car differential care axlengearYou may have heard your mechanic talk about the differential in your car, but if you’re unfmailiar with car part, you may have been confused as to what eh was talking about.

The differential in a car is an integral part of the design. It’s described as a component that allows a car to “…compensate for the difference in distance the inner wheels and outer wheels travel as the car goes around a corner. “ In other words, it allows the wheel that is on the outside of the curve when you turn the car to travel faster than the others, thereby allowing you a nice smooth turn.

Caring for a differential is a whole other matter.

Differentials typically take differential fluid (or transmission fluid if you have a front wheel drive vehicle), but there are different types of this oil. The oil itself is designated a gear lubricant number or GL number, and works to prevent wear and tear to the integrity of the differential.

Your everyday average differential could take either a GL-4 or a GL-5 oil. There are also special kinds such as GL-5+ and GL-5 LS that are made for specific types of differentials. If you’re unsure as to the type of GL fluid your car needs, it’s best to ask your mechanic!

As for the rate at which you should change the fluid, it’s best to do it every 30,000 to 50,000 miles. Avoiding this can lead to a similar situation as neglecting an oil change and will create a lot of wear and tear on your differential.

Axle N Gear knows the pain of dealing with a broken down car, so don’t wait until it’s too late and come in for a free diagnosis. If your car requires repair, we’ll have it done in less than a day!