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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My truck (2008) is relatively new to me and I've only used it in 4 wheel drive a few times just recently since the snow started flying. Driving around 35 - 40mph the other day on the highway in really crappy conditions I put it in 4 wheel drive because my rear end kept slipping on the snow/ice. When I accelerate I noticed their is more noise coming from the drivetrain than when I have it in 2wd, but when coasting it sounds just ever so slightly noisier than when its in 2wd.

It's not alarm bell ringing catastrophic sound like its going to detonate but I don't remember hearing it the first few times I used 4wd and like I said it's only when accelerating, not when coasting. When I put it back into rwd it went away.

I changed the front differential oil about a month ago, it is full and fresh.

Is this normal for it to be noisier under acceleration than when coasting? Any other thoughts on this?
 

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I can tell when mine is in 4wd, without looking at the light or turning the vehicle. It is a bit noisier then when it is out of 4wd. Now how much louder is yours compared to mine, who knows. I can certainly hear and feel the difference.
 
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Discussion Starter #4
how many miles on the truck?
did you service the transfer case?
56,000 miles and yes. I actually had the transfer case out of it during the summer to replace an output bearing. Inside was good no signs of significant wear on anything. Refilled with new fluid.

I can tell when mine is in 4wd, without looking at the light or turning the vehicle. It is a bit noisier then when it is out of 4wd. Now how much louder is yours compared to mine, who knows. I can certainly hear and feel the difference.
I really notice it when I accelerate even slightly, will coasting it's not much different than 2wd. Have you ever noticed a difference in vibration/noise under power vs off the throttle?

It almost feels like the drivetrain is binding when I'm on the gas.
 

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I have a 2012 SV CC that has what sounds to be very similar in the 4WD vs 2WD noise scenario.
Under any load (meaning, when not coasting) I can hear significant noise from the drivetrain when in 4WD.
When coasting it sounds no different than in 2wd.

I am assuming it is transfer case noise. Oddly, it does quiet down a bit around 50-55 and above.

This has been the same experience on any surface wet, slush, snow, deep snow. (no dry pavement)

I do not feel nor do I have reason to believe that there's any binding, and there's very little, if any, difference in throttle position to maintain a given speed in 4wd from that of 2wd.

I was actually going to post up about this soon (wanted to listen and play with it some more first)... but maybe I'll just listen in on/add to your thread if you don't mind...

FishnAlaska has me thinkin'... I do have an SPL meter (sound pressure level...loudness) ... I could answer exactly "How much louder" it is in 4wd...
 

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Mac, mine has a pretty good "hum" when in 4x4 high with a noticeable reduction in power. The hum is more obvious at higher speed.
 

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Same here. 4WD is nosier, and yes, you probably can feel some difference in handling and what could be described as sort-of a "binding up" of the drivetrain. That shouldn't be really noticeable if you are on loose/slippery stuff, but you can really feel that effect even on wet pavement, where the traction is still pretty good. Some of the noise probably comes from driving the front tires, so the tires may contribute significantly as well.

I've driven all manner of 4WDs (Chevys, GMCs, Internationals - yeah, there are some stories in that - Fords, Nissans) for almost 50 years... I don't even think much about it, since most were pretty noisy. Watch for changes in noise level, but expect some "background" noise.

Merry Christmas, all!
 
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can tell you as per last night in a snow storm i was in 4wd up a few steep hills for certain more noise. also you have to think that power is being delivered almost right under your feet. alot closer than your rear end. will be more noticable
 

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I'm a little surprised at the volume difference, as the entire front half of the drivetrain is always spinning anyway... Including that big ol' chain in the T-case.

I'm assuming that all the extra noise is from the added chain tension in 4wd, lessening clearance and adding pressure between the chain and sprocket teeth.

I'm gonna swap out my TCase fluid soon and see if there's a change in volume. Who knows what fluid is in it now or if ever changed... (only like 65,000mi on mine now...) and I am quite sure the dealer never checked it.
 

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I'm a little surprised at the volume difference, as the entire front half of the drivetrain is always spinning anyway... Including that big ol' chain in the T-case.

I'm assuming that all the extra noise is from the added chain tension in 4wd, lessening clearance and adding pressure between the chain and sprocket teeth.

I'm gonna swap out my TCase fluid soon and see if there's a change in volume. Who knows what fluid is in it now or if ever changed... (only like 65,000mi on mine now...) and I am quite sure the dealer never checked it.
doubt the fluid change will change the noise level i had just changed my front. rear and transfer case fluid about 2 months ago. seems as loud as per usual haha. seems to be pretty normal
 

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Absolutely change that fluid! "Old school" 30k mile fluid change make sense if you plan on having the vehicle for awhile; it pays off.

But, I was also surprised when looking at the service manual recently... although Nissan recommends for severe service 30 kmi for transmission fluid changes, they recommend 20 kmi for transfer case, front and rear differentials. Severe service is defined by Nissan as "...towing a trailer, using a car-top carrier, or driving on rough or muddy roads, change (not just inspect) oil ..." Seems like that covers most of us.

Oh, and I agree with Paskell, probably won't make a bit of difference in the noise level in 4WD.

Enjoy the truck!
 

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Got out the spl meter.. putting the truck in four wheel drive increases the cabin noise level by about 2db on level ground slight acceleration.

I changed the fluid... no noise level change (didn't really expect it, but figured I'd report back)

The fluid, much to my dismay looks like metallic gunmetal paint. No large flakes...just fines...
I'm going to assume it's never been changed and that's what 67,000 mile fluid looks like.

I'd probably be flippin' out, but, it is an aluminum case, and the drain plug magnet only had a small amount of really fine metal on it with no solids in it that I could see nor feel when smearing it between two fingers .. maybe the same volume as an average pea or less.

I saved the fluid, and the plug magnet residue. Was thinking about contacting the local dealer to at least get it on the books... but they may want to see it and its a pain to set aside time, and I don't trust any of them at all.

I'm gonna change it again in 5,000 or so and see what it looks like...
 

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I have a 2015 Pro-4x Titan with 36k miles. I have the same humming in 4H at speed under load. Doesn't sound like its coming apart but is noticeable. I had a 2014 frontier which I assumed is the same transfer case and it was totally quiet in 4H. Not sure if I need to get it looked as it sounds as if I'm not the only one.

BP--Bremerton, WA
 

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I have a 2015 Pro-4x Titan with 36k miles. I have the same humming in 4H at speed under load. Doesn't sound like its coming apart but is noticeable. I had a 2014 frontier which I assumed is the same transfer case and it was totally quiet in 4H. Not sure if I need to get it looked as it sounds as if I'm not the only one.

BP--Bremerton, WA
Hi, I have the identical truck to yours (2015 Pro-4x) and have exactly the same issue. I'm in Canada so the clock is in km and reading 63,xxx (about 40,000 miles) Noise is most prevalent around 70 km per hr and less at higher speeds. It disappears when the throttle is off. So far two different dealerships here have replaced the front diff and the transfer case twice and the noise has not changed. Pretty sure Nissan is going to put the issue in the too hard basket now, so I will probably drive it until it is close the the 100,000 km mark (end of drivetrain warranty) and trade it on a Toyota or Ford. Darrell
 
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