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Old 03-05-2009   #1
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What do Differential setting should i use?

i have read the manual and it isn't very clear to me yet. the options are High, Auto Diff, Low. i drive with it in high. should i use auto? would that help my gas milage?

what exactly does this do for the vehicle?

what do you all use?

oh i have a v8 04 if that matters.

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Old 03-05-2009   #2
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High is auto. Then there is LOW range, which also is auto unless you turn the knob to lock either the center diff, rear diff or both.

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Old 03-05-2009   #3
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Four settings (if you have the optional Rear Diff Lock):
1. High - Auto Center Diff, Open Rear Diff
2. Low - Auto Center Diff, Open Rear Diff
3. Low - Locked Center Diff, Open Rear Diff
(4. Low - Locked Center Diff, Locked Rear Diff)

You can't lock the Center Diff in High
You can't lock the Rear Diff without Locking the Center Diff.

And just in case you didn't know, don't EVER lock any diff on a hard surface.
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Old 03-06-2009   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrieK View Post
And just in case you didn't know, don't EVER lock any diff on a hard surface.
Haven't done it yet. But why not on a hard surface? I gather it should only be done on dirt.
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Old 03-06-2009   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enchanted egg View Post
Haven't done it yet. But why not on a hard surface? I gather it should only be done on dirt.
You need to be on a surface that will allow a little bit of slip when diffs are locked. It would really chew up tires to use diff locks on road surfaces.
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Old 03-06-2009   #6
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Or break or twist axels.
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Old 03-06-2009   #7
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That makes sense. Glad I park the car on the dirt all the time. Gonna go set the diffs and put it in low and see what it will do. But what happens when I go on the street. Should the drive be a short one? Not that I'm going to drive around with diffs locked mind you, just up and down the block maybe.
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Old 03-06-2009   #8
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You can drive around in low with unlocked diffs all you want, and other than revving the hell out of the motor and transmission, you're not going to harm anything. When you lock the diff (or diffs), however, there is a binding in the drivetrain due to the wheels needing to spin at different speeds and them not being able to do so.

If you want to experiment with diff locks, I'd find a loose gravel parking lot, and roll down the windows and listen to the differences when making a low-speed, tight, circular turn. You'll hear nothing out of the ordinary with them unlocked, but you will hear sliding/spinning/crabbing tires on the gravel with one or both diffs locked. The vehicle may also shift or step out to one side or the other during that turn, depending on which wheels hold better traction. If the tires can't slide on the surface you're on (ie pavement), all that twist that would otherwise be wheelspin/wheelslip gets held in the driveshafts, tires, and hubs, causing wear and tear, and possibly excessive tire wear or failure of driveshafts and CV joints.

Basically, as was said, on a hard surface never engage the diff locks. On a loose surface, it is OK to engage them, but I'd recommend only using them to avoid being stuck, or to get unstuck.

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Old 03-06-2009   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrieK View Post
Four settings (if you have the optional Rear Diff Lock):
1. High - Auto Center Diff, Open Rear Diff
2. Low - Auto Center Diff, Open Rear Diff
3. Low - Locked Center Diff, Open Rear Diff
(4. Low - Locked Center Diff, Locked Rear Diff)

You can't lock the Center Diff in High
You can't lock the Rear Diff without Locking the Center Diff.

And just in case you didn't know, don't EVER lock any diff on a hard surface.
How do you "lock" and "unlock" and how do you achieve settings 3 and 4?
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Old 03-06-2009   #10
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The transfer case control knob has detents at the 10 o'clock, 2 o'clock, and 4 o'clock positions as standard. If you have the optional rear diff lock, you have an additional detent at 6 o'clock. As listed in the message by AndrieK:

High is at the 10 o'clock position
Low is at the 2 o'clock position
Low with center locked is at the 4 o'clock position
Low with center and real locked (if applicable) is the 6 o'clock position.

To change the settings, simply push down on the knob so it pops up, and turn it. You need to be in neutral to shift from high to low or vice versa. Once in low, you can keep turning the knob as necessary to lock or unlock the diff(s) as conditions require.

Matt

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