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Unread 08-07-2019, 10:14 AM   #1
Not Yet Wild
Club Car
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Victoria area, BC, CANADA
Posts: 2
Default Club Car XRT 1550 rear differential failure

My 2010 XRT 1550 (250 hrs) does not (yet) have the failed rear differential, but I came across the posts on this forum discussing that issue while researching something else. I am wondering if there is anything that I can do to prevent/delay the onset of this problem.

I could change the fluid more often, but without knowing the details of the failure mode it’s difficult to know if that would make any difference.

I’ve read a post here from DCUnger stating that the instructions with the revised rear differential internals indicate to add 40 oz of fluid, which is twice the specified amount. Hmm…could I really help the situation by just adding more fluid to the differential? The first issue would be whether it would be appropriate to use that much fluid in the original design, like in my unit.

The second issue is that the extra amount seems contradictory to what Club Car still specifies.

In an article on (new forum members can't post links in posts), Club Car says that for 2012 the XR 1550 got a “Rear Differential Upgrade - The vehicle’s new differential is designed to improve wear life by 30 percent or more, which reduces the frequency of maintenance.”

So, are the replacement parts in Club Car AM1301301 the reworked components from the 2012 upgrade? If they are, then the 40 oz of fluid doesn’t seem to make sense. The specification section for the latest manual for the Carryall 1500/1700 and XRT 1550/1550 SE that I could find online still shows 20 oz for the rear differential. On the third page it shows “This manual effective June 2015”.

Of course, it could be that the parts in AM1301301 are a new design post-2015 and a recent manual would state 40 oz as the fill for the rear differential.

Does anyone have a manual later than 2015?
Can anyone post the instructions that come along with AM1301301?
Has anyone compared the parts in AM1301301 to the OEM parts in a 2012+ vehicle?
Has anyone had this failure in a 2012+ vehicle?

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Unread 08-08-2019, 01:41 PM   #2
dliw enoG
Fairtax4me's Avatar
Club Car
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Charlottesburg Va
Posts: 2,206
Default Re: Club Car XRT 1550 rear differential failure

Call David Hicks at Revolution Golf Cars. He's our resident Club Car expert and knows the ins and outs of all the XRT differentials. The early models used a clutch type setup that the clutches wear out. I believe the newer ones are a totally different design and use different fluid.
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Unread 08-09-2019, 09:38 PM   #3
Not Yet Wild
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Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Victoria area, BC, CANADA
Posts: 2
Default Re: Club Car XRT 1550 rear differential failure

Thanks for the pointer to David Hicks. I spoke with him this morning. He was of the opinion that there wasnít anything that could be done as far as preventive maintenance to avoid the problem.

Changing the rear differential and transmission oil is easy and inexpensive, though, so Iím going to do that at the same time as the front diff (100 hrs vs 300 hrs).

Without knowing the failure cause itís impossible to know what could be done, if anything, to avoid the problem. Itís also difficult to gauge how common a problem this is. That is, at say 500 hrs of operating time, how many machines with this differential design will have suffered a failure? Only Club Car has an idea about that, because they know how many replacements have been sold. The fact that the design has been changed tells us something, though.

It will probably take a while to get any feedback on this, so Iíll document what Iíve done for someone researching this in the future. Then Iíll forget about this until the diff in my machine fails (and that might never happen).

( to insert a picture? Can't see a way. Have to do an attachment)
I was looking at a couple of versions of the Ownerís Manual for the XRT 1550. From the pictures in the earlier version (and from looking at the actual differential housing), it looks like part of the 2012 rework of the diff was to take the existing housing, invert it and put a new drain hole at the new bottom of the housing. The wording is vague, but the intent is for the user to still put in 20 oz. of fluid, not fill up to the fill hole.

Look at the second attachment for a later version of that section from the manual. Iíll guess in response to people doing just that, now theyíve explicitly said not to fill until the level reaches the fill hole, but rather ďFill by volumeĒ, and that volume is still 20 oz.

I was trying to figure out why the housing appears to have been inverted. Could it be that it isnít possible to put 20 oz. into the housing when the fill hole is in the original position, and that was the cause of the failures? I tested this hypothesis today, but it failed. When I replaced the fluid I first removed the fill plug and the fluid was right at that level. I drained the fluid and measured it and got 650 ml (thatís 22 fluid ounces for you folks in the USA). In the interests of being technically complete Iíll say that the machine was parked facing ďdownhillĒ on a typically sloped garage floor, so that would add a very small amount to the volume.

I didnít have enough data to warrant doing anything different, so I filled back to the level indicator plug.

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Unread 08-13-2019, 04:01 PM   #4
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Location: Golf Car Capital of The World... Augusta, Georgia
Posts: 9,598
Default Re: Club Car XRT 1550 rear differential failure

Originally Posted by ChrisLowe View Post

I didnít have enough data to warrant doing anything different, so I filled back to the level indicator plug.


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