Question about 2005 Toyota Tacoma

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Where is the transfer case solenoid switch located on an 05 Tacom

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  • jimmyp631 Apr 27, 2009

    I'm not sure? I had a problem getting my truck to shift out of 4LO, so I called the 1-800 # in the owners manual and the technician I talked to kept calling it a solenoid switch. So I was wanting to locate it and replace it. Thanks

  • jimmyp631 Apr 28, 2009

    I bought the truck new and have probably only had it in 4Lo 3-4 times. I've used the 4Hi a lot more, especially during hunting season, and have never had a problem getting it to shift in and out of 4Hi. What you say about "lack of use" makes sense. thanks for the insight.

  • GENE FARLEY May 11, 2010

    Does it go in and out of 4H normally? How often do you use 4h? How often do you use 4L? What you are describing may be from lack of use of 4L. The 4wd actuator handles 4h and 4L. There is no particular 4L solenoid for activation that I know of. Getting in or out of 4L can be a chore. Backing up slowly and going to neutral while still rolling, same thing forward until it pops out.
    Also, with 4L you need to be stopped to activate. The ecu won't let it activate if the trucks moving.


  • GENE FARLEY May 11, 2010

    Do you mean the 4wd actuator?

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Good. 4H is a lot simpler on the transfer case then 4L, as far a activation/deactivation goes. I don't know why Toyota keeps 4L in their trucks, most people don't have a use for it.
Hope this all helped and you didn't have to spend money chasing a ghost.

Posted on Apr 28, 2009

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1997 ford expedition 5.4 when you turn the 4x4 switch sometimes the light comes on and works and sometimes it doesnt any ideas


The light is to come on when the solenoid has engaged the transfer case to the front drive axle. You could have old oil built up in the switch itself down below beside the transfer case and cause the switch to be unable to make the connection as well. I'll catch it for this but some spray carb cleaner and a rag helps in that case. A 'sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't' could also be a sticky solenoid that pushed the engagement pin into the gear to connect the transfer case to the drive-line. Again, carb cleaner can help once you pull the solenoid.

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05 envoy 4wd not engaging


Most likely cause is the encoder motor on the transfer case. This is the motor that activates the transfer case. Usually sets a code so you may want to have it scanned.

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Is the motor on the transfer case also called a soliniod ?


No, the transfer case motor has to move a shift fork and it takes more than a solenoid can produce.

May 06, 2014 | Chevrolet S 10 Cars & Trucks

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07 dodge ram 3500. Cold out and stuck in 4x4. Light in truck stays on (4x4) with switch in 2 wheel. When turned back to 4x4 then try to switch back into 2 wheel like flashes then stays on? What could be...


Likely transfer case switch or solenoid. Typically located on transfer case, is subjected to grime and salt from road causing a malfunction. Local parts store should carry & be under $30. Good luck!

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Where are the fuses for the 4x4 located on a 05 envoy


This not a fuse problem. When you switch to A4WD or 4HI, do the indicator light for those positions stay on solid or do they blink and then return to 2HI position? If so, then there is probably a problem with the transfer case actuator/motor.

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1 Answer

My 98 f150 was in 4WD Hi this morning when I started it. Selector switch is in 2WD position. 4WD Hi light is on, hubs (or front differential) is engaged and transfer case engage. (Feel front wheel hop...


If the switch was in the 2WD position and the transfer case was locked in a 4WD range, my 2 SWAGs would be bad switch or the connector to the shift motor is damaged / corroded or the fuse to the transfer case shift relay module is blown ( fuse # 17 ) / problem with the transfer case shift relay module.

This is without knowing if the truck was used in 4WD the night prior, and shifted out just before turning off. If this is the case, the shift motor might be stuck, and a few hits with a dead blow hammer to the transfer case might jar it free again ( do not use a metal hammer, it could damage the transfer case ).

The vacuum shift solenoids on the firewall are controlled by the GEM ( Generic Electronic Module ) which is grounding either the 2WD or 4WD solenoid, depending on the shift plate contacts in the transfer case. ( when in 4 or 4H, the contact switch plate signals the GEM, which in turn grounds the correct solenoid ).

Pulling the switch will not cause the transfer case to go back to a default position, the switch has a resistance level for each mode, and needs that value to operate the shift motor.

The resistance values for the switch between the 2 dark blue wires:
2WD - 4100 to 3700 ohms
4H - 1050 to 1150 ohms
4L - 380 to 340 ohms
- find the wire locations on the switch, mark them and remove the connector to test the resistance.

Just my opinion on the order :

1. Check the fuses for the shift motor
2. Try the old school shift method, back up ~ 50' put into park or neutral, and shift from 4WD to 2WD.
2.1. This is to see if the transfer case shift motor is bound up, and reversing might release it
3. Try hammering the transfer case with a dead blow hammer while someone shifts from 2WD to 4WD. You only need the key in the run position, if it happens quick enough after running the engine, the vacuum reservoir will still have enough vac to operate the solenoids. Don't chance running yourself over.
3.1. If this frees up the shift motor and the vacuum has bled off, you can try starting the truck and shifting into 4H then back to 2WD to get the front axle to disconnect or manually vacuum operate the front disconnect motor by applying vacuum to the pink vacuum line on the shift motor on the front axle.

Mar 05, 2011 | 1998 Ford F150 Regular Cab

1 Answer

KinlogworksI have A 2003 F-150 Super Crew. I have only used th4 wheel drive a few dozen times. about a mounth ago i switched it into 4 high and nothing happened. problem also in 4 low. any advise?


Operationally vacuum shifts the front axle between 2WD and 4WD mode. The GEM ( Generic Electronics Module ) applies ground to the solenoid needed for the mode selected on the switch ( for ESOF ) or when the transfer case shift lever is moved ( MSOF ). The contact plates in the transfer case signal the GEM that the transfer case is engaged, and the Vacuum solenoids need to be activated ( either 2WD to 4WD or 4WD to 2WD ).

Lift and support the front of the truck so the front wheels are off the ground ( take safety precautions, chock wheels, jack stands, etc )
Key on, engage 4x4 and try to turn the front drive shaft.
- If it turns it is a problem with the transfer case.
- If it doesn't it is a front axle engagement problem.

- If the front drive shaft does not turn :
•With the truck running ( with front wheel back on the ground ), switch from 2WD to 4WD and back again, the vacuum shift motor should move the lever on the front axle.
{ picture of shift motor }
-- If the vacuum shift motor does not move:
•Check for vacuum on the lines while shifting between modes. Pink vacuum line is 2WD mode, Light Blue vacuum line is 4WD.
•Check the fuses for the 4WD system and the solenoids.
•Check the vacuum lines from the vacuum shift motor to the solenoids on the firewall.
•Check the vacuum lines from the solenoids to the vacuum reservoir box behind the battery.
•Check the vacuum reservoir box for cracks.
•Typical solution is the vacuum lines ( to the solenoids or to the vacuum shift motor ) are cracked or the vacuum shift motor has a cracked diaphragm and has water in it.
•Could be the shift plate contacts in the transfer case are corroded / not making good contact, and not activating the solenoids.
{ Picture of Vacuum diagram )

- If the front drive shaft turns:
•For ESOF system
-- Check the fuses for the transfer case, engine compartment fuse panel, 17 & Cab fuse panel fuses 13 and 23 ( verify with owners manual, 97-97 & 99-03 MY can be slightly different on some items ).
-- Try hitting the transfer case with a dead blow hammer ( do not use a metal hammer, it can damage the transfer case ) to see if the transfer case shift motor is hung up .
-- Check the transfer case connector, to make sure the connector pins are clean and making good contact.
•For MSOF systems
-- Check that the shift linkage on the transfer case is moving when the lever is moved from 2W to 4H and 4L.

Jan 18, 2011 | 2003 Ford F150 Regular Cab

1 Answer

Where is the actuator switch located on the transfer case?(the switch that engages the 4wd)Thanks!


The actuator solenoid along with the axel solenoid
switch are located at the rear of the front axel on the
right side.And the transfer case switch is located on
top of the transfer case left side. Hope this helps.

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2 Answers

4wd does not work


Electronic Shift On the Fly (ESOF) Operation
The ESOF system is an electronic shift 4x4 system that allows the operator to choose between two different 4x4 modes as well as 2-wheel drive. The operator can switch between 2WD and 4WD HIGH mode at speed. To engage or disengage LOW Range, the vehicle speed must be less than 5 kph, the brake depressed, and the transmission must be in NEUTRAL.

The transfer case is equipped with an electromagnetic clutch which is located inside the case. This clutch is used to spin up the front drive-line when shifting from 2WD to 4x4 High mode at speed. When the control switch on the instrument panel is turned, the generic electronic module (GEM) recognizes that a shift has been requested and activates the electromagnetic clutch and the relays which power the transfer case shift motor. When the shift motor reaches the desired position as determined by the contact plate position inputs to the GEM, power to the shift relays and motors will be removed. When the transfer case front and rear output shafts are synchronized, the spring loaded lockup collar mechanically engages the main-shaft hub to the drive sprocket. Finally, the front axle collar is engaged and the electromagnetic clutch is deactivated.

Shift Between 2WD and 4x4 HIGH:
Shifts between 2WD and 4x4 HIGH can be made at speed. Listed below are the inputs and outputs needed by the GEM to execute a change between any of these modes.

Feature Inputs:
*4WD Mode Switch (Various resistances).
*Contact Plate Position Inputs A, B, C, D (grounded when closed, open circuit when open).

Feature Outputs:
*4x4 Shift Motor Relay Outputs
*Transfer Case Clutch Relay (grounded when relay is on, open circuit when relay is off).
*4x2/4x4 Vacuum Solenoid (grounded when activated, open circuit when deactivated).
*Cluster Indicators (ground when activated, open circuit when deactivated).

Shifting Into/Out of 4WD LOW:
When shifting into or out of 4WD LOW, the GEM requires that the vehicle speed be less than 5 kph, the brake is applied, and the transmission is in NEUTRAL.

Feature Inputs:
*4WD Mode Switch (Various resistances).
*Contact Plate Position Inputs A, B, C, D (grounded when closed, open circuit when open).
*VSS Sensor (Sinusoid Signal: 0.7V-20V, 2.2 Hz/mph).
Brake Input (battery voltage when brake is depress, open circuit when not activated).
*Transmission Range Sensor (grounded when transmission is in NEUTRAL, open circuit otherwise).
8Start/Clutch Depressed Input

Feature Outputs:
*4x4 Shift Motor Relay Outputs
*4x2/4x4 Vacuum Solenoid (grounded when activated, open circuit when deactivated).
*Cluster Indicators (grounded when activated, open circuit when deactivated).

4WD Mode Switch
A rotary switch allows the vehicle operator to choose between 2WD, 4WD HIGH, and 4WD LOW modes of 4x4 operation.

GEM Module
The Generic Electronic Module (GEM) controls the operation of the 4x4 system

Vehicle Speed Sensor
The vehicle speed sensor (VSS), mounted in the rear of the transfer case, informs the GEM of the vehicle speed.

Transfer Case Shift Motor Sense Plates

The shift motor sense plate, an integral part of the electric shift motor, informs the GEM to the positions of the transfer case

Transmission Range Sensor
Located on the left side of the transmission, this sensor informs the GEM when the transmission is in the NEUTRAL position.

Electric Shift Motor
The electric shift motor, mounted externally at the rear of the transfer case, drives a rotary cam which moves the mode fork and range fork within the transfer case to select between the 2WD, 4WD HIGH, and 4WD LOW positions.

4x4/4x2 Vacuum Solenoids
These two solenoids are attached to the upper RH side of the engine compartment dash, and alternately route vacuum to the vacuum motor which engages/disengages the center axle disconnect collar in the front axle assembly.

4x4 Shift Motor Relay
A module containing two relays which under the control of the GEM, shift the transfer case shift motor between the 2WD, 4WD HIGH, and 4WD LOW modes.

Transfer Case Clutch Relay
An electromechanical relay is used to activate the transfer case clutch within the transfer case.

Good luck and hope this helps,but start with the simple and check the fuses and wire harness. Both white/light blue stripe wires should have 12V in run. The GEM will ground the left side (closest to engine) solenoid to disengage the front axle. It will ground the the right side solenoid (closest to fender) to engage the front axle. If the GEM doesn't see Neutral it will not let the truck come out of 4Lo. If the GEM had water leaking on it it may well be the root of the problem. The shift motor only has power when the GEM sends it a signal to move the shift lever. Once the shift is completed the motor shuts off. There are 2 wires that control the shift motor. A yellow and an orange. The GEM alternates between 12v and Ground to these wires to control which way the motor turns. The GEM uses the transfer case shift relay module to control the power to the motor. There are contact plates inside the shift motor assembly that indicate the position that the shift lever is in. This is what the GEM used to know what the T-case is doing. Any one of these components can fail.







Jan 10, 2010 | 2002 Ford Explorer

1 Answer

2005 GMC Envoy Locked in 4WD all the time


If your luck it's going to be a $15.00 vacuum switch on the transfer case that takes about 15 min to replace, if it's the electronic solenoid to the transfer case then it's going to be cost a little more and take a little longer. If your try switching from 4WD to 2WD and hear the solenoid working by hearing the cluck's when it engages and disengage then it's going to be the vacuum switch on top of the transfer case on the drivers side. Auto Zone Sell's them for $15.00 and they will have the step by step instructions to replacing the switch. They will also have the transfer case solenoid  too, if you don't hear the solenoid. Check the fuses, the fuse may have gone bad. Good luck and hope this helps.

Jun 18, 2009 | 2003 GMC Envoy Xl

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