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Old 12-11-2005, 12:43 AM   #1
MekoNY
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Default AWD not working! Help!

Here's the story:
I sold my 2000 Legacy to my pops when it was made clear that I would need a new tranny. He had it fixed at local tranny shop back in February and the car has been fine ever since.

Fast forward to the last snow storm and it looks like the AWD isn't working. The car behaved just like a FWD vehicle. No traction or grip from the rear wheels. Now, prior to selling it, I owned the vehicle for 4 years and KNOW how AWD feels like in snow.

So he took it back to the shop, put it on the lift, and had them put it in "D". To his surprise, all 4 wheels spun.

How come it doesn't work while driving? Could it be a bad differential, low differential oil, a blown fuse? We're all stumped.
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Old 12-11-2005, 01:14 AM   #2
mccorry
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My guess..... blown fuse or stuck solenoid......
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Old 12-11-2005, 11:18 AM   #3
xcntrk75
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How many miles are on it?

Thereís a solenoid within the transmission which controls the center-diff lock-up. Itís not uncommon for this solenoid to fail on high-milage vehicles. Also, I donít know the design of the 4EAT in your model year, but I had the very same thing happened to my 98í tranny. Mine was a total loss of center-diff coupling via worn clutch packs. I think your model year is different however and relies on viscous coupling instead of actual clutch-packs. Bottom line, itís related to center-diff lockup either mechanically or with the engagement system.

Hope that helps point you in the right directionÖ
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Old 12-11-2005, 12:35 PM   #4
PHATsuby
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check the fuse first, thats the easiest, does it still do it when in 1st or 2nd lockout?

If its not the fuse, get out the multimeter and check that solenoid.

Ben
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Old 12-11-2005, 08:58 PM   #5
MekoNY
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Thanks for everyone's replies.

The car has at least 130k. I figured it might be something like a fuse, but didn't know anything about the solenoid. I'll have to tell my father to check both.

BTW-How much is a new solenoid? Is it a PITA to fix?
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Old 12-11-2005, 09:01 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PHATsuby
check the fuse first, thats the easiest, does it still do it when in 1st or 2nd lockout?

If its not the fuse, get out the multimeter and check that solenoid.

Ben
I don't understand what you mean by 1st, 2nd lockout. The AWD doesn't engage at all. My father drove it the entire day during the snowstorm and it never once engaged in AWD.

BTW-The car still kicked arse in FWD.
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Old 12-11-2005, 09:30 PM   #7
Wiscon_Mark
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1st and 2nd lockout, is if you put the shifter into 1st or 2nd gears, indicating a lockout of 2nd, 3rd, 4th, or 3rd, 4th...

Lockout also sets your differential to different settings (different power split) so it might have an affect on whether the AWD works or not.

Did I get it right, guys?
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Old 12-11-2005, 10:27 PM   #8
Kawikid20o2
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Mark- sounds right...but if the solenoid is the problem, I dont think it will transfer power back to the rear at all. locked or not, it sounds like an electrical thing.
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Old 12-12-2005, 10:39 AM   #9
PHATsuby
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yea 1st or 2nd gear(you have to select 1 or 2 manually) will put you at a 50/50 split. If it is still in fwd in those two gears then it will tell you if awd is really borked. I would guess its the fuse, but who knows, how many miles are on it?

If its the solenoid, its like 75 to replace I think, but you have to take off the oil pan and put it in the valvebody. Not difficult but takes time and a service manual to do it yourself, would likely cost a few hundred dollars to do at the dealer.

Ben
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Old 12-12-2005, 03:40 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MekoNY
So he took it back to the shop, put it on the lift, and had them put it in "D". To his surprise, all 4 wheels spun.

How come it doesn't work while driving? Could it be a bad differential, low differential oil, a blown fuse? We're all stumped.
If all four wheels are spinning in the air, then there is no problem, except when there is resistance on the wheels.

If you do the 1st, 2nd, 3rd lockout tests and there is still no traction, it's probably due to a intermittent clutch pack solenoid.

Typically though, the 4EAT's never go 100/0 torque split (front/rear), so the rear wheels will always move. They will go as high 90/10 and as low as 60/40 (though I think they may go 50/50, but I'm not sure).

The fuse CANT blow in this situation, because to make the car FWD you have to INSTALL a fuse into the FWD fuse holder at the passengerside firewall. When that is in, then "FWD" is illuminated on the dash.

Stupid question: have you checked the tread depth on the rear tires?
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Old 12-12-2005, 03:45 PM   #11
PHATsuby
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haha, huffer may have us, I think that is right you have to install a fuse, not remove one, forgot about that.

Ben
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Old 12-12-2005, 03:50 PM   #12
Huffer
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^ a newbie owned the specialists! hahahahah!
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Old 12-12-2005, 09:23 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Huffer
If all four wheels are spinning in the air, then there is no problem, except when there is resistance on the wheels.

If you do the 1st, 2nd, 3rd lockout tests and there is still no traction, it's probably due to a intermittent clutch pack solenoid.

Typically though, the 4EAT's never go 100/0 torque split (front/rear), so the rear wheels will always move. They will go as high 90/10 and as low as 60/40 (though I think they may go 50/50, but I'm not sure).

The fuse CANT blow in this situation, because to make the car FWD you have to INSTALL a fuse into the FWD fuse holder at the passengerside firewall. When that is in, then "FWD" is illuminated on the dash.

Stupid question: have you checked the tread depth on the rear tires?
You raised a good point. After reading all the responses, the clutch pack solenoid is probably the culprit. Fuses have never been touched, yet the rear tires DO spin on the lift. If the fuse is ok, then that means the car is probably doing a 90:10 split.

BTW-all 4 tires are brand new.

Thanks again.
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Old 12-12-2005, 09:32 PM   #14
MekoNY
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One more question...what kind of tranny oil should be used after installing the solenoid?

Thanks!
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Old 12-13-2005, 01:07 PM   #15
Huffer
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The same spec as in the owners manual.

You might just want to try changing the fluid out and putting in Lubegard ATF protectant. I did that when my 4EAT locked up in 50/50 mode, even at low speeds, and it's now working like factory new. I know it's probably to do with the solenoid, but I swear this stuff is great!
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