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I'm two days into a 13 day trip. Started in Los Angeles and now in Alpine, WY, about 800 miles along the 15 FWY with tons of long flat stretches. I went and had my ForestRiver FR3 upgraded to a class 5 hitch to handle the weight. I'd say 90% of the trip I was towing at 70 MPH, no problem at all. I had one steep climb in Idaho where I dropped to 35 MPH but it was short most of the other climbs I maintained 50 MPH with the engine still at 2500 RPM. Mileage was honestly barely affected except when climbing. I'm using the Stay-in-play Duo braking system cranked way down.

Here's my question though, none of the steps to set up a jeep to flat tow work properly (and there are no steps in the 4XE manual) as they all say to turn the Jeep off BEFORE putting it into Park. The 4XE computer won't let you do that. You have to be in Park before turning the Jeep off. Of course, there's a warning online saying that could cause damage but I don't see any other way. So I put it into Park, turn it off, release eBrake and then tow away. The transfer case is of course in Neutral. Is this correct? Is there another way?
The part of the manual that talks about damage says that it can cause damage if you shift into park when the engine is running and the transfer case is in neutral. I ran into the same issue (can't turn it off when not in park). I just shift it into part while the jeep is still in the "Run" position since the engine isn't running while I'm putting the transfer case into neutral. My current steps:
  1. "Start" the Jeep (put in "Run", the ICE doesn't start, that's important)
  2. Shift the transmission into neutral
  3. Shift the transfer case into neutral
  4. Shift the transmission into drive, then reverse to make sure the transfer case isn't engaged
  5. Shift the transmission into park (as long as the ICE isn't running)
  6. Turn off the Jeep
 

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I went out to a hill in an industrial park with just the jeep today. Engine off with the jeep in park and transfer case in neutral for all testing. Pulling f34 definitely disables the power steering, but with the brakes it was hard to tell. Both ways not very much pressure was required, but it was a short hill and I was not going fast at all.
 

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The part of the manual that talks about damage says that it can cause damage if you shift into park when the engine is running and the transfer case is in neutral. I ran into the same issue (can't turn it off when not in park). I just shift it into part while the jeep is still in the "Run" position since the engine isn't running while I'm putting the transfer case into neutral. My current steps:
  1. "Start" the Jeep (put in "Run", the ICE doesn't start, that's important)
  2. Shift the transmission into neutral
  3. Shift the transfer case into neutral
  4. Shift the transmission into drive, then reverse to make sure the transfer case isn't engaged
  5. Shift the transmission into park (as long as the ICE isn't running)
  6. Turn off the Jeep
Thanks, that's what I've been doing too though I haven't shifted into reverse, I'll try that. It would be nice to have something "official" from Jeep though!
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
Today I tested what pulling fuse F34 does to the 4xe, with the ignition off. It so happens I live close to the top of a hill, with a long straightaway and no traffic to speak of.
1. Made a base pass down the hill, fuse in place, ignition ON, no throttle. Got a feel for the brake pedal pressure.
2. Pulled fuse F34. You will need a fuse puller or long nose pliers. Put the transfer case in NEUTRAL, Transmission in PARK, turned ignition OFF. Pumped the brake pedal five times. Let off the parking brake. Definetely more pressure required for the brake pedal to stop the Jeep. Was it an immense amount more, NO, but definitely more pressure needed. My max speed was 10mph. When I got to the bottom of the hill and had to make a u-turn, I earned my spurs. You will NOT forget the fuse is out when you need to turn at slow speeds.
3. Turn ON the Jeep put it back in gear, climbed the hill and decided to go for a ride. My maximum speed was 15 mph, Definitely more pedal pressure needed. Did not want to risk going on the Highway and having to make an emergency stop. At speed the steering was manageable, but not at slow speeds.

it would not hurt my feelings if someone duplicated the test and posted their results.

At this point I believe MY solution for this issue (I’m sure there will be more), for flat towing the 4xe will be to disconnect fuse F34. I’m old and lazy and don’t want to continually have to open and close the hood and the fuse box. Plus I will eventually break something. That’s a small fuse in a difficult location. I decided to build a fuse bypass circuit.
I found a Blue Ox “Fuse Bypass” kit, Called Blue Ox, and got no help. Waste of time.. Checked the price of a fuse bypass kit on Amazon, Blue Ox $50, Roadmaster $60. So I decided to build one myself. Total in parts, $20 and eight feet of two conductor 14ga outdoor electrical wire. NOTE 14ga (for 10 amps) is only good for 10’ if you plan on putting the switch in the cab. If you run more than 10’ you will need 12ga wire. You can also just put the switch outside the fuse box.
if you need instructions, here is a YouTube video on it.


Im getting a 20 Amp rated switch with an LED light and will install it low left on the dash, so I can see it when I kneel down to connect the BlueOx Patriot braking system. If the switch is lit, it means the circuit is closed and the fuse connection is made. Thus the power steering and brake are getting hydraulic assist. If the LED in the switch is off, I’ll know the circuit is open and the electro hydraulic pump is not getting any power.
I’ll post pictures as I go along. The basic circuit is shown in the youtube video above.
 

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Today I tested what pulling fuse F34 does to the 4xe, with the ignition off. It so happens I live close to the top of a hill, with a long straightaway and no traffic to speak of.
1. Made a base pass down the hill, fuse in place, ignition ON, no throttle. Got a feel for the brake pedal pressure.
2. Pulled fuse F34. You will need a fuse puller or long nose pliers. Put the transfer case in NEUTRAL, Transmission in PARK, turned ignition OFF. Pumped the brake pedal five times. Let off the parking brake. Definetely more pressure required for the brake pedal to stop the Jeep. Was it an immense amount more, NO, but definitely more pressure needed. My max speed was 10mph. When I got to the bottom of the hill and had to make a u-turn, I earned my spurs. You will NOT forget the fuse is out when you need to turn at slow speeds.
3. Turn ON the Jeep put it back in gear, climbed the hill and decided to go for a ride. My maximum speed was 15 mph, Definitely more pedal pressure needed. Did not want to risk going on the Highway and having to make an emergency stop. At speed the steering was manageable, but not at slow speeds.

it would not hurt my feelings if someone duplicated the test and posted their results.

At this point I believe MY solution for this issue (I’m sure there will be more), for flat towing the 4xe will be to disconnect fuse F34. I’m old and lazy and don’t want to continually have to open and close the hood and the fuse box. Plus I will eventually break something. That’s a small fuse in a difficult location. I decided to build a fuse bypass circuit.
I found a Blue Ox “Fuse Bypass” kit, Called Blue Ox, and got no help. Waste of time.. Checked the price of a fuse bypass kit on Amazon, Blue Ox $50, Roadmaster $60. So I decided to build one myself. Total in parts, $20 and eight feet of two conductor 14ga outdoor electrical wire. NOTE 14ga (for 10 amps) is only good for 10’ if you plan on putting the switch in the cab. If you run more than 10’ you will need 12ga wire. You can also just put the switch outside the fuse box.
if you need instructions, here is a YouTube video on it.


Im getting a 20 Amp rated switch with an LED light and will install it low left on the dash, so I can see it when I kneel down to connect the BlueOx Patriot braking system. If the switch is lit, it means the circuit is closed and the fuse connection is made. Thus the power steering and brake are getting hydraulic assist. If the LED in the switch is off, I’ll know the circuit is open and the electro hydraulic pump is not getting any power.
I’ll post pictures as I go along. The basic circuit is shown in the youtube video above.
Wow! This work is impressive. Thank you for sharing! Do I really need to do all this to flat tow my 4xe? I have a Patriot 3 which I use to tow my TJ. Maybe I will just keep towing the TJ and leave the 4xe at home. . .
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Wow! This work is impressive. Thank you for sharing! Do I really need to do all this to flat tow my 4xe? I have a Patriot 3 which I use to tow my TJ. Maybe I will just keep towing the TJ and leave the 4xe at home. . .
No, you don’t really need to do all of that. BUT, if you have a battery powered brake assist system in the toad, like I do, with the Patriot and your battery in the Jeep runs down, you have no brake assist at all. Unfortunately, I don’t have a backup toad.
‘You can also do a DC to DC charger from your tow vehicle to the toad or run a charger from the tow vehicle to the toad to keep the toad battery charged.
The reasons I’m going with the fuse bypass. 1. I dont want the power steering pump to run all the time I tow. With my luck, it will fail as soon as I unhook the Jeep in Moab. 2. I’m too lazy and forgetful, these days, to pull the fuse and put it back in every time .(a perfectly good way of doing it). 3. I admit it, as my wife will tell you, I have to solve problems, or I’m not happy, So I found a solution that keeps me from manually pulling the fuse and puts a lit LED in front of my face every time I install the Patriot in the front seat. And every time I can build something cheaper than they sell it, it makes me happy.
With a good battery in the toad, you might be able to run all day, then charge It at night???
These are the issues the 4xe, as a toad, brings along. From what I have found, a lot of other hybrids and EV’s have the same issue of powered brake assust with the engine OFF. I’m sure there is a good reason for it, I just don’t know why?? Maybe someone can enlighten me on why the pump runs with the ignition OFF. The Jeep tech line told me, “so toad brake assist systems require less power.“. BS, BS, BS……I cant buy that answer, there must be more to it.
 

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Thank you for doing the additional testing! Now we just need someone to tow with the fuse pulled and report back what psi worked well. My brake buddy goes down to 20 psi. Do you think that would be low enough?

Today I tested what pulling fuse F34 does to the 4xe, with the ignition off. It so happens I live close to the top of a hill, with a long straightaway and no traffic to speak of.
1. Made a base pass down the hill, fuse in place, ignition ON, no throttle. Got a feel for the brake pedal pressure.
2. Pulled fuse F34. You will need a fuse puller or long nose pliers. Put the transfer case in NEUTRAL, Transmission in PARK, turned ignition OFF. Pumped the brake pedal five times. Let off the parking brake. Definetely more pressure required for the brake pedal to stop the Jeep. Was it an immense amount more, NO, but definitely more pressure needed. My max speed was 10mph. When I got to the bottom of the hill and had to make a u-turn, I earned my spurs. You will NOT forget the fuse is out when you need to turn at slow speeds.
3. Turn ON the Jeep put it back in gear, climbed the hill and decided to go for a ride. My maximum speed was 15 mph, Definitely more pedal pressure needed. Did not want to risk going on the Highway and having to make an emergency stop. At speed the steering was manageable, but not at slow speeds.

it would not hurt my feelings if someone duplicated the test and posted their results.

At this point I believe MY solution for this issue (I’m sure there will be more), for flat towing the 4xe will be to disconnect fuse F34. I’m old and lazy and don’t want to continually have to open and close the hood and the fuse box. Plus I will eventually break something. That’s a small fuse in a difficult location. I decided to build a fuse bypass circuit.
I found a Blue Ox “Fuse Bypass” kit, Called Blue Ox, and got no help. Waste of time.. Checked the price of a fuse bypass kit on Amazon, Blue Ox $50, Roadmaster $60. So I decided to build one myself. Total in parts, $20 and eight feet of two conductor 14ga outdoor electrical wire. NOTE 14ga (for 10 amps) is only good for 10’ if you plan on putting the switch in the cab. If you run more than 10’ you will need 12ga wire. You can also just put the switch outside the fuse box.
if you need instructions, here is a YouTube video on it.


Im getting a 20 Amp rated switch with an LED light and will install it low left on the dash, so I can see it when I kneel down to connect the BlueOx Patriot braking system. If the switch is lit, it means the circuit is closed and the fuse connection is made. Thus the power steering and brake are getting hydraulic assist. If the LED in the switch is off, I’ll know the circuit is open and the electro hydraulic pump is not getting any power.
I’ll post pictures as I go along. The basic circuit is shown in the youtube video above.
 

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Is there any downside to installing a battery cutoff switch instead of pulling the fuse? I dont save broadcast radio station and am not sure if any setting would be lost. Would that even work? Of course the supplemental brake would need to be powered from the RV
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Is there any downside to installing a battery cutoff switch instead of pulling the fuse? I dont save broadcast radio station and am not sure if any setting would be lost. Would that even work? Of course the supplemental brake would need to be powered from the RV
Good question. I can’t do that with a Patriot braking system, but others might.
Caution: The 4xe supplement has a caution if you disconnect the battery.
“Before removal of the positive and negative terminals to the battery, wait at least a minute with ignition switch in the OFF position and close the driver’s door. When reconnecting the positive and negative terminals to the battery be sure the ignition switch is in the OFF position and the driver’s door is closed.”
 

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Just flat towed my 4xe home from Camping World Richmond Indiana back to Columbus Ohio after tow conversion. Nighthawk tow bar with Demco Duo brake.
Issues: they installed an LED light bar for tail lights due to voltage discrepancy on tail lights.
also no method to create an LED dash indicator that the Duo was activating. Tech rode in the Jeep to verify it worked. Very low setting since the Jeep brakes were active even when “off”
120 mile ride home with no issues. The Camping World tech and parts guy were great. This was their first hybrid Jeep conversion. They called other stores for advice and the others said they won’t touch them.
the parts guy was a former Jeep tech with 4xe training so that helped.
it took 2+ days for the conversion but it all looks great.True test comes in two weeks as we head to the Rockies.
 

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‘Very complete post, thank you very much for posting, I’m the guy who started the thread. You answered lots of my questions. I hope I can help you with brake pressure and drain in the battery.

‘The one surprise I had, was the draining of the battery during flat towing, only because I was not familiar with electric cars. According to my Jeep tech, ex long time GM mechanic, most hybrids run the steering fluid pump to supply boost to steering and braking functions, even with the ignition switch in the OFF position.

‘’Here is a reply I got back today from Jeep when I asked them if the brakes were being supplied power while the Ignition is OFF:
Hi, I had a chance to discuss your inquiry with internal teams and you are correct, the 4xe's electrohydraulic brake booster (including brake boost) does function during flat towing. I hope this helps, please let me know if you have any other questions.

Fuse F34, page 69 of the Hybrid supplement, controls the power steering pump, which supplies boost to both the power steering and the brakes. So, one solution COULD BE, pull fuse F34 while flat towing. Two problems solved, lets you use your brake controller at normal pressures and stops the battery from draiNing.
‘I was thinking of a DC to DC charger from the RV to the Jeep. But, if pulling F34 accomplishes what we need. Maybe that’s a cheaper and cleaner solution. All of the non 4xe Jeeps tow just fine without boost to the brakes or power steering. So, do you really need the pump running while towing?? Plus think of all the wear and tear on that pump while towing.

I welcome other thoughts on the subject and if somebody pulls F34 and tows, please let the rest of us know.
‘The only downside I see at this time is remembering to put the fuse back in after towing and I bet it will only take one turn of the steering wheel to have an aha moment And remember to put it back in.
I don't follow the bit about the brake system being ON when the vehicle is OFF. Or do the brake and steering systems know the wheels are turning? Otherwise, the electrohydraulic system would drain the battery on all 4xe's while parked. I have the Demco Duo brake system installed. Heading from Ohio to Colorado starting Saturday. We will see what happens. Also, why not just use the hot wire from the trailer plug to tie into the 12 volt 4xe battery (properly fused)? Wouldn't that take care of any battery drain?
 

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I pulled f34 today and tried it with my brake buddy at 20 psi, proportional braking on. Unfortunately, it still locked the brakes up. Has anyone else found another fuse or have another suggestion?
 

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The Duo doesn't have a way to see an exact value that I can tell. It has a dial you turn up and down. The guys I had install it had worked with other hybrids before so they were used to active braking. They called Jeep as well to confirm. I found the Settings too sensitive as it was still braking under 10 mph today so I turned it down a bit more.
I don’t know the answer but doesn’t it go into something like AutoPark (I am forgetting the exact term) if shut off before putting into Park? My 4xe still hasn’t arrived after ordering in April so I can’t even try to tow it yet but recall seeing something about that when I downloaded the manual. Would that work for towing?
Ohio to Colorado and now over a couple mountain passes with the Demco Duo brake system. Demco tech said I could tow a couple of days without worrying about draining the battery. Two days of towing was no problem. I even forgot and left the power on the brake module. The only thing I noticed was the engine fired up immediately perhaps to recharge. All good. And regen on the mountains is awesome!
 

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I towed for the first time from from the foothills near Sacramento, CA to Malibu Beach over the grapevine (I-5). A few things:
  1. The 12V outlet that stays hot is in the rear storage behind the back seats (what genius made that call?). A simple 12V extension cord gets your break controller back there. Shout out to my 78 y/o father who tows a 2019 Wrangler Rubicon for being able to help me figure that out when my Jeep dealer couldn’t.
  2. I’m using the BlueOx Patriot 3 brake controller:
    1. Change the forces all the way down. Past 1 gets you to “H” for hybrid
    2. The default sensitivity is 9. That’s too high. First time it kicked in was down the backup side of the grapevine when 4 jack offs cut in front of me when traffic was slowing. I braked moderately and it locked up my Jeep.
    3. I’ve dropped to 6 after that and may still back down to 5 or 4.
  3. I did fine going over the grapevine. I would have probably held 55 mph with my 2019 V8 Ford 53 chassis if not for an idiot cutting me off requiring me to slow down on the uphill grade, and then I couldn’t get back to that speed.

N1ghtfox
2021 Fleetwood Bounder 33C
2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe
 

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Discussion Starter · #37 ·
[QUOTE="N1ghtfox, post: 8203, member: 1484"
  1. I’m using the BlueOx Patriot 3 brake controller:
    1. Change the forces all the way down. Past 1 gets you to “H” for hybrid
    2. The default sensitivity is 9. That’s too high. First time it kicked in was down the backup side of the grapevine when 4 jack offs cut in front of me when traffic was slowing. I braked moderately and it locked up my Jeep.
    3. I’ve dropped to 6 after that and may still back down to 5 or 4
[/QUOTE]
I took a three day shakedown trip to Sedona.
‘I also have a Patriot 3 Brake controller.
Started Out with the controller on ”H”. Jeep seemed to be braking, but not enough.
Upped the power to 6, locked up the Jeep on the first exit. Backed off to 5 and seems to be working fine.
We leave on an eight week trip tomorrow, from Arizona to Cape Cod to visit family. Lots of detours along the way, so I will get to fine tune the setting Will Post results and any problems with the battery drawing down.
‘Great find on the hot 12v outlet. Unfortunately, I already modified my front 12V plug to be hot all the time.
 

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4000+ miles towing our 4xe with Demco Duo brake system set at lowest setting. No problems from Ohio thru Colorado, Wyoming and Montana towing with our Thor Hurricane 29 M in Tow Mode to use engine to slow on down grades. 4000 foot downgrades at between 50 and 55 mph.
Connect Jeep, back it up to lock the tow extension bars, put in neutral, shift transfer case to N, place in Park, parking brake off, Demco Duo switch ON and shut off Jeep. Five weeks of travel and all is good. Even forgot toswitch off Demco one night. No issues.
 
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