jeep 4 wheel drive instructions

How to Put a Jeep Wrangler in 4 Wheel Drive (4wd Basics)

Four-wheel drive, also called four by four or 4WD, is a two-axle vehicle drivetrain that simultaneously provides torque to all of its wheels.

It can be either full-time or on-demand and is usually linked through a transfer case to provide an additional output drive shaft. It also delivers additional gear ranges.

This wheel-drive system is crucial for vehicles like Jeep Wranglers that are designed for going off-road. A 4WD Jeep Wrangler is optimized for off-road driving conditions, and it can take you anywhere you want to go.

It can manually or automatically switch between two-wheel drive and four-wheel drive. When you throw your Jeep Wrangler into the 4WD, the power increases, giving you a non-stoppable machine.

Unfortunately, not everyone knows how to put a Jeep Wrangler in a four-wheel drive. If you own a Jeep Wrangler and are wondering how to put it in 4WD, this article will help you learn how to do it.

Is Four-Wheel Drive Important in a Jeep Wrangler?

A 4WD delivers enhanced performance on and off-road and offers improved traction on slippery roads. This wheel drive system is a perfect option for adventurers and off-road enthusiasts.

But you should keep in mind that even if your Jeep Wrangler comes with a 4WD, you can only use it in certain conditions. For example; When you want better traction when driving in rough surfaces, the 4WD comes into play. The four-wheel-drive system ensures that your Jeep Wrangler performs well even when you are amidst the snow, rocks, beach, or other complicated conditions.

How to Put a Jeep Wrangler in 4 wheel drive

it’s time to learn how to put your Jeep Wrangler in 4-wheel drive. Here are the steps you need to follow:


Determine whether you need 4H or 4L, high or low gear. 4H is ideal for driving on loose or slippery surfaces. On the other hand, 4L is used for very slippery road conditions to deliver more traction. However, you should never use it when driving faster than 25-miles per hour.


Stop your Jeep and put the gear shift selector in Neutral while keeping your foot on the brake pedal. Then move the four-wheel-drive selector straight down to 4H from 2H. Change the gear selector to Drive (D), and continue to drive.


To move to 4L, you need to apply the brake pedal and move the gear selector to Neutral (N). Then release the brake pedal and let the Jeep coast at a low speed, possible two or three miles per hour (without applying the gas pedal)

Move the 4WD selector from 4H to 4L quickly, and don’t pause in the Neutral position between the two gears. Adjust your standard gear selector back to Drive (without applying the gas pedal excessively) and continue diving. Do not exceed 25 miles per hour.

Gear Options a Wrangler Comes with

It’s essential to know the gear options as it will help you easily learn how to put your Wrangler in 4Wd. Here is a list of the gear options you should know of:

2Hi or 2H

This gear combination is to be used when the surface is dry. It’s the recommended gear option for everyday driving, as it only requires you to do less.

4 Hi or 4H

You can use this gear option for normal speed driving. But it’s more suitable when you need extra performance such as traction of the dirt, muddy, or sand packed surfaces.

When you engage this gear, your Jeep’s front wheels will significantly improve traction by adding more stability to your Wrangler.

4 Lo or 4 L This is the optimal gearing position when you want maximum traction. In this gear option, both front and rear wheels drive in low range, with a lower gear ratio.

It’s a great combination of rough or difficult roads, and you can use it when driving on rocky or muddy situations. You can also engage this gearing position when working through sharp and steer inclines or deep snows

Things to do to Get the Best Out of Your Jeep Wrangler 4wd system

  1. Make good use of the 4H whenever driving on slippery or cracked conditions.
  2. Always check the road condition before deciding to put your Jeep in 4Wd.
  3. Never change your Wrangler’s gears from 2H to 4L or vice versa.
  4. When driving with 4L, you shouldn’t exceed more than 25 miles per hour.
  5. For 4H, you can drive with a speed of 45 to 50 miles per hour on slippery, wet, and muddy roads. ·         When driving in arid areas, you should never use 4H or 4L as the dry, and paved roads are very dangerous for the 4H or 4L. It could lead to breakage or heat-buildup.
  6. Always slow down whenever you want to disengage the 4WD.

Final Thoughts on jeep wrangler 4 wheel drive

Four-wheel drive is a perfect driving system for adventure and off-roading enthusiasts. It can help you get the best out of your Jeep Wrangler.

You should fully utilize the 4WD, especially when there is a change in road conditions. Nonetheless, you should always check the manual before using your vehicle’s varied gears, and be sure to abide by the rules outlined.