Transfer Case Tuneup and Fix

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how old is your battery?
Hey radman, The battery is only about 2yrs old. Our LC is a 2014 with around 80k so I replaced the original one with a Napa parts one.
Thanks to all of you good cruiser folks out there contributing and putting in the time to figure this annoying problem out!
I’ve been reading all the good info and it seems like it’s not too common of a problem but still needs to be fixed.
 
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wenatchee, WA
Hey radman, The battery is only about 2yrs old. Our LC is a 2014 with around 80k so I replaced the original one with a Napa parts one.
Thanks to all of you good cruiser folks out there contributing and putting in the time to figure this annoying problem out!
I’ve been reading all the good info and it seems like it’s not too common of a problem but still needs to be fixed.
It’s a pretty common problem in Sequoias and Tundras, I think. Thankfully it seems to be a fairly easy troubleshoot for the DIY’ers in the group to at least investigate and fix on their own.
 
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Bump for @afgman786 whose 200 nearly had to be left on a mountain the other day when the CDL wouldn't engage. Pro tip- check your gear before heading out to wheel. :flipoff2:
Hey Diff Kranken,

Just curious as to how much you need to engage the CDL as to have to leave it up there? I have never used this, these LC’s seem so powerful without it much as 4lo or a locker or two? What gives, sorry I’m just annoyed by our own blinking light CDL as it’s totally intermittent and I have never thought it would leave us stranded?
 

Diff Kraken

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Hey Diff Kranken,

Just curious as to how much you need to engage the CDL as to have to leave it up there? I have never used this, these LC’s seem so powerful without it much as 4lo or a locker or two? What gives, sorry I’m just annoyed by our own blinking light CDL as it’s totally intermittent and I have never thought it would leave us stranded?
I was just calling out afgman as a bit of a joke. He had no problem getting off the mountain- certainly wouldn't have actually gotten stranded, but it seems the connections on the CDL need to be cleaned, greased and/or replaced at some point on these trucks. Engaging the CDL about once a month is good preventive maintenance as far as I know, and, if it is having issues, you can follow the instructions earlier in this thread and see if that helps.
 
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I wanted to add my experience to this post. I was having problems with my transfer case engaging also. I would push the CDL and the light would blink fast, and no engagement would happen. I could sometimes get it to engage, but not consistent. I read through the comments here and watched the videos. I ended up following these videos I found on YouTube and was able to get it working. He does not speak English in the video, but if you follow along, you can figure it out. The biggest issue I was worried about was getting the gears clocked correctly. There doesn't seem to be much on how they should be placed, everyone just tells you to take note of the location, but that is impossible for the top actuator. Also note, I did not have the corrosion problem inside the actuators, but my vent hose was split. The hose is only about 6" long and connects right above the actuator to a plastic line. I was able to get some new vent hose, swap the braided covering and replace mine.

The first video is how to repair the actuator, including fixing the contact points in the housing. I did this on mine.

The second video is how to swap out a new actuator, but keep the shift rods in the transfer case. If you watch both, there is enough information to fix it.

This is a photo of the position I placed the gears before installation. Make sure the shift rods are pushed all the way into the transmission.

IMG_4926.jpg


IMG_4927.jpg
 
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Now that this is working it seems like the 4lo mechanism is pretty loud. I can’t hear the CDL engage with the engine running but when I engage the 4lo I can hear it switch over. Is that normal?
 

CharlieS

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Did you guys tin the contacts like this youtube video shows? What does that do? Build up any area etched away by the arcing contacts?
 
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Did you guys tin the contacts like this youtube video shows? What does that do? Build up any area etched away by the arcing contacts?

Yes, I did tin the contacts like the video. Mine had some deep etching so I went ahead and did it. I was worried it would be hard to get smooth but I used a little piece of 120 grit sand paper and it smoothed real easy. I am not sure if it’s necessary.
 
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He's a wildman. Very cool how he sorted that. Try using a little flux first, and please lubricate the gears.
 
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I wanted to add my experience to this post. I was having problems with my transfer case engaging also. I would push the CDL and the light would blink fast, and no engagement would happen. I could sometimes get it to engage, but not consistent. I read through the comments here and watched the videos. I ended up following these videos I found on YouTube and was able to get it working. He does not speak English in the video, but if you follow along, you can figure it out. The biggest issue I was worried about was getting the gears clocked correctly. There doesn't seem to be much on how they should be placed, everyone just tells you to take note of the location, but that is impossible for the top actuator. Also note, I did not have the corrosion problem inside the actuators, but my vent hose was split. The hose is only about 6" long and connects right above the actuator to a plastic line. I was able to get some new vent hose and replace mine.

The first video is how to repair the actuator, including fixing the contact points in the housing. I did this on mine.

The second video is how to swap out a new actuator, but keep the shift rods in the transfer case. If you watch both, there is enough information to get fix it.

This is a photo of the position I placed the gears before installation. Make sure the shift rods are pushed all the way into the transmission.

View attachment 3015492

View attachment 3015494

I beg to differ on the having the rods pushed in. I had a hell of a time with mine in.
Yes, I did tin the contacts like the video. Mine had some deep etching so I went ahead and did it. I was worried it would be hard to get smooth but I used a little piece of 120 grit sand paper and it smoothed real easy. I am not sure if it’s necessary.
Did you guys tin the contacts like this youtube video shows? What does that do? Build up any area etched away by the arcing contacts?
No, I didn’t tin mine.
 

grinchy

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This is a section of the FSM. What it does is describe how things actually work, along with diagrams and terms. Also has a very good section on the evap system.

There are several more pages like the above that go into detail on the 8 or so switching modes for the actuator.

Screen Shot 2022-05-23 at 5.16.56 PM.png
 

linuxgod

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I didn't realize there were two mechanisms involved here, I completely misunderstood until I saw the video posted yesterday. I always thought it was just one.

I almost wonder if the issues many of us have with the CDL is because it sits upside down on the transfer case. Possibly the mechanism isn't *tight* against the contacts, since they are *above* the mechanism as opposed to the H/L motor which sits below the transfer case and thus gravity pulls the mechanism towards the contacts? It would explain why many of us see this when the ambient temps get colder out, and how it typically goes away after about 5-10 minutes of warm up.
 

Diff Kraken

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I hope this holds for you. If it doesn't work out, you can buy a new dual-motor assembly for about $900. Partsouq says the part # for the 2012-2016 is
36410-60113. They show it as about $600 but I assume that's used. They have part #s for other model years as well.

Man! @afgman786 karma is a b-tch!! I decided to test my CDL in a gravel parking lot about an hour ago for the very first time on the 200 I picked up last week... Got stuck in 4Lo! Man! Had to drive home about 10 miles in a rainstorm like that. I've tried everything and it's still stuck in 4Lo. CDL light flashing, 4Lo light off now, switch is in 4Hi, but transfer case is still in 4Lo and truck won't go above 30/35mph @ 3.5k RPM. Made it back home now- thank G-d!

I had assumed I'd need to do this actuator cleaning process, but now I'm thinking I'd rather buy the actuator.


@linuxgod is this the part I'll need?



@TeCKis300 Can I just swap them out? Easy peasy?
 
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Man! @afgman786 karma is a b-tch!! I decided to test my CDL in a gravel parking lot about an hour ago for the very first time on the 200 I picked up last week... Got stuck in 4Lo! Man! Had to drive home about 10 miles in a rainstorm like that. I've tried everything and it's still stuck in 4Lo. CDL light flashing, 4Lo light off now, switch is in 4Hi, but transfer case is still in 4Lo and truck won't go above 30/35mph @ 3.5k RPM. Made it back home now- thank G-d!

I had assumed I'd need to do this actuator cleaning process, but now I'm thinking I'd rather buy the actuator.


@linuxgod is this the part I'll need?



@TeCKis300 Can I just swap them out? Easy peasy?

Not easy if your intent is to swap the whole actuator assembly. I haven't done it but as I understand, it requires dropping the whole transfer case as the actuator rods are internally retained.

That said, if you're only swapping the problematic sub-components, i.e. electronics located in the cap assemblies, it's easy. So long as you watch the clocking. Personally, I would take a stab at trying to fix what you have first.
 

Diff Kraken

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Not easy if your intent is to swap the whole actuator assembly. I haven't done it but as I understand, it requires dropping the whole transfer case as the actuator rods are internally retained.

That said, if you're only swapping the problematic sub-components, i.e. electronics located in the cap assemblies, it's easy. So long as you watch the clocking. Personally, I would take a stab at trying to fix what you have first.
Yeah, I'd just be using the sub-components. I certainly don't plan to get to the rods in the transfer case.
 

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