any fixes for the 0331 cylinder head casting on 00-01's? -
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Go Back > Models > Jeep Cherokee & Comanche Forums > XJ Cherokee Technical Forum > any fixes for the 0331 cylinder head casting on 00-01's?

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Unread 03-09-2006, 02:22 PM   #1
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any fixes for the 0331 cylinder head casting on 00-01's?

I am looking into buying a Cherokee Classic and I wanted a 01 so it would have low miles on it. Then I noticed a lot of posts about the head cracking issue on the 0331 castings. Did all 01's have that casting or were some a different casting? I see that people said that regualr maintenence of the cooling system should prevent it from happening but thing could happen. Is there an aftermarket head or factory head that I can replace the 0331 head with in case it happens? Thanks!

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Unread 08-08-2009, 11:56 AM   #2
2000 XJ Cherokee 
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the 01 really were the least affected. 00 xj and zj are the worst hit by this bull ***** head casting.And the head can crack anytime, some peope say if its going to crack it GOING to happen before100k, NOT TRUE!!!!!! i have seen more and more heads crack after 100k. its scary because u never know that 100k rule about heads crackin could change to 200k.
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Unread 08-08-2009, 12:05 PM   #3
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the issue appears to only affect 0331 head castings; any head before or after that will get rid of the problem.

i've read that cooling system cleanliness, and careful upkeep (new fan clutch, good quality thermostats, etc) will keep the problem away.

once you do swap in a used & rebuilt head, you will have a solid ride into the future; a small price to pay and is less than 2 car payments to fix.
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Unread 08-08-2009, 12:09 PM   #4
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I currently have a 2000 myself, and had another 2000 before this one that got totalled. The cherokee is a great reliable vehicle and the head problem didnt deter me from buying another 2000. They are getting harder to find in good shape with low miles. I would just keep an eye on your oil and coolant levels and make sure there is no coolant in your oil and vice-versa. If the head does crack don't drive with coolant in the engine as it will ruin your bearings and shorten engine life. 4.0's are known to go for many many miles. I've seen some with 400K on them. If your head does crack there are a couple solutions. The first would be a new head from the dealer. Definately not the cheapest option. If mine cracks i'm going with an aftermarket head from They are strengthened to prevent cracking and will fit perfectly. The cheapest option is to go to a junkyard and get another 4.0 head. A head from an '03-'06 4.0L is preferred because the cracking issue was suppossedly fixed by '02 and these heads match up with the distributorless ignition on '00-'01 cherokees. Older heads will also fit but will need a bit of modification to fit the distributorless ignition. There is plenty of info on this site on how to modify an older head to fit though and it isnt too hard. Hope this helps

My 0331 Head Swap How-To Thread:

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Unread 08-08-2009, 12:22 PM   #5
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You can replace the 0331 with an older model head with some minor modifications, or a newer head from a TJ, or WJ. I wouldn't turn away from the 00-01 for the head cracking problem, as it is easily fixed with a swap. They also have a low pinion d30 up front which again isn't so much of a reason to avoid one since it can also be easily swapped for a low pinion.
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Unread 08-10-2009, 11:08 PM   #6
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Mine went out 5 miles before 100k... I really wish I had done a stroker kit when it did

had the 331 casting. even had it resurfaced. still blew the engine though. it was poorly maintained before I got it. I have a jasper rebuilt engine now

Last edited by GunnerT23; 08-10-2009 at 11:10 PM.. Reason: forgot to add casting and replacement block
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Unread 02-19-2010, 03:04 PM   #7
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Another 0331 victim...

I have a 2000 XJ with a cracked 0331 head. My rods are knocking and I'm pretty sure my bearing is completely worn. What are my options? Can someone give me some links of the cheapest replacement engines that won't crack their heads? Or would it be cheaper to rebuild the engine myself and replace the head with one from alabamaheads?

Take into consideration that this is my DD and I have average mechanical expertise. I'm confident I could do a swap, but a rebuild would definitely be a learning experience.
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Unread 02-19-2010, 03:06 PM   #8
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My head cracked on my 00XJ. I threw on a reman unit and it is running fine. I'm sure the life will be shorter than a normal 4.0. When it blows.... Stroker time.
here is my story
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Unread 02-19-2010, 04:50 PM   #9
It's the crank sensor!
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1999 XJ Cherokee 
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Lots of good advice here.

The factory 0331 head for the 2000-2001 XJ has a casting flaw between cylinders 3-4. Will all 0331 heads crack? No. However, this forum and all other Jeep forums are littered with threads from people who have had it happen to them.

Cooling system maintenance is definitely highly recommended (FOR ANY ENGINE) but there are plenty of guys who have kept up with maintenance that have experienced the crack.

The #1 symptom that you need to watch out for is COOLANT loss from the reservoir. Watch your reservoir closely! If you have an 00-01 and you start using coolant, you need to troubleshoot it immediately. Could be a hose, a stat housing leak, a frost plug, radiator, etc.....but also could be a head issue and you don't want to drive it long with coolant in the oil or you'll toast your engine.

Plenty of options. Alabama and Clearwater are getting lots of business off of this and they are respectable companies. Sourcing a 2003 + Jeep head (TUPY) is another option.
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