4x4 Lock Questions [Archive] - Jeep Patriot Forums

: 4x4 Lock Questions


pokee
08-30-2010, 04:06 PM
Hey 4x4 owners,

Quick question: What are your thoughts on being able to 'lock' the 4x4 vs. having an awd vehicle? I found most of the other vehicles I was shopping for were only available in awd.

Also, the 4x4 lock/switch on the patriot north edition I may buy looks really cheap and flimsy (like I could break it off if I pulled too hard). Anyone busted theirs?

Thanks!

XPADREX
08-30-2010, 04:26 PM
I don't own one, but drove one- it doesn't take a lot of pressure to flip it on. It's electronic, not a manual engagement- so the only way to break it from what I experienced was if Mongo steals your car. ;)

I like the idea- it's one more thing that has us pumped for the Patriot- we've enjoyed AWD with the Subaru Outback Sport since we bought it in 1999, but the ability to proactively get some torque to all four in known rough conditions is a plus.

dixiedawg
08-30-2010, 04:52 PM
Better to be locked in before you slip, in some conditions, rather than have it change drive wheels after it slips.

I pretty much just let the AWD work on the roads in winter, and only lock it in (except once last winter) when off road. Now if it were rear wheel drive, I would lock it in on the roads a lot more I bet.

XPADREX was right, it's just an electric switch, no force needed to engage it.

I would say if you never go off road, it might not matter to you, but I prefer having the ability to lock it.

To tell the truth I would love a better drive system for off road, a transfer case with 4wd low range, better suspension, more clearance, etc. But nothing with those capabilities gives me the mileage, or initial cost of the Patriot. I looked for years for a vehicle as capable off road and the mileage and interior room I needed, and all there really was was the Patriot.

jettore
08-30-2010, 05:34 PM
Yea, as others have said the system is AWD normally so it can send power wherever needed. The switch locks the center diff to 50/50 so the computer no longer tries to send power to what it thinks is the best option. If you break the switch, your pulling way to hard on it.

Wooden Dog
08-30-2010, 07:11 PM
I had an amusing thought. I wonder how many owners of CR-V's, RAV-4's, Equinox's, Escapes, give a lot of thought about taking their vehicles offroad?
Realistically, those are the class the Patriot's in....

XPADREX
08-30-2010, 07:19 PM
Honestly, that's the reason we went with the Patriot... kind of like my Subarus, they might not be full-on 4x4s, but many of the people who own 'em seem to be a bit more wiling to get dirty than the major crop of mini-SUVs.

heckler
08-30-2010, 08:33 PM
pokee,

on the FDII (offroad package), the 4x4 lock also engages other beneficial electronic controls - hill decent speed control (lame), re-maps the engine performance for more torque and locks in the low range gearing and the brake lock differentials. We'll worth it IMO in our mountains.

If you drive up our steep logging roads, I'd go with an FDII model. No regrets here.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xi_SB5W7G4k

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HTutF3SHBCg&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IFWfPnAr-wM&feature=related

heckler
08-30-2010, 08:35 PM
and the lever is just an electrical switch - it doesn't need to be beefy.

Davo
08-31-2010, 05:18 AM
I use it a lot in wet conditions on winding roads. It really gives you a sense of security. The nice thing is that it is an instant lock that works at any speed - very smooth.

A lot of AWD cars change to FWD above 20mph or so even with the AWD 'locked'. The Kia Sportage does this and also the RAV4 I think. The Patriot has a real lock that stays locked at any speed.

dixiedawg
08-31-2010, 07:35 AM
I thought the hill descent, and other features came on line when I shift into Low off-road range, not when I lock 4x4? Seems if I lock 4x4 and stay in D, it's pretty normal.

I needed a daily driver with good mileage as I drive 100 miles a day for work, and then need decent off road for weekends. Not a lot of vehicles fit that bill.

Wooden Dog
08-31-2010, 08:40 AM
I use it a lot in wet conditions on winding roads. It really gives you a sense of security. The nice thing is that it is an instant lock that works at any speed - very smooth.

A lot of AWD cars change to FWD above 20mph or so even with the AWD 'locked'. The Kia Sportage does this and also the RAV4 I think. The Patriot has a real lock that stays locked at any speed.

I believe the 4WD Lock is only actually engaged at speeds below 15-24 mph or so.

" It’s important to keep in mind that 4WD Lock is a low-speed feature designed for situations such as getting out of a snow-filled driveway or a mud bog, and will deactivate at higher speeds. "

http://www.canadiandriver.com/2007/10/19/test-drive-2008-jeep-patriot-north.htm

Davo
08-31-2010, 12:01 PM
I think my euroPatriot has high speed 4wd but I have been wrong before - many times. My manual says you can use the 4wd lock-unlock at any speed. I have been at 80mph with the 4wd light still on. AFAIK, the Patriot uses an electronic clutch to the rear axle which is either on or off. Other AWD systems use a viscous coupling which can't cope with high speeds so they gradually disengage as speed increases.

Like I said, I have been wrong before. High speed 4WD was one of the reasons I chose the Patriot so I will be well embarassed if it cuts out at 15mph.

Schoat333
08-31-2010, 12:23 PM
The only thing that changes based on the speed is the ESP.

Straight from the owner manual

ESP OFF

In this mode, ESP and TCS, except for the “limited slip”
feature described in the TCS section, are turned off until
the vehicle reaches a speed of 35 mph (56 km/h). At 35
mph (56 km/h) the normal ESP stability function returns
with the exception of engine power reduction. TCS
remains off. When the vehicle speed drops below 30 mph
(48 km/h) the ESP system shuts off. ESP is off at low
vehicle speeds so that it will not interfere with off-road
driving but ESP function returns to provide the stability
feature at speeds above 35 mph (56 km/h). The “ESP/
TCS Indicator Light” will always be illuminated when
ESP is off.

Nothing about 4x4 lock tho.

heckler
08-31-2010, 01:09 PM
I thought the hill descent, and other features came on line when I shift into Low off-road range, not when I lock 4x4? Seems if I lock 4x4 and stay in D, it's pretty normal.

I needed a daily driver with good mileage as I drive 100 miles a day for work, and then need decent off road for weekends. Not a lot of vehicles fit that bill.

go into low without 4x4 lock and they stay off too.

dixiedawg
08-31-2010, 02:28 PM
go into low without 4x4 lock and they stay off too

That's true. They both need to be engaged for the down hill crawl, etc. I was saying that using the 4x4 lock without shifting into L, it's similar to an FDI.

Wooden Dog
08-31-2010, 04:00 PM
The only thing that changes based on the speed is the ESP.

Straight from the owner manual



Nothing about 4x4 lock tho.

http://www.jeep.ca/en/4x4basics/how_4x4_systems_work.html

"A 4WD LOCK mode, providing a locked 50/50 torque split between front and rear at low speeds for severe road or trail conditions is activated by pulling up on the chrome T-handle switch labelled 4WD LOCK in the centre console. Standard on Compass and Patriot 4x4"

Schoat333
08-31-2010, 04:35 PM
http://www.jeep.ca/en/4x4basics/how_4x4_systems_work.html

"A 4WD LOCK mode, providing a locked 50/50 torque split between front and rear at low speeds for severe road or trail conditions is activated by pulling up on the chrome T-handle switch labelled 4WD LOCK in the centre console. Standard on Compass and Patriot 4x4"

Jeep is really vague on this. This is what the owners manual says.

Where one or more wheels have wheel spin or if additional
traction is needed in sand, deep snow, or loose traction surfaces, activate the 4WD Lock switch by pulling
up once and releasing. This locks the center coupling
allowing more torque to be sent to the rear wheels. The
amber 4WD light will come on in the cluster. This can be
done on the fly, at any vehicle speed.

Contradicting?

I guess there is only one way to be sure. Someone needs to wire an led/light to the coupling itself, and see if it turns off when you go above a certain speed. I'd be willing to bet it does.

Wooden Dog
08-31-2010, 08:10 PM
I would bet that even though the light stays on on the instrument cluster, the 4WD cuts out at a certain speed and then cuts back in when you get slow enough.

Davo
09-01-2010, 05:33 AM
I guess there is only one way to be sure. Someone needs to wire an led/light to the coupling itself, and see if it turns off when you go above a certain speed. I'd be willing to bet it does.

Great idea :smiley_thumbs_up: That would give a definite answer. I will spring for the led :o

Edit - I just thought of another way that might give another clue. Does the 4WD light come on when you try to spin the wheels in soft stuff with the 4WD lock switched off? If it does, it might show that the electronic coupling and 4WD light are wired together.

dixiedawg
09-01-2010, 07:45 AM
I've driven in snow the last 2 winters without flipping up on the switch to engage 4wd lock, and never saw the 4wd light come on, and I know it's used more than the front drive wheels many times. I've only used the 4wd lock once on the roads in snow and ice the last 2 winters. I know I've felt the power go to more wheels, and have felt the ESP working many times as well, as we've had some bad winter weather the last couple of years.

Davo
09-01-2010, 02:55 PM
I've driven in snow the last 2 winters without flipping up on the switch to engage 4wd lock, and never saw the 4wd light come on, and I know it's used more than the front drive wheels many times. I've only used the 4wd lock once on the roads in snow and ice the last 2 winters. I know I've felt the power go to more wheels, and have felt the ESP working many times as well, as we've had some bad winter weather the last couple of years.

I guess this means that you can have 4WD operation without the 4WD dash light being on. The manual says that this light "indicates the vehicle is in 4WD mode". The manual also says that when you flip the 4WD lock switch it locks the central coupling and the 4WD light comes on. The dash light is then only an indicator for the lock switch.

It still leaves the question of whether the central coupling automatically disengages above 15mph. I am going to write to Jeep to see if they can shed some light.

dixiedawg
09-01-2010, 03:35 PM
Try this, it;s the best explanation I've found:

http://www.jeep.com/en/4x4/how_systems_work/freedom_drive_2/

Davo
09-01-2010, 03:41 PM
Found this on the Jeep customer service database. It looks like this is the system on the Patriot.

Electromagnetically Coupled All-Wheel Drive
Featuring an on-demand electromagnetic coupling it drives only the front wheels until power to the rear wheels is needed. All-wheel drive is also used on dry pavement between speeds of 25 mph and 65 mph to enhance handling during spirited driving. The system provides added traction on snow ice and other low-traction surfaces automatically and seamlessly without having to be switched on and off.

It looks like the 4WD works at up to 65mph with the 4wd lock switched off. Now, does it work at all speeds with the 4wd locked on?

Wooden Dog
09-01-2010, 04:06 PM
That doesn't sound like constant power to all wheels. AWD menas it switches from FWD to AWD as needed. At least In my understanding, I could be wrong.

The 4WD light only comes on when the LOCK lever is engaged, not every time the rear whels get power.
However I do think the ESP light comes on when ESP engages and then go off.