Explorer, Sport Trac, Mountaineer & Aviator1991-1994, 1995-2001, 2002-2005, 2006-2010 Ford Explorer
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New here and looking for some help. I have searched around the forum on this issue and got a head start but I need some additional info.
last week I used my 4wd and it worked fine at first. Later on throughout the day it started to take 2 or three times of switching into 4wd for the indidcator light on the dash to show that it was infact in 4wd (the "module" under the dash did click at this point). The next morning the 4wd would not engage at all and I did not hear any clicking from the "module". After searching this sight I have found that this is a common problem and that disconnecting the battery sometimes temporarily fixes the problem. This infact is true and my 4wd is working...FOR NOW!!
My question is, exactly what module is it that needs replaced (name, part number, ect.) and what does it typically cost? The dealership claims that this is NOT a common problem and that I should bring it in to have them check it out. YEAH RIGHT!!! the problem is that I dont have the equipment to diagnose the actual problem so I might have to crack down and take it there.
I have fixed the problem and I thought I would post my findings for anyone with these troubles in the future(And there will be others, The guys at the deallership said that they have a ton in stock because they sell them all the time).
The problem was the Shift control Module. It is a black 6" X 4" box made by motorola and has two wire harnesses going into it. The purpose of this box is to control the motor on the transfer case to shift into 4wd. The part # is IL54-7H417-AC and costs $185 dollars from the dealer. The part is not available from chain parts stores (advance auto, autozone, NAPA, ect.).
This part becomes fualty from a power surge. This is not only common on Sport tracs but is also common on other 4.0 4wd's (ranger, explorers, ect.) and possibly others. I have done alot of research and I can not find out what the power surge is caused from. I have found claims that the newer modules are designed to accomodate/protect from this surge.
To determine if this is probably the problem with your vehicle there are a few things to diagnose.
1. The #1 sign is that your 4wd drive will work fine one minute and then not the next without any signs of wear/damage/failure. If it is this module the 4wd will do nothing. The dash indicator lights will not come on and it will not feel or sound like it is engaging. I did not have this problems but some people claimed that the 4wd lights no longer flashed when they turned the car on.
2. When you switch the vehicle into either 4hi or 4lo you should hear 2 short clicks coming from behind the dash. This is the control module. If you dont hear this it is probably the shift control module.
3. Try unconnecting the battery for a few minutes. This sometimes temporarily fixes the problem and your 4wd will work. If this happens there is a good chance that your shift control module is at fault.
This item can be found in many areas behind the dash. Generally it is not hard to get to but you may have trouble finding it. If you are lucky enough for it to work when you disconnect the battery, try to listen for the clicks to locate the module. I have a 2001 Manual tranny sport trac and it was found behind the passengers kick panel. The Kick panel pops right off. I have also heard that it is sometimes behind the glove box. You can simply pull down the glove box and it will be behind it. Like I have already stated it has 2 wire harnesses that plug directly into the module. They easily slide out by pressing the button on the harnesses. In addition the module is held in place with two small hex head sheet metal screws.
I hope this helps for anyone that may face this issue in the future.
It seems that I jumped the gun on my post of this issue. Swapping the control Module did not fix the problem. Yesterday when I changed the part it worked immediately and throughout the night. Not only did the dash indicator light come on but I heard the clicks, and felt the 4wd engage. This morning when I started the truck the 4wd worked, when I stopped at the gas station it worked but when I got stuck on a snowy hill IT DIDNíT WORK!!!!!
Now I am down $200 and am back to square one. I donít think that It would be the motor on the transfer case. If it was I should be able to here the clicks from the control module. Here is where I need the help. When I turn the car on now the 4wd dash indicator lights flash. From what I read this is a sign that the control module is fine. What is prior to the control module in the wiring sequence. Would it only be the dash switch? The only logical thing that I can think that is broken is the switch . If the switch is broken It would not be telling the control module to tell the motor on the transfer case to work. This switch is only 18$ bucks from the dealer
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