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Thread: 4 wheel drive on 89 k1500 not working

  1. #1
    Junior Member rogersr2's Avatar
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    4 wheel drive on 89 k1500 not working

    I just bought a 89 chevy k1500 and the 4 wheel drive isnt working. I put it in neutral and shift through 4 hi 4low ect. and can feel it go into gear and even see the front end jerk as it engages but the front wheels arnt pulling, i tried it in the grass and the rear wheels spun but nothing in the front. Go into 4 wheel and out fine, any ideas?

  2. #2
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    Welcome to the forum. I would check the actuator first.

  3. #3
    Senior Member 1500cheyenne96's Avatar
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    id get it up on all four's and then put it in 4x4 kinda sounds like a broke front drive shaft but check the actuator as dave suggested first
    THEY DON'T BUILD THEM TO BE EASY TO WORK ON THEY BUILD THEM TO WORK
    "The Kamikaze"

  4. #4
    Junior Member rogersr2's Avatar
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    This is a 1989 with the 4 wheel drive gear shift on the floor not a push button, I didnt think is had an accuator. Does it?

  5. #5
    Senior Member Kennyray's Avatar
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    It has an actuator on the front axle that is activated by a switch on the t-case

  6. #6
    Senior Member Oldmech's Avatar
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    Yep, has an actuator on it. and it is "usually" the part that faisl when the 4x4 doesnt work. It isnt hard to change. You can even get a cable assembly for it to make it mechanical instead of electronic.

    make sure the fues isnt blown, unplug the actualtor, put it in 4 wheel drive and make sure you are getting power to the actuator. if you are getting power there, change the actuator. I have seen prices for a new actuator from the dealer for around 150.00...
    heres a link for one source to get a cable for it...

    4x4 Posi-Lok Positive Axle Engagement System for Chevy/GMC K-Series 4x4s

    i am sure there are many more places to order similar kits if you look for them.

  7. #7
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    Thanks for this. I am combining a 1990 GMC Sierra 1500 RWD and a 1989 Chev Cheyenne 2500 4X4 into one rig. I just did a bunch of body work on the Sierra and then I lost the tranny, (a 460L auto). The body on the 4X4 has been rusting away and is beyond repair, the motor is fading and now the gear box (a Getrag 290) cratered on it. I have another 5 speed gear box and NP Tcase that I will buckle onto the 350 from the GMC and set into the 4x4. Then I am setting the GMC body on top and voila.... an almost new '90 1500 on a 2500 4X4 chassis.
    The thing what was giving me the most grief was the actuator working very sporadically, or not at all. I did not know what the issue was, but after reading this post... I'm gold.
    Thanks again,
    hobo
    Last edited by hobo heart; 02-28-2010 at 09:55 PM. Reason: wrong sign out name

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