Off Road Transfer Cases and What You Need to Know

Is there anything more fun than getting behind the wheel of an off-roading vehicle and putting it to the test to see what it can do? From powering through muddy and rocky terrain at high speeds to climbing over big boulders at much slower speeds, off-roading vehicles can work wonders when they’re out on or, er, make that off the road.

Off-Road Vehicles

Some people think that it’s the tires on off-roading vehicles that allow for them to drive over almost any terrain without running into any issues. And to some degree, they’re right. The tires on an off-roading vehicle are very important. But it’s the transfer case tucked into the design of an off-roading vehicle that allows it to do what it does. Here is what you need to know about the transfer cases in off-roading vehicles.

What are transfer cases?

Transfer cases, which are also sometimes called T-cases, are installed on four-wheel-drive vehicles to help them push out power to all of the wheels on the vehicles. If these transfer cases weren’t in place, it would be pretty much impossible for you to off-road without encountering problems all along the way. The transfer case takes power from the transmission in an off-roading vehicle and distributes it to the vehicle’s front and rear axles to provide your vehicle with more traction and torque.

How exactly do transfer cases do their jobs?

As we just mentioned, the transfer case in an off-road vehicle ensures that the front and rear axles of the vehicle get the power they need to push forward. But how exactly do they do this? It’s a little bit of a complicated process that involves the engine sending power to the transmission, the transmission sending power to the transfer case, and the transfer case distributing power to the axles accordingly. More often than not, the transfer case relies on either chains or gears to accept this power and keep it moving down the line. Transfer cases also rely on a variety of other parts, including drive axles, driveshafts, and differentials, to allocate power to an off-roading vehicle’s axles.

Can drivers control the transfer cases in their off-road vehicles?

In many cases, the driver of an off-road vehicle can control their transfer case when they’re driving around. In fact, they have to do it many times since there are two gear settings located within the average transfer case. There is a high gear setting and a low gear setting. High gears are ideal for off-roading situations that call for you to drive over things like dirt, mud, ice, and more. Low gears, meanwhile, are perfect for increasing torque so that you can climb over rocks at much slower speeds than normal. Drivers often need to manually engage the transfer case, though there are some newer off-road vehicles that have let drivers control the transfer case electronically.

What happens if the transfer case in an off-road vehicle goes bad?

Transfer Cases for Off Road Vehicles

Most people know that it’s not good to drive around in an off-road vehicle when the transmission in it is starting to go bad. But it’s also not good to do it when the transfer case in a vehicle might be on its way out. When a transfer case is on the verge of going kaput, it’ll usually start to get very difficult for a driver to shift gears. It’ll also be tough to get your vehicle to stay in four-wheel drive. You might even start to hear strange sounds coming from your transfer case or fluid leaking from your transfer case. At that point, you’ll need to replace your transfer case as soon as possible before you start driving it again.

If you have an off-road vehicle, you should make sure that it has a fully-functioning transfer case inside of it. You should also educate yourself further about transfer cases so that you understand the importance of them and know how to tell when you might need to replace yours. If you would like more help making sense of transfer cases, don’t hesitate to reach out to SCS Gearbox for assistance. We canprovide you with transfer cases that are equipped to handle your off-roading needs, and we can also tell you more about how they work and why they’re so essential. Call us at 419-483-7278 to get started.