Is it better to have Manual or Automatic Hubs? | Ford Explorer - Ford Ranger Forums - Serious Explorations

  • Register Today It's free! This box and some ads will disappear once registered!

Is it better to have Manual or Automatic Hubs?

MadExplorer93

Well-Known Member
Joined
July 25, 2007
Messages
463
Reaction score
0
City, State
Sault Ste Marie, Ontario Canada
Year, Model & Trim Level
1993 XL 4x4 4.0L OHV V6
Ok Fellas/Girls i live in the great white north = CANADA and it is to dang cold to be getting out of my vehicle and locking those manual hubs.

I do how ever have Auto Hubs, but i was noting if i did change them to manual hubs. I would be freezing my buttocks off amongst other things to lock the hubs.

Manual Hubs have a huge drawback which is you can't push a button while driving and have 4x4 when needed and that sucks as if vehicles are behind you and your wanting 4x4 mode, you obviously have to pull over and lock the hubs.


So since my Auto Hubs are working good so far.

Is it better in ppls opinion to have Manual Hubs?

And please state why you think so or don't think so.

Thks

ME93
 
<

Join the Elite Explorers $20 Gets rid of the ads!

Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links, can add their own profile photo, upload photo attachments in all forums, and Media Gallery, create and save more private conversations, and more. Join Today. Your support is greatly appreciated.




kit352

Active Member
Joined
December 25, 2007
Messages
80
Reaction score
0
City, State
holland ma.
Year, Model & Trim Level
94 sport
manuals are stronger and tend to last alot longer. it also frees up the front end from excessive wear.
 
<



hunterdan

Explorer Addict
Joined
October 21, 2004
Messages
1,382
Reaction score
1
City, State
Fairless Hills, Pa
Year, Model & Trim Level
2010 Chevy Silverado
I agree, the manuals are better. If you feel you might need them in your trip, just lock them before you leave and you are good to go. With autos, you really should stop, put it in 4x4, then drive forward. Not sure how the autos on explorers work, but on my old truck, even in 4x4 they would disengage when changing direction (forward to reverse), then engage again after moving a few feet. With manuals, you are constantly locked. If your autos are working fine, I would run them til they stop, but would upgrade to the manuals when they start to go bad.
 
<



CBII

Well-Known Member
Joined
November 4, 2004
Messages
317
Reaction score
1
City, State
Edmonton, Alberta Canada
Year, Model & Trim Level
91 XLT
Had the autos and blew them up. Manuals are the only way to go regardless where you live.

Like you I'm from Canada (Edmonton to be exact) and we had 7" of snow the other day. I just locked them before leaving (even if there is a remote chance that I might need them). I also have the manual t-case so I just pulled the leaver whenever I need a little extra traction.

The wife wasn't to keen on the idea at first about have manual hubs and a manual t-case. One winter and she loves it...mainly because it's reliable.

Besides I don't think it's ever to cold to get out for 30s to lock the hubs.
 
<



X-North

Well-Known Member
Joined
July 16, 2007
Messages
552
Reaction score
0
City, State
Montreal
Sincerly i have original 207000 kms original hubs and they still work. People dont usually know how to clean them and grease them...too much grease will worn them because it wont engage correctly and not enough grease will overheat the hubs. The fact is that some guys dont just love to learn those details and they just want to have fun without loosing time with auto hubs. But if you are like me in canada then auto-hubs correctly used and greased is more useful in cold winter and snow. suppose that you have a child and you must get out of the truck every time to engage and disengage the manual hubs then he can get sick of it or you go to a wedding for exemple and you are stuck somewhere...you must get out and get wet or dirty or in mud just to turn those hubs.
Sincerly a good useage and maintenance would be great.
Personnaly i go sometimes in north where is -35 celsius lot of times so auto hubs is kinda useful :) Colder than that..my old truck can start yes but me i dot want to get out for nothing hehehe
 
<



fordnut71

Well-Known Member
Joined
September 11, 2007
Messages
391
Reaction score
0
City, State
oshawa, ontario. home 2 goverment motors canada
Year, Model & Trim Level
99 ex sport
i have the manual hubs an im also in canada in the toronto area. i also drive a highway plow truck so im out in the snow an cold before most even wake up. you can still leave the axles engaged an drive in 2wd an switch over to 4wd when you want to. also gives you better gas milage to be in 2wd an not be pushing the front axle like with auto hubs.
if you know what the wether for the day will be you can switch them on or off.
i bought my truck with the auto hubs on an put the manuals on.
still id have manual hubs over the auto hubs there really not that much work.
 
<



Willard

Explorer Addict
Joined
March 16, 2007
Messages
3,175
Reaction score
4
City, State
Bloomington, Indiana
Year, Model & Trim Level
04 Ranger Edge
Just an FYI....

There should be no gas mileage difference with auto hubs, and no difference in the wearing of the front drive train either. The auto hubs just engage and disengage automatically, they do not leave it engaged all the time. If they are not disengaging, something is wrong.
 
<



<



Willard

Explorer Addict
Joined
March 16, 2007
Messages
3,175
Reaction score
4
City, State
Bloomington, Indiana
Year, Model & Trim Level
04 Ranger Edge
They disengage when you press the swithc in-dash.

Kind of, not immediately. They need to have a little bit of reverse torque applied to disengage them, which is why it's a good idea to backup after you turn off 4x4 to disengage the hubs.
 
<



fordnut71

Well-Known Member
Joined
September 11, 2007
Messages
391
Reaction score
0
City, State
oshawa, ontario. home 2 goverment motors canada
Year, Model & Trim Level
99 ex sport
i dont have that problem i got the manual hubs an still would only have them
 
<



X-North

Well-Known Member
Joined
July 16, 2007
Messages
552
Reaction score
0
City, State
Montreal
I know that but anyway its not a problem to back off ...in condition you are not so stupid to back of where you where stuck haha
 
<



SensRanger

Active Member
Joined
September 14, 2005
Messages
90
Reaction score
0
City, State
Ottawa, ON
Year, Model & Trim Level
96 Ranger XLT 4x4 Xcab
With the winter we've had in Ottawa I am sure loving the auto hubs. With RWD only man is it ever easy to get stuck! But just flip the 4wd switch and you're good...but having to get out each time to engage the hubs would suck. I don't know my truck is a 96 only 120k kms but never had a problem with the auto hubs. And I am sure I don't service them at the suggested intervals. Maybe twice in 5 yrs and they do see some mud. Maybe the key is reversing 10 feet to disengage like you're supposed to do- I always do, and I also don't shift into 4wd on the fly too often, it always makes more of a clunk and it seems like there is less wear and a nice smooth transition when engaging 4wd at a slow roll so thats what I always do. I think the autos are still designed by Warn.
 
<



X-North

Well-Known Member
Joined
July 16, 2007
Messages
552
Reaction score
0
City, State
Montreal
Also you should maintenance them more often...they cost 180$ each at the ford dealer. :p

With the winter we've had in Ottawa I am sure loving the auto hubs. With RWD only man is it ever easy to get stuck! But just flip the 4wd switch and you're good...but having to get out each time to engage the hubs would suck. I don't know my truck is a 96 only 120k kms but never had a problem with the auto hubs. And I am sure I don't service them at the suggested intervals. Maybe twice in 5 yrs and they do see some mud. Maybe the key is reversing 10 feet to disengage like you're supposed to do- I always do, and I also don't shift into 4wd on the fly too often, it always makes more of a clunk and it seems like there is less wear and a nice smooth transition when engaging 4wd at a slow roll so thats what I always do. I think the autos are still designed by Warn.
 
<



Willard

Explorer Addict
Joined
March 16, 2007
Messages
3,175
Reaction score
4
City, State
Bloomington, Indiana
Year, Model & Trim Level
04 Ranger Edge
With the winter we've had in Ottawa I am sure loving the auto hubs. With RWD only man is it ever easy to get stuck! But just flip the 4wd switch and you're good...but having to get out each time to engage the hubs would suck. I don't know my truck is a 96 only 120k kms but never had a problem with the auto hubs. And I am sure I don't service them at the suggested intervals. Maybe twice in 5 yrs and they do see some mud. Maybe the key is reversing 10 feet to disengage like you're supposed to do- I always do, and I also don't shift into 4wd on the fly too often, it always makes more of a clunk and it seems like there is less wear and a nice smooth transition when engaging 4wd at a slow roll so thats what I always do. I think the autos are still designed by Warn.

Your truck, being a 96, doesn't have the locking hubs we are talking about. It uses a different system to unlock the differential, I believe it has a vacuum disconnect system. Either that or the front axle is always engaged.
 
<



SensRanger

Active Member
Joined
September 14, 2005
Messages
90
Reaction score
0
City, State
Ottawa, ON
Year, Model & Trim Level
96 Ranger XLT 4x4 Xcab
Remember I have a Ranger and I am pretty sure Rangers up to 1997 have the same type of hubs (and the same TTB suspension) as 1st Gen explorers. Only in 98 when they changed to the torsion bar setup did they move to PVH hubs. My manual describes how you need to reverse 10 feet to disengage them. Indeed my Ranger has way more in common with 91-94 ex's than the newer ones. (Ford always invested their $ for "improvements" (not counting PVH hubs) in the Explorer 1st while the Ranger was just an afterthought)
 
<



Maniak

Moderator-Stock 91-94
Elite Explorer
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
February 9, 1999
Messages
12,084
Reaction score
122
City, State
Vail, Arizona
Year, Model & Trim Level
1992 XLT 4x4
One thing you get with manual hubs that you don't get with auto hubs is 2 wheel drive low range.

With the hubs unlocked, but the transfercase in 4x4 low you will actually be in 2wd low. I've used that a few times when I was pulling (towing) a heavy trailer. This allowed me to pull it up a hill from a dead stop (stop sign).

I also use 2wd low when I want I'm backing up a trailer. It makes it easier since I don't have to hit the gas to keep moving.. the torque with the low range makes it move easily and I only need to control the brakes.

~Mark
 
<



Joe Dirt

Explorer Addict
Joined
October 4, 2007
Messages
13,365
Reaction score
21
Year, Model & Trim Level
07 Camry
<



Willard

Explorer Addict
Joined
March 16, 2007
Messages
3,175
Reaction score
4
City, State
Bloomington, Indiana
Year, Model & Trim Level
04 Ranger Edge
Remember I have a Ranger and I am pretty sure Rangers up to 1997 have the same type of hubs (and the same TTB suspension) as 1st Gen explorers. Only in 98 when they changed to the torsion bar setup did they move to PVH hubs. My manual describes how you need to reverse 10 feet to disengage them. Indeed my Ranger has way more in common with 91-94 ex's than the newer ones. (Ford always invested their $ for "improvements" (not counting PVH hubs) in the Explorer 1st while the Ranger was just an afterthought)

Whoops my bad, didn't notice you had a ranger.

In that case, you're right you do have the same suspension as the rest of us. I would imagine, however, that the auto hubs have improved slightly over the years.
 
<



X-North

Well-Known Member
Joined
July 16, 2007
Messages
552
Reaction score
0
City, State
Montreal
In fact i have auto lock with 3.27 diff's and it give me a final ratio of 19.65 in 4X4 low...dont need to slam the gaz too hard to advance hehe

One thing you get with manual hubs that you don't get with auto hubs is 2 wheel drive low range.

With the hubs unlocked, but the transfercase in 4x4 low you will actually be in 2wd low. I've used that a few times when I was pulling (towing) a heavy trailer. This allowed me to pull it up a hill from a dead stop (stop sign).

I also use 2wd low when I want I'm backing up a trailer. It makes it easier since I don't have to hit the gas to keep moving.. the torque with the low range makes it move easily and I only need to control the brakes.

~Mark
 
<

Join the Elite Explorers $20 Gets rid of the ads!

Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links, can add their own profile photo, upload photo attachments in all forums, and Media Gallery, create and save more private conversations, and more. Join Today. Your support is greatly appreciated.




Maniak

Moderator-Stock 91-94
Elite Explorer
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
February 9, 1999
Messages
12,084
Reaction score
122
City, State
Vail, Arizona
Year, Model & Trim Level
1992 XLT 4x4
In fact i have auto lock with 3.27 diff's and it give me a final ratio of 19.65 in 4X4 low...dont need to slam the gaz too hard to advance hehe

With auto hubs you cannot run 2wd low. That means if for some reason you want the low gearing (19.65:1) to move something (slowly) you cannot do it on pavement or hardpack. Once you put your truck in 4x4 and start to move your hubs will lock which you don't want.

With the manual hubs you disconnect the power from the wheels and now you have 2wd with a much lower gear ratio (higher numerically) to give you more torque for whatever reason you want it.

~Mark
 
<



Top