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Unread 04-09-2013, 10:53 AM   #1
Mikes96XJ88FSB
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1996 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Dearborn Heights, MI
Posts: 31
Running Warm at Idle only

Hey Everyone, I'm wanting to get some opinions on this issue with my 96 XJ. It only has a 124k miles. It runs a little warmer at idle than it should be...Especially since it is not the dead of summer. It has been at about 215-220 degrees after it idles for a few minutes. Cruising down the road it is right where it should be, at 195-200. Ive replaced the upper hose and tstat. It had a 180 in it but it would run rich when warm and in warmer temps. I noticed when doing the hose and tstat, the coolant wasnt the best, but not horrible. So Im sure it could benefit from a flush. Im not loosing coolant. It sounds like the fan clutch is working for the most part. It does the howl when cold, Ive never noticed the electric turn on though. And the heat works great.
Does the cooling sensor for the electric fan, or relays tend to burn out much? I'm assuming that one or all of these is the source of my issue. I was just looking for some insight, see if anyone has had the same issue Im dealing with. Thanks for looking.

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-Mike- 96 XJ Country: 4.0 HO, Auto, 3.55s, D30/8.25, 30X9.50s, Armored, Mopar Header, Glasspack, Custom Stereo, Roof Rack, 3in RC & 2in Blocks.
88 Bronco XLT: #'s Matching with 58k miles, Built Windsor making north of 440hp, C6, 4.10s, 31X10.50s. Factory Quad shock.
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Unread 04-09-2013, 11:00 AM   #2
habbyguy
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1996 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Mesa, AZ
Posts: 575
The XJ will overheat when idling if the electric fan won't come on. It's a simple circuit - battery to temperature sensor switch to fan motor (forget if there's a relay in there or not, but either way...). I'd suggest just checking to see where the 12VDC stops when your engine is getting hot (I'm betting it's at the temp sensor switch - if there's 12V in, but no 12V out, you've found the culprit). Just keep tracing it forward until you get to the point where it's not there. If it's reaching the fan motor AND the ground is good, then you have a bad fan motor. You can check the fan motor by switching on the A/C (which also turns on the fan motor manually).
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Unread 04-09-2013, 11:05 AM   #3
CJ7-Tim
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2000 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: out in the garage - Minneapolis, Minnesota
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Make sure all the cooling system components are newer and fully functioning, especially the mechanical fan clutch.

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.
-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
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Unread 04-09-2013, 11:29 AM   #4
Mikes96XJ88FSB
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1996 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Dearborn Heights, MI
Posts: 31
Thanks for the quick replies Habbyguy and Tim. I'll definitely check into the E-fan. I plan on getting it flushed before this weekend comes. And I will also look into the Clutch fan. How can I tell if the clutch fan is bad? I know if the seal is blown, that would be an obvious sign to replace it.
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-Mike- 96 XJ Country: 4.0 HO, Auto, 3.55s, D30/8.25, 30X9.50s, Armored, Mopar Header, Glasspack, Custom Stereo, Roof Rack, 3in RC & 2in Blocks.
88 Bronco XLT: #'s Matching with 58k miles, Built Windsor making north of 440hp, C6, 4.10s, 31X10.50s. Factory Quad shock.
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Unread 04-09-2013, 04:56 PM   #5
CJ7-Tim
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Location: out in the garage - Minneapolis, Minnesota
Posts: 21,805
A 1996 with 124,000 miles may need a new fan clutch.
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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 ......

Originally Posted by Ronald W. Reagan: Government is not the solution to our problems; Government is the problem.
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Unread 05-02-2013, 11:52 AM   #6
Mikes96XJ88FSB
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1996 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Dearborn Heights, MI
Posts: 31
Just to update on the situation. I jumped the E-fan, and it worked. So I replaced the Relay and now it is working like it should now. Thanks for your replies and thoughts!
__________________
-Mike- 96 XJ Country: 4.0 HO, Auto, 3.55s, D30/8.25, 30X9.50s, Armored, Mopar Header, Glasspack, Custom Stereo, Roof Rack, 3in RC & 2in Blocks.
88 Bronco XLT: #'s Matching with 58k miles, Built Windsor making north of 440hp, C6, 4.10s, 31X10.50s. Factory Quad shock.
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cooling , electric cooling fan , Fan clutch , over heat

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