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Unread 11-20-2011, 10:02 AM   #1
drew4008
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4WD question - new Jeep owner

First-time Jeep owner (or any vehicle with 4WD) and I'm having trouble with how to use the 4WD gearstick. I have a 2003 Jeep Liberty Renegade.

The gear shift says numerous different options (I'll go check what they are if need be), something like 2WD, 4WD Lo, etc.

The problem is, the only switch that can be made it seems is between "on" and "off"... that is, either pulling the handle up (on) or down (off). When I pull it up, a "Part Time 4WD" light comes up on my dash. That's the only light I can get to come up.

What am I doing wrong?

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Unread 11-20-2011, 11:24 AM   #2
Jerry Bransford
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I'm not as familiar with the 4x4 options on your Liberty as I am on other Jeep models, can you please go look what positions your 4x4 shifter has available? Then I can explain what they are and when they should be used. Just run down the list of what your shifter says... like 2wd, 4Hi, N, 4Lo, perhaps it has a Full-Time setting too?
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Unread 11-20-2011, 12:14 PM   #3
drew4008
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Here's a pic I took of it:

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images...111201414.jpg/

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).
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Unread 11-20-2011, 12:48 PM   #4
Snakefreex
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Does it say anything in the manual.. Like maybe having to push it downwards before moving back .. or maybe the tranny needs to be in Neutral ? I've got a full time 4 so it's different.
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Unread 11-20-2011, 01:15 PM   #5
Rubicon_Rob04
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Are you moving slowly when you try to shift through nuetral and into 4LO or are you sitting still? You should be rolling so the gears can realign themselves.
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Unread 11-20-2011, 01:24 PM   #6
drew4008
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I just read the manual and nothing seems to be wrong.

The wording is a little bit counter-intuitive though. If I want standard 4WD in winter conditions, then I want to be in 4Hi, in which case the "part time" indicator light turns on... is this correct? Why would it call that part time though?

And I only want 4LO when it's really bad out (as it says you shouldn't go over 40 km/h in this mode)?

Also, is it normal for the car to get louder in 4WD?
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Unread 11-20-2011, 03:27 PM   #7
Jerry Bransford
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drew4008 View Post
Here's a pic I took of it:

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images...111201414.jpg/

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/
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Unread 11-20-2011, 07:16 PM   #8
drew4008
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Thanks!

Does your vehicle get louder when you initiate 4WD Hi (part time) ??
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Unread 11-20-2011, 08:52 PM   #9
ShogunTJ04
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It'll get louder since the engine now has to move the front driveshaft and the front wheels along with the rear ones. It's basically using more power in 4WD and will also cause your mpgs to drop as well.
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Unread 11-21-2011, 06:58 AM   #10
mdm
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You get more gear box noise when in 4H and even more in 4L.
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