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Only Rear wheel turn in Reverse when in 4x4?

The Xplor94

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That might be a stupid question from a new owner of a 1994 Explorer. I was doing offroad for the first time with my Explorer this weekend and i noticed that in reverse, even with the 4 high or 4 Low engaged, only my rear tires were spinning. Nothing from the front.

I never had a Ford before and my only experience is with Toyota. But i'm use to have all 4 wheels in reverse. Is this normal or something weird is going on?

I have manual Hubs on it!

Thanks for your help.
 


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RangerX

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Are you sure neither front tire spun in reverse? And if so, how are you sure?
Are you sure you were getting power to the front wheels when going forward?
 




96EXXLTinCO

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A blown hub or one not engaging for some reason on one side or the other will cause neither tire to spin due to the open differential. Dumb question I have no doubt, but you do have a front driveshaft installed?
 




The Xplor94

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Are you sure neither front tire spun in reverse? And if so, how are you sure?
Are you sure you were getting power to the front wheels when going forward?

I was trying to pull a guy stuck in the mud, the mud was flying from all four wheels in forward a few minutes before and after. Yes, i am sure the front tire were not spinning because the spotter was like "Dude, only your rear tire spin" than i double check and yup, it was the case.

I will bring it to the garage and put it on the lift and try with no load to be sure!
 




The Xplor94

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A blown hub or one not engaging for some reason on one side or the other will cause neither tire to spin due to the open differential. Dumb question I have no doubt, but you do have a front driveshaft installed?

Yes, and when locked, it's a pita to park at the grocery parking. Jerking, squishing, well.. You know!
 




Mbrooks420

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Yes, and when locked, it's a pita to park at the grocery parking. Jerking, squishing, well.. You know!
Never run 4wd on hard, high traction surfaces. If it works fine in forward and not reverse you need to address the auto hubs, most likely. Very possibly a hub was damaged due to this very thing.

Also, if you’re factory (assuming you are from the auto hubs) most of the time only one front wheel will spin.
 




shran

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He said he has manual hubs. It's OK to have them locked all the time as long as it stays in 2wd on the street but yes it does bind when you turn.

Do you have an electric shift transfer case?

My guess is that your t-case is not actually shifting into 4 wheel drive (if it's electric shift) or there's something broken inside it or you've got a broken front diff, front axle joint is broken or you've got a bad lockout hub.

Start by locking in both hubs, jack up one wheel and spin the tire. The front driveshaft should turn. That will narrow down your issue.
 




Mbrooks420

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Manual hubs being locked should not cause any binding or driveline windup as the front diff is open.
 




shran

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You would think so but it does and gets progressively more noticeable as the wheels are turned further. It's not the front diff binding, it's the u-joints in the axle shafts. Some vehicles aren't too bad - my '88 Ranger is almost, but not quite, undetectable. Others, not so much - I had a full time 4wd Grand Cherokee that was just awful.
 




Mbrooks420

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My Bronco hubs were never unlocked and it never had any binding issues in 2wd. I’d also say something up front is broken in his hubs if he doesn’t get any spin up front. A tear down is likely in order.
 




shran

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I suspect it has to do with wheelbase, weight, tire size, etc... lots of factors... I can tell you that I've owned several dozen 4x4 trucks and SUVs and every single one that had a front axle with u-joints did it to some degree.

I went from standard u-joint factory shafts to RCVs in my SAS'd Ranger - night and day improvement... until I put a lock-rite in the front.
 




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