Bitumen driving in 4wd...damage ???

Submitted: Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 16:56
ThreadID: 66404 Views:11473 Replies:11 FollowUps:7
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What sort of damage can be done if you accidentally drive on bitumen with your front axle locked in.

A mate of mine's missus did it accidentally in his LC100 and he is a bit worried. Neither of us are mechanics ...and obviously, neither is his missus...hahaha

She is not sure how long the light was on and only noticed it when she pulled into a servo to fill up after a drive to her mothers place...about 60km. She could've pushed the little button thingy when she first got it...who knows ?

I haven't been in it since, but he said it seems OK ????

Oh, and that is why I don't let anyone drive my 4WD :-)
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Reply By: Member - Lionel A (WA) - Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:07

Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:07
Dunco,
Cant see too much damage to the bitumen being done, its pretty robust stuff.

If a really hot day it may scuff up a little.....hahaha.


Cheers....Lionel.
AnswerID: 351693

Follow Up By: Member - Royce- Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:11

Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:11
Yup... I though about making a funny about that too!
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Follow Up By: Dunco (NSW) - Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:14

Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:14
hahaha..you blokes crack me up. I love it !!!

I've gotta go and ring his missus with that one
But I better work a lead up to it.....so she will get stressed out first before I hit her with the punch line :-)



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FollowupID: 619902

Reply By: Member - Graham H (QLD) - Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:10

Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:10
When i accidentally bumped mine I picked it up because the tyres scrubbed on turns and felt like the power steering wasnt working.

Certainly would have noticed it well within 60km.

Can wind up the diffs and sort of lock it in.


AnswerID: 351695

Reply By: Member - Royce- Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:10

Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:10
Not sure what sort of damage CAN be done.... but have done it plenty of times in Hulux and Forerunner. Different distances and no issues.

Also had only one wheel locked in in landcruiser while 4wdriving... didn't work well, but no probs.

I think the biggest problem is 'dif wind up', but any little bump or looseness on edge of the road etc should allow this to be compensated for.

More tech stuff my follow!
AnswerID: 351696

Reply By: Sand Man (SA) - Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:19

Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:19
Do you mean with the front huibs locked in?
No harm caused by this, except a hardly noticable increase in fuel consumption. In fact you should plan to drive with the front hubs locked in (but left in 2WD) for at lease 20 kilometres each month to keep the front drive components lubricated.

If you mean, with the hubs locked in and the selector in 4wd, this will make it harder to steer on bitumen. On unsealed surfaces and sand, each front wheel can "slip" independently of each other but on bitumen both wheels are turning the same amount. Continued use will cause excessive wear on tyres and place additional strain on the diff and front axle. But you should soon notice the difficult stearing.

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AnswerID: 351700

Reply By: Dunco (NSW) - Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:23

Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 17:23
Thanks everyone.

Apparently she only noticed it when she drove into the servo and the steering felt funny...she then saw the 4WD light on.

It was on the highway, so she apparently didn't notice it.

All sounds good, I will pass the info on.

Thanks troops.

AnswerID: 351702

Reply By: Member - Nick (TAS) - Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 18:28

Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 18:28
I did this with our cruiser, only drove about 7kms before I realised.I jacked the front wheels up and noticed "unwind" of about 10mm.
I asked this question on a forum and one guy said he drove about 150kms in 4wd on the bitumen and didnt hurt anything.And he had the vehicle for another 100000kms before selling it.All in 100 series cruisers.
AnswerID: 351729

Reply By: Member - Axle - Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 20:10

Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 20:10
Are you talking about the button for the centre diff lock or what??

if its a full time 4wd and a button was accidentley bumped, then i would say a diff would be screaming for mercy on a bitumen road.l....lol.


Cheers Axle.
AnswerID: 351754

Follow Up By: Dunco (NSW) - Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 20:36

Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 20:36
Yes,

Don't know if she heard anything as the radio was probably too loud :-)

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FollowupID: 619964

Reply By: ferris - Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 21:40

Sunday, Mar 01, 2009 at 21:40
Dunco,

I am astounded that nobody has mentioned transmission wind-up. There is no problem if the hubs are locked in, the problem comes when engaged in 4wd on a hard surface. Like it or not, the front and rear wheels rotate and different speeds. There is no diff built into the transfer case, so the only way the different speeds can be dissipated is for the transmission to wind up, including the tail shaft. If your vehicle doesn't have a diff at the transfer case (which most don't) then you are at risk when in 4wd on hard surfaces. Having said that, a friend's wife drove 160 k's in low range, wondering why it was screaming and no damage. There are heaps of posts on transmission wind up. It is only usually a problem when on bitumen, because most other surfaces allow enough slip for the wheels to correct themselves. i am told there is a Toyota dealership in the high country with a proudly displayed tail shaft twisted up like a piece of liquorice twist.
Keep the shiny side up.
Ferris
AnswerID: 351774

Follow Up By: Member - Mike DID - Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 11:20

Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 11:20
"i am told there is a Toyota dealership in the high country with a proudly displayed tail shaft twisted up like a piece of liquorice twist. "

This sounds like a great urban myth -
- there is no way a tail shaft can twist like a liquorice twist without something else in the transmission line breaking.
- there is no way you could build up enough torque to twist the tail shaft by driving on bitumen.
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FollowupID: 620034

Follow Up By: Top End Explorer Tours - Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 13:22

Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 13:22
Ferris I won't resort to calling you an Idiot, however I am sick and tired of reading false and misleading info on this site, hence my abrupt post.

There is absolutely no way the example I gave for checking wheel bearings is incorrect, (re post 46156) this method is done every day by hundreds of mechanics world wide.

I work as a mechanic along with 4 other qualified mechanics in the off season, I told them what you posted and their reaction was the same as mine, these guy's get paid to work on cars, they don't need to read other peoples posts on a forum to give a qualified diagnosis.

Not only that, I have driven worked on or used a 4wd nearly every day of my working life since 1982, I drove my first 4WD in 1976 aged 12 this 4wd didn't even have FREE WHEELING HUBS.

Dunco.

My boss who in my opinion is one of the best I have ever met, told me that there is very little chance of any damage that will occur in what you have told us.

Cheers Steve.
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FollowupID: 620037

Reply By: Nomadic Navara - Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 00:16

Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 00:16
Transmissions are fairly solid. Back in the 50s the army instructions said tow trailers in 4WD (despite the fact LR did not.) A group of SAS members towed some trailers north from Perth with Land Rovers. They got up near Broome before damage started to show up (diffs I think - this was related to me by a work college back in the early 70s. It happened whilst he was building airports up that way.)

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AnswerID: 351808

Reply By: Wayne's 60 - Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 01:33

Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 01:33
Dunco,
There have been some interesting replies to your question, there are a couple of answers that have me at a loss for words.

To clarify your question, does the vehicle have free wheeling hubs and were they engaged when the vehicle was in 4WD on the bitumen? Is the vehicle a constant 4WD?

I think more information is required before giving a measured answer.

Windup will destroy the weakest part of a driveline and I agree with Ferris that there will be indicators of the condition. The first follow up to that seems to be a little blunt.

Cheers,
Wayne.
AnswerID: 351811

Follow Up By: Dunco (NSW) - Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 10:31

Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 10:31
The vehicle in question was a Toyota LC100.

The one where the front axle is always free wheeling until you either push the button on the dash, or move the 4WD gear shift to high.

She apparently has pushed the 4WD button on the dash inadvertently and drove for an unknown distance without noticing the yellow light in the dash.

She said the first she knew of it was when she drove into a servo and when she had to turn at a slow speed, it was hard to do so....it took her a little while to work it out...but then realised the light was on.


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FollowupID: 620030

Reply By: Oskar - Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 09:34

Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 09:34
Had to put my vehicle in 4WD at the dump a couple of months ago after rain and forgot to take it out of 4WD. the next fairly tight corner at the lights down the road .... crunch!
I wasn't sure what it was but the next weekend up at Double Island point with a trailer on guess what.... no 4WD. I'd accidentally left it in 4wd a couple of times before but this time it happened. So the moral is .. don't drive in 4WD on bitumen in part-time 4WD. Still haven't had it fixed yet.
AnswerID: 351822

Follow Up By: Oskar - Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 09:52

Monday, Mar 02, 2009 at 09:52
Dunco
I should have added that it was my transfer case gears that failed.
I'm still driving the vehicle and the clicking/grinding noise gradually stopped so I'm just going to replace the whole tranfer case when I get around to it.
Fortunately I have two 4WD's so I can use the other one when I need a 4WD.
Cheers
Oskar
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FollowupID: 620023

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