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goodwrench9124
goodwrench9124, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Chevy
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Experience:  Ase Master Certified, GM Master Certified Tech. Awarded GM Top performer, Hybrid certified
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1998 Chevy Blazer: electronic transfer case switches..neutral

Customer Question

I have a 1998 Chevy Blazer auto with electronic transfer case switches. I was in a three foot snow drift and had to use 4LO to get out. With the vehicle in neutral and stopped, I pressed the 4LO switch. Although I was able to get into 4LO, both the 4HI and 4LO indicators lit up and stayed lit. Then I couldn't get out of 4LO to 4HI or 2HI. Per instructions in the Chevy manual, I was able to get into 4HI by pressing the 4HI switch in neutral and shifting into park while the 4HI switch was blinking. I then shifted into drive and was good to go until I switched into 2HI. Now when I try to get into 4HI, both the 4HI and 4LO indicators blink for a few seconds but no transfer is made. I can't get out of 2HI. The manual suggests taking the car in for an adjustment. Can you please explain the adjustment and what I can expect to pay? Thank you.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Chevy
Expert:  goodwrench9124 replied 4 years ago.
Hello and welcome. the most common reason for this problem is a bad encoder sensor inside the encoder motor. try this and let me know if this takes care of the problem. disconnect the battery for a few minutes. reconnect the battery, start the truck up, place the transmission in neutral, switch the 4 wd from 2 hi to 4 lo and back to 2 hi. do this several times. this sometimes will clean the encoder sensor.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Thanks for your quick response. Unfortunately, disconnecting the battery didn't help, but playing around with the switches gave new results. I can't get into 4HI no matter what combinations I use, i.e., which switches are depressed or whether I'm in neutral or park. However, if I'm in neutral and press 4LO, I can transfer to 4LO if I quickly shift into park while both the 4HI and 4LO indicators are blinking. To get back into 2HI, I'm stopped and in neutral. I depress 2HI, the 4HI and 4LO indicators blink, then the transfer to 2HI is made and the 2HI indicator lights up. Does this still sound like an encoder sensor problem? So I can talk intelligently to my mechanic, would you please briefly explain the functions of the TCCM, encoder and actuator? Before I replace anything should I get a Tech 2 diagnosis? Can I buy the encoder sensor by itself? What about a used encoder? Lastly, could my problem simply be the electronic dash switch unit?
Expert:  goodwrench9124 replied 4 years ago.

very possible it is a encoder problem, but there is one other thing that happens with these trucks. over on the passenger side, behind the right kick panel is the control module for the transfer case. remove the kick panel and unplug the connectors for the transfer case module. look inside of the connectors and see if there is a powerdly green colored substance on the connector terminals. sometimes the connectors draw moisture and cause a bad connection at the module. here is a picture

 

 

graphic

 

graphic

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Relist: Incomplete answer.
The answers from goodwrench9124 were of very questionable quality, information that I had researched on the internet myself and incomplete answers or not responding at all to my questions. Please review the following question/answer stream and find another expert for me.

FromXXX@XXXXXX.XXX Original question:
I have a 1998 Chevy Blazer auto with electronic transfer case switches. I was in a three foot snow drift and had to use 4LO to get out. With the vehicle in neutral and stopped, I pressed the 4LO switch. Although I was able to get into 4LO, both the 4HI and 4LO indicators lit up and stayed lit. Then I couldn't transfer from 4LO to 4HI or 2HI. Per instructions in the Chevy manual, I was able to get into 4HI by pressing the 4HI switch in neutral and shifting into park while the 4HI switch was blinking. I then shifted into drive and was good to go until I switched into 2HI. Now when I try to get into 4HI, both the 4HI and 4LO indicators blink for a few seconds but no transfer is made. I can't get out of 2HI. The manual suggests taking the car in for an “adjustment.” Can you please explain this adjustment and what I can expect to pay? Thank you.

From goodwrench9124
Sun, Mar 21, 2010 7:34 AM EST Original answer:
Hello and welcome. the most common reason for this problem is a bad encoder sensor inside the encoder motor. try this and let me know if this takes care of the problem. disconnect the battery for a few minutes. reconnect the battery, start the truck up, place the transmission in neutral, switch the 4 wd from 2 hi to 4 lo and back to 2 hi. do this several times. this sometimes will clean the encoder sensor.

FromXXX@XXXXXX.XXX Follow-up questions:
Thanks for your quick response. Unfortunately, disconnecting the battery didn't help, but playing around with the switches provided new results. Now I can't get into 4HI no matter what combinations I use, i.e., which switches are depressed or whether I'm in neutral or park. However, if I'm in neutral and press 4LO, I can transfer to 4LO if I quickly shift into park while both the 4HI and 4LO indicators are blinking. To get back into 2HI, I'm stopped and in neutral. I depress 2HI, the 4HI and 4LO indicators blink, then the transfer to 2HI is made and the 2HI indicator lights up. Question 1: Does this still sound like an encoder sensor problem? Question 2: Can I buy the encoder sensor by itself? Question 3: What about a salvage yard encoder? Question 4: Could my problem simply be a faulty electronic dash switch unit? Question 5: So I can talk intelligently to my mechanic, would you please briefly explain the functions of the TCCM, encoder and actuator? Question 6: Lastly, before I replace anything and start throwing money at parts, should I get a Tech 2 diagnosis?


From goodwrench9124 Followup answer

Mon, Mar 22, 2010 6:52 PM EST

Answer 1: very possible it is a encoder problem, Answer 2: but there is one other thing that happens with these trucks. over on the passenger side, behind the right kick panel is the control module for the transfer case. remove the kick panel and unplug the connectors for the transfer case module. look inside of the connectors and see if there is a powerdly green colored substance on the connector terminals. sometimes the connectors draw moisture and cause a bad connection at the module. here is a picture
My dissatisfaction with goodwrench9124's answers are as follows: I already researched Answer 2 myself and found the same information. Questions 2 through 6 were not answered at all.


Expert:  goodwrench9124 replied 4 years ago.

My apology if I was not clear. I have open this question back for another expert to try to help.

 

Thanks for using JA!!!

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Relist: Incomplete answer.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Relist: Incomplete answer.
FromXXX@XXXXXX.XXX Original question to justanswer:

I have a 1998 Chevy Blazer automatic with electronic transfer case switches. I was in a three foot snow drift and had to use 4LO to get out. With the vehicle in neutral and stopped, I pressed the 4LO switch. Although I was able to get into 4LO, both the 4HI and 4LO indicators blinked for a few seconds and stayed lit. Then I could not transfer from 4LO to 4HI. Per instructions in the Chevy manual, I was able to get into 4HI by pressing the 4HI switch in neutral and quickly shifting into park while the 4HI and 4LO indicators were both blinking. The Chevy Owners Manual says, if your transfer case does not shift into 4HI, your transmission indicator switch may require adjustment. After the transfer was made to 4HI, both the 4HI and 4LO indicators stayed lit. I then shifted into drive and was good to go until I switched into 2HI on the fly. The 4HI and 4LO indicators blinked for a few seconds then the 2HI indicator lit up. Then when I tried to transfer into 4HI from 2HI, I depressed the 4HI switch and both the 4HI and 4LO indicators blinked for a few seconds, but no transfer was made to 4HI. I was not able to get out of 2HI and the 2HI indicator stayed lit. Do you know what adjustment Chevy is talking about? What else could be wrong? Thanks for your help.


From goodwrench9124
Sun, Mar 21, 2010 7:34 AM EST Original answer:

Hello and welcome. the most common reason for this problem is a bad encoder sensor inside the encoder motor. try this and let me know if this takes care of the problem. disconnect the battery for a few minutes. reconnect the battery, start the truck up, place the transmission in neutral, switch the 4 wd from 2 hi to 4 lo and back to 2 hi. do this several times. this sometimes will clean the encoder sensor.


FromXXX@XXXXXX.XXX Follow-up questions:

Thanks for your quick response. Unfortunately, disconnecting the battery did not help, but playing around with the switches provided new results. I can not get into 4HI no matter what combinations I use, i.e., which switches are depressed or whether I am in neutral or park. However, if I am in neutral and press 4LO, I can transfer to 4LO if I quickly shift into park while both the 4HI and 4LO indicators are blinking. To get back into 2HI, I am stopped and in neutral. I depress 2HI, the 4HI and 4LO indicators blink, then the transfer to 2HI is made and the 2HI indicator lights up. Question 1: Does this still sound like an encoder sensor problem? Question 2: Can I buy the encoder sensor by itself? Question 3: What about a salvage yard encoder? Question 4: Could my problem simply be a faulty dashboard electronic transfer case switch unit? Question 5: So I can talk intelligently to my mechanic, would you please briefly explain the functions of the TCCM, encoder motor and actuator? Question 6: Lastly, before I replace anything and start throwing money after parts, should I get a Tech 2 diagnosis?


From goodwrench9124 Followup answer

Mon, Mar 22, 2010 6:52 PM EST

Answer to question 1: very possible it is a encoder problem, New answer: but there is one other thing that happens with these trucks. over on the passenger side, behind the right kick panel is the control module for the transfer case. remove the kick panel and unplug the connectors for the transfer case module. look inside of the connectors and see if there is a powerdly green colored substance on the connector terminals. sometimes the connectors draw moisture and cause a bad connection at the module. here is a picture
Note: My dissatisfaction with goodwrench9124 answers is as follows: I already researched the TCCM solution myself and found the same information. Questions 2 through 6 were not answered at all.

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