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Old 07-12-2007, 16:21   #1 (permalink)
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Crown Vic clunking in the rear end

My '03 Crown Vic PI with 120k miles on it is starting to clunk and make metal to metal sounds. At first it sounded like the brakes were hitting the wear indicators, but they are new as of about 6 months ago. The sound only happened initially when in a turn, which leads me to believe the differential is the problem. Today it really didn't like backing out of a parking spot and starting forward. The motion seemed as if teeth are broke off and pieces lodged in between caused the car to struggle to start, until the pieces were free. There was a pretty good clunk and grinding associated with that.

I have had reccomendations to just replace the rear end. My options are to do it myself with new or junkyard parts, or have someone else do it with either type of parts. What is the reccomended route? I'm not exceedingly technical, so not sure how hard this is to do. I have heard the rear end is interchangeable with Mustangs and other Merc's, so finding the junkyard parts isn't too hard?

What would you expect this to cost at a shop?

Thanks!
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Old 07-17-2007, 13:14   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Crown Vic clunking in the rear end

If you are not mechanically inclined then I would swap out the entire rear axle with a junkyard replacement. Sounds like there is major damage in there anyway.
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Old 07-17-2007, 13:48   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Crown Vic clunking in the rear end

Instead of guessing what might be wrong why don't you pull the cover off the diff. and see what's going on in there. At least know for sure you have a damaged rear before assuming. A rebuild will probably run you $500 with parts and labor at a shop so if a new rear end is necessary I would go the junkyard route as well. Make sure you get a rear end off of a 2003+ CVPI as the -2002 are not compatibable. Confirm that the rear end is off of a CVPI as most of the civilian Vics have 2.73s in the rear vs. your 3.27s.
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