Jeep Grand Cherokee Steering excessively loose - JeepForum.com

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post #1 of 37 Old 03-31-2009, 08:45 PM Thread Starter
Tino26
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Jeep Grand Cherokee Steering excessively loose

Hi, I'm new to this site, so bare with me. I'm also new to Jeeps.
I bought a used 2001 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited. The steering is excessively loose, and when driving it seems that I have to continuously compensate one direction to the other to keep it going in a straight line. Not sure what this could be. Also, the suspension seems very wobbly?
I was told, welcome to a Jeep, but am not convinced. Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks.
Tino

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post #2 of 37 Old 03-31-2009, 08:49 PM
sir420
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I have a 99 Limited and it does the same thing so any other info on this would help us out greatly
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post #3 of 37 Old 03-31-2009, 08:53 PM
ZeJokee
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I posted the same question a few weeks ago and never got a answer, would like to know what this is.

99 WJ Ltd, Blacked out, 4.7L, 242j Swap, 2'' BB, 245/75/16 Kuhmo Venture AT KL78, Flow Master Super 40, MagnaFlow high flow Cat, Akebono caliper upgrade, Addco rear swaybar, Westin brush guard, Moog Super Trail Boss, Rancho RS5000, Rola roof rack with dual kayak J hooks, PAC-AOEM-CHR, Sony Xplod 1200w amp, 2 Sony Xplod 12'' subs, 118,XXX miles (SOLD)
93 ZJ Ltd, Blacked out, 5.2L, Reman 46RH, Reman 242 Swap, 3.5'' IRO + 2" BB, 33x12.50r15 Mud Claw MTX radials, Bushwacker Flares, 216,XXX miles (Still parked in NC)
04 F-350 SD Crew Cab FX4 Lariat, 6.0 PSD SRW, Head studs, AFE Stage 2 SI Pro Guard 7 intake, Blue Spring mod, 150,XXX Miles

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post #4 of 37 Old 03-31-2009, 08:54 PM
CrazyWalnut13
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Replace all 4 tie rod ends. My jeep handled like that until i replaced them all. One of mine was completely shot and was making popping sounds when i would turn. So i figured that since i was at 130k miles, I'd just replace all 4 (2 on the drag link, 2 on the tie rod) because they'd probably all be breaking sooner or later.

After I put them all in, it was AMAZED at how much tighter everything was. Make sure you get an alignment ASAP after you replace these!

I got all of mine through Kolak for a very good price. He's a vendor on here, you can PM him, or email him at kolak@aol.com

Tell him you need 4 tie rod ends and he'll know what you mean. Maybe he'll even chime in here.

Zak
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post #5 of 37 Old 03-31-2009, 08:56 PM
Haleyrz
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My best guess is that there are quite a few worn out bushings. Have someone steer the jeep one direction, and check the tie rod bushings. If there is play or the bushings squish easily you should replace them. Also, you may need a new steering stabilizer. I would recommend something heavier duty than a OEM one (such as old man emu, or check out iron rock offroad). Tino....you may need new shocks. Push down on your front bumper hard and let up. If it springs back stiff and quick, they are fine. If its more sloppy you need new ones. Check the control arm bushings for squishiness and cracks. If shot....replace. One more thing to check with the suspension is the sway bar mounts and end link bushings. Again if they squish easily or are really cracked replace them. To solve it all at once...........lift it!

1998 ZJ Laredo, 4.0L, 2WD, it's boring
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post #6 of 37 Old 03-31-2009, 08:57 PM
lakailimited06
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loose steering: check all your components..all those black bars in the front end, make sure the ends are all in good shape and not worn..grab your tie rod and drag link and try to move them and if theres alot of play they probably need to be replaced..

the steering wheel can be adjusted slightly right on top of the steering gear i believe... i would mess with it but i heard u can take an allen key and turn it a 1/4 turn or something and till make the steering have less play in the wheel..

other than that just check all the steering compenents i say and replace as needed, ive done this a couple of times and its gets tighter and more respondive...your steering dampener may also be shot might want to beef it up..

99WJ 4.0
IRO 3", SYE, D30 aussie/8.8 aussie, 4.10s, 33's, skids/bumpers
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post #7 of 37 Old 03-31-2009, 08:58 PM
CrazyWalnut13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tino26 View Post
Hi, I'm new to this site, so bare with me. I'm also new to Jeeps.
I bought a used 2001 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited. The steering is excessively loose, and when driving it seems that I have to continuously compensate one direction to the other to keep it going in a straight line. Not sure what this could be. Also, the suspension seems very wobbly?
I was told, welcome to a Jeep, but am not convinced. Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks.
Tino
How many miles are on the jeep? You may need new shocks.

Also, getting an Addco rear sway bar will make your jeep handle through corners much better. Don't bother with a new front sway bar, as WJs have very beefy front sway bars from the factory. I got my rear sway bar through Kolak also. Haha this is turning into a commercial for him.

Zak
Formerly Default Jeeper #13
2000 WJ Limited 4.7 with stuff. Look left for the deets.
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post #8 of 37 Old 03-31-2009, 08:59 PM
Haleyrz
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Get your lift through Kolak too, and you exhaust (adding to the commercial zak!)

1998 ZJ Laredo, 4.0L, 2WD, it's boring
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post #9 of 37 Old 04-01-2009, 11:06 AM
sir420
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I have 130,315 and I already replaced the steering stabilizer. Will check the tie trods for play as soon as rain lets up.
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post #10 of 37 Old 04-01-2009, 12:08 PM
CrazyWalnut13
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Yeah at 130k you'll most likely want to replace all those ends. Are there any inconsistencies when you turn the wheel? Or does your steering make any funny noises?

Zak
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2000 WJ Limited 4.7 with stuff. Look left for the deets.
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post #11 of 37 Old 04-01-2009, 12:16 PM
MoonyJohn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sir420 View Post
I have 130,315 and I already replaced the steering stabilizer. Will check the tie trods for play as soon as rain lets up.
Did you get a new OEM SS or a beefier aftermarket SS? There usually is a difference. I upgraded my SS and it made all the difference in my wandering in the road. I now can let go of my wheel and it will go straight for miles.

"Water covers 3/4 of the earth, Jeep covers the rest"
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post #12 of 37 Old 04-01-2009, 06:55 PM Thread Starter
Tino26
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Thanks everyone, will try tie rod ends/bushings first then move onto rear sway bar and see what I get. Might try track bar after that.
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post #13 of 37 Old 04-02-2009, 08:01 AM
sir420
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MoonyJohn View Post
Did you get a new OEM SS or a beefier aftermarket SS? There usually is a difference. I upgraded my SS and it made all the difference in my wandering in the road. I now can let go of my wheel and it will go straight for miles.
I got a upgraded steering stabilizer. All the suspension unnder the vehicle looks good and tight. Only thing that has play is between the wheel and gearbox. I will have the tie rods looked at by a professional.
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post #14 of 37 Old 05-30-2009, 06:16 PM
rmm149
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Fixed wandering problem

I have a 2000 WJ that had the same problem. I put in a new steering box and it drives like new. $120 at RockAuto. Jack up both front wheels and lock the steering wheel. Grab the tire and try to steer it back and forth. See if you have play and see if the pitman arm moves. If it does, the gear box is bad. if the pitman arm doesn't move you must have play in the other linkages. My wheel would move 1"-2" and the pitman arm moved 1/2" - 1".

I tried messing with the adjusting screw on the top. All that does is adjust the preload on the vertical shaft bearing. Some people claim to get improvement with it but I didn't.
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post #15 of 37 Old 05-30-2009, 08:18 PM
Virmagicus
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Just a FYI... The best way to check for bad TRE's is to pull it and check the actual joint. First push the joint back and forth then up and down. When pushing back and forth there should be some resistance. If you can flick it over with your finger for instance it is bad. Next pull up on the joint from all directions with the nut attached with a wrench. If you experience any play change them immediately as they are getting ready to separate.
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