Tacoma Rear Differential Leak?

I have a 2001 Toyota Tacoma, 90,000 miles. I used 4 wheel drive in the snow the other day and when I parked and came out to my car a few hours later I saw bright yellow fluid on the snow, under the rear axle and looking like it came from the rear differential? Could be a seal issue? I’m just not sure…

Any information would be much appreciated!

More likely from an animal taking shelter under the truck. Differential fluid is typically not “bright yellow.”

A similar yellow fluid appeared in the snow under my engine, and at first I suspected it was anti-freeze, but I realized my anti-freeze was green, not yellow. Must have been the neighbor’s cat.

Funny you say that because we have an outdoor cat and my friend mentioned the same thing but I also noticed it when I was at my folks house over the holidays when I had to use 4-wheel and they don’t have cats nor have I seen any cats around…

Well, there are wild animals around pretty much everywhere, not just pet cats.

But if you’re worried, you can take the truck to a local garage and have them check the differential fluid level. Don’t take it to a Quickie Lube place because they’ll definitely find something “wrong” in order to flush cash from your wallet.

My first thought was an animal doing #1. However, were you able to see whether there is moisture (indicating a lubricant leak) around the bottom of your differential? If yes, probably a leak and you need a new gasket. If no, then don’t worry about it.