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Vehicles (17 Jan 2019)

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4 WD light

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11 Jan 2019 11:47 #200440 by RogersJimmy
4 WD light was created by RogersJimmy
I have just done both kingpins on my 2001 model (with the 4WD lever on the floor). I followed the video and wiki guide on this forum to the letter. Before this work the 4WD worked fine, but now the light rarely comes on when the lever is moved - and, when it does, it flashes.

I have not had the opportunity to get the car into a slippery situation to see if the 4WD is actually working, so I don't know if it just the light malfunctioning.

I tend to wonder if it is the free wheel hubs. I took care to replace the vacuum pipes in the right order. I have listened to see if I can hear the hubs actuating when the lever is moved to 4WD but cannot detect anything. Trouble is, I don't know exactly what it should sound like.

All advice gratefully received. Thank you!

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11 Jan 2019 11:59 #200443 by paradox1001
Replied by paradox1001 on topic 4 WD light

RogersJimmy wrote: I have just done both kingpins on my 2001 model (with the 4WD lever on the floor). I followed the video and wiki guide on this forum to the letter. Before this work the 4WD worked fine, but now the light rarely comes on when the lever is moved - and, when it does, it flashes.

I have not had the opportunity to get the car into a slippery situation to see if the 4WD is actually working, so I don't know if it just the light malfunctioning.

I tend to wonder if it is the free wheel hubs. I took care to replace the vacuum pipes in the right order. I have listened to see if I can hear the hubs actuating when the lever is moved to 4WD but cannot detect anything. Trouble is, I don't know exactly what it should sound like.

All advice gratefully received. Thank you!


You should be able to hear a clunk from the hubs as they engage
It’s loud enough to be heard inside the car.
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11 Jan 2019 12:54 #200448 by Lambert
Replied by Lambert on topic 4 WD light
You didn't go mad with the cv grease did you, it can block the galleries in the hub if there is too much and it then bungs up the free wheels.

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11 Jan 2019 13:17 #200451 by RogersJimmy
Replied by RogersJimmy on topic 4 WD light
I don’t think so. But if I did, can I check by removing the freewheel hubs and vacuum pipes, then blowing compressed air through the pipe nipples on the back of the knuckle?

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11 Jan 2019 16:15 #200469 by Lambert
Replied by Lambert on topic 4 WD light
That would be my first choice. And check the free wheels just have a light cover and that everything is free to slide.

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

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12 Jan 2019 13:54 #200575 by RogersJimmy
Replied by RogersJimmy on topic 4 WD light
I am still struggling with this!

To recap, I overhauled both kingpins and now the 4WD light flashes when the lever is moved into 4WD. (now I am wondering about my memory and perhaps it was doing it sometimes before). Anyway, having studied the very helpful wiki guide on this forum, I have now established that neither hub is being actuated and have checked all the pipes and connectors I can see.

All the rubber pipes seem fine but the metal ones underneath the car are as rusty as rusty can be. They look like old brake pipes that are an instant MOT failure. There might be a pinhole anywhere - how can I check for this?

Lambert wondered if I had overdone the greasing in the knuckle and so I have just removed the FW hubs (which look clean and free) and the pipes from the knuckle (all look fine) and blown compressed air down the knuckle nipples (all seems clear).

As neither hub is engaging, it would seem that there is no vacuum. Am I right in saying that if only one hub has a problem (air leak etc) then the other one will work normally? Or is an air leak anywhere on the system going to disable both hubs even if is very local to one hub?

Following the wiki guide, it would appear that my problem possibly lies with the VSV2 solenoid, and suggests I test by pulling off the grey wire from it and earthing that solenoid pin I haven't got a solid grey wire, but there is a red/grey. Is that it? The wires are connected to the solenoid by a red-topped plug. At which point do I pull off the wire? The access is limited and I don't want to damage anything by being too gung-ho.

Alternatively, can it be checked by getting an assistant to turn on the ignition whilst touching the solenoid to feel it operate and listening for it to click? Perhaps at the same removing the pipe to feel the vacuum?

Finally, should I bale out and decide to go for manual FW hubs, presumably the car can be driven in 2WD with the hubs engaged, even though the front diff etc will be turning over? I am thinking of a situation when a winter road has cleared areas but with patches of ice or snow when 4WD is desirable. Presumably the hubs can be engaged and 2 or 4 WD selected with the lever and it is not necessary to keep hopping in and out of the car to engage/disengage the hubs?

Thanks everyone!

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12 Jan 2019 14:21 #200576 by adrianr
Replied by adrianr on topic 4 WD light
In my car the 4wd light illuminated yet the hubs were not engaged. After a few hours of trying to problem solve and fix I decided to lock the hubs.

I was going to go the route of getting manual hubs but then decided to do the mod where you put a bolt through the outer cover of the hub that pushed the sleeve over and engages the hub. All done in about 10 minutes. I used some blue threadlock on the threads, and smeared some waterproof grease around the edges of the bolt for good measure.



You can drive in 2wd fine - the hubs will be turning and the driveshafts etc. The front prop shaft, whilst rotating, is not driven by the transfer case unless you are in 4wd. a bit wasteful in terms of energy but I've hardly noticed the difference in performance or economy.

Good luck whichever route you take.
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