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Doug C.
Doug C., ASE Certified Technician
Category: Mitsubishi
Satisfied Customers: 8652
Experience:  Mitsubishi trained and employeed technician
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I have a Pajero 2.5 SWB 2003, When i move the small gear handle

Customer Question

I have a Pajero 2.5 SWB 2003, When i move the small gear handle up toXXXXXfor pulling the trailer, the green lights will stay on for a few seconds then the centre red light will flash, have i a sensor problem, if so where are they located in the jeep and are they expensive to replace ? Thanks in advance
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Mitsubishi
Expert:  Doug C. replied 4 years ago.

When normally shifting to a 4WD range the front wheel lights will go from dim to flash, and when the front axle actuator is fully engaged the lights will go to solid.

If there is a problem in the transition the lights will continue to flash. If there is a position detection issue after transition the center differential (C/D) light will come on flashing.

The C/D light is like the "Engine Management" light, just for the transfer case. Whenever you see this light flashing continually it is indicating that the transfer case computer has detected a problem with the transition.

This is 90% of the time sensor related or vacuum control related. It is extremely rare to see any sort of mechanical issue to cause this, it is nearly always detection malfunction not movement malfunction.

Two things are most common on this model. First and foremost are vacuum control issues on the front axle free wheel clutch system. This can be due to vacuum hoses off/rotted/leaking, but more often due to the free wheel clutch solenoid pack failing. This is the two vacuum solenoid assembly under the air filter area on the frame rail.
Second are transfer position switches. 01-03 models had some issues with water intrusion on the transfer position switches resulting in bad readings. There are five switches/sensors on the transfer case on the regular 4WD model, and if water intrusion is detected on one it is standard procedure to replace them all (As the replacement parts are upgraded and do not suffer this problem).

Before getting involved in any repairs however you will need to get the truck to a shop with either a dealer scan tool or a high end scan tool that supports transfer case ecus. From here the trouble code that is making the light flash can be read which will indicate your problem area.
The majority of the faults will be straight forward.... if it says you have a wheel speed sensor fault or a transfer case switch fault.... it will just be a matter or replacing the indiated part. If you have any free wheel clutch faults (typically 32 or 35 if I recall), then the vacuum system will need to be tested properly and then the solenoid pack bench tested for failure.

For what it is worth, the majority of the time the freewheel solenoid pack is at fault...they are very failure prone due to the heat in their location. You need to have the transfer ecu scanned though to see what is going on before committing to any repairs, as there are simply too many sensors/switches to just take a stab at it.