Dana 44 vs Dana 35: Which Axle Works Best For Your Car?

Are you confused about Dana 44 vs Dana 35? Don’t fret! I’ve simplified the comparison so that anyone can understand, from their durability to applications.

Read to the end to get the best tips to pick the right axle for your buddy.

Dana 44 vs Dana 35? Signs To Identify 

dana 44 vs dana 35

There are some ways to tell Dana 44 and Dana 35 apart. First, check the shape of the diff cover: Dana 44 is oval, while Dana 35 is mostly round.

Second, count the bolts on the cover: Dana 44 has 10 or 12 bolts, while Dana 35 has 10. Next, see the axle shafts: Dana 44 is thicker than Dana 35.

Also, look at the ring gear size: Dana 44 has a bigger ring gear. Finally, note the weight-bearing capacity: Dana 44 can handle more weight and stress.

That is the basis of Dana 35 identification and Dana 44 axle identification. You should note or remember these signs to spot the difference between them more easily.

Dana 44 vs Dana 35 Differences

Short answer: Dana 44 axles are more robust and reliable, making them suitable for heavy-duty applications.

On the other hand, Dana 35 is better suited for lighter vehicles and regular driving situations, where lower stress is expected.

Besides, both Dana 35 and Dana 44 axles can feature C-clip axles, a design that uses C-shaped clips to secure the axle shafts, providing easy installation.

Regular inspections & maintenance are crucial to keep C-clip axles in your vehicle functioning properly and ensuring safety.

Below are the details of the Dana 35 vs 44 comparisons.

Strength and Durability

The most outstanding when comparing Dana 35 vs Dana 44 lies in its strength.

Thicker Components

Dana 44 has thicker axle tubes, differential housing, and other critical parts.

The increased thickness enhances its ability to withstand higher levels of stress and pressure, making it more durable under heavy loads.

Larger Axle Shafts

The Dana 44 is larger in diameter compared to Dana 35.

The larger size increases the shaft’s strength and reduces the risk of bending or snapping when subjected to greater torque or weight.

Additional Bolts

More bolts than Dana 35 secure the differential cover of Dana 44.

The extra bolts provide added structural integrity, reducing the likelihood of leaks or damage in demanding conditions.

Common Applications

Dana 44 is commonly used in larger vehicles, trucks, SUVs, and heavy equipment because of its durability. It’s great for off-road adventures and towing.

Meanwhile, Dana 35 is found in smaller vehicles, like compact SUVs, used for regular on-road driving.

Off-Road Performance

Dana 44 features a stronger and more substantial differential assembly when compared with the Dana 35 differential.

The component is crucial in distributing power to the wheels and can better handle the stresses of off-road driving and towing.

Hence, if you love off-road driving and face rough terrain, Dana 44 is the better choice. Its durability & strength allow it to handle the stress of off-road trails.

Dana 35 may not hold up and could be a limitation during extreme off-road use.

Weight and Torque Handling

Dana 44 has a larger ring gear, contributing to its increased torque-carrying capacity. The larger ring gear helps with better power transfer and handling of heavy loads.

Therefore, Dana 44 can handle more weight and torque than Dana 35.

If you need to carry heavy loads or tow trailers, Dana 44 is the more suitable option. Dana 35 may struggle with heavier loads and might not be ideal for towing.

Upgrading Options

When it comes to upgrading, Dana 44 offers more possibilities.

Its stronger build allows various modifications and enhancements to suit specific needs, such as adding Chromoly axle shafts, lockers, or stronger gears for off-road enthusiasts seeking a rugged drivetrain. 

On the other hand, Dana 35 has limited upgrade options due to its weaker construction. You might not be able to add some of those special features like with Dana 44.

Usage Considerations

In situations like driving on rough and bumpy roads, pulling trailers, or carrying heavy things, the Dana 44 is better because it is stronger and can handle these tasks easily.

For everyday use or small cars, Dana 35 is enough. It can handle regular driving without any problems.

Important Note: 

One common concern with any axle, including Dana 35 and Dana 44, is the possibility of having broken wheel studs while driving, which can lead to wheel detachment and pose a significant safety hazard. 

Therefore, ensuring regular inspections and maintenance of these axles is crucial to prevent such problems and maintain a smooth and safe driving experience.

Besides, drivers should also pay attention to  vibrations through the car’s floor, which could indicate potential issues with the axle housing.

Tips To Choose The Best Automotive Axle

jeep dana 35

Know Your Vehicle’s Specifications

Understand your vehicle’s axle requirements, like size and weight capacity, to choose the most suitable axle for a safe and efficient ride.

You can find it in the owner’s manual or the online version of the vehicle’s specifications when you know the vehicle’s make, model, and year.

Research Different Axle Types

Learn about various available axle options to make an informed decision that meets your vehicle’s needs.

Axles come in multiple configurations and sizes, each designed for specific purposes and vehicle types. For instance, if you have a Jeep, you can look for more about Jeep Dana 35.

Consider Your Driving Needs & Consult With A Trusted Mechanic

Consider how you use your vehicle – off-road, regular commuting, or towing and choose an axle that matches those requirements.

Seek advice from a reliable mechanic who can guide you toward the best axle choice for your vehicle and driving habits.

Check Manufacturer Recommendations & Read Reviews 

Look in the vehicle’s manual or ask the manufacturer for their axle suggestions. Following their recommendations can optimize your vehicle’s performance and avoid potential issues.

Look for customer reviews and ask fellow car owners for recommendations to gain insights on the performance and reliability of different axles.

Evaluate Budget & Assess Warranty 

Consider your budget and compare axle prices. Read reviews to get the best value for your money without compromising quality.

Check the warranty offered by axle manufacturers and the availability of customer support in case of any issues or concerns.


what jeeps have dana 44 axles

Dana 30 vs 35, what are the differences?

Dana 30 axles have a more rounded shape, while Dana 35 axles have a more oval shape.

Besides, when looking at Dana 30 identification, you can see Dana 30 is stronger, better for bigger vehicles, and has larger parts.

Dana 35 is weaker, suited for lighter vehicles, and has smaller pieces.

However, for those seeking to enhance the strength of their axles, aftermarket Chromoly shafts can be considered as an upgrade option.

What Jeeps have Dana 44 axles?

Jeep Wrangler Rubicon and some special editions have Dana 44 axles.

How many axles does a Jeep Wrangler have?

2 axles. One axle is in the front, and the other is in the rear.

What axles are in my Jeep JK Sahara?

The front axle is Dana 30, and the rear axle is Dana 44.


That is all the deets of the Dana 44 vs Dana 35 topic. With easy observation, you can tell which is which.

In short, the Dana 44 is a stronger and more durable axle, ideal for heavy-duty and off-road use, while the Dana 35 is a lighter axle used in smaller vehicles for regular driving purposes.

 I recommend you note down your vehicle’s intended use and load requirements, and the decision will be made effortlessly.

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