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How To Replace A Rear Main Seal Without Removing The Transmission

The rear main seal is the protective guard of engine oil between engine block and the crankshaft output extension. The seal is mounted on a plate, which is located at the rear of the engine. Consistant car vibration and heat result in the failure of rear main seal. In this situation, it is better to replace the seal. But, how to replace a rear main seal without removing the transmission? You can find its answer by following a few steps process.

So, let’s get started the process!

How To Replace A Rear Main Seal Without Removing The Transmission – Like A Real Mechanic

Before you start the process of how to replace a rear main seal without removing the transmission, it is preferable to prepare everything vital. Raise the car with the help of a jack so that it becomes easy to reach the rear main seal. Keep the toolbox near you and make sure that you have every essential tool in it. It’s time to start with the first step.

1. Disconnect The Battery

Generally, there is no need to remove the battery, as you are not going to remove the transmission. But, whenever you think about how to replace a rear main seal without removing the transmission, for the sake of security, take off the battery. Carefully disconnect negative and positive terminals with meeting any short circuit. The next step is to take off the exhaust. It will give you enough room to reach the rear main seal.

Ideas For how to replace a rear main seal without removing the transmission
The battery should be removed for safety reasons. Source: youtube

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2. Remove Driveshaft & Flexplate

It doesn’t matter whether the car is a rear or front wheel, the drive shaft is vital to remove in order to allow more clearance. Now, you might be capable to see the flex plate. You can take the help of a wrench and screwdriver to untie the flex plate. The flex plate is the last layer that covers rear main seal replacement. By removing the flex plates you will be able to unbolt the seal from the rear end.

3. Remove the Rear Main Seal Hood

Now that you have taken away all the supplementary parts, it is time to remove the rear main seal. The major job was reaching the seal. By removing all the additional parts, you are almost done with the process – how to change rear main seal. Generally, the rear main seal is pressed into the hood through bolts into the engine block. Here in the middle, you can see the crankshaft that comes into action when the engine is running. At the center of the crankshaft, there is a tiny piece, which is a pilot bearer. The seal hood normally has six to ten mm bolts that you have to take off. After removing the entire set of bolts, remove the hood of the seal. Be careful while removing the housing of the seal as it is made with fragile material of aluminum that is prone to cracks and dents.

Points to remember how to replace a rear main seal without removing the transmission
Source: Youtube

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4. Remove The Crankshaft Seal

Normally the seal comes out with the hood but if it doesn’t, you have to do it by yourself. Sometimes the seal is stuck into the crankshaft. Cautiously, poke the crankshaft to remove the seal. This seal is the rear main seal that you need to take off. Remove it and install the new one. This is how to replace rear main seal without removing engine easily in no time.

Why Having Rear Main Seal Replaced Is So Costly That You Should DIY?

The steps on how to change rear seal on transmission seem to be complicated, why won’t we just bring the car to the garage? Well, some will be afraid of the sheer replacement charge. Read more for more reasons below

1. The Job Complexity

Rear main seal replacement requires a certain knowledge of engine construction as well as how it is attached to the transmission. There are different ways of installing the rear main seal as well as the transmission, so car shops have to charge a little more as each rear main seal will be a little different. Also, since so much of the vehicle has to be taken apart for the job, the mechanic need to know the transmission  and engine well enough to make sure all the other details don’t get overlooked and all the sensors get reconnected.

2. Special Tools Requirement

The job will could require an engine hoist, at least and require a transmission jack, a wide range of torque wrenches, engine support bar, and possibly a bunch of other specialty tools to complete the job correctly. Repair fees for rear main seal replacement need to be high enough for the car shop to afford to purchase and maintain that much equipment.

3. Other Entailing Services

It can make sense to encounter other maintenance while you are replacing the rear main seal. For example, whereas the vehicle has a standard transmission, it may be time to replace the clutch as well since the transmission will be removed. In the same way, in case your engine needs to remove the crankshaft, it may be time to rebuild part or all of the motor. Also, some additional costs can be unavoidable like replacing the oil pan gasket if the oil pan needs to be removed.

4. Mechanical Parts

Mechanical parts are the smallest cost of the job but can add up to your bill quickly. You may choose to change other seals or gaskets or do any sort of engine rebuild, and then the costs of the parts can easily be accumulated up to a few hundred dollars more, in your replacement bill.

Wrapping Up

So, whenever you have this question in your mind – how to replace a rear main seal without removing the transmission, follow this top-notch process. At any stage, if you think something is messed up or the situation is uncontrollable don’t wait much to contact the experts. They will handle the situation and might give you a few maintenance tips as well.

  1. Ronnie says

    Actually, you couldn’t be more wrong. That only applies to certain vechicles and you’re never gaining access to the rear main seal with the transmission bolted to the block.. the seal “hood” is a rear main cover . And only specific cars / engine combos have them . Stop giving mechanical advice when you have no clue what you are doing

  2. Joe says

    You have to split the engine and transmission, the seal is round, how do you magically install a round seal on a shaft without first sliding it onto the end of the shaft. In your picture you have completely removed the engine from the vehicle, was that magic too? Disconnect the battery and your engine will magically jump out of the vehicle and onto blocks and when you’re done, say the magic words and your engine and transmission go back together then jump back into the engine bay. I’m guessing you can do this in less than 15 minutes. Impressive!

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