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Old 09-13-2010, 12:31 AM   #91
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My two cents: Using 4wheel anything on ice'd pavement is dumb. Unless you are attempting to climb a hill. 4 wheels means you have 2 more wheels that can break lose due to torque conversion between gears which can equal you going off the road much faster. Same thing on wet pavement. I once owned a landrover discovery, which was FULL TIME 4wd, and that thing went all over the damn place in the ice and rain. I also once wrecked a s-10 blazer when I was in high school because I thought it would be smart to drive in 4wd in the snow, as soon as I shifted and rounded a corner, the front wheels broke loose and I slid right into a ditch. The only way using 4wd on slick roads would be beneficial is if you drove in a straight line without turning. If your wheels in the rear aren't sticking on ice, what makes you think the front will?

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Old 09-13-2010, 01:14 AM   #92
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My two cents: Using 4wheel anything on ice'd pavement is dumb. Unless you are attempting to climb a hill. 4 wheels means you have 2 more wheels that can break lose due to torque conversion between gears which can equal you going off the road much faster. Same thing on wet pavement. I once owned a landrover discovery, which was FULL TIME 4wd, and that thing went all over the damn place in the ice and rain. I also once wrecked a s-10 blazer when I was in high school because I thought it would be smart to drive in 4wd in the snow, as soon as I shifted and rounded a corner, the front wheels broke loose and I slid right into a ditch. The only way using 4wd on slick roads would be beneficial is if you drove in a straight line without turning. If your wheels in the rear aren't sticking on ice, what makes you think the front will?
good post

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Old 09-13-2010, 03:38 AM   #93
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I have seen far too many cars skid off the road to take chances with the serious rain Florida serves up.
I lived 20 years in Broward County, FL --- for 10 of them I just had motorcycles.

Good tires keep you on the road, not 4WD.

Everybody's contributed in an honest way and based on their experiences and education.
There are genuine classes you can take for offroading, btw. Not just club-level "I dun this before" stuff.

Here's one

Here's another kind
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Old 09-13-2010, 06:37 AM   #94
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That is completely fair. Not my viewpoint, im trying to formulate one which is tough being a mechanical idiot in a sea of knowledge that doesn't agree. .
There seems to be quite a bit of agreement here, just not agreeing with you. When sifting through information you need to look beyond the information and consider the source of that information. Is it from someone who has driven cars, or CRV's, or is it from someone who has been driving Jeeps? Just because someone is a mechanic doesn't mean they have the correct information either. Does he specialize in part time 4WD or does he work mainly on full time systems with a center differential? If you engine was running rough, would you look to a diesel mechanic for information?

Better yet, now that you have heard what we've had to say, why don't you do your own research and start reading up on the subject? One last question. Have you ever heard the sound of the front wheels binding and hopping from the wheels turning at uneven speeds while engaged in 4WD? When and if you do I guarantee your first thought will be, "That can't be good."
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Old 09-13-2010, 07:08 AM   #95
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^ Hah. Bingo.

And as hilldweller said, you can have 46 driven wheels in any terrain and it won't matter one cent if you have the wrong tires! Mechanical grip is 100% dependent on tire grip- if you have the right tires, you can move mountains. I learned this well rallying an old Volvo 240. I'd outrace many of the Subaru and Mitsu guys with AWD simply because I had a killer set of tires, while many of them were running street tires. Now, when the WRX and Evo came out, yeah, different story, but...

TIRES=GRIP. Not driven wheels.

Also, as a professional tech myself, I can tell you- just because I owned and ran a shop doesn't mean I know everything. I specialized in rally and hot street/track cars. I also did Jeeps on the side. But you bring in your duallie to get a set of new glow plugs, and I'll drool on your shoes- I know nada about diesel. On the same coin, most mechanics will tell you some very stupid stuff about ANY high-performance vehicle (and yes, off-road, a Jeep is a high-performance vehicle!), such as:
"When you lift it, it means it'll roll real easy"
"If you put a V8 in that, the frame will snap"
"Adding a turbo means it won't last half as long"
Etc.
Most mechanics know what they do. And most mechanics do everyday, pedestrian vehicles (Honda Civics, Buick Regals, etc.) for a living. They can swap out a CV joint in a Honda in half of book time, but you bring them a binding off-road suspension, and they, too, will drool on your shoes. It's not a profession that requires any specialized education (unless you're in a dealership and want to make money, but even then, VERY little on 4WD unless you're at Chrysler or Toyota, these days), and in an independent shop, NONE. So be wary of where you're getting your knowledge- Mark W.
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Old 09-13-2010, 07:55 AM   #96
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Are we talking about 4 LO ball shots or high ball ones? I think this thread is getting off subject with all this mechanical talk.
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Old 09-13-2010, 10:13 AM   #97
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Originally Posted by daggo66

There seems to be quite a bit of agreement here, just not agreeing with you. When sifting through information you need to look beyond the information and consider the source of that information. Is it from someone who has driven cars, or CRV's, or is it from someone who has been driving Jeeps? Just because someone is a mechanic doesn't mean they have the correct information either. Does he specialize in part time 4WD or does he work mainly on full time systems with a center differential? If you engine was running rough, would you look to a diesel mechanic for information?

Better yet, now that you have heard what we've had to say, why don't you do your own research and start reading up on the subject? One last question. Have you ever heard the sound of the front wheels binding and hopping from the wheels turning at uneven speeds while engaged in 4WD? When and if you do I guarantee your first thought will be, "That can't be good."
It appeared to me that the thread was in large agreement on the need for, what I was trying to get to the bottom of was whether there was actual harm in doing so, to which reading back through, only a couple of people addressed that, and it appears to me my statement of agreement lacking to be accurate.

That said, this subject has grabbed my curiosity and I have read some manuals online explaining the workings of 4wd systems, and I profess i am simply too stupid to understand a word of it or at least not well enough to understand how or how not using it on pavement in rain would damage it.

As to my friends expertise on that particular, I can't say other than he has worked on many things over 20 years, but I would assume enough general knowledge to form an opinion on whether the said scenario is damaging?? Again, merely subjective assumptions on my part.

I would have to agree that would be a scary sound! Just in 12 years of casual rain pavement driving, I've never heard anything bad or done any damage. Maybe I have taken what you said out of context and read too much into it. Is your decision based on the need vs potential for wear or are you suggesting doing so IS going to damage the vehicle? I came away from the article with the latter, had completely my fault for lack of understanding if I got it wrong. If you do mean the latter, did I just get lucky all these years?
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Old 09-13-2010, 11:17 AM   #98
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I think as long as your front tires can loose traction a bit (mud, snow, ice, maybe flash flooding? Since it is a part time 4WD) that it wont harm your jeep. It's when the tires continually have grip ( ex. Paved roads) when the problems occur. Granted I'm not a pro just makin an assumption for 4 Hi that is.
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Old 09-13-2010, 11:50 AM   #99
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Tires Tires Tires.

If you had snow tires in the winter. You wouldnt need 4wd.

Someone Speak up that has winter tires on thier Wrangler in the snow.

I will be running stock tires and using 4wd in the winter.

As I'm not storing a second set of rims and tires for Winter use. 4wd will work.

But I also know Im going to lose turning and stopping power..
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Old 09-13-2010, 12:43 PM   #100
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Originally Posted by dfwislander View Post
It appeared to me that the thread was in large agreement on the need for, what I was trying to get to the bottom of was whether there was actual harm in doing so, to which reading back through, only a couple of people addressed that, and it appears to me my statement of agreement lacking to be accurate.

That said, this subject has grabbed my curiosity and I have read some manuals online explaining the workings of 4wd systems, and I profess i am simply too stupid to understand a word of it or at least not well enough to understand how or how not using it on pavement in rain would damage it.

As to my friends expertise on that particular, I can't say other than he has worked on many things over 20 years, but I would assume enough general knowledge to form an opinion on whether the said scenario is damaging?? Again, merely subjective assumptions on my part.

I would have to agree that would be a scary sound! Just in 12 years of casual rain pavement driving, I've never heard anything bad or done any damage. Maybe I have taken what you said out of context and read too much into it. Is your decision based on the need vs potential for wear or are you suggesting doing so IS going to damage the vehicle? I came away from the article with the latter, had completely my fault for lack of understanding if I got it wrong. If you do mean the latter, did I just get lucky all these years?
Go to the news stand and pick up the October issue of Four Wheeler magazine. There is a great article in the tech section explaining the difference between ful time and part time systems.
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Old 09-13-2010, 12:46 PM   #101
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Originally Posted by silvrevo View Post
Tires Tires Tires.

If you had snow tires in the winter. You wouldnt need 4wd.

Someone Speak up that has winter tires on thier Wrangler in the snow.

I will be running stock tires and using 4wd in the winter.

As I'm not storing a second set of rims and tires for Winter use. 4wd will work.

But I also know Im going to lose turning and stopping power..
Let this serve as a warning to anyone intending to purchase an off lease Wrangler.
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Old 09-13-2010, 01:04 PM   #102
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Originally Posted by silvrevo View Post
Tires Tires Tires.

If you had snow tires in the winter. You wouldnt need 4wd.

Someone Speak up that has winter tires on thier Wrangler in the snow.

I will be running stock tires and using 4wd in the winter.

As I'm not storing a second set of rims and tires for Winter use. 4wd will work.

But I also know Im going to lose turning and stopping power..
I bought my first Wrangler last year. I bought a spare pair of rims and got a set of Cooper snow tires. I have a 30+ mile commute to work and I NEED to make it up the mountain in the winter during a huge snow storm....first tracks
But last winter with two storms that were around 30 inches of snow I did not use 4wd at all on paved streets (unplowed) and I had snow drifts up past the bottom of my doors; I got around fine in 2wd. I used 4wd once leaving the mountain, it had snowed all day and there was a line of stuck vehicles going up the hill leaving the mountain. I started losing momentum and the rear started coming around on me. I put it into 4wd high because I did not seem to need a lot of torque just seemed to need more traction and I was able to pass all the stuck spinning vehicles. Once I got past the hill I shifted back into 2wd and was fine.
I have taken my Wrangler on some class 4 trails and encounted some very steep hills, mud, rocks, sand, and other terrain (not the hard core wheeling terrain like most people on this website , but I will someday) and have never needed 4wd. My Wrangler has never had a problem with what I have done with it. But I am sure that sometime I will encounter a need for it when off road and will be glad that I have it.
That being said this is my first Wrangler, and first 4wd vehicle. I am no mechanical expert either, and I may have not been using my 4wd system right, but I just let common sense be my guide. If I am doing fine in 2wd why would I need to use 4wd. Just my thoughts/experience.
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Old 09-13-2010, 01:12 PM   #103
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It depends greatly on what type of 4WD you have. For my '99 TJ Wrangler, it's truly offroad 4WD. I use 4WD-HIGH when I am on ice, or snow, or when it's raining really hard (helps prevent slides/ fishtailing on turns). Otherwise, my 4WD is reserved for offroad.

When I am negotiating mud, or extremely loose soil, wet grassy areas, etc. or when climbing/negotiating rocks, ledges, etc. I use 4WD-LOW.
*NOTE: "Always" be dead-stopped when shifting into or out of 4WD-LOW.

When I am doing anything offroad where I am driving faster than the above, it's a 4WD-HI status ... dirt roads, sand, loose soil, and even grass.


This thing of "tearing up your 4WD" when using it in rain is a first for me! Never heard that before.
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Old 09-13-2010, 01:56 PM   #104
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I think as long as your front tires can loose traction a bit (mud, snow, ice, maybe flash flooding? Since it is a part time 4WD) that it wont harm your jeep. It's when the tires continually have grip ( ex. Paved roads) when the problems occur. Granted I'm not a pro just makin an assumption for 4 Hi that is.
Nail on the head That's a good "laymens terms " statement right there Mean.
Mud, Ice, snow, debris from a wrecked tanker truck hauling ready made Jello, etc. where the tires can slide easily will not break anything in 4hi or 4lo.

dry pavement will and wet pavement can.

4lo on ice, 2hi in sand, and everything else is a matter of preference and opinion.

Do NOT use 4wd on dry pavement, and use 4wd on wet pavement at your own risk... everything else you can "have at it" and learn what works best for you
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Old 09-13-2010, 04:21 PM   #105
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I've been driving all manner of 4x2 and 4x4 vehicles in Central Florida's infamous Frog Strangler rainstorms since 1978.

4 drive wheels hydroplaning due to excessive speed for the conditions isn't any safer than 2 drive wheels hydroplaning. Ditto as to reducing the chance of hydroplaning happening in my experience.

What will ?
Slower Vehicle Speed, not making Erratic moves and Tire type

As to using 4x4 in the rain doing damage ?
Given the low value of doing so, I wouldn't risk the likely chance of hitting dry spots while turning and causing binding to do it.

As to Snow.. What's Snow ?
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Old 09-13-2010, 05:18 PM   #106
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Tires Tires Tires.

If you had snow tires in the winter. You wouldnt need 4wd.

Someone Speak up that has winter tires on thier Wrangler in the snow.

I will be running stock tires and using 4wd in the winter.

As I'm not storing a second set of rims and tires for Winter use. 4wd will work.

But I also know Im going to lose turning and stopping power..
I have a second set of tires and wheels for my MINI. Just the Coopers for the Jeep.



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Old 09-13-2010, 10:38 PM   #107
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Part time 4wd requires your front wheel to be able to slip. As far as I understand the transfer case and diffs on a stock YJ and TJ are geared so that the front wheels are rotating faster than the rear wheels. This is designed to pull you straight and maintain control in slippery conditions. But something must slip, the wheels will wear prematurely and you will stress (and stretch) the chain on the transfer case. I had both a Cherokee and and a TJ where the previous owners had misused the 4wd and had to replace the t case due to damage. I found after when I was putting on my winter tires that my spare had flat spots, and looked like a stop sign. Something has to give; The wheels the chains or the driver.
Trying to stay on topic, the only difference between 4wd low and high are torque and speed. High torque at low speed or low torque at high speed (horsepower remains the same). Think of low range as having three first gears and two second gears. Great for realy slow precise control. Chances are you would never use low range on the road. Offroad you can use it when you want or need to go slow.

These are just numerical facts. People have offered opinions on techniques for certain conditions. That's another story.

I do repeat myself in saying on the XJs, YJ and TJ that I have owned two of the previous owners have destroyed the t case by using 4wd when they had too much traction. The internal chains were so stretched they would jump when engaged.

The front wheels rotate faster than the rear and must be allowed to slip on whatever surface you are on.

Wolf

PS 4wd high is awesome in snow if you use it correctly.
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Old 09-13-2010, 10:49 PM   #108
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Originally Posted by daggo66

Go to the news stand and pick up the October issue of Four Wheeler magazine. There is a great article in the tech section explaining the difference between ful time and part time systems.
Thanks for the tip, was indeed a very good article. It did not address my question of the chance of damage. Which is ok I guess, I'll just have to use my best judgement there. I definitely have a better general knowledge of when to use hi vs lo, which was my original intent. Thank you and everyone else for the info and the tips!
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Old 09-14-2010, 06:08 AM   #109
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Thanks for the tip, was indeed a very good article. It did not address my question of the chance of damage. Which is ok I guess, I'll just have to use my best judgement there. I definitely have a better general knowledge of when to use hi vs lo, which was my original intent. Thank you and everyone else for the info and the tips!
Actually it does. the following is from the article:

If the traction is so great that the tires cannot slip, guess what happens? Yep, something has to break! This could be a twisted driveshaft, broken U-joint, or even driveline gears.
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Old 09-14-2010, 06:44 AM   #110
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Actually it does. the following is from the article:

If the traction is so great that the tires cannot slip, guess what happens? Yep, something has to break! This could be a twisted driveshaft, broken U-joint, or even driveline gears.
That should be written on the sun visor.
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Old 09-14-2010, 07:01 AM   #111
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Originally Posted by daggo66

Actually it does. the following is from the article:

If the traction is so great that the tires cannot slip, guess what happens? Yep, something has to break! This could be a twisted driveshaft, broken U-joint, or even driveline gears.
Then why in 12years of driving this way did it never happen? I just am having a hard time getting by my experience. If it said there was a potential for something to break I could live with it. But I am living proof that something does not have to break. So what are the odds? 10%? Acceptable risk to me. 90%? Not worth risking.
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Old 09-14-2010, 07:02 AM   #112
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That should be written on the sun visor.
Or at least in the owners manual. Until I asked this question, I thought it was fine to engage it anytime
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Old 09-14-2010, 07:17 AM   #113
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Then why in 12years of driving this way did it never happen? I just am having a hard time getting by my experience. If it said there was a potential for something to break I could live with it. But I am living proof that something does not have to break. So what are the odds? 10%? Acceptable risk to me. 90%? Not worth risking.
ANY TIME you engage 4wd on a part-time system on a road with no "give", you're doing damage. The degree to which you cause damage depends on many factors.
your gearing
tire size
weight
how straight the road is; curves are worse
tire compound
speed

In the best case scenario, the effects are cumulative and will just show as accelerated wear over time with an ultimate failure of a part.
Worst case scenario, and a part fails catastrophically very fast.

Just use it the way it's intended and it works great.
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Old 09-14-2010, 08:20 AM   #114
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^ Not to mention rate of lateral acceleration (G's).

Also, as for needing 4WD, check out the Ferarri challenge where they took 599 Fiorano GTB's all over the America's (20K miles) on roads that most people assume you need a Rover for- fording streams and such. Yeah, in a low-slung Ferarri. Granted, it had the right... you guessed it! Tires! For the job- Mark W.
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Old 09-14-2010, 08:38 AM   #115
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Check this rally out, Duke. I have a friend competing in it in a little Suzuki.

The Mongol Rally :: fighting to make the world less boring
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Old 09-14-2010, 08:53 AM   #116
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Or at least in the owners manual. Until I asked this question, I thought it was fine to engage it anytime
Actually it is and it specifically mentions not to engage on wet pavement.

4H Position
This range locks the front and rear driveshafts together,
forcing the front and rear wheels to rotate at the same
speed. This range (4H) provides additional traction for
loose, slippery road surfaces and should not be used on
wet or dry pavement.
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Old 09-14-2010, 11:51 AM   #117
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Originally Posted by daggo66

Actually it is and it specifically mentions not to engage on wet pavement.

4H Position
This range locks the front and rear driveshafts together,
forcing the front and rear wheels to rotate at the same
speed. This range (4H) provides additional traction for
loose, slippery road surfaces and should not be used on
wet or dry pavement.
Looking at it now, that literally is not in my manual. My manual does say that I should stay under 50mph when in 4wh. Why would anyone be in a position to be going 50mph in the kind of conditions that would be so slippery you need the front wheels to spin? That makes zero sense to me.
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Old 09-14-2010, 11:54 AM   #118
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hilldweller
ANY TIME you engage 4wd on a part-time system on a road with no "give", you're doing damage. The degree to which you cause damage depends on many factors.
your gearing
tire size
weight
how straight the road is; curves are worse
tire compound
speed

In the best case scenario, the effects are cumulative and will just show as accelerated wear over time with an ultimate failure of a part.
Worst case scenario, and a part fails catastrophically very fast.

Just use it the way it's intended and it works great.

Well, ok, I will have to live with that statement then. 175k miles on one and 80+ on another and everything still worked, I can totally live with I guess. For me, using it casually in rainy weather has not led to catastrophic circumstances.
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Old 09-14-2010, 01:11 PM   #119
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Well, ok, I will have to live with that statement then. 175k miles on one and 80+ on another and everything still worked, I can totally live with I guess. For me, using it casually in rainy weather has not led to catastrophic circumstances.
What brand/model vehicles?
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Old 09-14-2010, 01:33 PM   #120
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What brand/model vehicles?
1982 red wrangler...was my high school vehicle, drove it around in 4wd just because I thought it was cool, lol...sold it in 90 I think

2002 blue wrangler sport

Now have a 2010 islander

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