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Jeep Liberty Universal Joints and Driveshafts

Universal joints and driveshafts are important parts of your Jeep Liberty's drivetrain. The driveshafts connect the engine to the wheels and carry power and torque from the engine to turn your Jeep's wheels. Universal joints placed at the end of the Jeep's driveshafts provide necessary flex and movement to the drivetrain.

What is the purpose of a Jeep's universal joints?

Universal joints are an integral part of your Jeep's driveshaft assemblies. They provide the necessary flexibility to the Liberty's drivetrain. They also allow some play in driveshaft movement when you shift your SUV into gear. This flexibility reduces wear on the transmission and the rear end of the Liberty. These joints are located at the end of the driveshafts.

What causes a Jeep's universal joints to go bad?

With time and wear, the rubber seal on your Jeep Liberty's universal joints can fail. When this happens, the grease leaks out of the joint while dirt, salt, and water can get inside. This causes metal-to-metal friction that can harm the Jeep's driveshaft assembly. Regular maintenance can identify this problem early.

When should a Jeep Liberty's universal joints be replaced?

Your Jeep's universal joints should be replaced when they show signs of excessive wear or damage. Watch for these warning symptoms of failing joint parts:

  • Squeaking noise when moving the vehicle at a low speed in either forward or reverse
  • A ringing sound with a loud "clunk" when shifting from drive to reverse
  • The Jeep has noticeable vibrations when driving at higher speeds
  • Your Jeep Liberty has a fluid leak located at the rear of the vehicle's transmission
  • The Liberty's driveshaft has fallen out or is loose
What are a vehicle's driveshafts and what do they do?

Your Jeep Liberty's driveshafts connect and carry power and torque from the engine to the wheels. The output shaft of the vehicle's transmission spins the driveshaft. The Liberty's driveshaft then provides the motion necessary to rotate the Jeep's wheels. The driveshafts on your SUV are precisely weighted and balanced because they rotate at high speeds and torque values. Jeep 4-wheel-drive Liberty models have multiple driveshafts.

When should a Jeep Liberty's driveshafts be replaced?

A failing driveshaft can cause further drivetrain damage to your SUV. Your Jeep's driveshafts should be replaced if they are excessively worn or broken. Some signs of a failing or broken driveshaft are:

  • The Jeep Liberty makes a squeaking sound when slowly moving in forward or reverse
  • A loud clunking sound can be heard under the vehicle when shifting gears or when turning the SUV
  • Your Jeep is difficult to turn or park
  • One of the driveshafts in your Jeep Liberty has come loose or fallen out