How To Turn On 4WD In Ford Escape: Master The Activation!

How To Turn On 4WD In Ford Escape

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The Ford Escape, known for its versatility, incorporates advanced drive systems to tackle diverse road conditions.

Among these features is the Intelligent 4WD (Four-Wheel Drive) system, enhancing traction and vehicle handling.

Unlike traditional setups requiring manual engagement, the Ford Escape’s Intelligent 4WD system activates automatically when it detects the need for increased grip.

Models from 2020 onward are equipped with this system, ensuring safer driving over challenging surfaces or in adverse weather.

For owners of earlier models with 4WD, understanding the system’s operation is vital.

While lacking a manual switch, the Ford Escape assures drivers that the technology engages automatically upon detecting traction loss.

It’s essential to note that Ford’s Intelligent 4WD seamlessly transitions between two-wheel drive and four-wheel drive without requiring driver intervention, prioritizing road focus overdrive mode selection.


How To Turn On 4WD In Ford Escape


Start your escape by ensuring your vehicle is running.

The 4WD system in your Ford Escape operates automatically, requiring no button or switch activation. It intelligently engages itself when necessary.

Automatic activation: Your Escape’s system continually monitors traction conditions.

Upon detecting wheel slippage, it autonomously transfers torque to the rear wheels to restore traction.

Manual override: Although there isn’t a conventional 4WD engage button, you can briefly press the “Traction Control” button if you wish to adjust traction control settings.

This feature proves beneficial in particularly slippery conditions, where a more proactive system response is desired.



When To Use 4WD On Your Escape


Snow and Ice:

The system’s purpose is to give drivers more traction when there is a buildup of snow or ice on the roadways.

Mud and Rough Terrains:

In a similar vein, the 4WD system kicks in to improve stability and control when you come across muddy roads or other rough terrain.

Normal Conditions:

To save fuel, the 2013 Escape mostly drives with front-wheel drive in normal driving conditions. When slip is detected, 4WD is immediately engaged.

Never forget that safe driving techniques are always necessary, even though 4WD might help in slick circumstances.

Keep your speed appropriate and give yourself more time to stop on roads with difficult driving conditions.


Understanding 4WD And AWD Systems


4WD (4-wheel drive), also known as true 4WD, channels power to all four wheels simultaneously, proving invaluable for navigating challenging terrain or low-traction conditions prone to wheel slippage.

Typically, 4WD systems employ transfer cases, specialized gearboxes distributing power between the front and rear axles as required.

Intelligent 4WD automatically adjusts power distribution based on traction changes, while the transfer case facilitates switching between 2WD and 4WD modes, sometimes manually or electronically.

In contrast, AWD (All-wheel drive) ensures power availability to each wheel but in varying degrees.

AWD systems utilize clutch packs to regulate power distribution to individual wheels without driver intervention.

This configuration aids in maintaining stability and traction across diverse road surfaces, commonly found in vehicles intended for on-road use.

While 4WD excels in off-road capabilities, often offering high and low range gearing options for severe conditions, AWD systems prioritize ease of use, with the vehicle’s computer determining optimal power distribution for maintaining consistent traction.

Essentially, 4WD emphasizes raw power and control, while AWD focuses on seamless traction management.

Remember, whether equipped with Intelligent 4WD or AWD, both systems in your Ford Escape are engineered to aid in stability and control, regardless of road conditions.



Preparation Before Turning On 4WD


Before engaging the 4WD system on your Ford Escape, it’s crucial to perform specific preparatory actions.

Ensuring vehicle readiness and acquiring a clear understanding of your vehicle’s features are vital for a smooth experience.


Checking Vehicle Readiness

Inspect the tires:

Verify that they are adequately inflated and possess sufficient tread for optimal traction.

Examine the dashboard:

Look for any warning lights indicating issues with your Ford Escape or the 4WD system.

Assess the surroundings:

Confirm that activating 4WD is appropriate for the prevailing driving conditions.

Understanding Your Ford Escape’s Features

Review the manual:

Familiarize yourself with the specifics of your Ford Escape’s particular model year and its 4WD capabilities.

Learn about the Intelligent 4WD system:

Understand that this system utilizes sensors to automatically distribute power between the front and rear wheels as necessary.

By following these steps, you can ensure your vehicle is prepared, and you possess the necessary knowledge to engage and utilize the 4WD system effectively.


Frequently Asked Questions


Why Is My Ford Escape 4-Wheel Drive Temporarily Disabled?


The four-wheel-drive system automatically disables itself if it detects system overheating or if you are using the spare tire.

Normal functionality of the four-wheel-drive system resumes and this message clears after driving a short distance with the road tire reinstalled or after the system cools down.


What Causes 4-Wheel Drive Not To Work?


When the vehicle is in 4WD mode, power should be directed to the actuator.

If no power is being sent in this mode, potential causes could include issues with the ball switch located on top of the transfer case, a faulty 4WD fuse, or problems with the wiring.

However, this assessment assumes that there are no internal malfunctions within the transfer case itself.






To prepare your Ford Escape for any adventure, ensure you understand how to activate its 4WD system.

By following simple preparatory steps and familiarizing yourself with your vehicle’s features, you can confidently engage the Intelligent 4WD system for enhanced traction and control in various driving conditions.

Whether encountering snow, mud, or normal road surfaces, your Ford Escape’s 4WD system is designed to deliver optimal performance, guaranteeing a safe and enjoyable driving experience.

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