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Unread 06-01-2013, 08:20 PM   #1
Badmunky
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1998 ZJ 
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: t, michigan
Posts: 65
Just bout a 98 ZJ and have some problems.

Okay so Ill try to keep it short. On Saturday the 25th I bout a 98 Grand Cherokee Laredo 4x4 with the 4.0.

It has a few problems I need some help with. I'm new to Jeeps and to 4x4s, this will be my first one that runs.

So a list of what I know to be wrong with it right now.

Steering box has excessive play, and will not center properly.
Head lights are shot. (Drives side is yellow, and leaks. Passengers side is broken.)
Fan clutch is locked on all the time.
Steering wheel is falling apart.
4x4 works but has a hard time shifting out of 4x4 in to 2wd. And gets stuck in 4x4 low. Suspect cable / linkage needs service.
Runs great, but will some times bog about 1 min after you start it. Will back fire threw intake if you gas on it when it bogs. But it runs great, has good power, idles good, and starts right up. No idea why its doing this?
Its getting crap fuel mileage. 13.4mpg.
Header is cracked. Not sure what to replace it with.
Spare tire is shot. Going to get a new one.
Alarm keeps going off at random. I think I traced it to bad sensor for the dome lights in the hatch. Not sure if this fixed it yet thou.
Speakers are all blown.
Head liner is sagging in spots.
Rust hole in passengers rocker near front fender. Going to have this fixed for $300 by a local body shop. Its the only rust any where on the truck.
Drivers seat lower cover is ripped. Need to get a new cover. It has leather.
Needs a tune up and oil change.
Valve cover gasket is leaking.
Brake pads are thin and so are the rotors. I have new ones already, just need to install them.
Hatch glass lift shocks are bad.
Both Diff covers look like they have a slow leak.
Oil pan gasket looks to be leaking.
Oil filter adapter gasket looks to be leaking.

What I have already done.
Replaced front sway bar mount bushings.
Cleaned TB and IAC.
Seafoamed motor and fuel.
Removed stupid side steps.
Replaced wipers.
Cleaned it up.
Adjusted trans kick down cable.
Fixed bad sensor on rear hatch glass.
Added steering wheel cover until I can find a good used wheel.

Now for the questions.
I need to replace the steering box.
What should I replace it with? I have read where people use the box from a Durango. Why do they do that?
Is a reman box okay?
Should I replace the pump to?

Why dose the motor want to die some times about a min after its started when under light load? I have never had a car do this that ran fine and had no other problems.

What should I about the fan clutch? Replace it? convert to electric?

The good things about this Jeep.
It runs great.
4x4 works, even though its stiff and hard to shift.
Power every thing and it all works.
Its only got 152k on it. Not bad for a 98.
New tires. Good for now.
Cold A/C.
New thermostat and housing.
New hoses.
New radiator.
New battery.
New lift shocks on the hatch. (Just not the glass)
Key less entry.
No rust under the truck or on the body except for one small spot I'm getting fixed.
Power sun roof, and it works.

Over all I'm happy with the truck for what I paid for it. And I expected it would need some TLC being 16 years old and all.

I paid $2,400 plus tax title and plate for it at a local dealer. $2,782.65 out the door.

Here are some pics for you.




And here is its only real body problem. Rust on the rocker and fender is beat up from some one driving while a tire shredded.



I plan to have the rust fixed and find a good used fender that's already the right color so I don't have to pay to get it painted.



The truck will be pulling DD duty for the wife and be used as an off road play thing on week ends. I want to lift it and get it to a point where we can take it camping and to some of the off road parks around here and such.

I also plan to remove the tow bar crap from the front of it and I already removed the stupid side steps that came on it.

So want do you think, did I pay to much for it?
I had a hard time finding a good Cherokee in Michigan that was not covered in rust.

Thanks for the help guys!


Last edited by Badmunky; 06-14-2013 at 03:35 PM..
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Unread 06-01-2013, 09:53 PM   #2
ZeeJay1997
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Location: Sweet Home, Alabama
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Badmunky View Post
Runs great, but will some times bog about 1 min after you start it. Will back fire threw intake if you gas on it when it bogs. But it runs great, has good power, idles good, and starts right up. No idea why its doing this?
Its getting crap fuel mileage. 13.4mpg.
Header is cracked. Not sure what to replace it with.

Why dose the motor want to die some times about a min after its started when under light load? I have never had a car do this that ran fine and had no other problems.
I would start with fresh NTK O2 sensors after replacing the manifold. Some have had good luck with the dorman.
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Unread 06-02-2013, 12:52 AM   #3
JasonStebbins
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1997 ZJ 
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 3,138
Okay so Ill try to keep it short. On Saturday the 25th I bout a 98 Grand Cherokee Laredo 4x4 with the 4.0.

It has a few problems I need some help with. I'm new to Jeeps and to 4x4s, this will be my first one that runs.

So a list of what I know to be wrong with it right now.

Steering box has excessive play, and will not center properly.
Check the ball joints, tie rod ends and track bar. Get an alignment.
Head lights are shot. (Drives side is yellow, and leaks. Passengers side is broken.)
Buy some Meguiar's headlight restore or get new lenses on eBay.
Fan clutch is locked on all the time.
Replace it with a new one. Very easy to do on the 4.0L with a 13mm ratchet wrench.
Steering wheel is falling apart.
Buy a new steering wheel cover.
4x4 works but has a hard time shifting out of 4x4 in to 2wd. And gets stuck in 4x4 low. Suspect cable / linkage needs service.
Unscrew the linkage and adjust it and add lubricant. The bushing commonly wears out. If stuck in 4wd reverse a little bit and it will kick back into 2wd.
Runs great, but will some times bog about 1 min after you start it. Will back fire threw intake if you gas on it when it bogs. But it runs great, has good power, idles good, and starts right up. No idea why its doing this?
Sounds like a bad catalytic converter.
Its getting crap fuel mileage. 13.4mpg.
That's pretty common for city driving.
Header is cracked. Not sure what to replace it with.
Replaced mine with a Dorman brand manifold. Has the flex pipes on each end to prevent it from cracking again.
Spare tire is shot. Going to get a new one.
Make sure it's the exact same size.
Alarm keeps going off at random. I think I traced it to bad sensor for the dome lights in the hatch. Not sure if this fixed it yet thou.
Fix that before your neighbors fix it for you.
Speakers are all blown.
They are 6 1/2" all the way around. Get some new tweeters for the dash while you're at it.
Head liner is sagging in spots.
Buy any color you want and replace it. It's very easy to take down the roof panel.
Rust hole in passengers rocker near front fender. Going to have this fixed for $300 by a local body shop. Its the only rust any where on the truck.
That's seems pretty expensive to have one hole replaced. If that's the only rust spot I would go another route.
Drivers seat lower cover is ripped. Need to get a new cover. It has leather.
Junkyard trip!
Needs a tune up and oil change.
Don't use Fram oil filters. Go with Champion coppers for the spark plugs. Nothing fancy like platinum or double tipped.
Valve cover gasket is leaking.
Very easy to do. Get a FelPro gasket. Replace the PCV valves since you're going to have the cover off anyway.
Brake pads are thin and so are the rotors. I have new ones already, just need to install them.
Don't forget to bleed them!
Hatch glass lift shocks are bad.
You're hatch shocks are probably bad too. Welcome to the life of a ZJ.
Both Diff covers look like they have a slow leak.
Are you sure they are leaking? It could just be from filling them up. The oil stains the cover when you refill the differential. Is the leak where the drive shaft enters the differential or under the plugs?
Oil pan gasket looks to be leaking.
This could be the oil filter adapter/valve cover gasket/rear main seal. You will have to wipe everything down in order to pinpoint where it's coming from.
Oil filter adapter gasket looks to be leaking.
No gasket. It's three O-rings on the adapter that go bad. They can be had at the dealership for around $7.00

Now for the questions.
I need to replace the steering box.
What should I replace it with? I have read where people use the box from a Durango. Why do they do that?
The Durango boxes have a larger piston.
Is a reman box okay?
I prefer new parts when possible.
Should I replace the pump to?
No reason unless it's making bearing noise or rattling or leaking.

Why dose the motor want to die some times about a min after its started when under light load? I have never had a car do this that ran fine and had no other problems.

Bad catalytic converter/upstream oxygen sensor/bad connection at battery/dirty or loose grounds.

What should I about the fan clutch? Replace it? convert to electric?
Replace it with a Mopar clutch. It's a matter of eight 13mm bolts. 99% of parts stores in my area only carry the "severe duty" ones and it sounds like an airplane taking off. So I got a Mopar one off eBay. If yours is stuck on then you're losing HP and MPG.

$2700.00 out the door for a fully loaded ZJ with 156,000 miles is a great deal in my opinion.

Thanks for the help guys!
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Unread 06-02-2013, 10:58 AM   #4
Badmunky
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: t, michigan
Posts: 65
First thank you for the info. Responses are in red.

Steering box has excessive play, and will not center properly.
Check the ball joints, tie rod ends and track bar. Get an alignment. All the tie rod ends are new. I can move the wheel about 1.5"s in each direction before the pit-men arm starts to move. It dose need an alignment, it drifts to the right a bit.
Head lights are shot. (Drives side is yellow, and leaks. Passengers side is broken.)
Buy some Meguiar's headlight restore or get new lenses on eBay. Its going to need new lenses for sure. Driver side is leaking, passengers side is broken.
Fan clutch is locked on all the time.
Replace it with a new one. Very easy to do on the 4.0L with a 13mm ratchet wrench.
Steering wheel is falling apart.
Buy a new steering wheel cover. Already did that. Want to get a good wheel so I can remove it.
4x4 works but has a hard time shifting out of 4x4 in to 2wd. And gets stuck in 4x4 low. Suspect cable / linkage needs service.
Unscrew the linkage and adjust it and add lubricant. The bushing commonly wears out. If stuck in 4wd reverse a little bit and it will kick back into 2wd. Thank you. Ill try that next time I work on it.
Runs great, but will some times bog about 1 min after you start it. Will back fire threw intake if you gas on it when it bogs. But it runs great, has good power, idles good, and starts right up. No idea why its doing this?
Sounds like a bad catalytic converter. It has a new Converter and Muffler on it. I suspect the last owner was trying to fix the same problem.
Its getting crap fuel mileage. 13.4mpg.
That's pretty common for city driving. It is? I thought I would see around 16mpg in the city and 20 or so highway.
Header is cracked. Not sure what to replace it with.
Replaced mine with a Dorman brand manifold. Has the flex pipes on each end to prevent it from cracking again. Cool. Are there any headers out there that will improve power and last longer?
Spare tire is shot. Going to get a new one.
Make sure it's the exact same size. Will do.
Alarm keeps going off at random. I think I traced it to bad sensor for the dome lights in the hatch. Not sure if this fixed it yet thou.
Fix that before your neighbors fix it for you. LOL. I know right.
Speakers are all blown.
They are 6 1/2" all the way around. Get some new tweeters for the dash while you're at it. Okay will do. Have any recommendations for what speakers I should run? What size are the dash speakers?
Head liner is sagging in spots.
Buy any color you want and replace it. It's very easy to take down the roof panel. I already removed it once. Had to fix the sunroof. But I have never recovered a head liner before. So ill see if I can find a hot to to help me.
Rust hole in passengers rocker near front fender. Going to have this fixed for $300 by a local body shop. Its the only rust any where on the truck.
That's seems pretty expensive to have one hole replaced. If that's the only rust spot I would go another route. He has to cut out and replace about a foot of the rocker. that includes paint and the new rocker panel as well.
Drivers seat lower cover is ripped. Need to get a new cover. It has leather.
Junkyard trip! Yep. Just have not found one in any better shape then mine is yet.
Needs a tune up and oil change.
Don't use Fram oil filters. Go with Champion coppers for the spark plugs. Nothing fancy like platinum or double tipped. I already bout thous E3 plugs. I have wanted to try them for a while now. If there crap Ill replace them.
Valve cover gasket is leaking.
Very easy to do. Get a FelPro gasket. Replace the PCV valves since you're going to have the cover off anyway. Will do.
Brake pads are thin and so are the rotors. I have new ones already, just need to install them.
Don't forget to bleed them! Yeah they need it to. Fluid is black!
Hatch glass lift shocks are bad.
You're hatch shocks are probably bad too. Welcome to the life of a ZJ. Last owner replaced the hatch shocks, but the glass shocks are bad.
Both Diff covers look like they have a slow leak.
Are you sure they are leaking? It could just be from filling them up. The oil stains the cover when you refill the differential. Is the leak where the drive shaft enters the differential or under the plugs? There is oil on the whole thing! I just cleaned them up and will watch them to see if it is leaking or not.
Oil pan gasket looks to be leaking.
This could be the oil filter adapter/valve cover gasket/rear main seal. You will have to wipe everything down in order to pinpoint where it's coming from. Already done. Just need to watch and see where its coming from now.
Oil filter adapter gasket looks to be leaking.
No gasket. It's three O-rings on the adapter that go bad. They can be had at the dealership for around $7.00 Okay. Ill replace them when I do the service.

Now for the questions.
I need to replace the steering box.
What should I replace it with? I have read where people use the box from a Durango. Why do they do that?
The Durango boxes have a larger piston. What dose this do for me? I have never owned any thing that did not have rack type steering before.
Is a reman box okay?
I prefer new parts when possible. Ill see if I can find a new one at a good price.
Should I replace the pump to?
No reason unless it's making bearing noise or rattling or leaking.

Why dose the motor want to die some times about a min after its started when under light load? I have never had a car do this that ran fine and had no other problems.

Bad catalytic converter/upstream oxygen sensor/bad connection at battery/dirty or loose grounds. Battery connection is good. Converter is new. So it must need new O2 sensor then.

What should I about the fan clutch? Replace it? convert to electric?
Replace it with a Mopar clutch. It's a matter of eight 13mm bolts. 99% of parts stores in my area only carry the "severe duty" ones and it sounds like an airplane taking off. So I got a Mopar one off eBay. If yours is stuck on then you're losing HP and MPG. Okay Ill look in to it. I saw a lot of people converting to electric so that's why I asked about it. I have never had a car that did not have an electric fan before.

$2700.00 out the door for a fully loaded ZJ with 152,000 miles is a great deal in my opinion. Well good. I thought I may have paid to much for it.
Dealer had $4,995 on it when we got there. I started pointing out things it needed and got the price down a lot.
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Unread 06-02-2013, 11:00 AM   #5
Badmunky
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: t, michigan
Posts: 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by ZeeJay1997 View Post
I would start with fresh NTK O2 sensors after replacing the manifold. Some have had good luck with the dorman.
I think you may be right. I will replace the O2 when I do the service and manifold.
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Unread 06-02-2013, 11:51 AM   #6
JasonStebbins
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[QUOTE=Badmunky;15509722]First thank you for the info. Responses are in red.

I can move the wheel about 1.5"s in each direction before the pit-men arm starts to move. It dose need an alignment, it drifts to the right a bit.
Ball joints make a big difference in the stiffness of the steering. I did my driver's side about a month ago and it made a huge difference in the steering response. You can also adjust the steering box with an allen wrench to make it tighter.
Its going to need new lenses for sure. Driver side is leaking, passengers side is broken.
They are cheap on eBay for the OEM lenses. It makes a significant difference in night time driving.
Its getting crap fuel mileage. 13.4mpg.
It is? I thought I would see around 16mpg in the city and 20 or so highway.
My ZJ is fully tuned up with ignition parts and all new fluids around. I get 15ish in the city and 22ish on the highway. It will go up once you replace the manifold and your oxygen sensor.
Cool. Are there any headers out there that will improve power and last longer?
The Dorman header is a great replacement, especially with the expansion tubes it comes with to prevent cracking. You can use the manifold from the second generation Grand Cherokee also. It has better flow.
Okay will do. Have any recommendations for what speakers I should run? What size are the dash speakers?
That's more of a personal preference. I'm running the Scosche HD 250 watts from Wal-Mart, plenty loud and don't distort. The tweeters in there now are diamond/oval shape. You can use pretty much any 1" / 1.5" you can stuff in there.
I already bout thous E3 plugs. I have wanted to try them for a while now. If there crap Ill replace them.
I've heard mixed reviews about the E3 plugs. The 4.0L is designed for copper, so most people here use the plain old Champion plugs with good results. Stay away from Bosch plugs and sensors.
There is oil on the whole thing! I just cleaned them up and will watch them to see if it is leaking or not.
It could just be from changing the fluid or the pinion seal is leaking where the shaft enters the differential.

What dose this do for me? I have never owned any thing that did not have rack type steering before.
Bigger piston = less effort. Especially if you get bigger tires.

So it must need new O2 sensor then.
Mopar/NTK

Okay Ill look in to it. I saw a lot of people converting to electric so that's why I asked about it. I have never had a car that did not have an electric fan before.
There's people on here that swapped for an electric fan. But if you're fan clutch is working properly and the cooling system is maintained the mechanical fan pushes more then enough air to keep your engine cool. The main reason for the electric fan is it frees up a little bit of HP.
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Unread 06-02-2013, 12:03 PM   #7
ZeeJay1997
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You said you have a new cat, need to fix the o2 sensor and header PDQ or the rich mixture will kill the cat, especially if its a universal type.
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Unread 06-02-2013, 12:06 PM   #8
JasonStebbins
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Nobody likes a cat killer.
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Unread 06-03-2013, 10:29 PM   #9
Badmunky
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Location: t, michigan
Posts: 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by ZeeJay1997 View Post
You said you have a new cat, need to fix the o2 sensor and header PDQ or the rich mixture will kill the cat, especially if its a universal type.
I have parked the Jeep for now. I'm out of town for work and will have parts waiting for me when I got home around the 4th of July. It dose look like its just a universal type replacement cat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JasonStebbins View Post
Nobody likes a cat killer.
LOL. True.

Thanks for the help guys.

So far I have ordered a few parts, and will order the rest in the next few weeks as money comes in.

I think I will convert it to an electric fan. It could use a few more HP any way. I'm used to driving a 440hp sports sedan and so is the wife.

Being that this will mostly be her rig I have been over ruled on the headlights. It will be getting some Projectors like these.

Not my thing but the wife wants them so I guess I'm ordering them next week.

After I get all the things wrong with it fixed Ill start working on a lift and some off road wheels and tires.
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Unread 06-12-2013, 02:56 PM   #10
Badmunky
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Okay so it has a few more problems I need help with.

It ran fine on the test drive, but it did seem to be down on power just a little. The Plug wires and cap looked old to me. I thought it just needed a good tune up. It was also having a problem with bogging shortly after being started and not running smooth.

So I had some free time so I did a tune up.

So I removed the spark plugs and found this!

Front of motor---------------------->

What is wrong with people?

Not only are there 2 incorrect plugs there, but they were also all gaped wrong. The 4 short-tip plugs where all about .055. The 2 long-tip plugs where gaped about .065.
Cap contacts where burnt, and the rotor was burnt.
Plug wires where dirty, but looked okay to me.

So, I changed every thing. I put in new correctly gaped plugs.
I reset the ECU, and then took the Jeep for a test drive.
I found that it ran better. Had more power, but still seemed to be down a bit from where I think it should be.

But there is one thing that it still will not do.
It still will not spin the tires off the line. It seams to have low power under 3,000 RPM.
My cousin has a 91 Cherokee with a 4.0 and he can spin his tires for a good 50 feet from a dead stop.
I cant even get it to turn the tire over at all. Is there still something wrong or is it just that I have ZJ and he has an XJ?

I did that all yesterday, along with a brake job.

Today, it's a different story, it's back to no power again. It will not spin the tires on wet pavement. On dirt it will spin both rears for 3 feet or less before it no longer has the power to keep them going.

And the other problem is it has a hesitation / stumble.

After it has been parked for a bit (say 3+ hours), and you start it up, it will start right up, and run fine. But about 2 min or so, after you take off it will hesitate, and stumble, lose all power, and backfire through the intake if you give it more gas. If you let off, it will sort its self out and run great after a few seconds. And will not do this again until it has been shut off and allowed to cool for a bit.

I don't know what is causing this.
And the power just is not there like it should be. I know its a Jeep, not a sports car. And I don't expect it to be able to white smoke the tires, or hit 60 in under 6 sec. But, right now it can not even get wheel spin. And 60 takes about 16-18 seconds and around 1/4 of a mile at FULL throttle.

There has to be something wrong here.

Things I do know about this Jeep:
It has a cracked header.
It has a newer cat, but it looks like its been cut open and then welded shut again.
Its got a new radiator.
Its got a new thermostat and housing.
Its got new hoses.
Its got a newer alternator and shows 14v on the dash.


Things I have done so far.
Seafoam'd the motor through the TB, and put half the can in the gas tank.
Changed the plugs.
Changed the wires.
Changed the cap.
Changed the rotor.
Cleaned the TB.
Cleaned the IAC.
Power washed the motor.


I'm at a loss here.



Thanks guys

Last edited by Badmunky; 06-12-2013 at 06:51 PM..
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Unread 06-12-2013, 03:08 PM   #11
dnuccio
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Badmunky View Post
But there is one thing that it still will not do.
It still will not spin the tires off the line. It seams to have low power under 3,000 RPM.
My cousin has a 91 Cherokee with a 4.0 and he can spin his tires for a good 50 feet from a dead stop.
I cant even get it to turn the tire over at all. Is there still something wrong or is it just that I have ZJ and he has an XJ?
XJs are lighter. 4.0s are kind of dogs in a ZJ IMO. i have the v8 and it wont spin the tires off a stop unless i hold the brake. it will break them loose very easily through corners though
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Unread 06-12-2013, 03:25 PM   #12
Badmunky
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dnuccio View Post
XJs are lighter. 4.0s are kind of dogs in a ZJ IMO. i have the v8 and it wont spin the tires off a stop unless i hold the brake. it will break them loose very easily through corners though
Mine will not even brake loose in a corner!

Updated last post with more info.
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Unread 06-12-2013, 04:15 PM   #13
HighLonesome
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On a positive note, I don't see any blatant problems with the plugs.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Badmunky View Post
So I removed the spark plugs and found this.
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Unread 06-12-2013, 06:21 PM   #14
ZeeJay1997
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Two of the plugs are a different type than the other and they are all at the end of their service life, indicated by the rounded electrodes.

edit, nevermind... you know that already.
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Unread 06-12-2013, 06:24 PM   #15
Badmunky
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Plugs where replaced with new E3s.

And yes 2 of them where the wrong plug for this motor.
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