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Seemingly unique 4wd issue

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10 Aug 2018 19:32 - 10 Aug 2018 20:45 #194999 by TFB
Hi All,

I have spent the last two days trawling the forum and the internet in general, but I cant seem to find anything that quite matches my symptoms. I've read the guides to hubs and transmission from this site and I thought I was starting to get my head round the problem, but unfortunately I cannot seem to fix the issue. So without much more rambling from myself here is what I know:

2013 1.3l Suzuki Jimny, 85,000 kms on the clock, push button 4WD system

Never had any issues before with the 4WD but a few days ago I went to engage it and nothing happened, the green 4WD light blinked slowly for 10 seconds or so, but no clunking noise as I would normally hear then the light went out. If I tried this two more times in a row both the Green 4WD and the Orange low range light would both come on and blink quickly and not go out until the car was turned off and on again.

So, many hours searching the forums would suggest an issue with the vacuum hubs. So, I visually checked the whole system and cannot seem to find any breaks or tears or corrosion of the metal pipes, the system seems okay to my untrained eye (side note: when directly under the middle of the car I took the rubber tubes off the vacuum system and there is definitely no leak on either tube going in the direction of the wheels. But going the opposite way, to the solenoids and valves, there was almost a free flow of air through both tubes. The car was off at the time, is this normal?). Anyway, I found some useful information about manually sucking the hubs, so I did that, and the hubs quite easily engaged. I understand that I then needed to fool the controller so I shorted the sensor cable that is attached to the side of the box that holds the solenoids and runs to a sensor under this assembly (small rounded cable clip that has a black and a grey/white cable). I did this by sicking a small wire into each of the female connector sockets that would effectively join them together.

My understanding is this would then trick the controller into thinking that the vacuum system worked and the car would then celebrate by staying in 4WD for me.

However, this has not happened. No change at all really. Its good to know I can lock and unlock my hubs this way but, I'm finding the front propshaft wont engage/lock. I should add at this point that I am in the middle of the jungle in Costa Rica and I'm on my own, so checking things like the vacuum system isn't going great, but I've tried to press the 4WD button then jump under the car to see if the front drive shaft locks, but noting, it spins freely.

Now I may have misunderstood everything I've read (and I am pretty much a beginner at this), but I think there is a problem in the transmission where the front propshaft isn't engaging/locking, rather than a problem with the vacuum. But I could be wrong. You guys have already been great, just by all your comments on this forum, and I've been a browser ever since getting the Jimny a year ago and never had to start my own thread to solve a problem, until now. My work as a field biologist relies on this car being able to engage 4WD, so I'm hoping I can get this solved quickly.

All my rambling done with, any ideas/suggestions. Thanks in advance for any help.
Last edit: 10 Aug 2018 20:45 by TFB. Reason: added side note about tubes

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10 Aug 2018 20:45 #195003 by Lambert
Replied by Lambert on topic Seemingly unique 4wd issue
Id be inclined to look at the solenoid valve block in the engine bay just below the battery tray. It has a simple filter to keep the bigger rocks out but it can clog. It's also possible that one or more of the solenoids are sticking, a bit of a tap and a some wd40 can be enough to free them off.

It's not a Jimny. It's my Jimny

Mooo said Ermintrude (black)
Boing said Zebedee (blue automatic)
Hello said Florence (silver gv 2.4)

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10 Aug 2018 20:53 #195004 by TFB
Replied by TFB on topic Seemingly unique 4wd issue
Hi Lambert, Thanks for the advice. I've cleaned the pretty crude filter out and there were no problems there, I also added an edit to my initial post possibly as you were typing your response, but I note that there was a free flow of air back up the pipes (from under the car and as opposed to the vacuum in the direction of the wheels). I dont know if this is good or bad. and now I've given the solenoids a bit of a tap and a spray as you suggested, but nothing has changed, same situation I'm afraid.

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10 Aug 2018 21:06 #195008 by Lambert
Replied by Lambert on topic Seemingly unique 4wd issue
Ok. Is the control wires to the transfer box intact? They are fairly low down on the transfer box and quite easy to catch on vegetation and rocks?

It's not a Jimny. It's my Jimny

Mooo said Ermintrude (black)
Boing said Zebedee (blue automatic)
Hello said Florence (silver gv 2.4)

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10 Aug 2018 21:23 #195012 by TFB
Replied by TFB on topic Seemingly unique 4wd issue
Yup, all the wires are attached and seem in good condition down there.

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10 Aug 2018 22:59 #195019 by Busta
Replied by Busta on topic Seemingly unique 4wd issue
Your issue is definitely with either the transfer box or 4wd control unit and not the vacuum hubs. Beyond that I can't really help. I'm sure there is a way to engage 4wd in the transfer case by applying 12v to certain wires, but having never had a Jimny with the electric transfer case I can't tell you exactly how.

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10 Aug 2018 23:30 #195023 by TFB
Replied by TFB on topic Seemingly unique 4wd issue
Hi Busta, Thanks for the input, it will be interesting to see if anybody has any further advice on this. Plus, the more technical it gets, the more dubious I am to take it to a mechanic here as I get the feeling they won't have a clue about this kind of thing. I'm inclined to do whatever needs doing myself though. I just need it sorted soon, these parrots aren't going to save themselves, haha.

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11 Aug 2018 00:14 - 11 Aug 2018 02:06 #195024 by zukebob
Replied by zukebob on topic Seemingly unique 4wd issue
I'm not sure from your comments but it sounds as though you are expecting the hubs to engage by putting a jumper at the vacuum switch connector. If I'm correct and that is what you're thinking, it will only allow the transfer case to engage. The hubs would remain open unless you have vacuum.

To clarify:
IF you have manually applied vacuum and are sure that the hubs are currently engaged
AND you shorted the leads to the vacuum switch and engaged the transfer case by pushing the button
then you should have 4WD. If this is what you have done and still don't have 4WD, I would agree with Busta.

Edit:
As far as this goes

side note: when directly under the middle of the car I took the rubber tubes off the vacuum system and there is definitely no leak on either tube going in the direction of the wheels. But going the opposite way, to the solenoids and valves, there was almost a free flow of air through both tubes. The car was off at the time, is this normal?


I'm not sure but don't think so and this would still make me suspect that you have a leak. As you inspect the system, the one place that is hard to determine is the vacuum tank. There is a hose that leads to the tank that is mounted inside the fender.

I started out with nothing & still have most of it left
Last edit: 11 Aug 2018 02:06 by zukebob.

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11 Aug 2018 18:33 - 12 Aug 2018 20:25 #195031 by TFB
Replied by TFB on topic Seemingly unique 4wd issue
Hi Zukebob,
Thanks for the help, I got back on the car today and found the vacuum tank, from the tank to the solenoids there's no leak, and from the manifold to the solenoids there's no leak either. So it just seems that its from the wheels to the solenoids that they both seem to have a free flow of air. I'm not quite sure how the solenoids work but is it something to do with the valve/filter thing on the back of them? I still don't know if this is a good or bad thing.

I will also note that if I sit in the drivers seat and press the 4WD button, as it blinks away for its 10 or 15 seconds, every couple of seconds theres a tick that sounds like a relay (a switch in the controller?) from under the dash every two or three seconds. sounds like its going on....off....on....off...on...off then it stops as the blinking stops.

With regard to your claification, yes that is exactly what happened. However, despite the hubs being locked manually by sucking the tubes, and shorting the vacuum switch with a small bit of wire, when I went to engage the transfer case by pushing the button, the exact same thing happened with the flashing 4WD light and clicking sound, which then both went off, leaving me as though I had never pushed the button, i.e. still in 2WD

I'm not sure how to do the quote system so apologies for the incoherence of this message, but with regard to the first thing you said, No I was only expecting the transfer case to engage. So, if I were to put 12v to the controller to force the transfer case to engage the front drive shaft where would this leave me? would the car know (or display) that it was in 4WD? would it try and come out of it if the controller is gone? At this point I'm guessing that even if this works this a really just a temporary solution and the car needs a new controller. However, it would be nice to know for sure if this is what it needs as I work for an NGO and money is tight.
Last edit: 12 Aug 2018 20:25 by TFB. Reason: changed the words now in bold for clarity

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12 Aug 2018 02:51 - 12 Aug 2018 03:02 #195041 by zukebob
Replied by zukebob on topic Seemingly unique 4wd issue
Based on what you say, your current issue shouldn't be vacuum related. With the hubs manually engaged and a jumper at the vacuum sensor switch, you should have 4WD and everything should appear normal (no flashing 4WD light). In my mind that would narrow it down to the 4WD controller, the transfer control module or the 4WD switches on the transfer case.

I will send you a private message with some information that may help, if you want to (are able to) fix this yourself.
If a DIY fix is beyond what you have available in tools or facilities, hopefully it will help a local mechanic.

After all, we need to keep them parrots alive.

Edit: I can't attach a file in the PM so I will attach it here. It is the section of the service manual for the push button transfer with the electrical diagram attached.

I started out with nothing & still have most of it left
Attachments:
Last edit: 12 Aug 2018 03:02 by zukebob.

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12 Aug 2018 03:17 #195042 by zukebob
Replied by zukebob on topic Seemingly unique 4wd issue
Also, so that we don't embarrass ourselves, check fuse 88.

I started out with nothing & still have most of it left

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12 Aug 2018 20:14 #195061 by TFB
Replied by TFB on topic Seemingly unique 4wd issue
Thanks for sending that information Zukebob, at least it seems we are able to narrow it down if nothing else. I've had a quick look at the file and I think this may be a bit beyond me. However I'm sure it will come in handy to whomever it gets passed on to, so thank you for all your help.

Can you give me a quick guide to where fuse 88 is please. I have no cover on the fuse box under the dash, which is where I assume the legend would be. That is, unless its in the box under the hood?

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