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Unread 01-20-2014, 04:45 PM   #1
jonnymilano
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1989 XJ Cherokee 
 
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89 is slow to startup

I have an '89 Cherokee that takes about 9-10 seconds to start at almost every start (hot or cold). Sometimes it starts in less time but it seems it always requires a lot of cranking.

Things I've tried:
  • replace fuel filter
  • replaced sparkplugs, sp wires, rotor and cap (this helped with general idle)
  • cleaned throttle body and iac valve
  • seafoam

Could this be a starter relay issue? Hoping to get some suggestions from you guys (see video). I've tried turning the key on (not all the way to the "start" position) a couple times and waiting for the fuel pump to prime and then starting the Jeep - same issue tho. It has never not started.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LP0cykvuDvw


Thanks in advance.

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Unread 01-20-2014, 10:43 PM   #2
uberxj92
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Have your battery load tested. Clean the grounds on the the firewall fenders and battery. Rent a fuel pressure tester. You should be around 47 ish.
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Unread 01-21-2014, 06:48 AM   #3
cruiser54
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Click on the link in my signature.

Do the things outlined in posts 1, 3, 4 and 5.

Your era of Jeep has the Renix system and does take a few rotations to start even on a good day.

After performing the tips outlined above, report back please.

After that, you could test your Crank Position Sensor for output as outlined in post 7.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris87xj View Post
If you own a Renix Jeep, you'll want to check this out. >

An index to over 25 write-ups can be found in Post #1.

Cruiser's Mostly Renix Tips
Refresh*Connections*Before*Replacing*Components
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Unread 01-21-2014, 09:51 AM   #4
jonnymilano
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Excellent suggestions from both of you. Thank you very much! Will do this weekend or next, and will report back! Thank you.

cruiser54, excellent guide that you have written! Can you suggest a good connections cleaner?
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Unread 01-21-2014, 10:56 PM   #5
jkingdon90
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i've also had this problem with my '88. i had to take off the transmission range sensor and clean it out to get it to start up every time the key turns but it doesn't always like to kick right up... i've been wondering if its the starter but its steady until it seems to prime and then fires right up (usually 5-6 seconds) but sometimes as many as 2-3 turns of the key totaling 12-15 seconds of key in start position. if i can figure mine out with some of the work i'm doing on mine in the next few days i'll let you know but i'd appreciate posting what you find with yours so i can look there too
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Unread 01-22-2014, 05:19 AM   #6
cruiser54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jkingdon90 View Post
i've also had this problem with my '88. i had to take off the transmission range sensor and clean it out to get it to start up every time the key turns but it doesn't always like to kick right up... i've been wondering if its the starter but its steady until it seems to prime and then fires right up (usually 5-6 seconds) but sometimes as many as 2-3 turns of the key totaling 12-15 seconds of key in start position. if i can figure mine out with some of the work i'm doing on mine in the next few days i'll let you know but i'd appreciate posting what you find with yours so i can look there too

In post 3 above, I made some proven suggestions on improving his Cherokee. You should do the same, but for sure add in post 2 from the link in my signature.

Known issues, easy to address, good results, cheap or free.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris87xj View Post
If you own a Renix Jeep, you'll want to check this out. >

An index to over 25 write-ups can be found in Post #1.

Cruiser's Mostly Renix Tips
Refresh*Connections*Before*Replacing*Components
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Unread 01-22-2014, 10:10 AM   #7
jonnymilano
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jkingdon90 View Post
if i can figure mine out with some of the work i'm doing on mine in the next few days i'll let you know but i'd appreciate posting what you find with yours so i can look there too
May take me a week or two as I'm busy with life right now but I will post back! Thanks everyone! Very helpful online community here.
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Unread 01-27-2014, 12:31 PM   #8
jonnymilano
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I have not had fuel pressure checked yet but have had the battery load tested and have done items 1, 3, 4 & 5 of cruiser54's guide (thanks again!). The battery is very good. The connections to the starter relay were very gummy and gross so, it felt good to clean those up! I also installed the second ground as suggested in the tips, using the battery wire from Napa. No improvement yet however.

I'll let you guys know about the fuel pressure test. Thanks.

PS forgot to mention that I got 0.02 on the multimeter when doing the ground test from the TPS B to battery ground and wiggling all the wiring.

Last edited by jonnymilano; 01-27-2014 at 12:33 PM.. Reason: forgot something
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Unread 01-27-2014, 01:40 PM   #9
cruiser54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonnymilano View Post
I have not had fuel pressure checked yet but have had the battery load tested and have done items 1, 3, 4 & 5 of cruiser54's guide (thanks again!). The battery is very good. The connections to the starter relay were very gummy and gross so, it felt good to clean those up! I also installed the second ground as suggested in the tips, using the battery wire from Napa. No improvement yet however.

I'll let you guys know about the fuel pressure test. Thanks.

PS forgot to mention that I got 0.02 on the multimeter when doing the ground test from the TPS B to battery ground and wiggling all the wiring.
That's a good reading on the TPS ground.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris87xj View Post
If you own a Renix Jeep, you'll want to check this out. >

An index to over 25 write-ups can be found in Post #1.

Cruiser's Mostly Renix Tips
Refresh*Connections*Before*Replacing*Components
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Unread 01-31-2014, 03:25 PM   #10
jonnymilano
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So replaced the main battery cables just because I wanted to anyways. I had the fuel pressure checked - all good. So, I'm starting to think about the check valve in the or near the fuel pump. Seems like there's no fuel after I let it sit for a few and then start 'er back up.

Also, cruiser54, when I did my electrical connections clean up, I can across this connection (attached). Just two wires heading into it. It was obvious that it hadn't been connected for a very long time as there was 1/8" grime all over it. Just wondering if anyone knows what it does!
img_1416.jpg

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Unread 01-31-2014, 03:50 PM   #11
cruiser54
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Using the same fuel pressure checker, let the Jeep sit and observe the gauge for 30 minutes.

Connector is for washer pump.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris87xj View Post
If you own a Renix Jeep, you'll want to check this out. >

An index to over 25 write-ups can be found in Post #1.

Cruiser's Mostly Renix Tips
Refresh*Connections*Before*Replacing*Components
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Unread 02-05-2014, 09:55 AM   #12
jonnymilano
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The gauge drops dramatically in under 5 mins. after the engine is turned off.
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Unread 02-05-2014, 02:44 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonnymilano View Post
The gauge drops dramatically in under 5 mins. after the engine is turned off.
Injector(s) are probably leaking down pressure.

Just for fun, pull the vacuumhose off your fuel pressure regulator and see if there's gas present.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris87xj View Post
If you own a Renix Jeep, you'll want to check this out. >

An index to over 25 write-ups can be found in Post #1.

Cruiser's Mostly Renix Tips
Refresh*Connections*Before*Replacing*Components
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Unread 02-06-2014, 09:14 AM   #14
jeepnphreak
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My 89 has a similar deal,
I dont know why but it seems that after I shut er down the fuel drains back in to the tank.
If I turn the key to acc for a few seconds and let the fuel pump run she fires up fast.
However if I just ram in the key and try to crank er immediately than it takes 5 or so second to start.
I can not find an issue to fix, its just been than way for the past 15 year I owned my jeep.
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1989 XJ, 5spd, np231 with bjconversion SYE , re3.5, 33x12.5r15 BFgoodrich ATS, D30 F, Dana 44 from 87 with 4.56s, Custom front bumper.

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Unread 02-06-2014, 11:43 AM   #15
jonnymilano
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Mine is the same way! Over the past week, I've been turning the key to ON and then waiting a few moments before starting the Jeep. It starts faster this way. I think it's the check valve in the fuel pump. Pretty common on our vintage. Have a look at this video:
Interesting fix that I will probably try out.
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