1997 Cherokee Sport Major Problems - Need Help! - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 7 Old 08-10-2009, 10:53 AM Thread Starter
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1997 Cherokee Sport Major Problems - Need Help!

I have a 1997 Cherokee Sport 6cy. 4liter. I bought it used and it ran fine, dealer said they had just replaced water pump. One week after I had it, it started to overheat. Replaced thermostat and ran fine for a few days, then overheated again. Took to mechanic said head gasket was blown. Took the manifold off and had it milled. Replaced the head gasket and all was good for about a week and started overheating again! I've replaced the spark plugs, spark plug wires, changed the oil (did this when I replaced the head gasket), flushed radiator, and changed the water pump. The problem now is that it starts but when I drive, it stalls out and I get a check gauges light on. Then I have trouble starting it again and there is a tapping noise. I'm about ready to pull my hair out. Anyone have any suggestions? I did do a little research on the water pump and was told it had a reverse rotation. When I pulled the old water pump off there was not an "R" stamped on it could a bad water pump have caused all this trouble? Thanks!

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post #2 of 7 Old 08-10-2009, 12:16 PM
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could it be the fuel pump??
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post #3 of 7 Old 08-14-2009, 09:13 AM Thread Starter
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I don't think it is the fuel pump. It starts and will run, but if the RPM's drop below 1,000 it will shut off and is hard to get started again. I took it to AutoZone and the readings said it was the spark plugs. We checked those and they are all fine, all the spark plugs are brand new as are the wires.
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post #4 of 7 Old 08-14-2009, 09:41 AM
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What about the distributor/rotor, and the coil?

- _litz

1997 Jeep Cherokee Sport
1976 Fairmont MT-19
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post #5 of 7 Old 08-14-2009, 10:10 AM
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Is the overheating issue solved ?

When you have the starting issue is the the sound your hear tapping or clicking ? Where, exactly, does the sound come from ?

Begin with basic trouble shooting of the start and charge systems. Remove, clean, and firmly reconnect all the wires and cables to the battery, starter, and alternator. Look for corroded or damaged cables and replace as needed. Do the same for the grounding wires from the starter to engine block, and from the battery and engine to the Jeep's frame/body. Jeeps do not tolerate low voltage or poor grounds and the Jeep may behave oddly until you remedy this.

Have you removed and cleaned the throttle body and Idle Air Controller ?


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post #6 of 7 Old 08-14-2009, 10:25 AM Thread Starter
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It's not overheating anymore, but it doesn't run long enough to overheat. the tapping sounds like its coming from the engine. But it only does it when in idle. Will try all of these things everyone as suggested. Just want it fixed and don't want to spend a whole lot. Had a 96 Jeep Cherokee and never had this much trouble. Will let ya'll know on Monday how these tips worked out.
Thanks so much!
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post #7 of 7 Old 07-06-2013, 09:28 AM
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I have a 97 Jeep Cherokee Sport, 4.0L engine. Yesterday it begin sputtering while I was driving and then stalled when I would bring it to a stop. After several tries it finally started and the sputtering continued with some smoke coming from the engine. As I continued driving a knocking sound begin. Today I added 2 quarts of oil and after idling for a few minutes I decided to do a test drive. It drove fine until I slowed for a stop sign and it stalled. Again it took several tries it finally started, but the knocking was not present during the test drive. I parked it and kept it idle while I checked the engine. The engine began smoking from the top but stopped after a few mins...but then a chirping sound began which sound like it was coming from the fan belt. Anyone have any thoughts of what the problem could be?
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