Center Diff Problems!!!

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Jan 7, 2009
Camden, SC
Purchased a 92 Landcruiser a few weeks ago and discovered the "Center Diff" button today (it was had been in the "in" position since the day I purchased the vehicle). Decided to press it (traveling appx. 40 mph) and I came out of gear grinding down the road. I then pulled over and pushed the button again while in park and drove off. Curious......I pulled over once more, pushed the button (disengaged), tried to drrive off and it was like I was in neutral. Engaged the "Center Diff" button and drove off again. What the heck is going on with my Landcruiser?
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X2, not sure how to properly respond at the moment.

Like you said, since you have owned the truck, the button has been in the "in" position? Just the clarify. Are there any dash lights that are on? Did any come on when you pressed it?
Is the front prop shaft still there?... Front axles/birfields/diff guts still in there? OR: is the rear prop shaft still there? Rear axles/diff guts still in there?

Common trick when something in the front end drive train blows and/or is removed is to lock the center diff to get torque to transfer to the rear end and vice versa if the rear end blows etc...

Seems pretty extreme to be the above - but that's what it sounds like. Where/who did you buy this '92 from? Did you test out the 4wd system before purchase, seems unlikely since you've only just 'discovered' the center diff lock switch...

Nothing came on when I dis-engaged center differential. No light or anything....all I know is it works when in the "in" position, but doesn't when disengaged.
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Huh - in your first post you said the switch was "in" and drives fine. When "disengaged" it appeared like you were in neutral.

Which one is it?

Not to just repeat, but X2 what ^ said. Your first post said the opp.??
Sorry, corrected previous post. It's late and I'm discouraged about the whole situation. It doesn't work when "Center Diff" button is dis-engaged.
Sorry, corrected previous post. It's late and I'm discouraged about the whole situation. It doesn't work when "Center Diff" button is dis-engaged.

See my first post in this thread & report back...

I think the answer is pretty simple. You probably have a bad front drive flange and the PO discovered that the truck would drive fine with the center diff locked.

Check both front drive flanges and replace as needed. They cost about $40 ea from Cruiserdan.

What B said. Also, your seller may have disabled the light indicating the center difflock is on to conceal the situation. You should definitely pay them a visit as this is out and out deception. It is a major defect that was intentionally concealed from you. I'd ask for a couple hundred bucks or you'll report them and perhaps take further action. No idea who the sellor was or what the terms were, but still.....

yup, flange is a possibility. If so, good for you. Could be worse.

What did you mean by "grinding down the road"? As in making an ugly grinding noise?
Is the front prop shaft still there?... OR: is the rear prop shaft still there?

newsomew, have you confirmed that the front and rear driveshafts are installed?
I appreciate everyones input. Here is the latest update, the vehicle was sold to me without a front driveshaft. I called the used car dealership that sold the vehicle to me and they said "we purchase these vehicles as is and sell them as is. I then called my brother in law who is an attorney and he basically confirmed what the man told's as is. I don't really want to purch a new drive shaft, and at the moment my thought process is to purchase one from a junkyard. Any suggestions?
Ok, missing front prop shaft explains the center diff lock needing to be engaged.

Of course it begs the question why the front prop shaft was removed... Maybe the PO thought it would save some fuel or otherwise it was to work around another problem.

So, not wanted to pour on the bad news, but I'd recommend preparing yourself for something else possibly wrong in the front drive train... Probably a good idea to get knuckle rebuild kits on order and strip down the knuckles in preparation for a birfield grease/repack and see what else may be wrong/missing. Most folk plan on repacking the front knuckles/birfields as part of baselining a newly purchased 80.

I'm at a loss for words...
Please tell me you got a screamin deal on this thing. Please.


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