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Hello, my names Colton, im 17 and just got a 98 Durango SLT. I'm planning on doing some mods to it, lowered with some suspension upgrades and hopefully a twin turbo set up. The only question i have right now is whats the difference between my truck in 4HI and an R/T in AWD? I want to convert mine to AWD, but i don't understand the difference. I know its a different transfer case, but I know the front diff doesn't lock so why does the r/t have AWD and 4HI?
 

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Hiya! :wave:

AWD is full-time 4WD. The main difference is that an AWD transfer case adds a third differential between the front and rear driveshafts, which allows the axles to turn at different speeds. In a turn, the front shaft needs to turn faster than the rear - just like how in a right turn the left tires turn faster than the right. The TC differential allows you to turn in 4WD without putting stress on the drivetrain (your part time 4WD case doesn't have that, it just locks the front and rear shafts together - which is why the tires bark and the steering feels heavy on dry pavement in 4HI).

Part time 4WD (4HI) is only supposed to be used on low friction surfaces, like snow/ice/slush, mud/dirt, etc. The low friction allows the front tires to slip a bit in turns so the driveline doesn't get stressed.

The 4HI position in an AWD truck locks the differential so it functions just like a part time case. Why would you want/need this? Because the differential is not "limited slip".. So if the front or rear tires were to break loose and start spinning, you'd lose all traction - just like how an open rear would spin one tire.

I'm pretty sure you could do the swap for a 2000 AWD case, but nothing later. In 2001 they went to an electronic control system that you can't transplant into an older truck.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
oh okay, thankyou, i didn't realize the transfer case functioned as a center diff, i was actually looking at putting in a center diff! :funny: is there anyway to put a lsd in the front diff?
 
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