4 wheel drive not working

Tiny
RANJO
  • 1997 FORD F-150
  • 100,000 MILES

I have an on the floor 4 wheel drive shift lever. I can not move it forward or back, it will move side to side. Can not engage any 4 wheel drive. Is this a totally manual shifting application or is there some type of electronic switch that controls this? Tried both forward and reverse, it won't move. Is this model totally manual shift (no electronic or vacuum? I live in northern Wisconsin and maybe the linkage is frozen due to rust etc.

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Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011 AT 2:39 AM

41 Replies

Tiny
JJONES99F150
  • MEMBER

It has all of the same issues as the guys truck above. I do live in Ohio and it is RUSTY so I do have a feeling my linkage is froze up. The guy I got it from said that he always had to force it into 4wd so I'm hoping that he didn't bend anything.

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:01 AM
Tiny
JJONES99F150
  • MEMBER

I got under my truck and like I thought it was very rusted. So I sprayed it down with pb blaster and wait a few hours. Then tried it again and it went right into 4wd.

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:01 AM
Tiny
RANJO
  • MEMBER

I have an on the floor 4 wheel drive shift lever. I can not move it forward or back, it will move side to side. Can not engage any 4 wheel drive. Is this a totally manual shifting application or is there some type of electronic switch that controls this?

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:01 AM (Merged)
Tiny
EGGMAN1980
  • 1997 FORD F-150

Drive Train Axles Bearings problem
1997 Ford F150 V8 Four Wheel Drive Automatic 199918 miles

Hello,
I have a 1997 Ford F-150. Today we got our first snow and discovered that the 4X4 was not engaging. The 4H and 4L light would come on but no 4x4. When switching into 4L I would hear a clunk and then when pulling foward it was geared down but only the rear tires would spin. In 4H turning a corner every once in a while I would hear one clunk but nothing would happen. 4H nothing would happen. I switched back and fourth a few times and the last time it clicked in the dash 5 or 6 times and the light went out. Not neither 4H or 4L light will come on and couldnt hear any clicking or clunking under the truck. I have checked fuses and all appear to be good. I was hoping for it to be an easy fix since this is my first year to push snow. Can anyone please help me?

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
RACEFAN966
  • EXPERT
  • 5,128 POSTS

Sound like the 4x4 shift motor on the back of the transfer case. Here is what it looks like and it is very easy to replace. If you have a digital multi meter we can run a test on it if you like let me know what you would like to do ok.


http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/249564_767749_1.jpg

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
EGGMAN1980
  • MEMBER

Well I replaced the Transfer case motor today. Still no 4X4.. Although the clicking behind the dash has stopped and the transfer case appears to be engaging. I was told that it could be the 2wd and 4wd vaccum solenoids on the passenger side firewall. Which is wierd because I have been told by numerous people that Ford doesnt use vaccum lines in the 4wd system. Im really confused now.

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
RACEFAN966
  • EXPERT
  • 5,128 POSTS

Ok so we fixed one problem but still have more. Ford does use vacuum set up to engage the front diff. Now the old motor may have shorted and taken out another components. Ok all that is left is the buttons and the GEM Module that controls all that kind of stuff and more. Do you have any way to pull codes from the gem? It is a different scanner then the OBD2 scanner. Here is the vacuum diagram for the front diff. Now keep in mind that the GEM controls all this when it know's the transfer case is engaged so check the vacuum lines and routing and make sure there are no leaks or broken lines if not then we will have to check the GEM. If you have access to an NGS (Next generation scan tester) this will make it a lot easier to check it. Let me know where you would like to go from here.


http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/249564_Graphic_12.jpg

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JASONSTITH
  • 1997 FORD F-150

Drive Train Axles Bearings problem
1997 Ford F150 V8 Four Wheel Drive Automatic 97,800 miles

A while ago my 4wd would only work sometimes. Now it doesn't work at all. I found out that there is an actuator that you can zip tie down when you need to put it in 4wd. I think the problem is that the hubs won't lock, because they're vacuum actuated. Do you think I have a vacuum leak somewhere that might be causing this? Would it be hard to install manual locking hubs?

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
  • 68,244 POSTS

It could be either of the two. If you have electric shift 4wd, start by checking if the actuator on the transfer case is getting power. If it is, remove the actuator and confirm that it is working. If that is okay, then you most likely have a vacuum leak to the front axle.

Check that and let me know what you find.
Joe

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JASONSTITH
  • MEMBER

The actuator is working. If it is depressed after I use the switch to engage the 4wd then the 4wd does work.

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
  • 68,244 POSTS

Check for vacuum leaks at the front axle. If the actuator is good, then the axle must not be engaging.

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
OPMRAVCING
  • 1997 FORD F-150
  • 6 CYL
  • 4WD
  • MANUAL
  • 187,000 MILES

I have a 97 F-150 with a 4.2 v6 and a 5 speed manual tranny. I shift into 4 hi and nothing happens, no dash light or clicking in the dash like it used to. The same happens when trying 4 lo. When I start the truck, the indicator lights all light up including the 4x4 light and goes out like normal. I've visually checked the fuses in the cab and under the hood, also checked the vaccuum solenoids behind the battery and they are connected with no corrosion. Went under the truck and the shaft is engaged and turning when shifted into 4wd. I'm lost, please help, we just got 2' of snow and I can't even get out of my driveway. That's pathetic! Thanx in advance. Ray

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
  • 68,244 POSTS

Make sure there is power to the actuator on the transfer case. If there is, remove the actuator and check for operation.

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
DOGMAN_ALMONT
  • 1997 FORD F-150

Drive Train Axles Bearings problem
1997 Ford F150 V8 Four Wheel Drive Automatic 132000 miles

I recently bought from a local dealership a 97 f-150. The saleman never really said why it was so cheap. I later found out that it's because it won't go into 4wd. I asked a friend who has only driven ford's, and he told me with out a doubt that it's the accuator on the front of the front axel that's the problem. So I bought an accuator installed that and that's not the problem. It still won't go into 4wd. It's a manual shift lever on the floor not the dial kind. I can move the lever side to side approxmitely 5-6" and back and forth about a 1/2". I have checked all fuse to make sure it wasn't that. My Question is what else could it be?

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
BMRFIXIT
  • EXPERT
  • 19,488 POSTS

The level have to move back and forth in is not enough

this is what happen the pivot bolt is rusted on,
not allowing you to place the transfer case into 4x4

under the truck locate the level,
disconnect it and remove the bolt (you may have to remove a bracket for a better clearance )
clean it, if the plastic sleeve no good replace it

you can try WD40 on it too it may or maynot work
good luck

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
KASLESEN
  • 1997 FORD F-150
  • 4.6L
  • V8
  • 4WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 100,000 MILES

I had the transfer case range sensor go out. I replaced it but I still can not get the front end to engage in 4wd. The frond drive shaft engages but the diff in the front does not. The solenoids are not receiving the ground signal from the gem that they are supposed to. The wires leading to the position sensor are the correct voltage from what I have read. I don't know if there is another way to test if its the gem or if there is another relay somewhere that could be the problem. Help, no one can seem to answer this. Its MSOF by the way not electric, 4x4 light is not burnt out, and low range light works when put in low.

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JSAYS
  • MEMBER

HI, Good Ole Ford 4wd issue, been their many times. Lets start with the basics. 1. In the junction box fuse/relay panel which is under the left side of the dash their is a fuse, fuse number 23 10 amp check that fuse to make sure its good. If the fuse is good you will need to test for voltage at the 4x4 solenoids. The white/light blue is the power wire, so if you have a test light or a voltmeter, make sure you have 12 volts at that connector. Let me know what you find!

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
KASLESEN
  • MEMBER

Tested fuse in and out of panel. Its good. Solenoids are getting constant 12v they are supposed to but do not receive ground signal from gem when shifted into 4x4 in order to enable them. Haven't bothered to check for a pneumatic leak until I fix the electrical issue.

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JSAYS
  • MEMBER

The best way to test the GEM is to plug in a scan tool and see if you have communication. Looks like the GEM is powered from a fuse that runs through the 4WD high light. I believe you said that the 4WD high light is working? If so you may have a bad GEM module, or a open in the 4x4 solenoid ground wire (red). First I would see if you can get someone to scan the GEM, if not you could maybe try a used module and see if that works. These modules were fairly common in their day. The only thing throwing me off is the GEM is responding to you putting the t-case in 4wd low, ie by grounding the 4wd low light circuit turning the light on. The 4WD indicator switch (on left side of transmission) is in charge of telling the GEM what range of 4wd you want. I think that's the switch you replaced? Besides the t-case clutch relay that's pretty much the whole system. So the two questions, does the 4WD HIGH light come on when you engage 4wd high? 2. Was the "range sensor" you replaced on the side of the transmission?

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)
Tiny
KASLESEN
  • MEMBER

No 4wd hi light at all aside from flashing on at startup so I know the bulb is good. Yes it was the range sensor that I replaced. I also did a voltage test on the battery saver relay connected to the gem and it came back positive in lower right pin and full ground in upper right pin. This is typically an easy test to see if you have a bad gem. Even a replacement gem of ebay is $150 so I dont really want to spend that for a test. I have an obd2 tester and its not throwing any codes but I dont know if it communicates with the gem or not (autozone tool). I do have a shop I can use that has the $3000 scan tool its just going to be into next week before I can get to it. The 2 wires going from the gem to the position sensor send 5v and 12v. If there was a ground fault wouldnt they ground out? Not understanding how voltage can remain functional with a faulty ground as the sensors job is to ground out the cables depending on what position the transfer case is in.I told you this is a tough one. Im not one to usually ask questions, I can usually google anything but I am stuck on this one and out of ideas.

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Monday, January 30th, 2017 AT 2:05 AM (Merged)

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