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4WD issue? controller? SOLVED!!!!

Discussion in 'Suzuki Carry' started by SDK1968, Mar 1, 2023.

  1. SDK1968

    SDK1968 Active Member

    well its time to ask the experts.

    its my 2002 Carry. 5spd 4wd.

    background: went down over the hill this AM & had no 4wd. no noise, no nothing. was just gone. it was working the other day & YES we leave it in 4lo all the time. never take it out cause we are never over 10mph on my hillsides. goes without saying that for the first time ive owned it was stuck anywhere let alone on an incline & getting nowhere. had to have a neighbor come over & help me get it up the hill. that was embarrassing. JD tractor pulling my Zuki up a hill.

    thoughts: as a 1 wheel wonder this thing is useless to me. after/if we get this fixed? will for sure be looking for a posi trac deal for the rear end.

    heres what ive checked:
    the front shaft is turning going into the pumpkin, so its not my linkage. that was my first search out after i got it unstuck. no holes in it. front tires spin by hand when up in the air on jack stands, but no engagement from the shaft. saw no blown fuses, but not sure which ones go to this.

    questions: thought this was electrically engaged & there is a plug on the front of the pumpkin, right under a big black plastic piece with 2 vac style hoses on it.

    which fuses should i really be looking at? (which ones in which box?)

    which is the engagement? that electric plug? or that vac thing?

    how do i fix this?

    where do i start?

    didnt see this particular issue in my searches. input & advice?


  2. SDK1968

    SDK1968 Active Member

    nobody has had this problem?

    no one has ever busted a front end?

  3. Limestone

    Limestone Well-Known Member

    Not sure and don't know a lot about your particular Model but if it was me and I checked all the obvious, fuse, drive line engagement,(have seen false test look good with this in the past as broken parts will still turn when up in the air doing a test), Put tension against moving parts while up in the to make sure.
    Okay with that being said are the vacuum lines to the front and possible switch there and think I would make sure that's working before I went further in other Directions.
    Having schematics to identify everything sure helps and possibly trouble shoot.
    Don't know if I was much help.
  4. fmartin_gila

    fmartin_gila Well-Known Member

    Not familiar with the 4WD setups on Suzuki as I only owned a 2WD and never had the need to find out. Since you never take it out of 4Lo, why not take the trouble causing vacuum pieces off, figure out what needs to be done to mechanically shift it into position and then fabricate some manner to lock it there.

    Owned a Toyota FJ quite a number of years ago (1980s) and seemed to always be some matter with the vacuum shifter valve under the dashboard or the vacuum lines somewhere along their path.

    Limestone likes this.
  5. SDK1968

    SDK1968 Active Member

    thanks guys!

    put her back up off the ground & did a resistance test while she was in gear with the front shaft turning in 1st gear.

    NOTHING resistance wise in that front pumpkin.

    there is a black thing on top with those 2 vac lines but ive got no idea what they actually do, same for the plug right under it. not sure what they do vs the manually actuated transfer case.

    am i reading this right from you guys? there is a vac or electric engagement on the front pumpkin? on top of the manual transfer case engagement?

    will trace those 2 vac lines back & see where they go.

    if those are good how do i go about testing that plug? (im not electrically savvy, but do have test lights) do i just jump it across?

    then if these move an acutator inside the pumpkin? got nothing against engaging & blocking it into place.

    my truck is never out of 4wd where we live & what we do with it & very rarely out of 4lo.

    will see what you guys say on this & then go from there.

    good news is i dont have to go back down over the hill right now. :)

    you guys rock.

    thanks! sk
  6. SDK1968

    SDK1968 Active Member

    lets try this again:

    heres pix of the top of the vac lines (they connect to nothing)

    and the bottom of the lines along with the electric plug & the plastic thing on top.

    not sure what does what inside there & man taking that unit out will be a job if it has to be opened up.


    Attached Files:

  7. SDK1968

    SDK1968 Active Member

    dropped the shaft from the transfer case up to the front diff. i can still run both ranges in 2wd that way.

    got a LSD kit coming for the rear diff, it should be here tuesday. gotta get my mini back up & able to tool around the yard, its busy season here on the hobby farm.

    soon as i get that installed, will hop up front & take the front diff out..... tear it open & see what happened in there. can take my time that way looking for parts or replacement unit.

    will do a different thread on the LSD install.

    totally not connected=== but while i was taking the skid pan off, found a mystery wire near the exhaust rectangle. its black with a yellow strip & comes from a plug. no clue where it was supposed to go. got about 6" of wire hanging there & see no other end of anything. anybody know?
  8. Limestone

    Limestone Well-Known Member

    Once again not knowing your unit. Can it possibly be some sort of electronically controlled switching to engage the 4 wheel drive/
    That plug does something naturally. What if you test it while the key on and the 4 wheel drive engaged?
    This is a perfect example of what Fred and I was talking about on a couple other threads with a Buzzer tester alligator clipped to the Leeds
    while you are in the cab switching different things with the key in the on position.
    Saves a lot of time by yourself.

  9. SDK1968

    SDK1968 Active Member

    will grab a pic of it when get back in the shop/barn.

    ive got a very stripped down version of mini. it has no bells, whistles or what not. this could be why the engine light has always been on. :)

    manuals & diagrams for these are just so incredibly unhelpful. the people here are the only really good input on what does what. stay tuned!
    Limestone likes this.
  10. fmartin_gila

    fmartin_gila Well-Known Member

    Any possibility it may have to do with O2 senser or maybe a hot cat warning that is disabled/removed. Could have to do with the engine light, you might touch it to ground and see if the light goes out.


    I thought I posted this yesterday, guess I forgot to push the "post reply" button
  11. SDK1968

    SDK1968 Active Member

    ok will get that pic here in a bit & will try the test light with key on & then running...

    after that will try grounding that wire while running & see what happens.
  12. SDK1968

    SDK1968 Active Member

    ok still havent got the front diff out yet, but did get the rear diff done & will make a thread for that with the basic info.

    now about that mystery wire i found? hers a pic from the top & one from the bottom. made no difference when grounded, key on or running.

    you can see its from a plug & has the ground strap behind it that comes down to the body. anybody got a guess?

    from bottom.jpg from top.jpg
  13. SDK1968

    SDK1968 Active Member

    here we go...

    so rolled out to the shop this morning & yanked the front diff out. i did NOT do it the way the guy in the video did. it came out pretty easy. maybe this will be a problem getting it back in by not doing it his way? we will find out in a day or two.

    found the problem: it was that black plastic box on top of the unit. it has a couple plastic gears inside of it & they were busted & stripped all at the same time.

    went ahead & opened up the case & made sure there were no pieces/chunks or anything else in the way. looked perfect, fluid was good.... but went into the dirty drain pan. gonna have to get new fluid for it.

    put the case back together & manually tripped that toggle thing & sure enough when it rotates over there the front ales move with the pinion turning.

    NOT the correct way to fix it== but its what i went with. took a piece of flat bar, drilled a hole in it for the pin/pivot arm & then a hole on the other end to a bolt hole. spacered it out & now its locked in & it will not come out unless i undo that by hand. if i want 2wd? will just get it from the transfer case & the front hubs will stay engaged. for some people? this would not be acceptable. for me & how i use the truck? its perfect. pretty rare if it ever goes off my property, unless its down to the gas station or to plow snow at the neighbors. If this works? then the mini is fixed for the cost of the fluid for the diff.

    found a couple other things while under there. had a bad mount. had a piece of rubber, cut it to shape, drilled the hole, put it in the mount & then i siliconed both sides of it to make sure it stayed put.

    also lined up the front wheels better than they were & got the play out of that. this should take a lot of the rattle & banging out of the front end.

    for all those who offered help & advice-- thank you very much!

    cant wait to get this back together in a couple days.
    fmartin_gila and Limestone like this.
  14. fmartin_gila

    fmartin_gila Well-Known Member

    As to whether it's a proper fix or not - you fixed it for your purpose and that's what counts plus being able to fix a couple other need-tos . My way of looking at it is being able to get rid of the vacuum lines and such also has to be a plus for the future. Seems like a good thing to me. Hope you are able to seal up whatever you had to remove so you don't lose the gear oil.

    Last edited: Mar 18, 2023
    Limestone likes this.
  15. SDK1968

    SDK1968 Active Member


    your right. i should have better explained how that worked on the hole. was just so stoked to of got a fix....

    looking back at the picture of the black plastic unit about 8-10 post up: that black plastic controller is bolted on with 3 14mm bolts. i removed those bolts & the unit wiggled out with the little gear on it. this whole thing fell apart in my hands. on the bottom where the gear comes thru it has a round circle part about an inch in diameter with a rubber ring on it. i reused that whole area & put it back in the opening. this was a very tight fit & was oil tight before. all the rest of what would have been the floor plate of this plastic thing was trimmed away. then the bracket i made goes over top of this & over to a bolt hole. this holds it in place & keeps it down in the hole. will come back & ad a pic of this later today when in shop.

    as Fred mentioned this did away with the rubber line that was on the black controller. it did not do away with the rubber line that was actually a vent for the differential itself.

    as of this morning when typing this (8amEDT).. If my wife stays busy with her things, will get back out there & do the install today. got heat in the shop & the back isnt killing me, so no excuse to be lazy. stay tuned for results.
    Limestone likes this.
  16. SDK1968

    SDK1968 Active Member

    heres the pix. grabbed em this morning & just came in for lunch... then will head back out for some more work on it. PXL_20230319_134141577_2.jpg PXL_20230319_134152689_2.jpg PXL_20230319_134152689_2.jpg
    Limestone likes this.
  17. fmartin_gila

    fmartin_gila Well-Known Member

    Looks like a WINNER to me. Some may think it looks a bit crude, but I'm easily impressed.


    Always a believer in the KISS principle
    Limestone likes this.
  18. SDK1968

    SDK1968 Active Member

    wanted to give you guys full info/disclosure on this incase you attempt it. NO i didnt do pix, was so mad that work was the only thing happening.

    well this is why we do these things & post them.

    it was working just fine & then i put it in a bind & that was the end of it.

    so back in the shop, tore it all back out & apart & found the problem. here we go....

    the piece up top held still just fine. the bar it rides on inside has teeth on one side & when thats all engaged? it cant move. when you do as i did? well then that bar can spin if its in a bind! when it spins? it lets that big C shaped thing that holds the ring on the axle shaft move & no lock up.

    needless to say i was pretty pissed at having to take all this back out. so it came out a little more aggressively than the 1st time. took everything out of the case & had it all up on the bench to really look over good. it came to me that all you have to do is hold that ring over to the ring gear & not let it move.

    yeah you know where this went. hosed everything off with degreaser & cleaner, got it all in place & made sure this would work. drug out the MIG & welded that ring into place against the housing. used the 3 lugs it rides on & welded to those so that nothing is in the way if you need to change the actual ring gear or any of the spider gears.

    all in all this affects NOTHING except the engagement of the electric activated arm that i did away with.

    next step was to remove that arm, which turned out to be a pain in the ass. so grabbed the plasma cutter & buzzed it off up in the top out of the way. this let me keep the rubber/plastic plug so no fluids leak out.

    put it all back together, then decided to put it all back in the truck. YUP went ahead & did the full reinstall too. got it all hooked up & did the on jackstands test with it running in gear. was working perfectly, so it was time to put it to the hill climb test. dropped it down on the floor & hopped in. went up & down every hill we have & even on the steepest it worked perfectly like it used to.

    you can definitely tell a difference in the rear end with the LSD unit too.
    Limestone and fmartin_gila like this.
  19. fmartin_gila

    fmartin_gila Well-Known Member

    Good follow-through.


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