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2002 4x4 acting a fool


Speedwagon

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2002 Ranger, 4.0 auto trans.

I replaced the 4wd motor about 2 years ago, so it fairly new. And the problem I'm having, is after I drive somewhere, it doesn't want to engage.

Example: I leave my house in the morning, engage 4wd just fine to get out of my neighborhood with all the snow. Back to 2wd for the highway. When I get to work, go to engage 4wd and it won't go. I know it's not engaged, because I don't have a light, and I certainly don't have the front tires pulling in the snow. Same thing on the way home from work. It engages when I get in the truck to leave, won't engage when I get to my neighborhood.

When I got home, I turned the truck off, turned it back on, tried to engage. Nothing. Well not nothing, I hear clicks coming from the lower right of the cab. It clicked differently than the standard engagement clicks. Like a rapid fire click, then stop. About 45 minutes later, I got in the truck to leave again, and 4wd engaged just fine.

I don't know if something is heating up and failing while I'm driving? Because everything seems to function when cold. Thoughts on what to check?
 


Josh B

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I don't believe it's your motor, because it is not in that area. Maybe try opening your driver door and listen out that way. You can switch it without the engine running, maybe give you a better idea exactly where it is coming from.
That is a fairly simple motor and I think it would either work or not, instead of being sporadic
I think you may be correct in thinking more a relay or something similar
 

DILLARD000

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Likely 4x4ShiftMotor is getting weak\failing. These are barely big enough to do job when new.
Need to briefly excercise every month 2WHi~4WHi~4WLo & back, to insure they don't get stoved up & will operate when needed.
Test Procedure:
* Park were you can crawl under DriversDoor
* Set EBrake, Chock Wheels, Raise+JackStand as needed for access & make safe
* Remove 4x4ShiftMotor from TCase, 4 Bolts, Leave WiringHarness connected
* Have a Wife\Friend in DriversSeat, Engine Idling, Foot On Brake, Trans in Neutral, Switch Dash Control slowly thru 2WHi~4WHi~4WLo & back.
* Watch ShiftMotor drive stem
If ShiftMotor rotates proper, likely have a weak\failing ShiftMotor.
If ShiftMotor does NOT rotate proper, likely have a failed 4x4ConMod, behind right passenger KickPanel.
Motor stop positions can be adjusted slightly; note 3 slotted screws on backside of ShiftMotor RotaryLimitSwitch.
Click here for more info & part numbers for this 4x4ShiftMotor+ConMod.
2001.Ford_TrCs.Case_Borg.1354_000b.GIF

2001.Ford_TrCs.Case_Borg.1354_000c.GIF

2001.Ford_TrCs.Mdul_Ford.1L54-7h417-ab,ac,ad,ae.GIF
 
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Speedwagon

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Well it is definitely my control module. I took it out of the plastic case, had it hooked up. Truck in run, and turned it to 4hi. Went in no problem, twice. Heated the control module up with a heat gun, and then the truck failed to go into 4hi. Took the module out, waved it around in the freezing air, and it engaged again after I put it back in.

I don't see anything really wrong with it, so I guess I'll get another at the junkyard.

edit: Or not. Every compatible vehicle in 2 junkyards, has already had the 4x4 module removed. I guess there's a significant failure rate in these.
 
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Josh B

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I have never had a bit of trouble with mine in 16+ years and counting. I don't use it ever day, or even maintain it very well for that matter, but it has Never failed to go when it was needed. I don't do rock crawling or even heavy hill climbing, in fact this photo is the main extent of mine from Friday, and even that is rare but between rain I like to go cruise around in the back 40 at times. I just cannot see giving the auto shift the bad rap it constantly receives, and No, I will not try matching you rock for rock in a hill climb, that is not my trucks purpose, I am just sayin'
 

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00t444e

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Swap to a manual shift transfer case.
 

pjtoledo

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if you know of one, and the shifter, I'm listening.
 

4X4XFD

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I have a 2002 4.0L 4WD auto, FX4, all factory. Does yours have the same selector knob on the dash for 2WD, 4WD Hi, 4WD Lo?
I've not had a problem with mine but agree with the advise to periodically activate the 4WD system and run around in 4WD hi and 4WD lo for a while to help keep everything lubed up and functioning. I do that.
 
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Josh B

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I have a 2002 4.0L 4WD auto, FX4, all factory. Does yours have the same selector knob on the dash for 2WD, 4WD Hi, 4WD Lo?
I've not had a problem with mine but agree with the advise to periodically activate the 4WD system and run around in 4WD hi and 4WD lo for a while to help keep everything lubed up and functioning. I do that.
Mine has 2 push buttons in center of the dash, beside an air vent, above the radio. Top one says 4x4, bottom one says Low Range. I've read you can switch it up to 55 MPH but I've never tried such a thing.
I believe they get some bad rap because they never got used, although the owners manual does give guidelines on that, I cannot recall what they say, but it surely includes engaging it now and then for a bit, and I wouldn't want to leave it there while driving any distance at 75 MPH, but just around the block if that's where you live, the block I live on is 6 miles around.

Anyway, I think the worst part is not the shifter but the front differential not having any drain plug. It could use a good flushing now and then but seems that would require flipping it :/ I've read of breaking the case apart but have not tried that
 

DILLARD000

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Normally okay to switch 1354 TCase from 2WHi to 4WHi & back at steady speed on a straight road, don't be accelerating\braking at the time.
Have done this many times driving rural mountain highways & realize road is getting icy\snowy & need 4WD.
If really icy or heavy snow, pull over to safe spot & stop to zero speed, foot on brake, trans in neutral, to switch 1354 TCase into 4WLo;
then can use "OD Off\On" toggle button to engine brake all 4 wheels, handy in those hard winter conditions at speeds below ~40mph.
Excercise 2WHi~4WHi~4WLo & back in a straight driveway or quiet street without other traffic; only need a brief run a few feet in each gear.
Don't make sharp hard turns on dry hard pavement with 4WHi\4WLo engaged; the binding front wheels will screw up your alignment
 

Speedwagon

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I have never had a bit of trouble with mine in 16+ years and counting. I don't use it ever day, or even maintain it very well for that matter, but it has Never failed to go when it was needed. I don't do rock crawling or even heavy hill climbing, in fact this photo is the main extent of mine from Friday, and even that is rare but between rain I like to go cruise around in the back 40 at times. I just cannot see giving the auto shift the bad rap it constantly receives, and No, I will not try matching you rock for rock in a hill climb, that is not my trucks purpose, I am just sayin'
I mean, this is the factory original part, and it's 20 years old at this point. I certainly don't think it's a flawed system. And I rather like the electronic shift vs a manual one. Just as I rather like power windows, vs reaching across the truck to roll up the window on the opposite side.
Another new Ford OEM control module (not significantly more than an aftermarket one it appears), and another 20+ years.

My general rule, is if every vehicle at the junkyard is missing the part, I shouldn't buy it used.
 

Josh B

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My general rule, is if every vehicle at the junkyard is missing the part, I shouldn't buy it used.
Would you mind enlightening me as to how to figure that rule?
 

Speedwagon

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Would you mind enlightening me as to how to figure that rule?
That one part is not on those vehicles for a reason. At a pull it yourself place, that almost always translates to a part that has a (relatively) high failure rate. And by the 4th, 5th, or 6th vehicle I've seen missing the part, I no longer want that part used. Especially if several of the vehicles have only been on the lot for a few weeks. Most vehicles don't make it past 90 days on the lots I frequent. Often times 60 days is a long time.

It's obviously a different story, on a rare-ish vehicle. I can't find many Miata parts, but that's because there's no Miatas in the yards. Rangers are everywhere though. For this 4x4 module, I looked at half a dozen+ Rangers and Sport Tracs. Not one module left in the vehicles. And even if I did find one, and it turned out to be bad, I wouldn't be able to find another to exchange it with(usually no refunds, only exchanges, on such parts).
 

00t444e

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DILLARD000

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Believe for 2000+Earlier years, the 4x4ShiftMotor+ConMod was a specific design\version.
Then 2001~2005, both were redesigned & were incompatible with earlier+later versions.
Then 2006+Later, both were redesigned again & again incompatible with earlier versions.
But didn't seem to be any real improvement in typical reliability; they still commonly fail.
So beware, a lot of chaos in those part numbers & opportunity to order\buy wrong parts.
 

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