Most Common 87' YJ Problems? -
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post #1 of 7 Old 07-30-2007, 05:06 AM Thread Starter
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Most Common 87' YJ Problems?

I just wanted to get a heads up... what are the most common issues/problems that the 1987 YJ has?
It's the 3spd Auto tranny, has PS, PB, AIR... so the owner claims. Im going to check it out this weekend.

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post #2 of 7 Old 07-30-2007, 05:26 AM
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The carter carb

The emissions system

Seriously, You need to go over every inch of that thing if you are going to buy. The things I have mentioned above can be taken care of for a few hundred right at the start. Location would be my biggest concern. If your in the northeast, you need to check for rust EVERYWHERE(see my rust thread for examples). If it has carpet, pull ALL of it back to check.

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post #3 of 7 Old 07-30-2007, 06:39 AM
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There's some more info in the FAQ's as well...And look for that rust and rot that Rusty talked about... what you really wanna find is a good completely stock machine that has been garaged and is in good shape...yer gonna have to figure that at that age, and if it's got significantly more than 100K on it, a tranny rebuild and a replacement of that carb... Check out the smog laws in your state before you jump on this one, out here in California, the only legal conversions other than the stock POS carb are the Howell and Mopar fuel injection kits...the former is about a $1200 pull, the latter is $2500...

So, do a search here on the forum or go back manually thru the archives before you look at this thing...I put up some info about how I normally buy a vehicle on a couple other threads this weekend, check those out...
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post #4 of 7 Old 07-30-2007, 08:35 PM Thread Starter
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So I went and looked at it tonight. It's got dual exhaust, 2" bodylift, brand new 31's. Also has new paint, NO RUST. All the floorboards are amazingly still got some kinda undercoating on them. The only spot is the passenger side floor, it has a 4inch long by 1inch wide hole. The vehicle has a canadian safety already but it's from texas. So I can drive away with no hassle. The leaf hangers are fine, the steering box and frame look fine. The tranny has had alot of work but couldnt confirm a rebuild. It's the 6cyl auto and original carb. It idles high then low and during the low the exhaust makes a pop sound. It's been sitting for a year and when you fire it up and kinda smokes... definatly needs an oil change and new gas. The engine bay is totally clean, no smoke damage, no spills etc. the interior is really good, the seats got a few cracks in em, nothing major though. The passenger side fender step is cracked.
Here's a photo..
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post #5 of 7 Old 07-30-2007, 09:46 PM
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That link doesn't work for me.

I've got an '87 and the problems I've run into (other than a crappy idle) are a power steering line blew out, ($200) and my ignition wiring had to be redone($350) It'll run rough until you can ditch the carter, but other then that, I've been ok. I kinda get the feeling mine was the veritable "grandma's buick" of jeeps, it has an alarm that someone put in, and once had a car-phone! No joke

Anyway, good luck!
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post #6 of 7 Old 07-30-2007, 10:37 PM
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You don't know what the new paint is do know that you have some rot in the floorboard...It's a very common technique to paint a rust bucket once you have slapped some bondo over the won't know the difference...It's still a pig in a poke...the tranny is an unknown and if it's been worked on, and you don't know if it's been rebuilt, that would be a concern of mine. No matter what, the Carter carb WILL give you problems...It is a twenty year old vehicle...if the owner used a 2" body lift to fit those 31's without a suspension lift, that's the cheesy way to to...

Look at it like this...what's it gonna take to get it where you want it to be? You know this...yer gonna have to replace the carb with a decent intake system, whether that's a Weber or Motorcraft, or a $1200 Howell FI, or a $2500 Mopar FI. Yer gonna want to clear those tires right, so figure AT LEAST $800, maybe more, for a suspension lift of any quality...and by that, I mean OME, RE, or BDS... Ya better figure on rebuilding the auto tranny, and while that's happenin', resealing the transfer case...just had that done a month ago, cost me $1851.21 for both.

You'd also better figure that there's some significant rust and/or rot under that paint job...a much better deal would be to find a Jeep with an original or seasoned paint job that would show you exactly what you highly suspicious of a new paint job, I know I'm repeating that, but it's very important.

So, put all this on paper, and figure what it would be worth when you're all done, and go from there...but do be very cautious...
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post #7 of 7 Old 07-30-2007, 11:16 PM
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Originally Posted by GlennH
I just wanted to get a heads up... what are the most common issues/problems that the 1987 YJ has?
It's the 3spd Auto tranny, has PS, PB, AIR... so the owner claims. Im going to check it out this weekend.

go back take some picks...also u said dual exhaust with a inline motor is dumb...its prob just a y pipe so dont let him pull saying it has dual...ask him about the tranny work if he did it he should know its a torque flight 999 tranny....also how much does he want for it

88 jeep wrangler, 4.2, auto---cragar soft 8's, d35 locker, bucket seats with 5 point harnesses, warn bumper w/ grill gaurd, winch plate, kc daylighters, light bar, herc the interrior, rebuilt tranny (yay) with tranny cooler, winch and msd ignition, 3.5 inch fabtech lift, currie boomerang shackles f/r, weber carb...[B]

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