Chevy Colorado & GMC Canyon banner

1 - 20 of 37 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,819 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Okay, here's the scenario. Driving along on a two lane curvy road when suddenly three deer (momma and two babies) appear in front of me. I reach to put on my 4-way flashers to alert the car following, but I also apparently reached to turn on the headlights to flash oncoming traffic without realizing it. But guess what? I apparently didn't turn on the lights, but somehow managed to turn on either Auto or 4WD. Not sure which, because as soon as I realized it was wrong I turned it back to 2WD.

But here's the thing. I didn't notice it was wrong for about 10 miles! Dry road. I figure if it was AWD, no harm no foul for such a distance. But if 4WD am I okay as long as nothing broke while I was in 4WD? It shifted out to 2WD normally without any noises or other unusual actions.

And here's maybe a clue to which I was in. I didn't notice the error due to the light on the dash, I noticed due to hearing drivetrain noise when turning into a parking spot. I'm assuming that means I was in 4WD, but I haven't tested that theory.

As an aside, I again cannot believe how incredibly F'n stupid GM engineers are to have the drivetrain controls right next to the lighting controls with both the same shape knob and both hidden by the steering wheel. How hard would it have been to at least design the drivetrain control so that it either needed to be pushed in or pulled out to change the setting? Rather obviously they realized it was a problem when the added the dash light in 2017 or 2018, but that's a half-ass fix for a moronic design.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
272 Posts
Absolutely hate the decision to have those two knobs in that location like that, don't know what they were thinking.

You should be fine. My understanding is that in 4Hi the damage can be done when shifting into it or driving at high speeds, so I think you're supposed to stay below 30 or 40 when shifting into it.

I think 4Lo can do some damage at road speeds but it won't let you shift into it unless you're in Neutral anyways.

Edit: Just realized you're driving the diesel, don't know how that affects the transmission but I assume the system and limitations are similar.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
928 Posts
Is your 4x4 light on on the dash? But now realizing you may not have a light on your dash. So much for that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
618 Posts
You'll be fine. I'd be more worried if you took A LOT of sharp turns where you could feel it binding. These are mass produced truck, so an accidental thing like that is accounted for while they engineer/select the components.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,819 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Is your 4x4 light on on the dash? But now realizing you may not have a light on your dash. So much for that.
I didn't notice it. Perhaps because the day before I was driving around in tow/haul with the driving lights on, so I was used to lights being on. What I don't know how I didn't notice the "switching" displayed on the dash, but I was probably looking at the deer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,280 Posts
Nothing broken so you're fine. If you noticed groaning and the truck felt like it took more throttle when turning at low speed then you were in 4HI. 4Auto feels just like 2WD because it prevents the driveline wind-up/binding as a result of the clutch in the transfer-case so turns feel "normal" when on dry pavement.

@bumbletruck there's no problem shifting between 2WD and 4Auto or 4HI, won't damage anything to do that even at freeway speeds because it's not actually engaging any gears, it deactivates the front axle disconnect which is part of the front axle (no gears, just a collar that slips over splines once they line up) and energizes the clutch in the transfer case.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
774 Posts
I'll second the nothing broken so you are fine statement. Also agree sounds like 4HI.
You may have warmed some gear oil a little above your normal but that cools off.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,819 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Nothing broken so you're fine. If you noticed groaning and the truck felt like it took more throttle when turning at low speed then you were in 4HI. 4Auto feels just like 2WD because it prevents the driveline wind-up/binding as a result of the clutch in the transfer-case so turns feel "normal" when on dry pavement.
Thanks, that's sort of what I was guessing. Good thing I've rotated the tires so that they should be fairly close in diameter--probably could be closer though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,510 Posts
Ten miles on a highway should not be a problem. The most stress on the powertrain was when you pulled into that parking space: You shifted back to 2WD, so I would't worry.

I used to shift my Wrangler into 4WD a few times per year just to exercise the system. Granted I usually waited to do it on a dirt road or something I thought might offer a little bit of slip and typically wasn't doing 55 MPH, but I have been known to forget to shift back out of 4WD until the first time I had to turn into a parking space or driveway.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
272 Posts
Nothing broken so you're fine. If you noticed groaning and the truck felt like it took more throttle when turning at low speed then you were in 4HI. 4Auto feels just like 2WD because it prevents the driveline wind-up/binding as a result of the clutch in the transfer-case so turns feel "normal" when on dry pavement.

@bumbletruck there's no problem shifting between 2WD and 4Auto or 4HI, won't damage anything to do that even at freeway speeds because it's not actually engaging any gears, it deactivates the front axle disconnect which is part of the front axle (no gears, just a collar that slips over splines once they line up) and energizes the clutch in the transfer case.
That's good to know and makes perfect sense. The old man always told me to be under 40 when shifting it but he operates largely on "if memory serves," so happy to learn, thanks!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,920 Posts
I think there are protections built in that won't let any damage happen.
Like, nothing will engage unless you are under a certain speed or in neutral, etc.
IOW, idiot proof. Or in this case, knee proof. (no insult implied)

In my one situation when I wanted to go into 4WD auto at speed, and I could only grope for the knob, I only turned on the light switch. This mistake almost got me stuck.
So now I just remember to stay in 4WD auto when driving in Texas.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
48 Posts
I’ll confess I drove nearly 40miles down the parkway at 70mph in 4wd one morning last month. I kept thinking this trailer shouldn’t be holding me back this much. Finally looked down and saw 4wd light on. Pulled over back in 2wd(I don’t leave it in auto) and off I went. Garage is slightly uphill and had to use 4wd to back up, hook and load trailer. Forgot to put it back before I left next morning.

I’ve launched full size trucks in 4wd up to 100-110 mph and been fine. Granted this is a stock 6L50. Not a 5R110 or Allison 1000 setup. Used 4wd twice this week...but as long as there’s no popping/binding I wouldn’t worry.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,920 Posts
  • Like
Reactions: bumbletruck

·
Registered
Joined
·
272 Posts
Very curious too, love this idea
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,690 Posts
Thats clean! Where do i find the panel stock?
That's a @logistixs special, one off.

There are other users with a switch relocation panel, all with different ideas. They all require an extension harness with the proper Molex connectors, as well as the removing the square retention bracket that holds the switch in place on the back of the knee panel.
 

·
Registered
2017 All Terrain 2.8L CCLB Dark Slate Metallic
Joined
·
876 Posts
I don't think you hurt anything, because Auto 4WD mode almost does the same thing. But I am curious how you bumped the switches on the left side of the steering wheel, when you reached down to put on your 4-ways, the switch for that being on the right? By 4-ways you do mean hazards? lol
396112
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,819 Posts
Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
I don't think you hurt anything, because Auto 4WD mode almost does the same thing. But I am curious how you bumped the switches on the left side of the steering wheel, when you reached down to put on your 4-ways, the switch for that being on the right?
My original guess when I posted was that I was also trying to turn on the lights to flash oncoming traffic, but thinking about it I also may have just reached the wrong way. I clearly remember reaching with my left hand before my right, but I don't know why I did that. Hitting the flashers was more important than turning on the lights given I knew there was a car behind and didn't know what was ahead.

Quite frankly though I don't remember because I was worried about the car behind and I was worried about hitting the deer, so my focus was on those two things more than the interior of the vehicle. Fortunately I didn't need to make the choice of either running over deer or being rear ended, and that's what I was most concerned about at the time. The deer were in a really bad place on a corner and the speed was just over 50.

Edit: After writing that I realized I didn't remember where the 4-way flasher switch was on my 89 Ranger. It's on the left hand side of the top of the steering wheel column, and most easily reached with the left hand. That was my main driver for over 20 years, so maybe that's why I went to the left first????
 
1 - 20 of 37 Posts
Top