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  #1  
Old 07-10-2004, 10:10 AM
mudslide mudslide is offline
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Thumbs up 2003 F150 Rear Axle Noise

I bought a new 2003 F150 Lariat with a 5.4 in Sept. 2003. It now has 10,500 miles on it. Since new, it has had a high pitch whinning noise in the rear axle and gets really loud around 40-50 mph. I have the 3.55 LS rear end. I usually have to turn the radio up to drown the noise out. I have been driving Ford trucks for the past 20 years and think they are great trucks. This is the first annoying problem I've had to deal with. Is there anyone else having this problem??? Click the image to open in full size.

Mudslide
2003 F150 5.4 Lariat, 3.55LS Click the image to open in full size.
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  #2  
Old 07-10-2004, 10:28 AM
Flash Flash is offline
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I unloaded a 2002 SCrew with the same problem. I am unloading my current piece of junk, 2004 SCrew with the same problem. Welcome to the world of Ford and yes, it's normal- for a Ford anyway.
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Old 07-10-2004, 01:48 PM
SoCalDesertRider SoCalDesertRider is offline
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Sounds like maybe Ford had a rash of F150 axles with the ring and pinion mesh clearance set too tight. Our E150 van hasn't had any problems. Dont know if it's the same axle as in the F150 or not.
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  #4  
Old 07-15-2004, 08:57 AM
mudslide mudslide is offline
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Flash and SoCalDesertRider,
Thanks for your inputs. Does anyone know what is actually causing this noise and if it does not get fixed what will the results be? I read a TSB number 17087, dated Aug 01, 2003, NHTSA Item number 10003182, Powertrain Axle Assy, Whine/Howl from rear End.
Does this mean anything as far as ensuring that the dealer has to do something about fixing this problem? Is it like a recall? All information on this will help. Thanks,
Mudslide
2003 F150 Lariat Supercrew 3.55 LS rear end.

Last edited by mudslide; 07-15-2004 at 09:00 AM. Reason: Did not put my name on it
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  #5  
Old 07-15-2004, 09:16 AM
whimsey whimsey is offline
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Mudslide,

If you're still under warranty get to the dealer right away. A TSB is not like a recall. Once your 3/36 B to B warranty expires you pay for all repairs that are NOT RECALLS. If you have Ford's ESP then maybe it will be covered. It depends on the ESP plan you have.

I have a 2002 with the 3.55 8.8 open rear. Have these "whiners" been both 8.8 and 9.75 rears, and both LS and open rears. Mine is very quiet.

Whimsey
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Old 08-14-2004, 07:17 AM
mudslide mudslide is offline
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Whimsey,
Thanks for all the great inputs to this problem. It still is under warranty so I'll get with the dealer real soon. When I took it to them on the last oil change, the service guy who took my maintenance request said that Ford knows about it and there is nothing we can do about this at this time.(or somethig to that effect. I was not actually there when it was taken in for the oil change) I'll have to be more persistent about it when I take it back this time. I'll let you know what they say or do about it the when it take it to them next time.
Again, Thanks.
Mudslide
2003 Ford F150 Lariat Supercrew 5.4, 3.55LS rear end
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Old 09-28-2004, 08:32 AM
mudslide mudslide is offline
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Whimsey and the rest of you all,


I took my 2003 Ford F150 SCrew, 3.55LS, Lariate into the Ford dealer a couple of weeks ago. The noise coming from the rear end was horrible around 35-55 mph. The Ford dealer's maintenance manager took it out for a test drive and it they decided it was bad enough to get fixed. They rebuilt the rear end and put on a new updated drive shaft. I've driven it now for a couple hundred miles and the noise seems to have gone away. Let's hope it stays this way. It seem that that is fixed, however, there seems to be some type of play/slippage when I come to a complete stop and on take-off. Something doesn't feel right. I will take it back to the dealer but does anybody have any idea what could be causing this????? Your suggestions help greatly.

Mudslide
2003 Ford F150 Lariate SCrew, 3.55LS
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  #8  
Old 09-28-2004, 09:29 AM
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n578md n578md is offline
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I had a 2002 F150 with the 8.8" axle 3.55 LS that did the same thing. Before I took it in, it would only do it between 46 and 52 MPH. It would even boil the gear oil out of the vent tube because it got so hot. Ford took it apart twice and gutted the axle, replaced everything, bearings, ring, pinion, crush sleeve (of course) and all, except the carrier. Each time I got it back and it was silent for a while, and then wouldn't you know it, it made noise again. The first time it lasted several hundred miles, the second time it lasted less than a hundred miles. Not only it made noise again after the fixes, but over even more speed ranges, 23-26, 32-38, 46-52, 59-63 MPH. On top of that, it wouldn't keep a pinion seal but for 200 miles. A Ford field engineer even came to look at it. The verdict: "No problems found, condition is normal operating characteristics of vehicle, do not attempt further repairs." I wanted a brand new axle but I guess after reading of 2003's having the same problems, that wouldn't have fixed it. I swear this is true, the service tech told me "But sir, if you turn the fan on Max and have the radio on, you can't even hear it." That's how loud it was. These guy's favorite lines were: "We couldn't find anything wrong with it, sir" and "They all do that, sir." I read somewhere that Visteon, who makes the axle, had some casting problems and that these axles can't keep the propper pinion pre-load because of it. I even found an auction, I think on E-Bay, where you could pick up piles of defective 8.8" and 9.75" axles for cheap. (And do what with them, I don't know.)
I finally got it fixed by getting a brand new 2003 F250 with a Visteon 10.5" full floater. No more whine.
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Last edited by n578md; 09-28-2004 at 09:34 AM.
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Old 09-28-2004, 09:29 AM
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