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4wd high or 4wd low

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Dodgedzlr, Nov 21, 2010.

  1. Dodgedzlr

    Dodgedzlr Junior Member
    Messages: 15

    Im just curious, I spoke with an old salt that has been running old equipment but with little maintenance done to his rig. He claims that he runs in 4wd Low more often than not. Now, I know he is not setting any land speed records by doing that nor is he knocking out a boat load of accounts if he is operating at a snails pace. However, he claims he has yet to have a tranny problem or any major welds break on the plow. He does a great job with what he does do. With that said I was wondering how many people operate in 4 high and or in Low. Also, does anyone watch there Tranny temps when they plow? Not the Idiot gauge but actual temp monitors. I guess if you have the aftermarket gauges to do so.
  2. DaytonBioLawns

    DaytonBioLawns Banned
    from 45458
    Messages: 347

    hmmm.... I wonder how he gets away with it. He must be on uneven and slick surfaces the whole time. Most of the time, If the roads are fine to travel I'm in RWD. When the roads are still bad, it may call for 4 high. When I get to an account I will open up a lane and start in 4 high if that is what I was in on the road. Then, once I have a place to get a footing, I pop it back into RWD. If your tires are on dry pavement _or mildly wet or less.... NEVER be in 4WD period. Four low is the best way to mess some drive components up and start overheating things (tranny). ALWAYS watch your gauges. In every car you ever operate, because it may save your life some day. I never go anywhere without making sure my car isn't overheating. I watch it more on a plow rig. I have to replace my CV's and some basic wear and tear on my 2001 k1500 Z71 but it is the first time since it was new (and im at 81K on it). So in all, it was not bad. I don't even know when to use 4 low.... I have only used it once... and that was to pull a half full diesel fill tank that was bolted to a steel plate off of the ground at my facility to sell. That was really the only time I've ever used it in 81K miles. I'm afraid of breaking front end parts in 4 low when I get stuck (which has been a couple times only). So I just try 4 hi... then RWD then I rock it once or twice after putting traction aid down. If that didn't help then I call for a pull with my tow rope... not worth being impatient and breaking something... and I hate to rock it cause the tranny so I try to avoid that too.

    IDK are there any 4WD component experts cruising? All I know is my experience since 2007 doing this.
  3. 4700dan

    4700dan Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 329

    All my trucks are 2WD been plowing since 1990 I did buy an 09 F250 4x4 but this is only a backup, had 4x4's in the past but have always plowed in 2WD everytime possible. :nod:
  4. bob00

    bob00 Senior Member
    Messages: 143

    i got a TH400 on my 88 chevy 1500 and some time it feel to be esier on it on 4low only for plowing not to drive arount
  5. ajslands

    ajslands 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,033

    Just use 4 hi and if you feel like it or are only going like 3 mph, use 4 lo.
    Or just use 2 wd
  6. 91AK250

    91AK250 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,657

    i allways plow in 4low. otherwise the truck is locked in 4high from october to april. after my last tranny rebuild the guy doing it said try running in 4low. 9 years later no issue with the tranny (knock on wood)

    i cant get out of my driveway in 2wd, so thats not even an option, def could not plow in 2wd thats just a joke. even with weight.
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2010
  7. FordFisherman

    FordFisherman PlowSite.com Addict
    from 06611
    Messages: 1,613

    Nothing but misinformation in this post. 4 low will keep your trans temps down. You'd better do some research before you make a post like that.
  8. terrapro

    terrapro PlowSite Veteran
    from MI
    Messages: 3,912

    Yep, Basher last year schooled a bunch of guys on that fact.
  9. DaytonBioLawns

    DaytonBioLawns Banned
    from 45458
    Messages: 347

    The idea behind why 4 low is bad for the tranny may not have been correct but I do know that guys engaging 4 low often have drive train issues. That is just what I've seen around here. All of the guys I know knocking into the low range break crap. I said IDK why, but it happens. I'm not a pro mechanic or anything. All I know is that 2wd should be used as often as possible and 4high after that... It may be a speed thing that the old timers were trying to teach me, but they say four low is a big no-no (and they have been doing it for 20+ years with success)

    PLOWTRUCK Senior Member
    Messages: 125

    anywhere you can plow all winter in 2wd is a place that doesn't get a lot of snow, come to upstate NY(past Albany) and you will last about one maybe two storms with a 2wd truck. Most of the time I am in 4 hi but every once in a while 4 low is needed.
  11. Onebadbowtie86

    Onebadbowtie86 Senior Member
    Messages: 114

    LMAO you couldnt drive up some of the driveways after i get done plowing them in 2wd. I plow in 4 hi if its just 3"-5" of fluffy snow. Anything more then that I plow in 4 low. Theres no reason that you should be breaking parts by putting your truck in low range.
  12. hydro_37

    hydro_37 PlowSite Veteran
    from iowa
    Messages: 3,790

    2 wd when I can and 4hi when neede3d
    I hardly ever use 4L
  13. Cmbrsum

    Cmbrsum Senior Member
    Messages: 141

    2 wd when I can (mostly salting) and 4hi when needed
    I hardly ever use 4L
  14. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    Beg to differ. Equipment and operator has mulch to do with it.
  15. 91AK250

    91AK250 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,657

    i've never broken anything drivetrain wise. so i dont see where using 4low is going to cause any damage what so ever. other then saving your tranny from high temps.
  16. mercer_me

    mercer_me PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,371

    My buddy twisted his front drive shaft and it snapped plowing in 4-low. Plus you spin alot easier in 4-low. I always plow in 4-high.
  17. 91AK250

    91AK250 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,657

    it all depends on your truck, your location..ect but over the last 8-9 years, same truck, same locations i've used 4low for every storm. have not had a tranny issue since i started doing that and no drivetrain breaks. i stay ontop of maint and check everything often.
  18. cretebaby

    cretebaby PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 4,162

    Can you explain how 4 lo would make any difference in snapping drive shafts?
  19. mercer_me

    mercer_me PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,371

    It puts alot more torque on the drive shaft.
  20. nac lawncare

    nac lawncare Junior Member
    from ohio
    Messages: 8

    I have both 4wd and 2wd trucks and id rather be in 4wd anyday. I do agree that operator has alot to do with it, but having that option of locking the truck into 4wd is well worth it. Ive had alot of people tell me to plow in 4low, but i will agree its a snails pace and if your trying to get businesses open in the morning you better be working fast. I think we are spliting hairs here, but how long do plow trucks really last. There being operated in the coldest temperatures and being asked to do things that most vechicles are not. Just plow in what ever drive your most comfortable in. I just know in my opinion if its not a flat lot my rig is in 4wd and my 2wd truck is in the garage just incase I need a backup.