The driveline includes the gearbox / automatic transmission, transfer case (4WD or AWD), drive shaft/s, differential assembly, axles and hubs. These systems incorporate an extensive number of bushes, bearings and seals and require a constant oil supply to lubricate all of these components to keep them heavily coated.
General maintenance of these components is basically only changing the oil and in some cases the filter and additives. Their service intervals vary widely. Many late model vehicles do not have a dipstick for checking automatic transmission fluid. Quite often we see automatic transmissions neglected by poor servicing / maintenance practices. Once it's too late, the transmission overhauls can cost thousands…..Prevention is better than cure!!!!!
More often than not, when a driveline component fails, it will be due to either a leaking seal (which will spread oil across the undercarriage of the vehicle) or more commonly, a worn bearing (which will cause a whining noise that increases with vehicle speed and progressively gets worse over time). Age and abuse also takes its toll on these components which can lead to difficulty in selecting gears.
Usually vibrations felt through the vehicle body, clicking around corners, knocks and clunks may be caused by the drive shaft and the constant velocity shaft components failing. If you suspect that you may have a faulty driveline component, book into De Jonge Mechanical Repairs for diagnosis, advice and/or a quality repair.
In conclusion it is advisable to have your driveline regularly monitored and oils changed when required,