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4 Wheel Drive blinking indicator light

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by Maddog721, Jan 7, 2012.

  1. Jan 7, 2012 at 3:12 PM
    #1
    Maddog721

    Maddog721 [OP] New Member

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    I have a 2006 Tacoma Double Cab SR5, 4x4, automatic with ~61,000 miles. I'm the original owner and all the scheduled maintenance done. Never a problem with this truck, until now.

    Over the holiday period, the road conditions were bad and I switch from 4x2 to 4x4 (at about 30 MPH) but the indicator light just blinked. It blinked for about 4 or 5 minutes and I wasn't sure if I was in 4x4. I pulled off the road, stopped, then felt/heard "the slight clunk" (as in the past) and the light stayed on. I was definitely in 4x4. Later, the road conditions improved and I switched back to 4x2 and again, the light just blinked. I decided to "let nature run its course” and after about 10 minutes (accelerating/decelerating along the way), the light final went out. Next day I tried it again and same thing happen. This is not normal.

    Any suggestions on possible cause / solutions?

    Love my truck but need my 4x4.
     
  2. Jan 7, 2012 at 3:19 PM
    #2
    Brunes

    Brunes abides. Staff Member

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    How often do you use your 4x4 and when was the last time before the other day??
     
  3. Jan 7, 2012 at 3:22 PM
    #3
    Maddog721

    Maddog721 [OP] New Member

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    Good question....may last winter. This was the first time "this season" I had to use the 4x4.

    Thoughts?
     
  4. Jan 7, 2012 at 3:24 PM
    #4
    pataco

    pataco Well-Known Member

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    did you actually use(see the front wheels spinning or feal it pulling) the 4 wheel drive?almost sound like it never engauged,but with the clunk it might of.when mine clunks its in........but you can never trust a $2 light bulb
     
  5. Jan 7, 2012 at 3:25 PM
    #5
    MonkeyProof

    MonkeyProof Power Top

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    maybe it's the 4x4 actuator motor assembly, it's a common problem..it's not sealed very well from the factory and sometimes it gets all boogered up inside. you can try taking the whole assembly off and try to clean all of the contacts with WD-40. usualy that will work. send BrandonH a PM..he has to do this frequently with his and im sure he can chime in with more useful info.
     
  6. Jan 7, 2012 at 3:26 PM
    #6
    08TacoTrD

    08TacoTrD Well-Known Member

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    Takes a little bit before it goes in if it hasn't been exercised on a regular basis. Sometimes turning the wheel and tapping the brakes will allow the transfer case to line up properly.
     
  7. Jan 7, 2012 at 3:36 PM
    #7
    Maddog721

    Maddog721 [OP] New Member

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    Thanks for the info and suggestions...will try.
     
  8. Nov 24, 2012 at 12:56 PM
    #8
    nj636

    nj636 Hub Master General

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    resurrecting this thread..

    went to use 4 hi last week and the light just blinked. after 10 minutes of messing with the truck (drive forward, backwards, turn wheels ect ect) it finally went in.

    now occasionally the indicator light blinks at me for a few miles then goes out.

    I use 4wd ocassionally, not seasonally.

    signs of the actuator going south?
     
  9. Nov 24, 2012 at 1:13 PM
    #9
    BlueT

    BlueT Well-Known Member

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    I moded 1999 Taco so much it had turned to Land Cruiser
    Not necessary.
    Problem with our 4x4 its sensitive, and like its buttons pushed often like a women.
    Things to check.
    1. How fresh and level of front differentail oil.
    2. How fresh and level is transfer case.
    Both may need fresh oil and oil needs to be at the fill hole level.
    Once those things are check find little dirt road and drive slowly. Then engage 4x4 drive for a minute disengage (regardless if locked or not) do that few times to get things lubricated.
    4x4 needs to be on/off at least once a moth to get things lubricated
     
  10. Nov 25, 2012 at 8:36 AM
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    nj636

    nj636 Hub Master General

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    both diff's and t-case were dumped 6 weeks ago, fresh fluid dripping out of the fill hole.

    I use 4wd a few times every month or so (for play and fishing on the beach)

    a little more research in my future..
     
  11. Nov 25, 2012 at 8:40 AM
    #11
    KenLyns

    KenLyns Lord of War

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    You have to be driving in an almost perfect straight line for 4H to engage. Probably because the front ADD has to line up.
     
  12. Nov 25, 2012 at 10:20 AM
    #12
    BlueT

    BlueT Well-Known Member

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    I moded 1999 Taco so much it had turned to Land Cruiser
    If all that checks out then your next most likely culprits are sensors. transfer case and front ADD have these switch like sensors. They are simple design but when they get stuck they will do something similar. You going have to remove them and check if they are ok. Sensors should be grey with nut like base to unscrew them from the housing. Transfer case should have two of them one for 4hi one for 4 low. Then there is one on front actuator.
     
  13. Nov 25, 2012 at 10:48 AM
    #13
    jmg256

    jmg256 Calmer than you are

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    If/when this happens I find that slipping the transmission into neutral before actuating four wheel drive tends to take all of the pressure/bind out of the drive train and allowing it to go into 4x4 instantly. Or instead of neutral, take your foot off the gas and coast while switching to 4x4

    Ymmv
     
  14. Nov 25, 2012 at 10:57 AM
    #14
    Blacktacoma23

    Blacktacoma23 The Dank Tank

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    actuator motor assembly

    ^ Happend to me
     
  15. Dec 23, 2012 at 6:35 AM
    #15
    nj636

    nj636 Hub Master General

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    so this happened again this weekend. was riding some trails that has some soft sand spots. remembering this problem, I went to go into 4hi just to make sure it went in and I wouldn't be fooling with it when I actually needed it.
    I tried going into 4hi multiple ways; stopped, driving 20 mph & under, accel, decel, coasting to a stop. you think of it I tried it. eventually it went right into 4hi and then into 4lo, came right out of 4 wheel and went back into 4 wheel with no problem.

    I'm going to be removing the actuator to see what's going on in there, I just wanted to update this issue.
     
  16. Dec 23, 2012 at 10:48 AM
    #16
    David K

    David K Well-Known Member

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    BLINKING means you turned the dial, but it is not yet in H4... try slowing, taking your foot off the gas pedal. The clunk sound/ feel is when it goes in or our of 4WD. The light will stop blinking. I wouldn't drive for 10 minutes with it blinking... obviously you don't need to be in 4WD if you can drive for 10 more minutes?! If it doesn't stop blinking, and you did what I suggested above, turn the dial back to H2, and then repeat. Read the card that is in your sun visor if you don't believe me. Fortunately, I have never had a transfer case/ selector issue with my three Tacomas... but I do use 4WD monthly (as requested by Toyota) and let off on the gas if shifting into 4WD while moving.
     
  17. Dec 23, 2012 at 10:56 AM
    #17
    DikDikerson

    DikDikerson Well-Known Member

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    Anyone have trouble switching back and forth in cold temps? It was -25C with the wind last night and could not get the truck to switch from 2 to 4H, took about 10 mins of trying everything mentioned before.
     
  18. Dec 23, 2012 at 11:00 AM
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    File IFR

    File IFR "... Intercepting The Localizer"

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    I read your post super fast and was about to ask you where do I spray the WD-40 in the actuators every month. :facepalm:

    Derp :eek:
     
  19. Dec 23, 2012 at 11:09 AM
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    David K

    David K Well-Known Member

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    No WD-40 yet! Is tuna oil in the actuator really helpful? I guess to keep water out!?
     
  20. Dec 23, 2012 at 2:19 PM
    #20
    nj636

    nj636 Hub Master General

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    now the four-wheel-drive light blinks while I'm driving down the road in 2 wheel. I'll report back after I diagnose.
     
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