How To Clear Service 4WD Light Easily – An Ultimate Guide

Knowing how to clear service 4WD light will help you solve the problems with the dashboard’s four-wheel-drive system indicator.

You can understand more about the message from your vehicle through this article when you see this light. It may tell you about the gear’s improper shift and other problems if the 4WD indicator lights up.

Bryan’s sharing also guides you through the detailed steps to disable this light and fix the related issues for your car.

Now, let’s go ahead with the details below for in-depth ideas about this topic.

What Does Service 4WD Light Mean?

How To Clear Service 4WD Light

What does serv 4WD light mean? This light often indicates problems with the service 4WD system that requires a thorough inspection and proper auto service & repair.

Besides, the 4WD service light flashing on the dashboard means an incomplete shift happened in the vehicle’s gear. This also indicates the engine can get a damaging risk.

How To Clear Service 4WD Light?

1. Check Service 4WD Light

Check the service 4WD light for problems before disassembling. You may begin inspecting your lights. Below is a complete guide on determining if the light system is on.

Find the light reading Service 4WD or Serv 4WD by looking at your car’s dashboard.

Light comes in many forms. Sometimes it flashes, but in other cases, it switches to red.

Whatever it is, you should check the light, identify the problem, and find the best fix when you see the light.

2. Remove Knee Bolster And Dash Bezel

Remove Knee Bolster And Dash Bezel

In this step, you start clearing the service 4WD lights by removing the knee bolster and dash bezel. Taking the dash bezel off only needs a simple effort when you snap it out.

Yet, removing the knee bolster becomes more complicated since it requires a screwdriver to unscrew and detach them.

3. Pull The Assembly Switch

After taking the dash bezel and the knee bolster off, proceed to remove the switches. This is quite an easy procedure, but you should still be a bit careful while doing it.

Now, you will start pulling the switch assembly. You’re better off using even force from every side, or you will risk breaking it.

This is the prep step for the next one, which requires you to remove wires from the TCCM (short for Transfer Case Control Module).

4. Unplug The TCCM

After finishing the 3rd step, start your vehicle and double-check whether the 4WD lights are still on.

Every time the 4WD service light is illuminated, the problem is likely with the TCCM. So let’s unplug it now.

Thus, the light usually goes off throughout this process. In the back of the switch assembly is the TCCM. You may see two wires connecting to a small gray box.

You should disconnect them and restart your car to check whether the serv 4WD light is on. Should it persist, proceed to the following steps.

5. Take The Battery Negative Cable Off

If disconnecting the wires that come from the TCCM does not resolve the issue, you should try another method.

Look for your car battery. In case it is difficult to understand or navigate, please use the manual instruction.

Then, disconnect the negative battery cables. Wait a while for the track to get cooler. Remove the negative cable and leave it for about an hour.

Next, reconnect it and make an effort to power up the motor. The 4WD service light should now disappear. Remember to reconnect the (-) cable and tighten the battery terminal.

This is often useful for handling with the 4WD service lights or when you want to reset an automobile’s service light, such as the 2014 ram 4WD service light reset.

If this procedure does not fix the issue, you may need support from an expert with extensive knowledge.

As mentioned earlier, the problems with the 4WD light can be complicated and varied. Several approaches tackle this, including a visit to the garage.

How Can You Check the 4WD System?

The 4WD system may be tricky to check. Yet, you need to inspect it even when everything seems fine. Therefore, it is useful to know how to prevent this issue yourself. Follow the simple steps below:

Step 1. Park your vehicle to identify if there is a problem with the 4WD service system. Opt for an even parking space.

Step 2. Next, keep the vehicle in neutral first. Then, switch to the service 4WD system. You can detect a noise upon activating the system.

Continue moving the vehicle about 10-12 feet from its previous place. This will engage the front-wheel drive hubs.

Step 3. Spin the wheel and check resistance. Turn the car’s wheels to one side (either side) and move forward one more time.

Rather than smooth driving, you will feel some resistance, which is a sign that the four-wheel drive system is excellent. Yet, if you feel no resistance, your vehicle gets a problem.


What Are Common Signs of the 4WD Problem?

Besides the DIY method, you can apply other ways to determine if there’s a problem with your 4WD drive system. You can know when noticing the following symptoms: 

  • The 4WD service system creates a rattling noise when you activate it.
  • The vehicle loses traction in snow and mud, which sometimes triggers the traction control light and loss of power.
  • The problem with disabling the 4WD service system appears.
  • The 4WD drive service light is on or is on without flashing.
  • Your vehicle gets excessive fuel consumption and front tire wear.
  • There is not enough power in the wheels.

Can You Drive With Service 4WD Light On?

Can I still drive with service 4WD light on? You might wonder. The answer depends on the status of this light. If the 4WD light system comes on, it warns there is something wrong with the engine.

Thus, it is safer to stop your car and park it in a good location when the 4WD warning light continues to flash. Yet, if the light turns off after a while, it’s possible to continue your drive.

Why Is the 4WD System In Your Vehicle Not Working?

Four-wheel drive often fails when there is a problem with the electronics. A faulty 4WD system switch or corroded wiring could be why it doesn’t work.

Apart from that, a leaking vacuum hose, faulty lubrication, or a bad transfer case module also lead to the 4WD service system malfunction.

It is best to take your 4WD car to an auto repair shop and have it serviced every 30,000 to 36,000 miles.

If you use it on a more frequent basis and on tough terrain, a check-up after 15,000 miles is advised.


If you fully understand your car, you will know how to clear service 4WD light with the complete guide mentioned above.

The first important step is to check the 4WD light, then take out the knee bolster and dash bezel.

Once done, continue pulling on the switch assembly and remove the battery cables to accomplish this task.

If these steps can not help you fix the problem with the 4WD service system, you should ask for help from a professional mechanic or take your car to an auto shop.

Yet, before asking for support from a professional, attempt to clear the 4WD service light yourself to reduce fixing average costs and save your budget.

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