I put my vehicle into 4WD and heard a grinding noise. I took it out and put it in 2WD and It started to make some noise.

I put my Dodge ram 1500 in 4*4 and heard grinding. I put it in 2wd and the grinding stopped but soon after a noise developed. Im going to dig into it tomorrow and I am trying to decide if its locked up hubs, if the transfer case is also an issue, a bad bearing?
My car has a manual transmission.
Experienced mechanics share their insights in answering this question :
Hi there. Jack up the vehicle and put it on jack stands. Make sure that all 4 wheels are off the ground. Put the transfer case in 4WD, the transmission in drive, and let off the brake. Check to see if the front wheels are turning. If the front wheels are not turning, then check the front drive shaft and see if its turning. If the drive shafts front and rear are turning and the hubs are lock and the front wheels are not turning, then the front hubs are damaged. If the front drive shaft does not turn on 4WD and the grinding noise is coming from that area, then the chain could be broken, or the clutch slider could be stripped inside the transfer case. If you need further assistance with your transfer case making noises, then seek out a professional, such as one from Your Mechanic, to help you.

How to Identify and Fix Common car Problems ?

Our sources include academic articles, blog posts, and personal essays from experienced mechanics :

If you hear a grinding noise when engaging the 4×4, also known as four-wheel drive (4WD), or it`s not working and you have auto-lock hubs, it`s because the hub is not able to move in and out. It connects to outside of the CV shaft and has a nut, which is known for loosening even after being torqued properly.
A common cause of grinding noises under your car are failing wheel or hub bearings. Wheel bearings allow the wheel and tire to rotate and are designed for low friction, while hub assemblies have an additional responsibility of securing the wheel and tire to the vehicle.
Most likely, if it is true grinding that you hear, the problem is related to the starter. Causes include the starter not lining up correctly with the ring gear on the flywheel, missing or damaged gear teeth, or a faulty solenoid. Replacing the starter is most often the right solution.
If you are on solid pavement, and the wheels cannot slip easily, and you are in 4HI or 4LO, then yes, it is normal to have some binding and noise while turning in 4WD, but it would be a BAD THING. 4WD should only be used when the wheels can slip, such as snow, ice, mud, and sand.
Grinding noises coming from underneath the vehicle

When the output shaft seal breaks or wears out, it also can cause noises to appear from under the vehicle. In many cases, these noises are caused by the reduction of lubricants inside the transfer case or metal-to-metal grinding.

Whining, growling, and humming are all bad transfer case sounds. This may come from a fluid leak or a mechanical problem like damaged gears. Another symptom other than noise from transfer case is the vehicle jumping in and out of four-wheel drive.
If the bushing or bearing that supports the driveshaft or the driveshaft U-joints wear out or fail, they can interfere with the driveshaft`s ability to rotate correctly. This may result in unusual rattling, clunking, scraping, or even squeaking sounds from underneath the vehicle.
If you hear this grinding noise both while you`re driving and idling, it`s possible that worn-out bearings are to blame. If the grinding noise comes when you shift, it`s likely due to a worn clutch. Grinding when you turn a corner could be due to a CV joint that needs to be replaced or another suspension issue.
Your Alternator Might Be Wearing Out

When your alternator is starting to wear out it will often make a grinding noise. This is because modern alternators have a decoupler pulley system designed to help you save on fuel, but can make a grinding noise when they are not working properly.

Check Your Motor Mounts

If one or more of them wear out, your engine or transmission will be less secure and you may notice a rattle that doesn`t go away when you start driving. While an unsecure engine or transmission can more easily be damaged, replacing any worn or broken mounts is a relatively simple car repair.

Reasons Your Car Makes a Noise When Turning the Wheel

CV Joints: If you hear a crunching noise when turning at high speeds, the CV Joints are typically the main culprit. Power Steering System: A screeching or whining noise while turning at normal speeds can mean that there`s an issue within the power steering system.

Should you drive your car with a bad transfer case? Driving your car with a bad transfer case is a bad idea. If you continue to drive with a transfer case that has a serious mechanical problem, you could destroy it beyond the point of repair, and possibly damage your transmission, driveshafts and axles in the process.
If the differential was damaged it will make a noise like grinding or a banging noise. If there is no noise, then shut off the engine and put the transmission in park when the wheels stop turning. Lower the vehicle and take the vehicle for a test drive.
Difficulty changing gears – Low or dirty transfer case fluid can affect your transmission`s ability to shift gears. It can also result in your car unexpectedly falling out of four-wheel drive. Loud noises while driving – As the transfer case fluid loses its lubricating properties, friction will occur inside.
Grinding gears is one of the most common signs of a transmission problem. It means that the clutch isn`t completely disengaging from the engine while the gears are still rotation. However, there are numerous reasons why it could be happening. In some cases with a manual transmission, it`s actually user error.
It is not safe to drive with a broken transfer case. If your transfer case is showing signs of damage, you should have it replaced immediately to avoid transmission damage or issues with your axles and driveshafts.
You may be able to drive on a bad CV axle for several months, but it depends on the extent of the damage. We`re obliged to let you know that the safest thing to do is get the axle replaced immediately. The longer you wait, the worse the damage will be.
A worn CV axle can cause what some people describe as a grinding noise. This noise is commonly heard on tight turns at slow speeds. When an axle wears, the joint no longer smoothly articulates. This in turn causes a grinding noise when it catches at a stiff spot.
Another symptom of driveshaft issues is loud clunking noises. These noises are usually produced by worn-out u-joints. The ability of your driveshaft to rotate correctly is altered if your vehicle has a faulty u-joint. Lack of u-joint lubrication can cause squeaking noises when you drive at low speeds.
Most of the time, if you hear scraping and grinding, it can be attributed to one of two main issues: Worn-out brake linings. Worn-out wheel/hub bearings.
Scraping noise while accelerating

A scraping noise whilst accelerating may be the result of a number of things; from a deteriorating transmission or timing belt to a damaged wheel bearing or brake pads. For this reason, it`s worth taking your car for a check-up with a mechanic who can determine the cause.

If the engine mounts wear out, they cannot stop your car`s engine from moving around while you`re driving. When you press down on the gas pedal, your engine can come into contact with other metal components under the hood. This can result in a rattling sound from under the hood any time you accelerate.
A broken bearing will compromise your ability to recharge your battery. You`ll know you have issues with your alternator if you hear grinding or squeaking from under the hood. Another sign is if your electrical components have stopped working or are not working at total capacity.
It is recommended to have a dedicated grease gun for alternator bearing re-lubrication only. Never mix lubricant types. As per the Installation, Service & Maintenance manuals, it is vital that the grease, grease gun, grease nozzle and relubrication nipple are free from abrasive materials and other contaminants.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

I put my vehicle into 4WD and heard a grinding noise. I took it out and put it in 2WD and It started to make some noise.
ANSWER : Hi there. Jack up the vehicle and put it on jack stands. Make sure that all 4 wheels are off the ground. Put the transfer case in 4WD, the transmission in drive, and let off the brake. Check to see if the front wheels are turning. If the front wheels are not turning, then check the front drive shaft and see if its turning. If the drive shafts front and rear are turning and the hubs are lock and the front wheels are not turning, then the front hubs are damaged. If the front drive shaft does not turn on 4WD and the grinding noise is coming from that area, then the chain could be broken, or the clutch slider could be stripped inside the transfer case. If you need further assistance with your transfer case making noises, then seek out a professional, such as one from Your Mechanic, to help you.

Car makes grinding noise – 1996 Chevrolet Corsica
ANSWER : Hey there, thanks for writing in. I would have a professional mechanic check out the constant velocity joints on your vehicle. One or more of them may be worn enough to cause the noises you describe. S/he can diagnose and replace any failed CV joints.

Switched to 4WD – did fine for a little then started making grinding noise. Now car won’t move and the 4WD light is blinking.
ANSWER : Hi there. If the 4WD light is blinking and you hear a grinding noise when the transmission is in drive or reverse only, then the transfer case has either broken the fork inside the case or the syncronizer jammed up and is grinding the gears inside the case. If the noise is not coming from the transfer case, then the front differential could be damaged. I recommend seeking out a professional, such as one from Your Mechanic, to help you diagnose your 4WD not working issue.

Car won’t start. When trying to start, starter makes a clicking noise and then closed back hatch recloses.
ANSWER : It sounds like there is some type of drain on the battery. When there is low voltage in a battery, it can cause several symptoms. The electrical systems can act very strangely when they don’t have the correct voltage being supplied. When a battery won’t hold a charge, it can be caused by a wiring issue, a bad battery, or some type of parasitic draw that can slowly pull voltage from the battery. Some electrical diagnosis done by a professional, such as one from YourMechanic, will be necessary to pinpoint the cause.

I put a penny in place of a fuse, tried to start my car and now it wont start and makes a grinding sound when i try to start it
ANSWER : Hi there. Putting a penny in place of a fuse, not recommended, replace with the correct fuse. The fuse is there, to protect the circuit. If the fuse blows, there is a short to ground. The grinding sound, when you try to start your vehicle, could be the starter. The starter drive could be at fault or the flywheel has a problem. I recommend having your vehicle’s no start be diagnosed and repaired by a certified technician from YourMechanic.

Issue with Mazda 626, starts up then makes a grinding noise while in park
ANSWER : Your symptoms suggest that the starter solenoid contacts are burned enough to stick in the "Start" position (engaging the starter drive and motor), even when the ignition switch is not energizing the relay portion of the starter solenoid. The starter motor continues to run after the motor starts, causing the horrible grinding. Eventually, the engine speed kicks the start drive back enough to jar the contacts loose, and things are fine – until the next time the solenoid contacts stick. Replace the starter solenoid – usually packaged as a starter assembly.

I would recommend having the starter replacement job completed by a mobile, professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, who can assist you at your home.

Grinding noise when starting engine.
ANSWER : Hi there:

Improper alignment or installation of the starter can cause this grinding noise to occur. However, it’s also possible that internal components inside the starter, the starter relay or the flywheel teeth could also be the source. It’s really difficult to diagnose a noise without physically being there to inspect the vehicle on site, so you should have a mobile mechanic complete a car is making a noise inspection, so they can pinpoint the issue and recommend the right repairs.

grinding noise while turning right or driving straight
ANSWER : Hello. If the noise is still there when the engine is off and if you are not turning the wheel, then it is typically either a failing bearing in the rear differential or it can be a failure in the transfer case if it is four wheel drive.

The transfer case is a very common failure on this vehicle. If it is two wheel drive then I typically start by draining the oil from the rear differential and inspecting the fluid for metal.

Any metal in the fluid indicates a bearing failure. If that is also fine, then it may be an issue within the transmission. It may be a failure in one of the thrust bearings. If you need to get this looked at, consider YourMechanic, as a certified mechanic can come to your home or office to diagnose your car’s grinding noise.