Originally Posted by drew4008
Here's a pic I took of it:
As I mentioned though, I can only seem to get one option to work. See how it says there's 4 different ways you can have it? All I can get to work (or at least seemingly) are two of them. When it's all the way down, it's off. When I pull up, the "part time" light comes on and the car gets noticeably louder. The stick won't shift to the left or right at all, from either the down or up position. It only comes up one "click" as well (ie. when I pull up and get the light to come on, I cannot pull up any further to get it to go into the next mode).
Ok, that is the same type of 4x4 system I have. With the lever all the way down (forward-most position) your Liberty is in 2wd. Pull it up to 4Hi and you're in 4x4 "4Hi" which is what you would use on low-traction dirt, snow or ice-covered roads. You can shift back and forth between 2wd and 4Hi while driving at any safe speed. Your Liberty's 4x4 system (4Hi and 4Lo) is a "part-time" 4x4 system which is suitable ONLY for low-traction surfaces and should never
be used on dry pavement or when the road is simply wet from rain... no matter how heavy the rain is.
Next down is Neutral which you'd use if you were flat-towing your TJ behind another vehicle.
4Lo is for low speed offroad use only... like when the trail is so difficult that 4Hi would have you driving too fast for conditions. If you can drive fast enough in 4Lo that you start hearing a loud high-pitched whine from the transfer case, shift back into 4Hi or slow down. You have to be stopped or at a dead-slow crawl (any slower and you'd be stopped) to shift into or out of 4Lo. A quick firm (!) pull is normally required to get it shifted into 4Lo. Occasional grinding while shifting into 4Lo is normal since it is an unsynchronized gear.
Part-time vs. full-time. Full-time is a mode that is optionally at extra cost available in the Liberty, Cherokee, or Grand Cherokee. It is suitable for all road surfaces... dry, wet, snow, ice, dirt, whatever. It is commonly used on the highway in bad weather. Full-time allows the front and rear tires to rotate at different rpms like is needed during left or right turns... the front tires rotate faster than the rear tires do during any turn.
Part-time 4x4 is what your Liberty came with... again, its two 4x4 modes (4Hi and 4Lo) are only suitable for low-traction road surfaces. Why? Because a part-time 4x4 system like yours mechanically locks the front and rear axles together so the front tires can't rotate faster than the rear tires during a turn. On a low-traction surface like an offroad trail or snow/ice covered street, that's no big deal. But if you were in 4x4 on a dry street, your Liberty would start bucking and "crow-hopping" during left or right turns since it wasn't allowing your front tires to rotate faster than the rear tires as they must do. And no, you can't even drive straight ahead on dry roads in 4x4 (4Hi or 4Lo) because even slight turns, curves, and even the slight ratio difference between your front and rear axles will cause binding between the front and rear axles.
For more 4x4 information, check out something I wrote several years ago... http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f27/4...nswers-130169/