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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-07-2012, 06:51 PM Thread Starter
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4 wheel drive

So a week after getting hit with the hurricane, we are now dealing with a nor-easter which is causing snow and icy roads. I have a Patriot Sport 4x4 which i guess is a FDI. I heard you cant drive with the 4 wheel drive on over 30 mph. Is this true?
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-07-2012, 07:04 PM
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What did your Owner's Manual state???

"My doctor tells me I should start slowing it down - but there are more old drunks than there are old doctors... so... let's all have another round." - Willie Nelson
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-07-2012, 08:36 PM Thread Starter
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I read before it shouldnt go over 30 mph, im not sure if it will do harm to the car if i went over. I asked the service guy at my local dealership a few weeks ago but he never gave me a direct answer.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-07-2012, 08:52 PM
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I own a 2010 FDI....

pg. 37 of the owners manual states u can pull the T-handle on the fly at any speed.

that's all it says. I say staying under 30 mph in 4wd doesnot seem reasonable.

I am sure going above 30 mph with 4wd locked, the jeep will be fine.

Where did u get that info?

more info here:


You have to be very careful if you don't know where your going, because you may not get there.

Last edited by EastBeach; 11-07-2012 at 09:00 PM.
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-07-2012, 09:00 PM
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If you lock your Patriot in 4 wheel drive and then begin to drive on the highway or a roadway at speeds over 30 mph the system unlocks it for you to prevent damage.

You still enjoy the benefits of the AWD system and won't even notice as it moves power from front to back and around as needed.

The only time you need to lock in 4 wheel drive is on a particularly tough stretch of trail where you would be going considerably less than 30 mph.

There are more technical reasons as well but maybe read a number of the threads that exist on this very topic and then ask again if something still eludes you.

Figuring out the similarities and differences between AWD and 4WD would be the type of question that will get you a similar succinct answer as Mr. Murman did to your original question.

For now, the take away is: These things are like little tanks in snow. Don't worry about the 4 wheel lock, just point it where you want to go and go...enjoy it
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-07-2012, 09:13 PM Thread Starter
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I thought I have read it in the manual before but ill have to recheck it. I might have got it confused with something I might have read here on a thread somewhere. The video helped. Thanks everyone for the advice.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-08-2012, 08:46 AM
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Lock it in if the roads are bad. As has been said the system will automatically unlock if you get going too fast to avoid any damage. I am not a fan of just waiting for the computer to adjust when slippage occurs. Had that with an automated AWD system. It works ok most times but once you start to slip it can lead to loss of control even if the 4WD/AWD is engaged by the computer. Better to have 4WD locked in to start with. Only takes a split second in some situations for slippage to take you off the road. Once you start slipping 4WD/AWD being engaged after the fact won't always help( especially with the piss poor OEM tires that come on the Patriot ). Lock it in when the roads are bad. JMHO.

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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-08-2012, 08:59 AM
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You can drive in 4x4 at any speed,
If you can do 50-60mph, then probably don't need 4x4 anyway,
As for 30mph limit, that may be 4lo max speed.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-08-2012, 10:27 AM
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I have a 2011 FDI 2.4 and the manual with it only says 4WD may be engaged at any speed. It may be different in an FDII Lo gear.

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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-08-2012, 11:59 AM
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Originally Posted by hypno444 View Post
I have a 2011 FDI 2.4 and the manual with it only says 4WD may be engaged at any speed. It may be different in an FDII Lo gear.
FDII has the identical book and says the same
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-08-2012, 01:27 PM
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Well I have a true 4x4 system and I'll use 4x4 at speeds north of 75 mph. If RockTrac can do it, so can Freedom Drive. My biggest concern with pulling 4x4 at high speeds is the Wrangler has a big mechanical lever that's pretty low. Not the easiest thing to pull in or kick out while going sideways on ice. I think the 30 mph thing is in most true 4x4 systems owners manuals, but I ignore it and drive however fast I want to drive. I say you should do the same, although I honestly don't know if I understand the point of the 4x4 switch in the Patriot. I recall the Compass I test drove in deep snow being very point and squirt without that lever pulled, with the lever pulled I saw no difference.

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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-08-2012, 03:40 PM
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I think the locked position is very effective at take-off and lower speeds. Like Terasec stated at higher speed it's probably not necessary.

As yesterday was my first actual bad weather driving experience, I noticed that with 4WD lock on, the ESP and another function whose icon I did not recognize(maybe BLD???) went off in reverse and low. Is that normal?
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-30-2012, 10:28 AM
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I just picked up my '09 Patriot with the FDI this spring. With winter finally approaching, I have been anxious to see how well it will do in the snow. It's my forth Jeep, but first one with the FDI. We have had a few little squals that have greased up the roads pretty good and I must say that I am impressed - even with the fact that I NEED to get new tires - at how well it has done. Admittadly, I should have asked more questions at the dealer on how the FDI works, but the video above really helped explain it to me. So, basically, the FDI is an ALL WHEEL DRIVE system that can be locked into FOUR WHEEL DRIVE on demand, right?

My first Jeep was an '85 Cherokee with the Carburated 2.5L I-4 and a four speed stick. That thing had ZERO guts, but it did have posi in the rear. It was the BEST winter car I have even had. I can't wait to see how the Patriot measures up!
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-01-2012, 01:07 AM
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From my understanding of the 4wd system:

the 4wd LOCK is a suggestion for the system to put the vehicle into 4wd before it starts going, otherwise, it would take the computer a few moments to realize that it needs to have 4wd engaged to get moving. But those few moments of wheel spin could cause a wheel to dig in or slip and cause further issues. so its really just for low speeds/low traction. I believe that having it in 4wd lock engages the bld and hill decent control, both of which are low speed functions.

Over a specific speed (i haven't read anything that tells what that speed is) it doesn't matter if you have it locked or not. the 4wd system is really an all wheel drive system that can send power to just 1 wheel, or all 4 wheels or any combination of wheels in between, depending on traction needs. if you can go over 30 mph, having all 4 wheels getting power isn't necessary unless a wheel slips, then it can move power around on its own, without input. it also prevents binding in the system.

again, this is my understanding, not 100% sure on it, but its what I've gotten from reading and watching vids.
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-01-2012, 04:41 AM
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With the 4x4 lever actuated , over 30mph the trans will revert back to regular AWD & look after its self ....dont worry about it !!

Just swapped red Classic X , for, Green Auto SE " Spirit " 2.5 Petrol Limited edition X still 4x4,

Ex 07 Patriot CRD Sport , UK ( with lots of chrome goodies )
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