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BWM Brown Wire Mod 3rd Gen

Discussion in 'Modified 2002 - 2005 Explorers' started by P. doggy, September 10, 2007.

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    1. P. doggy

      P. doggy Active Member

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      I know this has been posted before, but here is the post with pics and a better title for those searching.

      This is the procedure I used on a 2002. It should work on up to a 2005. These are the steps I followed. I am not saying this is the best and this is just a guide. Give your self about 2-3 hours to be safe.

      1.Remove Dash. Start by removing the dash piece around the radio, center vents and air control. I applied a flathead screwdriver to the bottom of the plastic dash piece and pried up. This might leave a small mark in the dash piece below it, where the shaft of the screwdriver rests. Be careful. The dash should pop out. It should gradually start popping off. There are about six pops (clips) that should happen.
      2. Mount the switch. I wanted mine in a easy-to-reach spot and visible. Since I have an XLS, the spot in the pics works great.

      It is also easy to replace the small dash piece if needed. I also used a lighted switch, so I needed power for the light. I used the second wire from the right on the wiring harness to the 4x4 option buttons.

      4. Run the wiring. I grounded my switch out to the radio (yellow wire). The red wire is the power wire spliced into the wiring harness mentioned above. I ran it to the power input on the switch.

      The acc. or load wire on the switch, I ran behind the glove compartment. You can make the glove comp. swing all the way down by squeezing the catches inward.

      After it is all wired, check the switch. Turn the key to the on position and check the switch. Should light up. Carefully replace the dash piece. Make sure not to pinch any wires. Close the glove compartment.
      5. Find the Wire. If you remove the step plate on the passenger side, there is a wire channel underneath. You will also want to pull off the lower plastic trim piece, on the far right-hand side, under the glove comp. Remove the top cover of the wire channel; it is black and made of plastic. This will now show 2 bundles of wires; one large and one small. You want the small bundle.

      The plain brown wire is the one of interest.

      6. Install relay and wires. Cut the brown wire. Strip the ends and crimp or solder on a wire to both sides of the brown wire. There should be three bolts where you pulled off the plastic under the glove comp. One should be bare. This is where I mounted my relay and grounded out my relay.

      If you do not have a mount, you can it tuck back in the body. I used a 12V/30A relay. In this photo,
      Yellow = Ground
      Green = Switch
      Black = Input from brown wire (runs toward rear of vehicle)
      White = Output to brown wire (runs to front of vehicle)
      7. Check. After it is all hooked up, check it out. Start the vehicle. If the light is on, on the switch, all 4x4 options should work. If the light is off, it should be 2x4.
      8. Put the plastic back on. Take for a test drive. Should work.

      Notes. You now have new feature. You can still get the transfer case to shift into low. 2x4 Low! With the tranny in Neutral and with your 4x4 switch turned off, press the 4x4 low button. You should have low range but no 4x4. I have ran this mode several times and have no adverse effects. Feel free to ask questions. I am always glad to help.

      Have Fun, Jared G.
       
      Last edited by a moderator: February 9, 2014
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    3. misconceived

      misconceived Active Member

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      You burn up your tires yet?
       
    4. muzzymaniac

      muzzymaniac Active Member

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      Any increase in MPH? ?
       
    5. YamahaDrtRdr

      YamahaDrtRdr New Member

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      Thank you!!!! I've been looking everywhere on this site for a decent guide on this mod with no avail. I'm planning on doing this mod on Wednesday when we only have a half-day at school. Could you please tell me where you bought the switch and relay and possibly product #s? Thanks!!!
       
    6. bel4_20

      bel4_20 New Member

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      when the button is "on" so 2wd, will it trip the 4x4 light on the dash? makeing the truck think theres a problem with the auto 4x4?
       
    7. P. doggy

      P. doggy Active Member

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      To answer all the Qs:
      I had to replace one set of tires so far. They spin pretty easily in 2wd; even with the V6.
      It does not affect MPH. If you meant MPG; it does not affect that either. The two biggest gains in MPH for me came after I put 265/75/16 tires at 65PSI, and higher octane fuel.
      You can get a relay (30A/12v) at any auto parts store. Just pick out any lighted switch and ask for a 12v/30amp relay, and all you need is the wires. Checker Auto (also Kragens and Schucks) sells a relay kit for add-on driving lights and that is what I used.
      It will not trigger any lights on the dash. All you are doing in this mod is basically interrupting the signal to the clutch that engages the front drive-shaft. As I mentioned in the post, if the switch is off; you can push all the buttons (4x4auto, 4x4 high, 4x4 low) and still only have 2x4. Now, I am not sure what would happen if you wired it wrong, because I never did, but that might give you errors.
      Hope that helps, Jared G.
       
    8. ghoster

      ghoster Active Member

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      ok let me get this straight.... i have a Eddie Bauer 4WD...doing this will enable me to go into 2wd?
      kinda got me confused since i c u don't have the 4WD switches on the dash like i do..but it might be b/c urs is a XLS
      please let me know
       
    9. misconceived

      misconceived Active Member

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      He's showing the switch "blanks" on the right side of the radio. You have these if you don't have the message center. He chose to mount a switch there because they are useless.

      Yes, doing this will let you go into 2wd.

      Hope this helps.
       
    10. ghoster

      ghoster Active Member

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      thanks...did help
      just got confused b/c on my x the 4X4 switches are on the right of the radio and the message center controls on the left...didn't know it was diff. for x's that don't come w/ the message center

      again thanks....i'll be doing this,this weekend hopefully
       
    11. Dopler174

      Dopler174 Official Welcome Committe Moderator Emeritus

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      I want to see a pic/vid of the smoke rolling.:burnout:
       
    12. Curtis

      Curtis Well-Known Member

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      To simplify this for testing, could I simply cut the brown wire and add a simple on/off switch? If im happy with that I could then spend the time to add a cool switch like yours.

      Excellent job man!
       
    13. P. doggy

      P. doggy Active Member

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      Yes, I think that would work, Curtis.
       
    14. Regulator_XLS

      Regulator_XLS Active Member

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      what is a brown wire mod
       
    15. misconceived

      misconceived Active Member

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      You're joking right?

      You "MOD" the brown wire that connects to your transfer case. It enables you to drive in 2wd.
       
    16. muzzymaniac

      muzzymaniac Active Member

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      Other than burnouts. There is really no benefit, right?
       
    17. P. doggy

      P. doggy Active Member

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      Well, if you are on an icy road and your auto 4x4 engages, you have a pretty good chance of spinning out of control. I want to choose when I am in 4x4; not have a computer tell me when it thinks I should be in 4x4. And it does save mileage in the snow. I get better mpgs when the 4x4 is not engaging and disengaging all the time; even if my rear tires spin a little bit more.
      Jared G.
       
    18. awdrocks

      awdrocks Active Member

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      Well I don't think this will work for 04'+. I'm not sure what year they got away from part-time 4x4 and went to AWD. But I think part-time 4x4 was 02-03.
       
    19. bel4_20

      bel4_20 New Member

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      Now that's what I wanted to hear and if any MPG will be saved that's where it will count the most, all that engaging and disengaging does consume more gas that makes sense to me. and for the time it will take to do this mod that will be worth it. Besides once you do this mod if you don't want it on and you want the truck do decide weather or not to engage 4x4 just turn the switch of...simple!:thumbsup:
       
    20. bel4_20

      bel4_20 New Member

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      if you have auto 4x4;)

      hope that helped.
       
    21. Curtis

      Curtis Well-Known Member

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      Im hoping this works for 04! I dont need the 4wd in FL and it would be nice to turn it off. My X isnt AWD, at least I dont think so cause I have 4x4 Auto, 4x4 high and 4x4 Low buttons.

      I do plan to give this a try but need to get the time to spend on a saturday to do it.
       
    22. briwayjones

      briwayjones Manual Master

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      You should be able to just use a 30amp switch with no relay and have no problems at all.
       
    23. awdrocks

      awdrocks Active Member

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      If you have those three buttons you are not AWD, and you are good to go.
       
    24. Curtis

      Curtis Well-Known Member

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      I want to do this so bad because my father disconnected his 4x4CM until we get a new one because of flashing 4x4 lights. After disconnecting it he gets about 420 miles / tank on the highway... im lucky to get 320 in mine. Both are 4.6L 4x4's.
       
    25. Rick

      Rick Pumpkin Pilot Staff Member Admin Elite Explorer

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      Thanks for the writeup. I'll give you 6 months of Elite Explorer privileges for it. I do have a request though. Once your Elite membership is active, please upload the photos to this site, so the photos will always stay with the thread.

      Thanks:chug:
       
    26. bel4_20

      bel4_20 New Member

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      4x4 Auto is just the same as AWD well almost the same except for the fact that the computer decides if it engaes or not where AWD is all 4 tires turning all the time.
       

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