97 S-10 4 Wheel Drive Not Working

Tiny
GRUBBERS10
  • MEMBER
  • 1997 ALL OTHER MAKES ALL OTHER MODELS
I recently bought a 97 S10, supposedly the 4 wheel drive worked properly, however with a recent snow I quickly learned that it infact does not. I have the electric transfer, with the buttons on my dash. When I attempt to switch into 4Hi I can hear a quiet click like something has happened, but then the front tires still dont spin. When I try to put it into 4Lo there is a little bit of a louder click and I can feel the truck actually jolt a bit as though it is engaged. However, just like in Hi, only the back tires are spinning. Is there any chance you might be able to relate to this problem, or point me in the right direction? Unfortunately, this is my first 4WD so I am clueless on this problem. Any help you could provide I would be extremely greatful.
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Saturday, March 3rd, 2007 AT 4:32 PM

9 Replies

Tiny
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Hi,
i just want to confirm all buttons on the switch light up when the vehicle is started and that they all work when you try and engage them, if they do, have someone go outside with you, turn the ignition to run or start the truck, and get under near the transfer case while one person pushes range button, listen to the motor on the transfer case, if its making noise and you can feel it engage, this is a very simple fix, there is a switch on the right side of the front differential, make sure its not unplugged, if it is plugged in, go get a new one, this switch lock the front diff in, as long as all other conditions are met as I stated befor, parts are like 13 bucks
jim
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Saturday, March 3rd, 2007 AT 4:50 PM
Tiny
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Hi, thank you so much for getting back to me about the 4WD troubles I am experiencing. I grabbed my buddy and took the truck out to test like you suggested. When turning the truck on the 4Hi and 4Lo buttons both light up for the first moments I turne the truck on (and each light when pressed). I was able to determine that the transfer case is engaging (you could feel and hear the click when touching the transfer case). So then I checked for the plug in the differential. The plug was in. The wires seemed securely fastened, but the clip seemed like it would only half fasten. (One side seemed fully clicked in, while the other side seemed to be less secure.) But it was unable to be pushed in any further. According to what you were saying it seems that I will need a new switch/plug for the differential. Do you know what the technical name for this part might be?

Also, I was reading prior posts and there has been a lot of talk about people pointing to "automatic hub locks" and "actuators". Any thoughts on this? Would you know how I might test to see if the hubs might be faulty?

I appreciate your help and patience immensely.
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Saturday, March 3rd, 2007 AT 6:44 PM
Tiny
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The part is called a front axle switch, its about 12-14 bucks from napa auto parts or I think 30 from the dealer,
you have just diagnosed your vehicle like a pro and it didnt cost you a dime,

if you have a test light you could do the same test and check for power to the switch and pull the switch out and watch it, its like a neutral safety switch when you look at it, this is a very common failure on these trucks, I just did one on an 04 last week, let me know what happens

good job
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Saturday, March 3rd, 2007 AT 7:03 PM
Tiny
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You are the man, and the help is very much appreciated. Just to make sure that I am on the same page with you.

Once again, thanks a ton
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Saturday, March 3rd, 2007 AT 8:08 PM
Tiny
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It looks like the right one but still wrong name, gm says its a front axle switch check this out

dont forget some feedback bro

the switches come in two or three pron and I think yours is two, I just dont want to say the one you sent is right but it looks like it i, dont wanna give bad info, just tell the parts guy way you want he can figure it out
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Saturday, March 3rd, 2007 AT 8:49 PM
Tiny
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Thanks for the continued help, I dont mean to continue to bother you but I feel like we're on the verge of solving this! :) I got under the truck and looked at what you described, I THINK I located it. I took my digital camera out there with me and was able to snap a few shots of what I think might be the switch. Can I get your email and send you the picture to make sure we are on the same page?
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Sunday, March 4th, 2007 AT 4:35 PM
Tiny
CHEVYII
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YOU CAN POST IT HERE, RIGHT UNER THE POST BOX IT SAYA UP;OAD PIC, A NEW BOX WILL OPEN, PIC WHAT YOU WANT HIT UPLOAD AND WHEN THE PIC COMES UP THERE WILL BE A BUTTON UNDER IT SAYS STANDARD HIT THAT WHALA YOUR DOME HIY SUBMIT
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Sunday, March 4th, 2007 AT 5:54 PM
Tiny
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Thank you for your patience, I didnt realize I could post a picture on here. This picture is of what I think you might be talking about. This red plug is located to the right of the differential and plugs into what im finding to be called the "shift housing", indirectly plugging it into the differential. This plug is infact 2 prong. In this picture I have it unplugged. Could you tell by this picture if this is exactly what we're discussing.


http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/62139_switch_1.jpg




http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/62139_switch3_1.jpg

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Sunday, March 4th, 2007 AT 9:43 PM
Tiny
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You got it man, go get some parts and fix it, jim
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Monday, March 5th, 2007 AT 5:35 AM

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