Frequently Asked Questions: Eaton ELocker

Find answers to common Eaton ELocker questions here. 

How do I activate my ELocker?

ELockers are activated by a dash (or console) mounted switch; included with all new ELockers. Any suitable 12VDC (or 24VDC for military designs) switch will work. The wiring harness with a relay switch, chassis electrical system protecting diode, and fuse is included with all aftermarket performance ELocker differentials.

What is the warranty on my Eaton Performance differential?

Eaton Performance differentials (including Eaton ELocker, Eaton ELocker4, Eaton Posi, Detroit Truetrac, and Detroit Locker) are warranted for one year against manufacturer defects. The full warranty document can be found here.


Can the ELocker be engaged “on the fly”?

While technically, you can engage it “on the fly”; you must be careful that the wheel speed difference (between the right and left wheel) remains under a 50 rpm. Eaton strongly suggests engaging your ELocker ONLY when the vehicle speed is below 5 mph. While ELockers are designed to accommodate harsh use, continuous abuse and extreme speed engagement will greatly decrease the life of the ELocker and is not covered under warranty. Keep in mind that when the electrical signal is received by the ELocker, it immediately tries to lock and match wheel speeds. The differential must immediately snap (accelerate) the slow speed wheel, axle shaft, and brake component mass (weight) to the same speed as the free-spinning wheel. This is not only harsh on the differential; it is extremely harsh on the axle shaft.

Are Eaton ELockers rebuildable?

Yes. Depending upon your needs, several types of service kits are available including gear service kits, locking mechanism kits, stator / armature kits, and a universal wiring kit. Most service items are listed in the Eaton Performance Differential catalog and in our online product selector. For specific component questions and identification, call the Eaton Performance hotline. 

What locking mode(s) does an ELocker have?

The Eaton ELocker is an open differential with electronically controlled locking features. While the design of the locking components varies between models and generations of designs, they all operate by locking one of the side gears to the differential case. When the ELocker is engaged via the dash switch, the electromagnetic mechanism fully locks, sending 100% of the available torque to both wheels equally.  

Can I purchase just the ELocker wiring harness? 

Yes, the ELocker wiring harness is universal to fit any vehicle, and can be purchased separately. 

Is a relay necessary for proper ELocker operation?

All Eaton ELockers include a relay in the wire harness which should be used. While the current requirements of the differentials range from 5-10 amps, installers are well advised to utilize the relay to increase switch life and provide more stable current to the differential electronics. 

Are there any special installation instructions for the ELocker?

The simple answer is, “a few”. All Eaton ELockers require drilling a hole through the axle housing or carrier (see instruction card included with all new ELockers or the Eaton Performance website). Select models of ELockers also require the use of non-OEM bearing sizes, such as the Dana 30 and 35 models. No other “special” installation is required. 

What type of gear oil should I use with the ELocker?

  • Most gear oils are sufficient: a quality, petroleum-mineral based oil is recommended.
  • Synthetic oils and friction modifiers can also be used, but are not necessary.
  • In cold weather conditions, a lower viscosity gear oil (equivalent to API GL-5 75W-90) is recommended.