4x4 questions

1032 Views 8 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  BBA
Hi all. I Recently bought a 1997 Ram 1500 4x4 with a 5.2L automatic, 188k miles.
So far I like the truck (except the mileage...13) I don't know if the 4x4 is working properly.
I was unsure of the correct way to engage it, so I would stop, put in neutral and pull back on the shifter into 4 hi and the 4x4 light would usually come on, then when I would accelerate, I would hear and feel a "big bang", then grinding noise. When I put it into 4 low, no problem, no bang...sweet! Freaked out, by the "big bang theory", I started to research it. I checked vaccum, seemed good and consistent. Opened up the axle at the actuator, the shift fork was perfect as was the shift collar, and the actuator worked good. Replaced the small amount of gear oil lost, and added about two cups of trans. fluid to the transfer case. Had an old mech. buddy help check the TC as I attempted to shift, his conclusion was a bad TC. Another big Ram buddy of mine said... "don't shift while stopped, go about 25 or 30 mph and put it in". I did it and it seems to work perfect!?!! How do I now make sure it really is in 4x4 and why does it work on the fly and not stopped? Will the gears not sink up while stopped?
Thanks for reading my novel, I just like to get all the history out there.
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My 95 doesn't like being put into 4wd at a standstill, whereas my 98 doesn't seem to mind. They both do not like to release at the axle disconnect at road speed, they let go after a few miles, hard, it's like taking my foot off the brakes. The 95 gets all grindy if I engage at a standstill, once I start rolling. I can engage anywhere up to about 60 mph, no problem, as long as the road is straight and foot is off the throttle., havent tried faster.Firm steady pressure, no limp wristed hand on the lever, but I don't pull it in like it's been hit by a sledgehammer, either. dead stop +- about 1/2 mph in and out of low. make sure all your tires are the same size and profile, if you're getting any grinding while shifting at speed, 2h to 4h. Shut the motor off and then put into park or neut if you get hung up in trans case neut, resist the temptation to reef it into park to stop things from grinding!!!
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Usually done when prepping to pass on slop in the hammer lane, Yeah, that was me who did that to you, and left you in a cloud of snow!!! Remember, I'm the guy who just loves my pizza cutter tires, great in the hammerlane in snow!!!
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