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Unread 06-04-2013, 02:49 PM   #1
Mortifix
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 37
2000 Jeep Cherokee Issues

2000 Jeep Cherokee Sport
4 Door
2WD
4.0L
Automatic
118,000 miles


Hello, I am having multiple issues with my Jeep and was hoping some of you guys might have some insight on solving these problems. I will try my best to explain the symptoms without going into to much detail.

Problem 1 : Jeep Overheating

I live in the south and it has started to get pretty hot lately and I can tell its taking a toll on my Jeep. I am on my 3rd radiator now and its all aluminum. On the old radiator I just took out, it looks like there is some sort of build up which I believe is rust. It was so bad that fluid was barely able to flow through my radiator. Sometimes my thermostat does not register any temperature and the house that goes into the thermostat looks like it is bulging a bit.

Problem 2 : Vehicle Starting Issues

This is kind of intermittent, but sometimes when I go to start my jeep it takes about 5 seconds of turning the key to fire up. Other times it will start after about a second. I notice it has trouble starting after I have been driven it for 20 or so minutes. I have never changed my spark plugs or starter.

Problem 3 : Vibration while stopped

When I come to a stop sign or stop light, I can hear and feel a rattle in the floor board. I have done some reading on this issue and it seems it could either be a transmission mount that is bad or the catalytic convert's heat shield. Is there an easy way to spot what is causing this?

Problem 4 : Key Trouble

I don't know if this is an issue with my key or the ignition, but sometimes when I put my key in the ignition I have to judy chop it to be able to turn it.


Thank you in advance for any assistance you can provide with these issues.

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Unread 06-04-2013, 05:03 PM   #2
CJ7-Tim
Real Jeeps have dents.
 
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2000 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: out in the garage - Minneapolis, Minnesota
Posts: 21,843
All are common issues

1) See below
2) See below
3) Check for loose exhaust components. 4x4: Also check for failed bushings on the 4x4 shifter mechanism.
4) Clean the lock cylinder.


Overheating can be caused by anything that decreases the cooling system’s ability to absorb, transport, and dissipate heat, such as a low coolant level, loss of coolant (through internal or external leaks), poor heat conductivity inside the engine because of accumulated mineral deposits in the water jackets or radiator, a defective thermostat that doesn’t open, poor airflow through the radiator, a slipping fan clutch, an inoperative electric cooling fan, a collapsed lower radiator hose, an eroded or loose water pump impeller or even a defective radiator cap.

The cooling system is a group of related parts that depend on proper function from each of its component parts to keep the engine cool. Service the cooling system and replace any under-performing or suspected weak parts. Any component part of the cooling system that is not fully doing its job will stress the others and your cooling system will overheat. Temperature creep on the 4x4 trails, at idle, or in stop-n-go traffic points to a weak or failing mechanical fan clutch.

The most important maintenance item is to flush and refill the coolant periodically. Coolant should be replaced every 36,000 miles, or every two to three years. Anti-freeze has a number of additives that are designed to prevent corrosion in the cooling system, but they have a limited life span. The corrosion causes scale that eventually builds up and begins to clog the thin flat tubes in the radiator and heater core, causing the engine to eventually overheat.


-Use a flushing/cleaning solution and then drain and fill the radiator with a fresh 50/50 coolant and water mix. With a neglected cooling system you may have to flush several times.
-Inspect the radiator for mud/bugs/grass clogging the outside and mineral deposits clogging the inside. Clean or replace as needed.
-Replace the thermostat with a STANT or Robertshaw 195* thermostat. Cheap thermostats are cheap for a reason.
-Replace the radiator cap if your Jeep has one. An old worn out radiator cap will allow boil overs and/or allow the coolant flash over into to steam. You will see the coolant temps suddenly jump from 210* to the Red Zone and back to 210* if your radiator cap is weak.
-Inspect/test or replace the mechanical fan clutch. A worn fan clutch will allow temperature creep at stoplights, in heavy traffic, and on the 4x4 trails. A fan clutch that “looks” OK is not the same as working OK. Consider installing a Heavy Duty fan clutch such as the NAPA #272310.
-Inspect the electric cooling fan and the fan relay. Apply 12 volts and make sure the fan runs. Exchange the cooling fan relay with one of the others similar relays. Confirm that the e-fan starts when engine temps reach 215-218*. Repair or replace the fan or relay as needed.
-Inspect/test or replace the coolant temperature sensor that activates the e-fan.
-Replace the water pump. The pumping fins can deteriorate over time and the pump will not flow enough coolant to keep the temps under control.
-Inspect/replace the radiator hoses. Make sure the coiled wire is installed in the lower hose.

If you have covered all the points listed above and still have overheating issues, inspect and test the head for cracks and head gasket for leaks. Exhaust gasses entering the coolant can raise the temperature of the coolant or cause steam pockets in the coolant that will temporarily block the flow of coolant

Read more about cooling systems here –

www.offroaders.com/tech/engine-overheating.htm

www.familycar.com/classroom/coolingsystem.htm



When your 1997 to 2001 Cherokee won’t start on the first try day after day, the first thing to suspect is a failed check valve on the fuel pump. The fuel pump check valve is supposed to hold pressure in the fuel line while the engine is off. The check valve is located on the fuel pump and located in the gas tank. A failed check valve allows the fuel to drain back to the tank. This results in one or more of the following symptoms:

SYMPTOMS

• Longer than normal cranking times
• Never starts on first try, almost always starts on the second try
• Rough idle for a few moments of idling
• Rough running for first block of driving
• Little or no fuel pressure at the fuel rail test valve similar to this -

1- Key in on position; fuel pump primes for 2 seconds then stops. 0 PSI
2- Cranking over the engine. 2-3 PSI
3- Engine starts and idles for 20 seconds. < 5 PSI
4- Engine idles and fuel pressure creeps up to 45-50 PSI.


POSSIBLE CAUSES

• Failed check valve on the fuel pump in the gas tank.
• Leaky fuel injector(s) may be the true cause of your problem, but more likely they are simply contributing to the check valve issue.

Testing of the fuel injectors should show if any are faulty and are allowing fuel to drain into the cylinder. Either problem can allow heat soak to vaporize the remaining fuel in the fuel rail and you may be dealing with a bit of vapor lock as well, especially in warmer weather.

1. Connect the gauge at the fuel rail and start the engine. The gage should read 49 psi plus or minus 5 psi.

2. Turn the engine off and immediately clamp the fuel line just ahead of the fuel tank. Watch the pressure gage and see how long it takes to loose pressure.

If the pressure remains at 49 psi for an extended period of time then the problem is in the tank - probably the check valve. If the pressure falls below 49 psi fairly rapidly then the problem is probably a leaky injector.

There are a few solutions to the problem –

1. Turn the key to ON for 5 seconds and let the fuel pump prime. Turn the key to OFF, turn the key back to ON for 5 seconds, start the engine.

2. Crank the engine for 3-5 seconds, pause, and crank the engine again. It will almost always start on the second try.

3. Replace the fuel pump assembly in the gas tank. The check valve is not a separate part and cannot be serviced. This is both expensive and time consuming because you have to remove any hitches and skid plates and then remove the gas tank from the vehicle.

You can use solutions 1 or 2 for as long as you want to, they do not harm anything and the fuel pump will continue to function for many more years.


If you do replace the fuel pump assembly, purchase a high quality OEM style pump assembly such as Bosch or Carter.. Some cheap aftermarket fuel pump assemblies, like Airtex, don’t hold up and fail completely within 12-18 months.
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Unread 06-05-2013, 01:57 PM   #3
Mortifix
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Thanks for the reply! From the information provided is seems that I have quite a few things that need to be replaced. I will be getting my wifes car fixed this weekend so I may just park the Jeep in the garage and start tearing it down to pinpoint the exact issue.

My biggest concern is the heat issue. My jeep has overheated a few times and I'm a little concerned I may have caused some permanent damage. I have been debating on changing the fan clutch for a while, but I haven't noticed really any play in it and it seems to run pretty strong. Should this be replaced anyway?

I had a pretty hardcore leak in my radiator so I had to use water for awhile because coolant was starting to get expensive. If this has created rust build up, is there any way of cleaning this without taking the engine apart?

I will be replacing my thermostat ASAP because I know that is fault due to temps jumping from 0 to 200 back to 0. Since my TSTAT is bad, would this prevent the e-fan from kicking on when temps get high?

I see on eBay water pumps run for about $30. Should I replace this whether or not its bad just to be safe? As far as the vehicle not starting, I have never had it where it wouldn't start on the first try but it just sometimes it will take a few seconds longer. Does this still sound like the check valve?

Again thank you for all the help so far!
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Unread 06-05-2013, 07:00 PM   #4
CJ7-Tim
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Cooling system parts are normal maintenance items like tires or mufflers. They last for X number of miles, and you replace them when they wear out or fail. Use a cooling system flush product, and then start your maintenance.

Cheap parts are cheap for a reason. Unless you enjoy installing and un-installing the same parts over and over again, buy good quality parts at a local auto parts store. Rebuilt water pumps are a waste of time and money.
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Between 2009 when Obama took office, and 2013, median annual household incomes have fallen by more than $2,100.

Progressive Liberalism: Bringing you new Healthcare ideas so wonderful, they have to include mandatory participation ......

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Unread 06-05-2013, 07:18 PM   #5
Kalali
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2000 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Ocean, NJ
Posts: 517
On a 2000 you need to be especially vigilant about overheating the engine. Reports from the field seem to suggest that even a single overheating episode can cause the cylinder head to crack on the 2000 XJs. It looks like you need a complete cooling system overhaul and a complte engine tune up. It is highly unusual to go through radiators unless there is another underlying reason causing them to fail. I'm still on my original radiator after 180K miles and my temp needle stays just below 210 mark regardless of the outside temperature.
Good luck and keep us posted.
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Unread 06-06-2013, 01:38 PM   #6
JAdams722
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1998 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Fargo, ND
Posts: 28
Quick side question

Sorry to slightly hijack this thread for a moment. But CJ7-Tim mentioned the coil spring in the lower radiator hose needing to be in there. I wondered, why does that need to be in there? I just replaced my lower hose, and thought the spring may have been part of my water heater, which didn't get re-installed, so I took it out. If it is necessary, I will be doing some more work (water pump, exhaust manifold, etc...) to the XJ soon, and will put it back in. Thanks for any info you can give.
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Unread 06-06-2013, 01:43 PM   #7
Jeep_Tech
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its very needed to have the spring. it keep your pump from sucking/collapsing the hose closed
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Unread 06-06-2013, 07:10 PM   #8
JAdams722
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Okay, I will put it back in. When it was mentioned, I thought that may be the reason for it. Thanks for the info.
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Unread 06-07-2013, 02:00 PM   #9
BigBadWuf
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1992 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Greenville, Virginia
Posts: 183
His is a 2wd so no 4x4 shift linkage to rattle. Could be the exshast pipe rattling on something. When the exshaust is cold enough to touch grab it and shake it see if it moves. Same thing with the cat heatshield shake it too.
Could also be transmission mount broken.
Flush out your cooling system real good, then start replacing parts, no sense clogging up another radiator, also you might could reuse your radiator if you take it to s radiator shop and get it "rodded out".
Put new waterpump, thermostat, and tstat housing. Also check radiator hoses. Dont buy cheap parts Your jeep will thank you
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Unread 06-07-2013, 02:19 PM   #10
chriskeenan
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1999 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Colton, Oregon
Posts: 2,236
a note about water pumps, if it looks like this

its bad. this one is only 3 years old from autozone.
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Unread 06-15-2013, 07:15 PM   #11
Mortifix
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OK I finally fixed my wife's car so I will be putting my jeep in the garage to start working on it. I did realize I was low on coolant which is why it was overheating more than usual so I topped it off and its running a lot smoother.
but with the recent temps of 100+ down here in the south its definitely taking a toll. It seems as though I have a pretty bad leak somewhere so I will definitively need to look into that. Should I attempt to fix the rattle or just take in into the shop for that. Also to change my thermostat, do I need to do anything special or just let it sit for awhile and start taking it apart. Thanks for all the help so far!
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