1997 Dodge Ram 4 Wheel Drive

Tiny
MARCUSJ011891
  • MEMBER
  • 1997 DODGE RAM
  • V8
  • 4WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 162,000 MILES
Why should I shift my truck into neutral before engaging the 4 wheel drive? The other day I accidently shifted into 4 wheel drive without being in neutral. In this case should I be worried if I tore something up in my truck?
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Sunday, April 11th, 2010 AT 1:26 AM

7 Replies

Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Actually, I believe the vehicle has shift on the fly 4wd. Basically you can go from 2wd to 4wd while moving. However, you must stop and put the vehicle in park or neutral (I can't remember) when shifting to 4wd lo range.

When you shifted it to 4 hi, did it make a noise (grinding)?

Let me know.
Joe
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Monday, April 12th, 2010 AT 12:27 PM
Tiny
MARCUSJ011891
  • MEMBER
What happened was I tried to shift the truck in 4 lo and then when I shifted to drive the light never came on. Without shifting the truck back into neutral I pulled the 4 wheel drive lever to make sure it was in 4 lo and then when I gave it a tug it proceeded to shift into 4 lo while my truck was still in drive. While I was stopped, my truck was still in drive when I shifted into 4 lo and it didnt make any noises really except I heard the 4 lo engage as normal. The only time it has ever made a grinding sound was another incident when I was trying to shift out of 4 lo it grinded but I was stopped and my truck was in neutral at that point in time. Im just paranoid I guess because I just bought the truck and I dont want to tear anything up in it. Im sorry if the way I am explaining the situation is confusing but I cant figure out how to put it in words.
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Monday, April 12th, 2010 AT 3:36 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Actually I understand very clearly. What you did shouldn't hurt anything. As far as the grinding you heard in the past, come to a complete stop, place the vehicle in park and then shift from 4lo to high range. Placing it in park will prevent the transmission from spining when you hit neutral on the transfer case. Therefore it shouldn't grind for you.

Again, you didn't do anything wrong. It will be fine.

Let me know if you have other questions.

Joe
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Monday, April 12th, 2010 AT 7:28 PM
Tiny
MARCUSJ011891
  • MEMBER
Thanks for all your help involving the 4 wheel drive. I do have one more question. The other day I noticed sort of a squeaking or more of a creaking sound in the front end when I was turning the wheel. I also felt it pulling in the steering wheel while I was making a turn. What could cause this?
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Monday, April 12th, 2010 AT 11:56 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
It could be a few things. First, make sure the ball joints are properly greased. Also, check the sway bar bushings to make sure they are not dried out or cracked.

Let me know what you find.

Joe
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Tuesday, April 13th, 2010 AT 6:58 AM
Tiny
MARCUSJ011891
  • MEMBER
Although I havent had the parts you mentioned looked at, I did check the power steering fluid level and it was way low. I think this might be the problem but if the fluid was low would that cause it to do what it is doing?
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Tuesday, April 13th, 2010 AT 9:10 AM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
It would cause a noise. Not a creaking but rather a screaching.
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Tuesday, April 13th, 2010 AT 9:12 AM

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