Evo 8/9 Rear Differential Removal How-To

This is a how-to based on the steps described in this post on evom, with pictures – way more straight-forward than the video I saw on youtube. Do all work at your own risk.


  • Heavy-duty jack & stands (or Quick jack, mini lift, any of those will make this job way easier.
  • Towel
  • Drain pan
  • Axle popper/pry bar
  • 12mm wrench x2
  • Whatever wrenches you need to get the exhaust off
  • 14mm wrenches (rear sway bar), 17mm socket/wrench (various bolts on diff), 19mm bolt (two carrier bolts), 24mm socket (rear diff drain)
  • Long zip ties

This process was surprisingly straightforward – coming from me, that says a lot:

1. Raise the car up as high as possible. The higher you can get the car, the easier it will be down the line. If you can’t get the car up very high, I don’t know how viable this will be. I have a Quick Jack 5000slx, which made life pretty easy here.

2. Drain the rear differential. It’s a 24mm socket on the bottom, 17mm on the top. Always loosen to the top first. Let the diff drain, and close it back up.

3. Unbolt the sway bar endlinks. I have a Whiteline 24mm, but with my stock endlinks which are 14mm. Once unbolted, you should be able to tilt the rear sway bar down:

4. Unbolt the axle back portion of the exhaust. This will obviously depend on your exhaust setup, I have Buschur slip-fit with magnaflow mufflers, hooked up in the back to the stock hangers:

5. Pop the axles loose. You can use a pry bar, I chose to use axle poppers from Amazon, which were pretty nice. Just get them loose/out for now.

6. Unbolt the driveshaft. This uses 12mm bolts on both sides, will spin unless you hold the other side. Take note of the order of the bolts – the bolt comes in from the front to the back, held on by washer and nut in the back. You do not need to mark these, as the driveshaft is independently balanced (don’t quote me on that). Have a jackstand ready to hold up the diff.

7. There are 3 17mm bolts in the back that hold the diff on to the mustache bar. You will likely need a wrench to do this. I used these, which are really nice – 17mm 6pt ratcheting wrench. Don’t think I nabbed a picture of this, but they’re just the 3 bolts on the back of the rear diff.

8. Get a jack under the diff.

9. Remove the two carrier bolts on the diff. They’re 19mm, one on each side, and I use a breaker to get them loose and the impact to drill them out. Make sure the jack is holding the diff.

10. Slowly lower the differential, making sure it is balanced on the jack. The position of my jack from the pictures wasn’t bad. Get one side of the axle fully out, and zip tie it up. These guys can twist a lot, but if you’ve got the car high enough, there’s not a ton of twisting needed. The other side will then come out easily, and zip tie that up as well. Lower the jack all the way, and it’s out.

11. Send off to Team Rip to get that bad-ass rear diff in your Evo! As you can tell from the pics, Jon@TRE installed a sight glass on mine long ago, when I refreshed the Cusco, but now the Cusco is coming out for an OS Giken…


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