Gearbox oil change
I have two issues with my 1992 Peugeot 205 diesel. First, can you tell me how to properly drain/fill the five-speed BE3 manual gearbox?
Second, there’s a rumbling noise (central to right side) when I’m accelerating and driving uphill, but doesn’t seem happen under normal driving conditions (ie, 3040mph). It sounds and feels like a spindle not running true when under load.
I first suspected the bearings on the offside driveshaft, but I’ve noticed a thin film of watery rust seeping around the bearing/seal where the shaft enters the differential part of the gearbox. I can’t see anything on the bearing/engine bracket, but have not dismantled this yet. Peter Walmsley Draining and refilling the BE3 gearbox is a straightforward job. The oil should be drained by removing the drain plug which is located at the rear of the diff housing. The box should be refilled using the filler/ level plug located on the edge of the end cover at around the three o’clock position. The gearbox/transaxle should take two litres of EP75W80.
From your description, the rumbling noise may well be the driveshaft centre bearing, which sits in the carrier. The signs of rust around the bearing do indicate a problem here. The shaft will need to be removed to check the bearing properly and removing the shaft will necessitate losing a slight amount of gearbox oil.
The bearing is held in the carrier by two bolts with offset heads. The bolts are loosened off by using an 11mm socket to undo the nuts on the gearbox side of the carrier. After undoing the driveshaft centre nut and then disconnecting the lower swivel on the offside, the driveshaft can be removed and the bearing may need tapping to persuade it out of the carrier.
Once out, the bearing can be felt for any roughness. The new bearing is available separately but you may find it better value to get a replacement shaft complete with bearing and CV joint which is available for around £54. This would also cover another possible reason for the rumble, which is a problem with the CV joint.