Binding Wheels and clunking noise in 4WD mode

Mattwurst79

Registered Member
Hello to all you guys,

I had changed my front disconnect actuator and housing cause the old one was toast.
When I engage 4WD the car would do it and all 4 wheels are driven (checked jacked).
But when I want to turn more than approx. 20⁰ left or right the car will decelerate and then make this sound you wouldnt want to hear (clunk).
If I go straight ahead everything is fine.
So I decided to change out both cv axles as the rubber was shot anyways.
But no help. Same tough shit.
I jacked the car again and had someone steer it left right while I was checking all links and joints but it all looks ok.
The only thing that I noted was that the left wheel would turn slower than the right one and when turned left it would stop completely but I believe that is the normal differential behavior!?

Any Ideas?

Thanks for your help, guys!

Chris
 

Mooseman

Master Blaster
Moderator
If this is on a good traction surface like asphalt, wet or dry, yes, this is normal. It's called crow hopping. On snow or very loose gravel or dirt road, you shouldn't get this. Do not use 4x4 on asphalt.
 

Mattwurst79

Registered Member
Thread Starter
Ok good to know.
It is my first 4WD truck and I didn't know that.
The owners manual says also sth. like do not use 4x4 on asphalt but it doesn't say why.
I will try this out on mud on the weekend.
That's going to be fun I believe...

Thanks for the tip, Mooseman!
 

gmcman

Guru
When turning, your front tires take a different turning circle than the rear tires, the sharper you turn, the quicker the total distance traveled changes.

So when in 2WD, the front differential is not connected to the rear differential and the front tires can rotate freely.

In 4WD, while again, each tire having it's own turning circle, when the front doesn't match the rear, you will bind the driveline until one of the tires slips on the dry surface which is the noise you're hearing. On a slick surface, the tire will slip without you hearing or feeling it while causing less strain to the driveline.

A4WD is more useful when transitioning from dry to slick surfaces as the front will engage with wheel slip, allowing 2WD when the wheels are not slipping. Don't leave it in A4WD all the time when 4WD is knowingly not needed as it adds to more driveline parasitic drag for lack of better terms....aka, slight loss in MPG.
 

Mattwurst79

Registered Member
Thread Starter
Thank you all for the good tips and explanations.
It is my first 4x4 and I read a lot through the Internet now since I know from Mooseman that this is called crow humping.
I tested it out just now on a muddy field near my house and almost got stuck. It rained a lot since November and the truck sunk in deep about 1-1/2 inch from the axle.
But it worked fine and there was no binding or clunky noise heard under these conditions.
I am so Happy now the car is in completely good shape now.

Thank you for the support, I learned a lot from you, guys!

Chris
 

Mooseman

Master Blaster
Moderator

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