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How to Put My Dodge Nitro in Four Wheel Drive

by Patrick Nelson

Some Dodge Nitro sport-utility vehicles are equipped with four-wheel drive. When 4WD is engaged, power is supplied to all four wheels through the transfer case. Using 4WD aids in driving on sand, snow, mud and rough roads. It makes traveling possible when weather conditions have made roads impassable for two-wheel-drive vehicles. Switching from two- to four-wheel drive on a Dodge Nitro can be accomplished by changing the vehicle's settings.

Changing when Stationary

Insert the ignition key and move it to the "ACC" position.

Rotate the transfer case switch to the "4WD Lock" position while the Dodge Nitro is stationary. The switch is on the center console. The front and rear drive shafts will be locked together and when moving, the Nitro's front and rear wheels will rotate at the same speed.

Start and drive the vehicle. Only use this setting when you're about to drive on loose, slippery surfaces.

Changing when Moving

Monitor the "4WD" indicator light on the dash for flashing. If it's not flashing, the wheels are not spinning due to loss of traction, and you can proceed to the next step. If it is flashing, reduce speed until the wheels stop spinning through lack of traction.

Rotate the transfer case switch to the "4WD Lock" position while the Dodge Nitro is moving, but not spinning its wheels.

Release the accelerator pedal for a moment after turning the switch to engage 4WD more quickly.


  • Uneven tire wear, low tire pressure and overloading can increase the time it takes to shift back to two-wheel drive.

About the Author

Patrick Nelson has been a professional writer since 1992. He was editor and publisher of the music industry trade publication "Producer Report" and has written for a number of technology blogs. Nelson studied design at Hornsey Art School.

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