Mitsubishi Pajero Flashing 4×4 lights fix

For a more thorough run down on how to repair these problems we suggest either –


I recently had the joy (ha ha) of helping a friend diagnose a problem with his Mitsubishi Pajero. I suppose you couldn’t even call this vehicle modern as it was a 1993 model. I hate to think what problems a 2007 model will cause down the track! The problem we had was with the ‘Super Select’ system, which when working allows you to select four wheel drive on the ‘run’. A great system no doubt, but not something you would want to stop working halfway through a drive to the ‘back of Bourke’ (a long way from civilisation for those outside Oz!)

The system has five earthing switches on the transfer case and gearbox, a small control module, two vacuum switches in the engine bay and a vacuum operated gizmo (the technical term!) to engage the front hubs. That to me spells trouble in itself, a complicated system on a vehicle that is designed to take you places you normally wouldn’t go with a conventional car.

The first issue was the green lights on the dash flashing, indicating that the hubs where trying to lock in even though the transfer lever was in two wheel drive. We tracked that down to the ‘gizmo’ on the front differential housing had vacuum to only one side of it’s diaphragm. To keep the hubs in the unlocked position it needs a vacuum supply to both sides. O.K. so once we swapped the vacuum hoses around and provided vacuum to the other side the actuator and the hubs retreated into unlocked position and the lights on the dash went out. Yee-hah. So now we had to work out why the vacuum had disappeared on one side only. We checked vacuum supply to both solenoids, checked vacuum hoses for splits or damage and checked power and earth supply to the solenoids. All good, except for the earth supply for the solenoids wasn’t great, but we reasoned if that was the cause then both solenoids would be playing up as they are wired in series. Checking the solenoid’s resistance revealed a huge difference in the two. Problem one, need to replace solenoids.

I was still concerned by the quality of the earth provided to the solenoids. Probably not causing too much drama but just not right. We found that by using a test light connected to the positive terminal of the battery and the probe stuck into the negative side of the solenoid connection, that when we earthed the wire at the gearbox switches the earth improved drastically. Why were the switches on the gearbox and transfer case not giving a good earth? Only way to find out was to pull them out. Luckily we were doing this in a garage and not on the side of the road, bit of a mission! There was two switches that our earth wire was joined to, one on the gearbox and the other on the transfer. When we unsrewed these we found that someone had obviously tried to fix this problem previously. Where the wire goes into the switch there was lucky to be two strands of the wire left!

Because the wire comes out of the side of the switch, not the top, as you screw them out if you are not careful the wire twists around itself and breaks. Luckily we were able to solder another piece of wire to what was left coming out of the switch. Another problem we found was that the switches themselves had a reasonable amount of oil inside them, not good for providing an earth. So we cleaned them out as best we could, carefully re-installed them and now we had the test light glowing like a champion. Problem two, near broken wires and switches full of oil.

We ordered new solenoids from Mitsubishi, they only come as a pair even though we only need one! Just shy of $200.00 which I think is reasonable. We have just fitted them today and it all works like a charm. Problem solved. Looking at four wheel drive forums and web pages, it seems this problem is very common with Pajeros. For my dollars I’d much rather have the slight inconvenience of getting out of the vehicle and manually locking the hubs in, rather than relying on electronics to do it for me. You don’t want to be second-guessing when it comes to driving in difficult terrain. A brilliant idea no doubt about that, but poor execution.

61 thoughts on “Mitsubishi Pajero Flashing 4×4 lights fix

  1. hi there i have similar prob with 93 pajero all my hub lights work perfect except for the cd transfer light it flashes in 2wd constantly but all other lights work how they should any helpers

    regards scotty

  2. hello scotty ,
    if your 4wd system works properly then you got a simple problem i guess , you can check the vacuum valves ( yellow and blue dotted valves found in the engine bay under the air intake rubber manifold on the right side) , look for leaks in the air pipes stretching from these valves to the front diff , also one very important thing to do is to get under the truck and check the front diff , there you will see 2 air pipes attached to the diff worth check them also for leaks , there is a horizontal rubber boot attached to the front diff (sometimes its hard to see because it lies under the metal skid), slide the rubber off carefully you will see a small shaft under it , this shaft activate the 4wd system , apply grease to this shaft and return the rubber cover to it , and try to apply 4wd several times , the flashing may stop. for more help you can visit and register there and see the forums , you can ask there also its very helpful.


  3. Have a 2001 NM that has just developed that front diff grind, again all good in 4WD. Have seen on a forum elsewhere that you can get the vacuum solenoids from Ashdown Ingram for a fraction of the price, but will they do the trick?

    Have checked and greased the shaft, but does not seem to be moving much when you change between 2 and 4WD.



  4. Morning ( well it is here in my bed )
    I have a 93/94 V6 Pajero this thing is unstoppable best 4×4 I’ve ever owned for comfort and go any where up any rock face/mountian side. And yes I’ve the other over priced brands & later models but still chose to go back to the hey day of the 4×4 builds.
    My problem is while in 4LLc it will jump out will gear is loaded or unloaded can you help ?

  5. Hi I have a 94 2.8td automatic pajero. On the dash where the 4wd lights are the back right light is coming on and staying on. It is driving ok in 2wd and 4wd. I have not changed anything on the jeep. Just wondering does anyone know what the problem might be. Thanks

  6. Hello Lindsay and Anthony , in 4LLc the front differential is locked and so the right and left wheels are tight together thus the truck will jump causing problems in differential and axel , try only to use 4H without lockers (Lc) unless you are stuck and cant move with 4H , some people remove the fuse responsible for the front lock , and so they got low gear without lock , you can check this at in the forum link.

    and for mr. Anthony which lights? for the back wheels its normal to stay on for both back wheels all time, but on most cases the bulb inside dash got blown because its ON all time , its not a big deal you got no problem then.

  7. Thanks reade. That sounds good was just wondering because the back 2 lights never came on until a few days ago and now one of them is just on and was wondering if it was a problem.

  8. The old L300 4WD vans ran the paper 4WD running gear and they had the same problem in the 80’s. I have 2007 NL same problem spoke to a guy with brand new 2013 model same problem. It is fine if it is under warranty if not big bucks. As soon as you install any of the parts you void the warranty on the parts. It is common to leave the dealer and week later it starts again faulty part covered under warranty.. On the van all replaced under warranty still did it in the end manual hubsfixed the problem. But not always. So as I ally how long is a piece string and how fat is the wallet. The only way to be free is disconnect the vacuum lines to the hubs leave in 2wd and trade it in. But after 30 years you think they could get it is dangerous to I wonder how the get compliance for it. Traveling along, usually into a corner the center different lock engages and the hubs so at best in 4HL tires dig in bight the bitumen then it unlocks and power to the wheels again and it surges and has changed the direction of the front wheels. Never touch the accelerator or breaks to correct it it just makes it worse. Therewas a case of a guy who they believe had committed familicide crash his 4wd police could not replicate the accident the vehicle was fine mechanically so it had to be intentional. Or as it was done to me engaged into 4wd going around a corner.

  9. hi my name is aboo i have a 95 model pajero 3500 doch with has a few problems on the 4×4 some time he tried to go on by him self what is the problem help please

  10. My dad had to replace the computer in his NM pajero; very expensive for a little card. Apparently its a regular problem with them

  11. Hi,
    Can any one help me! I have a 2001 swb did Pajero. Whilst driving I get a vacuum sound from behind the dash, but not sure if its there or not as the sound can be heard with the window open as well. There is no flashing lights, just this vacuum noise.

Leave a Comment