec.com
- I was impressed by the detail about the product and installation on their site. It was evident that a lot of forethought went into the design and delivery of their products.
- The price was reasonable, as were the shipping costs
- When I called their number, the person who answered was friendly, informative and patient. I’m a sucker for good customer service and theirs was excellent.
|In this picture, I tried to show the gasket cement that needs to be completely removed from the mating surface. The dark area under the gear teeth is the material that must be removed. I used a putty knife, and then a razor scraper…|
After cleaning the mating surface thoroughly, it’s time to wipe off any excess oil from the inside of the differential. It’s best to use a cloth rag that won’t snag or throw any lint. The bottom of the differential also holds a few ounces of oil that won’t drain, so I reached in with a wad of paper towels and sopped this up.
The installation instructions also advise to look for any irregularities in the mating surface, and to carefully remove them with a file. Fortunately, my differential was in good shape, so I didn’t have to perform this rather delicate step.
Before installing the Mag-Hytec cover, I smeared a little gear oil on the mating surface, being sure to cover the rubber beading.
The entire installation took less than 90 minutes, including unpacking, clean-up and time-outs for photography. This project has piqued my curiosity about fluid temperatures, so I may well add a temperature guage (the Mag-Hytec cover has a hole pre-drilled for a sender unit) from www.egauges.com. I’m also planning on installing a Mag-Hytec transmission cover as well, based on my positive experiences with this effort.