t-case locked? | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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t-case locked?


Well-Known Member
December 31, 2007
Reaction score
City, State
Davenport, IA
Year, Model & Trim Level
'99 Sport
Pretty sure my sploder's transfer case is locked up now, not even really sure how.

Background for help with my diagnosis. I have the 4.0L SOHC, transmission was rebuilt around 120k miles and I now have about 160k. ABS hasn't worked since I replaced the wheel hubs. I've also done the brown wire mod.

This morning on the way to work I had to make an emergency maneuver and the brakes locked up and I skidded a bit on the road. I even managed to smack my head against the pillar. Not hard.

Anyways, made it all the way to work and when I was trying to part I noticed that there was some binding, truck was hopping like the 4wd was on. BWM switch was set to off. The selector of course was on Auto. I tried backing up to release the binding. I tried unplugging the BWM wires and the t-case plug and still had binding. I even tried banging on the t-case to see if that would loosen it up.

After trying all that on pavement I tried the forward and reverse on gravel. Still seems to be locked. Not sure if maybe there is something else wrong that I'm missing or maybe it actually it is the transfer case. I want to just drop the driveshaft for now. But I'm reading that the vehicle will keep rolling in park if I do?

Chances are at this point I'm going to be getting rid of the vehicle soon, but wanted to make it to winter. Not just because of the t-case but I know that I've got a death rattle in the engine.

Any insight is greatly appreciated.

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Your vehicle would only roll in park if you had AWD. You have 4WD so this does not make a difference to you.

Sounds like maybe a blown clutch pack, but that's just a guess. Since the BWM "forces" the clutch to slip in a sense, it could be related. You might as well pull the driveshaft at this point.

Thank you for your replies. How difficult of a job is it to drop the front driveshaft? Anything I need to know about driving without it on the vehicle?

So I seem to have misplaced my Chilton manual. What tools do I need to remove the shaft. I found 6 small bolts on the rear of the shaft - the part that connects to the t-case and the front seems like there are only 4 bolts that hold the u joint caps on. I've got some WD-40 soaking in now.

The bolts look different than normal on the front, kind of like a star inside them, what do I need to remove those? Am I looking in the right places to take this thing out?

that would be called a torx bit. yes your looking at the right place.

Is there anything I need to do to make sure things are sealed once the shaft is off, is it just the front that needs bolts removed or the rear too? The rear looks more like a CV and I see 6 bolts there, do those get removed to take the shaft out. I saw on another thread it's a Torx 30 to removed those bolts on the U-Joint?

Gotta get the shaft dropped today, does anyone have a how to on dropping this so I can keep driving the explorer?