02 WRX Stock Rear Differential Replacement Cost?
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This is a discussion on 02 WRX Stock Rear Differential Replacement Cost? within the General Maintenance, Troubleshooting & Accidents. forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; Hello, I recently bought an 02 WRX Wagon, there was a 'whirring' noise coming from the back of the car ...

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    02 WRX Stock Rear Differential Replacement Cost?

    Hello,
    I recently bought an 02 WRX Wagon, there was a 'whirring' noise coming from the back of the car that sounded like something rubbing, not intense, just a slight 'whirring' u could hear when you were off the gas. So I took it to the dealer, who put it up on the lift, since I was having them do 60k maintenance on it (it has 105k miles on it, and they replaced the timing belt aswell)... Long story short, after running the car up on the lift, and inspecting the rear they tell me that it the bearings are done, and I need a new "Rear Differential, the Front Diff is fine" they also said that one of the axles is sticking out in a slightly unhealthy way. SOOOOOO they say that a new Rear Diff is $1500 and a used one they found with a 1 year warranty is gonna be $600, I dont work on my car, this is my first time owning, I'm not a modder or a tuner, I just want to make sure i'm not getting raped since I probably came off to them as not knowing much about the mechanics behind my WRX. So, is $600 a ripoff for a used Rear Diff for an 02 WRX? I'm seeing used Rear diff's online for $350 but i dont have the technical knowledge to know if i'm looking at the correct part since i'm doing a very random "wrx 02 used rear diff" type search in google.... any feedback would be appreciated, yes I realize i'm a total noob. It's just a stock WRX 02 Turbo Wagon, nothing special. Lemme know what the forum thinks.

    Thanks.

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    Registered User EvoEatr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by evowrx View Post
    Hello,
    I recently bought an 02 WRX Wagon, there was a 'whirring' noise coming from the back of the car that sounded like something rubbing, not intense, just a slight 'whirring' u could hear when you were off the gas. So I took it to the dealer, who put it up on the lift, since I was having them do 60k maintenance on it (it has 105k miles on it, and they replaced the timing belt aswell)... Long story short, after running the car up on the lift, and inspecting the rear they tell me that it the bearings are done, and I need a new "Rear Differential, the Front Diff is fine" they also said that one of the axles is sticking out in a slightly unhealthy way. SOOOOOO they say that a new Rear Diff is $1500 and a used one they found with a 1 year warranty is gonna be $600, I dont work on my car, this is my first time owning, I'm not a modder or a tuner, I just want to make sure i'm not getting raped since I probably came off to them as not knowing much about the mechanics behind my WRX. So, is $600 a ripoff for a used Rear Diff for an 02 WRX? I'm seeing used Rear diff's online for $350 but i dont have the technical knowledge to know if i'm looking at the correct part since i'm doing a very random "wrx 02 used rear diff" type search in google.... any feedback would be appreciated, yes I realize i'm a total noob. It's just a stock WRX 02 Turbo Wagon, nothing special. Lemme know what the forum thinks.

    Thanks.
    I would make sure that the labor is also covered under the warranty of the used rear diff, and if it is and your 100% sure it wont cost you a dime if it fails again within a year I would prob. go with the used one... I would also figure out how many miles are on the used one. Personally I have worked on thousands of subarus for years and I have seen one rear diff. failure which was in an STI. Its somewhat rare that these go bad...How many miles are on the vehicle? As for the price of $600 I have seen them a tad cheaper however they do have to cover themselves if indeed it does fail and you need another one, thus the warranty....I am assuming $600 is just for the diff itself and no labor correct?

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    evoeatr,

    my wrx has 105k on it, the used diff they're offering has 70k on it. the total cost of the diff and labor will be $867. I believe the 1 year warranty is just for the parts.

    I realize that at the dealer, I'm paying a premium for their expertise, the ability to locate/choose/procure the correct Diff, and the ability to sell the car one day with the caveat "only Dealer serviced" i'm just hoping this doesnt turn into a thing where i get the whole "well we had trouble getting YOUR axles into this diff, so we need to now order XYZ..." I also dont really know for sure if I'm getting the exact same diff from a WRX and not some diff from a 2.5 impreza or something without the WRX bells and whistles, OR if there even is any difference and I'm just being paranoid about the whole thing.

    I assume that the TIME it takes to rebuild a differential from a replacement parts kit plus the cost of the parts makes getting a used diff less expensive than a diff rebuild, even thought my gut tells me that "IF" they're saying its expired bearings, not catastrophic damage, then why get a whole new unit when it seems like an 'open case, replace parts, lube up.. close case, rebolt to drivetrain, enjoy....but like i said in my previous post, im a noob.

    I"m pretty sure im gonna go with the dealer and just take the hit for some peace of mind, because the thought of taking a part i bought thru my own research on the internet and dropping it in the hands of my local mechanic who is going to look at me and the parts and say.. "this doesnt look like GM stuff..." while he scratches his head underneath his John Deere cap doesnt give me alot of confidence in those moments when i'm deciding at 7000rpm and 110mph if i wanna keep standing on the throttle or start slowing down.

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    Registered User EvoEatr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by evowrx View Post
    evoeatr,

    my wrx has 105k on it, the used diff they're offering has 70k on it. the total cost of the diff and labor will be $867. I believe the 1 year warranty is just for the parts.

    I realize that at the dealer, I'm paying a premium for their expertise, the ability to locate/choose/procure the correct Diff, and the ability to sell the car one day with the caveat "only Dealer serviced" i'm just hoping this doesnt turn into a thing where i get the whole "well we had trouble getting YOUR axles into this diff, so we need to now order XYZ..." I also dont really know for sure if I'm getting the exact same diff from a WRX and not some diff from a 2.5 impreza or something without the WRX bells and whistles, OR if there even is any difference and I'm just being paranoid about the whole thing.

    I assume that the TIME it takes to rebuild a differential from a replacement parts kit plus the cost of the parts makes getting a used diff less expensive than a diff rebuild, even thought my gut tells me that "IF" they're saying its expired bearings, not catastrophic damage, then why get a whole new unit when it seems like an 'open case, replace parts, lube up.. close case, rebolt to drivetrain, enjoy....but like i said in my previous post, im a noob.

    I"m pretty sure im gonna go with the dealer and just take the hit for some peace of mind, because the thought of taking a part i bought thru my own research on the internet and dropping it in the hands of my local mechanic who is going to look at me and the parts and say.. "this doesnt look like GM stuff..." while he scratches his head underneath his John Deere cap doesnt give me alot of confidence in those moments when i'm deciding at 7000rpm and 110mph if i wanna keep standing on the throttle or start slowing down.
    I believe in the 2.5 RS and the WRX the rear diff is the same Nissan R160 unit, the gear ratio may be different though...I can definitely understand your line of thinking though. I look at a situation like this and also am a huge believer in "you get what you pay for"...

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