Why regular transfer case maintenance is crucial for your all-wheel-drive vehicle

Dear Mike,

I have a question regarding my all-wheel-drive vehicle. I was wondering how important it is to have the transfer case serviced? I have heard mixed opinions on this topic and I am not sure what to believe. Can you shed some light on the matter so that I can make an informed decision? I appreciate your advice as always.



Dear Candace,

Ah, the all-wheel-drive vehicle, a favorite of Canadian drivers everywhere. That extra power to all four wheels can be a lifesaver when the weather turns harsh. But you are correct, the transfer case is an important component in this system and it does require upkeep.

Think of the transfer case as the middleman between your transmission and your axles. It is responsible for sending that extra power to the wheels that need it most. Without it working properly, your all-wheel-drive system won’t be as effective and you may find yourself slipping and sliding on the road.

So, how important is it to service the transfer case? Well, let me put it this way, when was the last time you changed your oil? The transfer case fluid should be treated with the same level of importance. The additives in the fluid break down over time and the fluid can become contaminated with metal shavings from normal wear and tear. If you neglect to service it, you risk internal damage to the transfer case, which could result in an expensive repair bill.

If you’re hearing mixed opinions on this topic, let me clear things up for you. The transfer case requires regular maintenance, just like any other component on your vehicle. Your owner’s manual will give you a recommended service interval, but a good rule of thumb is to have it serviced every 30,000 miles or three years, whichever comes first.

Now, I know what you might be thinking, it’s just a drain and fill, right? Well, not exactly. Many manufacturers require a specific type of fluid to be used in the transfer case. Using the wrong fluid could cause damage to the transfer case or even your transmission. It’s important to have a qualified technician perform this service and use the correct fluid for your specific make and model of vehicle.

Another sign that it’s time for a transfer case service is if you’re experiencing any unusual noises or vibrations coming from your all-wheel-drive system. This could be an indicator that the transfer case is not functioning properly and needs attention.

In conclusion, Candace, the transfer case is a vital component in your all-wheel-drive system and requires regular maintenance. Neglecting to service it could result in costly repairs down the road. I hope this advice has shed some light on the importance of transfer case service and helps you make an informed decision. And as always, if you have any other questions or concerns about your vehicle, don’t hesitate to give us a call at Urban Automotive.

Mike Urban