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Unread 10-22-2009, 11:11 AM   #1
GreekGhost
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What are common issues with WJ

Hi all -

I am in the process of selling my 2003 BMW (PM me if interested ) and looking to purchase a Grand Cherokee shortly after completing the sale.

I was curious to know what common issues do the WJ have and about what mileage do I need to be conserned about these things? For example, it is common for the BMW 3-Series (2000-2005) to need a cooling system overhaul at about 50,000 (which mine has had done). This is not part of regular maintenance but rather just an issue with the design. I am looking for these types of issues with the WJ's.

I was hoping to get one with about 60,000 miles but I am willing to go a bit higher if the price is right, depending on the issues.

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Unread 10-22-2009, 11:18 AM   #2
gbauer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreekGhost View Post
Hi all -

I am in the process of selling my 2003 BMW (PM me if interested ) and looking to purchase a Grand Cherokee shortly after completing the sale.

I was curious to know what common issues do the WJ have and about what mileage do I need to be conserned about these things? For example, it is common for the BMW 3-Series (2000-2005) to need a cooling system overhaul at about 50,000 (which mine has had done). This is not part of regular maintenance but rather just an issue with the design. I am looking for these types of issues with the WJ's.

I was hoping to get one with about 60,000 miles but I am willing to go a bit higher if the price is right, depending on the issues.
Oh god. Not another BMW owner here about a Jeep....

My 1999 WJ, 4.7L has been great (200k miles). The only major issue was the transfer case but it was a cheap fix (swapped to a 242 case: better case with more options: 2wd for instance). Parts are FAR cheaper than BMW parts. By far, I mean by a TON! For instance: a BMW supercharger is $10k installed. Jeep: 3k. My fuel filters: BMW: $50, Jeep: $20.


Get it.

Are you in the local BMWCCA? If so, a lot of us also have Jeeps: Me (George), Bogden, Pete, etc, etc.

(I own a 1998 M roadster.)
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Unread 10-22-2009, 11:22 AM   #3
GreekGhost
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lol I assume there are a lot people that post about this? I am not in the BMWCCA, nor do I know really what that is. I have my Wrangler which I will probably be buried in but the BMW while it has been a beautiful car to drive, I have to get rid of it mainly because I need a vehicle with more utility use.

My exgirlfriend used to have a Grand Cherokee along with one of my room mates and they never said a bad thing about them. They are a blast to drive (IMO) and most of all it is Jeep. I will probably only own Jeeps for the rest of my driving life.
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Unread 10-22-2009, 11:24 AM   #4
gatorayde
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^^ Where did you get a $20 fuel filter for your WJ? They are ~$80 from the dealer because they are not just a filter, but a regulator as well.

Basically, the newer the WJ the less problems. The 99-01's had crappy front calipers that like to warp rotors every 5k miles or so when they wear out. If you can, find a V8 with the selec trac T case. It's rare, but it's a very nice setup. Models with the auto climate have blend door issues and it's an expensive fix or you have pull the dash and do it yourself. There's probably more but those are the biggest things that come to mind.
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Unread 10-22-2009, 11:25 AM   #5
99avant
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It is common for new owners, and those looking to purchase, to not use the search function.

:-) This gets asked weekly, if not daily here.

Cliffnotes- buy a v8. Limiteds have blend door issues($1k fix), 242HD transfer case FTW, window regulators and and lock actuators live short lives. Other than that it is pretty typical jeep stuff.
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If it aint broke, fix it till it is.
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Unread 10-22-2009, 11:32 AM   #6
GreekGhost
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Yeah I figured I should use the search after I posted. Been a member for many moons (joined 2003). Pardon my annoyance. I was hoping to get an idea of mileage when certain parts fail. Your input is greatly appreciated however. My room mate has a 2002 or 2003 with the V8 and Quadra-Drive. He told me to avoid that since parts for that transfer case are more expensive. I am hoping to get a V8 but I will settle on the 6 cylinder.
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Unread 10-22-2009, 11:35 AM   #7
walter_da_jpr
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Common Issues as I see them:
- brakes on earlier models (warping rotors often. easy fix though, updated calipers and aftermarket rotors last much longer)
- electric cooling fan relays and electric fan motor brushes wearing out. (search this: also easy fix, just replace relay and fan motor and you'll be happy. I also recommend adding a mechanical fan if you don't have one, or avoiding these issues by finding a WJ with a hydraulic fan)
- Transmission leak: Eventually your transmission output seal will leak. Not too bad/expensive to replace.
- TRE's/balljoints <-- this is general for all used cars: I always find that owners never even touch balljoints or TRE's on their cars. I always replace these when I get a used car. It will make it that much better).
- Blend doors: On models with dual climate control/auto climate control, these buggers fail and require dashboard surgery to remove. (Parts cheap labor expensive)
- Some transfer cases are weak (I would target a WJ with the 242 otherwise known as selectrac)

So If I were you I would target a WJ with a 4.7L, Selectrac, and manual climate control. (but good luck finding that set up)

That being said my simple 4.0L laredo hasn't really let me down after all of the above upgrades.
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Unread 10-22-2009, 11:39 AM   #8
99avant
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That is why you swap to the 242HD tcase. Like I did!

I am not annoyed, just saying that it is more efficient to search than to sit around waiting for us nerds to babble on. It will sound like a broken record when you read threads about this.
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|94 XJ|4.0|NP231|AW4|8.25 Trac Lock|Lotsa miles - SOLD
|99 WJ|4.7|242HD|Vari-lok|Upcountry+BB|DT8000|Dead as of 10/29/2009

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Unread 10-22-2009, 12:23 PM   #9
gbauer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gatorayde View Post
^^ Where did you get a $20 fuel filter for your WJ? They are ~$80 from the dealer because they are not just a filter, but a regulator as well.

Basically, the newer the WJ the less problems. The 99-01's had crappy front calipers that like to warp rotors every 5k miles or so when they wear out. If you can, find a V8 with the selec trac T case. It's rare, but it's a very nice setup. Models with the auto climate have blend door issues and it's an expensive fix or you have pull the dash and do it yourself. There's probably more but those are the biggest things that come to mind.
My bad: $30 at autozone. I had to recheck it online.

Next time you need to buy a fuel filter, send me the $80 and I'll send you two and buy myself some beer with the leftover monies!
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Unread 10-22-2009, 12:27 PM   #10
gbauer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walter_da_jpr View Post

So If I were you I would target a WJ with a 4.7L, Selectrac, and manual climate control. (but good luck finding that set up)
Like mine (now that I did the 242 swap).

The 242 swap isn't that hard if the milage is low. If you buy it and want to do the swap, PM me and bring it out to Fredneck. We can do it in less than a day assuming the drive shaft is the correct length. If not, I have a guy that can do the shaft very quickly.
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Unread 10-22-2009, 12:38 PM   #11
GreekGhost
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Awesome, I can bring beer!!! I am definitely going to be purchasing one. Just a matter of selling the BMW before I do so. I want to pay cash for it.
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Unread 10-22-2009, 12:40 PM   #12
leaf001
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Power window motors/ regulators/ Replaced 3 of mine at almost $300 a pop.
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Unread 10-22-2009, 12:55 PM   #13
Double E
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Check my sig for mileage and what's been upgraded & fixed. Pretty much all of them have needed these things.

+1 on the V8 vote. You won't regret it ...even once. The I6, you'll regret about 3 times each month at some point.
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Changes & fixes: Rear Addco sway bar & greasble bushings, upgraded headlights, upgraded tail lights, new hood struts (replaced 2X), new rear hatchglass struts, new radiator (replaced 3X), new oil pressure sending unit (replaced 4X), 2 new speed sensors, 2 new door lock actuators, new ignition key cylinder, chrome front tow hooks, Mobil 1 Synthetic 5/30, Purolator Pure One oil filter, EBC slotted & dimpled rotors, EBC Greenstuff pads, new front shocks (replaced 3X), new rear shocks (replaced 2X), new IRO steering stabilizer, new timing chain cover, new water pump, thermostat, new thermostat housing, new high pressure power steering hose, Michelin-X radials, new sunroof assembly, new single-piece lug nuts, new exhaust manifold studs & gasket on driver's side, new Durango alternator. Jeepforum.com sticker, Visit cobaltboatsforum.com when you can!
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Unread 10-22-2009, 12:58 PM   #14
gbauer
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Originally Posted by leaf001 View Post
Power window motors/ regulators/ Replaced 3 of mine at almost $300 a pop.
Probably just bad electrical connectors. I think you might have wasted $900 there.

Every time mine died, it was just a dirty connection. The one exception was the passenger's side window actuator.
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Unread 10-22-2009, 12:59 PM   #15
gbauer
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Originally Posted by GreekGhost View Post
Awesome, I can bring beer!!! I am definitely going to be purchasing one. Just a matter of selling the BMW before I do so. I want to pay cash for it.
Post it up on bimmerfest, bimmerforums and craigslist.


I'm always up for beer. Something other than Buttwiper, Coors, or Miller please.
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