4x4 problems - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


Drivetrain Tech General discussion of drivetrain for the Ford Ranger.

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Old 03-13-2018
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4x4 problems

So, my son's 99 4x4 shot craps. The front end would not lock into 4wd. I put it up on jack stands, and with a little wigging of the half shafts got both wheels to turn at the same time. When i took it for a test drive, there were a couple of loud clunks and some jerking of the front end. I shifted back into 2wd, and stopped to flip the hubs (we had swapped out the pvh for manual locking hubs a couple of years ago) to free, and the passenger side hub came off in my hand.

If I have to replace the hubs, a) should I replace with the vacuum hubs, or non-vacuum hubs with new manual locking hubs b) how difficult is it to replace the half-shafts?

Thanks
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Old 03-13-2018
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You should have a Dana 35 SLA on your 1998 Ranger 4x4

Good look at it here: The Ford Ranger/Explorer Dana 35 SLA 4x4 Front Axle

Axle removal steps here: How To: Replace 1998-2011 Ford Ranger CV Shaft

Not easy but not all that hard


No, do not use PVH it was a bad system, Ford used it starting in 1998 and by late 1999 was changing over to Live Axle because of problems with PVH

This is what you should have on there now: 1998-2000 Ford Ranger Rugged Ridge (AVM) Locking Hubs

There was only one maker of these, as far as I know
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Old 03-13-2018
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We do have the Rugged Ridge hubs on there now, although they will nee to be replaced.

The replacement hubs I keep seeing look like they have the vacuum hookups. Do I need to special order new hubs that don't have the vacuum hubs?
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Old 03-13-2018
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Not seeing that on my search: https://www.ebay.com/itm/AVM-470-loc...-/183000703017

Google: avm 470 locking hubs

Also sold as: Rugged Ridge 15001.70

Seen here: http://www.ruggedridge.com/manual-lo...-15001-70.html
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Old 03-13-2018
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Member here is selling some of these hubs: https://www.ranger-forums.com/engine...-trans-153776/
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Old 03-13-2018
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Old 03-13-2018
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So I just heard back from the shop. They want $250 a piece for the front hubs and $300 for the install. All three auto parts places carry the hub assembly $139 each, and I found the place above has the pair for $100.95.

Am i missing something with these. I understand that some parts are supposedly of a higher quality, but twice as much, or 4 times as much?

Either way, I am bringing it home to do the work.
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???

Those are wheel bearings, while they are different between 2WD and 4WD they are not part of the 4WD manual locking hubs.
If front wheels are "loose" then you need to replace the wheel bearings

And price would be different between RABS and 4WABS models, i.e. with or without sensors and tone rings

Yes there are cheaper and more expensive parts for just about anything, vehicles included.
Best thing is to look at reviews if there are any.

"Name Brands" are also popular with some people and others don't care.
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Old 03-13-2018
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Yeah I have some posted for sale. I converted to a live front axle so I don't need them anymore. I had a 3rd as a spare. The replacement hubs for the hub locker style are much more expensive. I have had one of these go out on me and take out one of my hub lockers. The live axle hubs from a 95 ford explorer also work, however you'll need the cv joints if you are going to go that route instead. I got mine out of an expo with 100k miles on them. Timkens are considered an oem replacement, skf is always a good brand but cost a bit more money.
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Old 03-14-2018
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RonD View Post
???

Those are wheel bearings, while they are different between 2WD and 4WD they are not part of the 4WD manual locking hubs.
If front wheels are "loose" then you need to replace the wheel bearings

And price would be different between RABS and 4WABS models, i.e. with or without sensors and tone rings

Yes there are cheaper and more expensive parts for just about anything, vehicles included.
Best thing is to look at reviews if there are any.

"Name Brands" are also popular with some people and others don't care.
As I understand it, if the wheel bearings go out, I need to replace the whole hub-bearing assembly. Is this not correct? You also stated earlier that somewhere along the way, Ford shifted from the PVH to a live axle system. I was asking if I need to replace the whole hub-bearing assembly, do I need to replace it with the same PVH type, or the live axle type, or are the hub-bearing assembly the same for both.

I do understand that I will need some sort of hub for the 4wd portion. I was planning on buying another set of the Rugged Ridge, which is what is on there now.

One last question, how do I tell if the front axles need to be replaced?

Not trying to be a PITA, just trying to figure out what I need to do to get my kid his truck back, and more importantly, my wife her car back (he has her car at school while I fix his truck).

Thanks
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Old 03-14-2018
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I think we are talking about two different things.

Wheel bearings are a self contained unit in your year, but nothing to do with locking hubs, Vacuum control or live axle.

They need to be for a 1999 Ranger 4x4, also need to to have ABS sensors if you have 4WABS.

These do wear out but wheel would be wobbly on that side if that was the case, the wheel is bolted to the wheel bearing unit.
The axle just slides thru the center of this unit, on 4x4s

Then on 2000 and earlier Ranger 4x4's you have the locking hubs, in 1999 they were originally Vacuum operated, but yours has been changed to Rugged Ridge, this has nothing to do with wheel bearings or axle shafts.
Live axle is altogether different, 2001 and up Rangers, so no not the same parts


The axle shafts are CV joints covered with a rubber sleeve, if the sleeves are torn then axle shaft on that side should probably be replaced.

You can run the truck in 4high with the Hubs UnLocked, listen for axle noise
Then lock the hubs, both sides, and repeat

If only one side is Locked then there WILL BE noises
You said the locking hub came off in your hand, so my guess would be it was broken and thats where the noise came from
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