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Unread 02-11-2011, 11:30 PM   #1
DaveWRX
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1990 XJ Cherokee 
 
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Idol Problem

I have a 90 Cherokee Sport. 2.5 Litre. Today my jeep was having a rough idle and it felt like it was going to die on several occasions. Well I had planned to get an oil change. I did make it there and when the tech popped my hood we saw that one of the vacuum lines (connected to the airbox was snapped). Fixed the issue and got my oil changed. Starting after the oil change it seemed fine. Well I went out tonight and the jeep died on me twice. the lights would dim and the jeep shut off. it started with no problem. once again i came to a stop and the jeep did the same thing just died. Well worried i would get stranded i went home keeping on the throttle a little to keep the jeep from dying. What could the issue be? The only light that came on when the motor died was the battery light, which is normal as ive stalled it a couple times and that light seems to come on. Battery is fairly new. Could it be the alternator on the way out? Or could there be something wrong with the idler? Any input would be greatly appreciated as have to get it running by monday cause it is my only way of transportation to work

Thanks for the help guys
sorry about the long message.

-Dave

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Unread 02-12-2011, 03:47 AM   #2
xjfever
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I would have the battery load tested and have the alternator tested also. Most any parts store can do this with them in the jeep.
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Unread 02-12-2011, 04:15 AM   #3
cruiser54
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Good advice here. Also check the alternator output.

But, before doing any of this, I would perform a few maintenance procedures including:

Topping off the water in the battery
Removing and cleaning both battery cables and the terminals
With the cables disconnected, check the connections at their other ends for tightness
Removing and cleaning down to bare metal the braided wire connection bolted to the firewall
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Unread 02-12-2011, 08:07 AM   #4
DaveWRX
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Ok, I will def try this out. Thanks guys, will post up if anything changes
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Unread 02-12-2011, 08:21 AM   #5
smitty81
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I would bet your battery and alternator are gone..........

When your alternator quits, it stops maintaining your battery.

Eventually, its just running on battery power and then when your battery goes, your lights go and your jeep will just shut down like you stated.

You may have ruined the battery also by running it that long without getting a charge from your alternator.

I'm actually surprised you were able to start it after it died.
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Unread 02-12-2011, 09:01 AM   #6
DaveWRX
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It actually still starts. I was even running it for about 20 min on a light throttle. Even in the frigid temps it still starts. I was thinking the Alternator too but if that was out, then I would not even be able to start it. I Know subarus so i know the basics and a little more. I honestly hope its the alternator and not the cam position sensor cause the alternator is cheaper.

Thanks for the feedback guys....Went out today and checked all the Vacuum Lines. Didnt see any rips or tears or anything loose. Going to get the battery and Alternator tested later today
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Unread 02-12-2011, 09:21 AM   #7
cruiser54
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Don't forget post #3. It's free and can cause all sorts of electrical problems including fuel injection issues.
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Unread 02-12-2011, 10:32 AM   #8
Flyordie
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That sounds more ignition based than anything I have ever encountered. I have run 85 miles on my battery with no alternator (had to, my alt belt broke) and it handled it just fine.
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Unread 02-12-2011, 02:15 PM   #9
DaveWRX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cruiser54 View Post
Don't forget post #3. It's free and can cause all sorts of electrical problems including fuel injection issues.
I did do check the battery, and the termails and the wiring. everything seems up to par
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Unread 02-13-2011, 07:18 AM   #10
cruiser54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveWRX View Post
I did do check the battery, and the termails and the wiring. everything seems up to par
What does "checked" mean?
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Unread 02-13-2011, 12:09 PM   #11
DaveWRX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cruiser54 View Post
What does "checked" mean?
The battery in the Jeep is maintenance free! From my experience, I do not pry the top parts off as that could potentially damage the Battery. There is no corrosion on the battery terminal. removed the positive and negative from the battery and cleaned them with a wire brush. Checked all lines for snugness, rps, tears, leaks. As far as i could see there was nothing wrong.

I did start it up. Got it to idle properly for about 5 min. went to move the jeep to a closer parking spot. When i got to the spot the idling problem started again. didnt die though. Just idled really rough. The jeep doesnt have a tachometer so i couldnt say what range the rpms were in but if i had to guess id say 300-500 range
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Unread 02-13-2011, 03:03 PM   #12
cruiser54
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I'm trying to encourage you to refresh your grounds. They must be removed, scraped, cleaned etc, not just wiggled or checked visually.
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Unread 02-13-2011, 05:49 PM   #13
tjwalker
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1. The ONLY way to determine the condition of the battery is to have it LOAD TESTED. Any parts store will do this for you for free. Highly recommended. Newer batteries fail more frequently than you think. Personally, I think I have had at least two of them die within a year.

2. Testing of the charging system is tied to #1 as if the charging system isn't working, it isn't going to charge your battery.

If this were my XJ, I would verify battery and charging system (and grounds) before moving onto anything else.

Marginal electrical is a very common cause of stalling.
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Unread 02-14-2011, 11:47 AM   #14
DaveWRX
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Going to take the jeep to the auto parts store to get tested. thanks for the input guys.
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Unread 02-14-2011, 03:02 PM   #15
DaveWRX
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Well took the jeep to the auto store, battery and alternator tested good. the problem was the idle speed actuator. fixed that and now the jeep idles just fine. thanks for all the inputs guys. greatly appreciated
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