99 Expedition 4x4 Issues
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Italian Rafter

Atlanta, GA

#1 Nov 15, 2006
I have a 99 Expedition XLT; 4x4; 5.4L:

I've gone to my hometown mechanic and then to two FORD dealerships and they have all told me something different.

Over the weekend, I had to engage the 4wd (on the fly). After I got out of the quagmire, the 4wd would not disengage and go back to AWD. I tried everything, Park, Neutral, Reverse all while trying to get the transfer case out of low range. Then, the whole drivetrain sounded like it was going to fall out (it was binding up), and my spedometer was spiking. Finally, the transfer case just went into complete neutral on both drive shafts. These symptoms sound really bad, but they are detailed just like this on a couple of FORD's TSBs. After a little time, I got the transfer case back to rear wheel drive, but it was like my front wheels had locked hubs (I couldn't turn sharply at all). Come to find out, it's not hubs, but the front driveshaft binding in turns.

I have several FORD Technical Service Bulletins (TSB's) that I've got from the three mechanics I've been dealing with. Some point to GEM module, others to bad grounds, and finally a shift motor (on the transfer case).

Home Mechanic -$50 to test grounds and gem module; paid him.
Ford # 1 - Wanted to charge me $900 to replace the GEM module; I declined
Ford # 2 - Wanted to charge me $1900 to replace the entire transfer case; I was really pissed about this one and declined.

The computers all pull up the same errors: shift motor, shift motor plate, speed sensors in front/rear diff's. When I have the mechanic(s) reset the GEM Module (by clearing the codes), the "HUBS" unlock, or really the front driveshaft doesn't bind, for a short time until you start to drive 25' and then they lock back up. I'm not in Low range, but the front driveshaft binds and the Expedition "thinks" it's in 4HI all the time.

Where I'm at now:
I dropped my front driveshaft and am driving in 4HI (so really just 2wd rear and I don't have the binding)...so I put a bandaid on it. I've ordered a $100 shift motor online and hope this will fix it.

Anyone have any advice or experience with a similar issue like this? Thanks!
mechanicix

Shepherdsville, KY

#2 Nov 26, 2006
I own a 97 expedition, I got cocky one day and hit a giant mudhole. Ever since then I've had this binding noise somewhere in the suspension. I guess I have the same problem as you. Because I've completely replace the following, Transmission-transfer case- and about 500 bucks worth of sensors. And the truck still has a binding.
Dave

Dekalb, IL

#3 Dec 4, 2006
I have the same problem, All I did to avaiod it was unplug the shift motor. It will then run in rear wheel drive. I plug it back in when it snows and leave it unpluged in the summer.
Ide

Schuylkill Haven, PA

#4 Dec 17, 2006
Dave wrote:
I have the same problem, All I did to avaiod it was unplug the shift motor. It will then run in rear wheel drive. I plug it back in when it snows and leave it unpluged in the summer.
I have 2000 Expedition 4WD W/51000mi. the right front wheel locks-in on any type incline let off the fuel it release its self also make noise when locked-in.....where's the shift motor wiring plug...thanks ide
Nick S

Ogden, UT

#5 Dec 22, 2006
I was out in my 99 Expedition (XLT 5.4L) the past couple days in the major snow storm we just got. It wasn't coming out of 4L very easily. And both times that it did, less than 60 seconds later there was a giant clunk from beneath the car.
This morning I found a broken bolt in my driveway - could the clunk have been this bold being broken away???

everything seems to drive fine still - but I've only been using AWD and 4Hi.
joe

United States

#6 Dec 28, 2006
I had the same issue and the solution was to remove the GEM and dissassemble the thing the GEM plugs into.(I can give you a detailed process for this if needed since it is not made to come apart.) What happens is there is a leak from the windshield that is usually small. It drips down onto the GEM and because of the way it is oriented, it collects inside the GEM socket. This will cause all sorts of strange things to happen because of the transient voltages crossing into incorrect circuits. One of the things is the 4X4 won't disengage. I drilled out the two rivets/studs in the socket and, layer by layer, removed the plastic and metal plates. I dried them well and sprayed with WD40. reassembled after drilling drain holes in cover of socket (in case) and no trouble at all for two years now.
Italian Rafter wrote:
I have a 99 Expedition XLT; 4x4; 5.4L:
I've gone to my hometown mechanic and then to two FORD dealerships and they have all told me something different.
Over the weekend, I had to engage the 4wd (on the fly). After I got out of the quagmire, the 4wd would not disengage and go back to AWD. I tried everything, Park, Neutral, Reverse all while trying to get the transfer case out of low range. Then, the whole drivetrain sounded like it was going to fall out (it was binding up), and my spedometer was spiking. Finally, the transfer case just went into complete neutral on both drive shafts. These symptoms sound really bad, but they are detailed just like this on a couple of FORD's TSBs. After a little time, I got the transfer case back to rear wheel drive, but it was like my front wheels had locked hubs (I couldn't turn sharply at all). Come to find out, it's not hubs, but the front driveshaft binding in turns.
I have several FORD Technical Service Bulletins (TSB's) that I've got from the three mechanics I've been dealing with. Some point to GEM module, others to bad grounds, and finally a shift motor (on the transfer case).
Home Mechanic -$50 to test grounds and gem module; paid him.
Ford # 1 - Wanted to charge me $900 to replace the GEM module; I declined
Ford # 2 - Wanted to charge me $1900 to replace the entire transfer case; I was really pissed about this one and declined.
The computers all pull up the same errors: shift motor, shift motor plate, speed sensors in front/rear diff's. When I have the mechanic(s) reset the GEM Module (by clearing the codes), the "HUBS" unlock, or really the front driveshaft doesn't bind, for a short time until you start to drive 25' and then they lock back up. I'm not in Low range, but the front driveshaft binds and the Expedition "thinks" it's in 4HI all the time.
Where I'm at now:
I dropped my front driveshaft and am driving in 4HI (so really just 2wd rear and I don't have the binding)...so I put a bandaid on it. I've ordered a $100 shift motor online and hope this will fix it.
Anyone have any advice or experience with a similar issue like this? Thanks!
joe mazzulla

Salinas, CA

#7 Jan 20, 2007
no heat in the front just the back in my 1999 expedition
bob

AOL

#8 Jan 20, 2007
I have 2001 EB Expedition at cold start oil light on and no pressure on gauge when temp comes up all is normal any ideas mabye sending unit
bob

AOL

#9 Jan 21, 2007
bob wrote:
I have 2001 EB Expedition at cold start oil light on and no pressure on gauge when temp comes up all is normal any ideas mabye sending unit
Yep sending unit just replaced it
Tim Ault

United States

#10 Jan 29, 2007
joe mazzulla wrote:
no heat in the front just the back in my 1999 expedition
There is a flap that breaks in the front that goes between ac and heat when the selector is turned and it defaults to ac when broken and thus you only have heat in rear, had same problem on 98 expedition. Its a 50 cent part and a $1,000 repair due to its a 12 hour repair at avg dealership
Ken

Miamisburg, OH

#11 Feb 13, 2007
Where is the GEM located and what does it do?
joe wrote:
I had the same issue and the solution was to remove the GEM and dissassemble the thing the GEM plugs into.(I can give you a detailed process for this if needed since it is not made to come apart.) What happens is there is a leak from the windshield that is usually small. It drips down onto the GEM and because of the way it is oriented, it collects inside the GEM socket. This will cause all sorts of strange things to happen because of the transient voltages crossing into incorrect circuits. One of the things is the 4X4 won't disengage. I drilled out the two rivets/studs in the socket and, layer by layer, removed the plastic and metal plates. I dried them well and sprayed with WD40. reassembled after drilling drain holes in cover of socket (in case) and no trouble at all for two years now.
<quoted text>
matt

Troy, NY

#12 Feb 14, 2007
I have a 97 xlt expedition and went to put in 4 wheel high the dash clicked and light comes on but no 4wheel drive??? im in a huge snow storm help!!!!
Jason

Greensburg, PA

#13 Feb 22, 2007
i have a 97 expedition and the 4 wheel low does not enguage??? i put it in 4 lo and hit the gas it just reves up?????????? help please
Will Try To Dry Out GEM

Tucker, GA

#14 Feb 26, 2007
Joe - I would like the details on removing and drying out parts of the GEM. I cleaned the wiring harness connection from the transfer case to the shift motor and that got it out of 4L; it is still stuck in 4H.- I was about to buy a used transfer case on EBAY because it came with all new sensors...but I'd like to try the GEM first.

Thanks!
joe wrote:
I had the same issue and the solution was to remove the GEM and dissassemble the thing the GEM plugs into.(I can give you a detailed process for this if needed since it is not made to come apart.) What happens is there is a leak from the windshield that is usually small. It drips down onto the GEM and because of the way it is oriented, it collects inside the GEM socket. This will cause all sorts of strange things to happen because of the transient voltages crossing into incorrect circuits. One of the things is the 4X4 won't disengage. I drilled out the two rivets/studs in the socket and, layer by layer, removed the plastic and metal plates. I dried them well and sprayed with WD40. reassembled after drilling drain holes in cover of socket (in case) and no trouble at all for two years now.
<quoted text>
john

Lafayette Hill, PA

#15 Feb 27, 2007
matt wrote:
I have a 97 xlt expedition and went to put in 4 wheel high the dash clicked and light comes on but no 4wheel drive??? im in a huge snow storm help!!!!
i have the same problem someone please help
Robert

Wilmington, NC

#16 Apr 15, 2007
I have been haveing the same problem and all points to the GEM!!! Took me hours of searching but i found the location of the GEM heres the link hope it helps you guys out!!! Just copy and paste the link!!http://199.79.180.163/pr epos/files/Artemis/Public/Purs uits/2005/EA/INCLA-EA05015-248 96.pdf
shandajsha

Chicago, IL

#17 Apr 15, 2007
good idea where would I find the plug to the shift motor?
Dave wrote:
I have the same problem, All I did to avaiod it was unplug the shift motor. It will then run in rear wheel drive. I plug it back in when it snows and leave it unpluged in the summer.
shandajsha

Chicago, IL

#18 Apr 15, 2007
I am having the same problem sort of, I have a knocking when I make sharp turns but if I put it in 4h, it does make a binding sound when I turn.
fleetservices

United States

#19 May 31, 2007
joe wrote:
I had the same issue and the solution was to remove the GEM and dissassemble the thing the GEM plugs into.(I can give you a detailed process for this if needed since it is not made to come apart.) What happens is there is a leak from the windshield that is usually small. It drips down onto the GEM and because of the way it is oriented, it collects inside the GEM socket. This will cause all sorts of strange things to happen because of the transient voltages crossing into incorrect circuits. One of the things is the 4X4 won't disengage. I drilled out the two rivets/studs in the socket and, layer by layer, removed the plastic and metal plates. I dried them well and sprayed with WD40. reassembled after drilling drain holes in cover of socket (in case) and no trouble at all for two years now.
<quoted text>
can you please tell me where the GEM is located? on 1999 ford expedition. thank you.
fleetservices

United States

#20 May 31, 2007
Can you please tell me where the GEM is located, on 1999 ford expedition.

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