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Ticking Sound from Rear of Suburban

Hi All,

I have a 99 Suburban half ton which, upon returning home with a boat, it was noticed that the rear end has a nasty ticking sound.

If your very lightly accelerate or hold speed, no sound. But if you take off from say a stop light, the ticking takes off.

If I hold the brakes and put a load on the engine, no ticking or slipping. There is also no noticable vehicle shaking or loss of power.

I am guessing that this is the sign of a failing rear end; but I’ve never had personal experience with that. Do you concur, and if so, anecdotal reply’s with a cost of repair estimate would be helpful.


Side note, it has recently fired off a service code for “misfire” when pulling uphill. I figured plugs and wires are due and I don’t think these are related; but I know click & clack hate it when people hold that back.

The first thing to check is the condition of the differential fluid. There should be a plug on the side of the differential case, remove that and stick a finger in there to check the fluid level. It should be level with the bottom of the hole. If the fluid is very dirty looking or has never been changed, now would be a good time to pull the cover off and get the old stuff out of there.

If you decide to do so, drain it by removing the cover and inspect inside the unit for the presence of metal shavings. Any sign of those means that damage has occurred and, depending on the severity, you might be able to simply fill up with fresh gear oil and be on your way…or you might need a salvage yard unit.