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Unread 11-18-2013, 03:57 PM   #1
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1996 XJ Cherokee 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Lynchburg, TN
Posts: 1
looking at an 88 Cherokee

Folks I have a few questions for the more knowledgeable on Jeep Cherokees. Iím looking at buying a 1988 Cherokee 4 door 4x4 5 speed from a local guy. I do not want it for an off-road wheeler just something to get me back and forth to work in the wintertime.

Well I went to look at it today, and for a 25 year old vehicle it is in great shape inside and out. Guy hardly ever drove it and mostly used it to pull his boat the three hundred yards to his subdivisions boat ramp. Straight body, good paint, and only a couple of minor surface rust spots. I drove it and the only issue I found was the brakes, or the lack thereof. It would stop but barely, pedal would go all the way to the floor. What could be the issue? Checked for leaks on the ground where he kept it parked in the carport, there were none. Master cylinder was full of fluid. Could it be air in the lines, or a sign that the brake booster is gone bad or something else?

I really liked this Jeep and the price was decent, but I donít want to have to shell out a lot more to get it road worthy. What do yíall think?

Johnathan Smith

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Unread 11-18-2013, 06:09 PM   #2
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1998 XJ Cherokee 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Portland, Or
Posts: 299
I'd say air in the lines.. A bad brake booster would be a stiff petal, not a lack there of. With it being a 88' I'd imagine it's due for a full brake fluid flush.
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Unread 11-19-2013, 07:22 AM   #3
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1989 YJ Wrangler 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Central Mississippi, Mississippi
Posts: 1,359
Count on having a brake job done, even as you hand over the cash. You don't say what the price is, but discount heavily for the rust.
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Unread 11-19-2013, 07:47 AM   #4
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1995 XJ Cherokee 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Helena, Montana
Posts: 7,292
The most likely problems in that era were not found by merely driving it. The steering column is prone to issues. The ignition switch, blinkers, wipers, brights, check these things so you know. But be aware, even if it all works, it only has yet to have these issues.
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