Pretty sure it's just normal transmission whine
My '89 wagon has a whining and/or a "wha wha" noise coming from the gear box. esp at higher speeds. I changed the trans oil, which was down a bit, but it didn't make much difference. Not sure if I need to worry about the noise or what. Thanks
Depending on how low on transmission fluid it's been, and how long it's been running like this, the bearings on the differential or on the shafts could be a bit worn causing the noise.
I wouldn't worry about it too much, to be honest - other than ensuring you're running proper fluid (75w90 or Synchromesh) and the correct amount of it (1.7 quarts in a 4spd, 2.2 in a 5spd IIRC), I would just drive it and see if it gets worse. You could jack the car up so the wheels are off the ground, leave the car in neutral and spin your wheels by hand to hear any off noises coming from the differential housing and see if the half-axle flanges have play, but other than that, there's little you can diagnose without removing the differential cover and inspecting it inside, or taking the transmission apart.
Thick additives like Lucas Transmission Fix claim to cushion worn bearings, but I can't say from experience. My Fox transmission has been running GM Synchromesh for a few years and that's really thin, but it runs very well with it.
Also, other than how much fluid was in it before, how it looks says a lot about what was going on inside the transmission - if it was brown, not black, and if there was no hint whatsoever of metal speckles in the fluid, chances are things are not too bad
Thanks for the replies... old fluid was not black and I didn't look for metal particles. It was down a small amount. Maybe I pulled out 1.5?!
"see if the half-axle flanges have play" Are you saying there should be no play in forward/rvs motion of the wheels?
Last edited by goldFOXleader; 09-24-2012 at 09:38 PM.
What he is saying is if you grab the axle flange on the transmission with your hand, (where the axle bolts up to the trans) there should be no forward & back play nor should there be any play moving it up & down.
Don't try and spin the flange or axle, just try to move it up or down and forward or back. The flange should sit nice and tightly into the transmission. If it does have play, it's usually an indication of worn differential bearings
If you were a Volkswagen....who would your owner be?