Hello, new jeep enthusiast here .
I just picked up a 2000 Cherokee Sport with 210k from a co-worker who didn't want to put any more cash into it. Very clean, no panel rust, suspension looks good. $500 and done! Now, it does have its share of problems...
To start, it has a cracked radiator and the PO mentioned he suspected a blown head gasket. I have read about the 0331 head problems and will look into a replacement when I get into the engine.
Next up, the brakes clunk pretty bad. I have read that it could be loose calipers, ill-fitting pads, or worn suspension (ball joints, control arms...). So looking into that once I get underneath.
Minor issues: lift gate pistons need replaced, one speaker cuts out, one power window doesn't work, and the fan blower switch is either full-on or off.
The first step in this project is to tow it home to a friend's garage bay.
After the radiator, head gasket/cylinder head, and brakes, I intend to change all the fluids and check the drive train components.
My intention is to get this jeep legal and reliable as a fun time, camping, forest road, snow day vehicle. Long-term I want to install a modest lift and larger tires, maybe get it tow ready for a small trailer.
As for my skill level... I am a fast learner and good with hand tools. I also have access to a garage bay, Haynes manual and a good friend that owns a 96 xj. I have worked on my dd dodge neon the past year replacing the brakes, throttle body and some misfire troubleshooting. Weak, I know, but a start.
Just an intro here. I plan to post progress and pics eventually.
In the past 2 weeks I have really dug into this jeep. Replaced the radiator, parts of the rear brakes and new spark plugs. PB Blasted a bunch of bolts (only snapped off one that holds down the air box). Performed a cold, dry compression test: 165, 163, 163, 175, 175, 175 front to back. In addition, the coolant and oil are both clean... so the head may be good for now?
The rear drum brakes were falling apart. On the driver side the pads began crumbling, adjuster cable was frayed and its adjustment screw (the shaft with a gear on it?) was hanging loose. On the passenger side, the shoes were assembled backwards. Replaced the shoes, brake cylinders and some other parts inside. After bleeding the new brakes I now have a slow loss of pressure if I stand on the pedal. So probably a leak somewhere? At least the rear end doesn't lock-up anymore.
First road test above 25mpg on dry roads: Nice power and acceleration. Engine revs and transmission shifts well so far. The cooling system works now with no leaks.
New troubleshooting for a low/rough idle and eventual stall after warm-up. I have not yet reset the pcm or cleaned the iac/throttle body. Those are on the list for this weekend along with an oil change and inspecting the power steering.
Hope to get it state inspected soon and take a trip.
Oh, the CEL disappeared and we did not find any stored codes. I wonder what happened to the CEL when I bought it. Using a bluetooth ODBII reader with Torque.
Cleaned off the battery terminals and reset the CPM. Terminals were fused to the battery with corrosion underneath. PO hadn't replaced (or disconnected?) the battery in 3 years.
Good new is, reset fixed the idle issue!
Did an oil change, replaced a leaking power steering line and fixed a leak at the trans cooler screw-on fitting.
Picked up some gently used 235/75/15 General Grabbers and took a run through a mud pit. Excellent.
Still need to get the new muffler welded on to fix the exhaust leak. Then hopefully I'll get it inspected and take a road trip next weekend.
I am looking for some new fog lights and want to put a hitch on the back. May take off the driver door panel and check the wiring and ground to fix the speaker and power windows.
Also, I need to degrease the engine bay and look for an oil leak. The bay is really gunked up with antifreeze, power steering fluid and grime.
So far we are calling it the Leno, or Jay.
great rig. great price. you might as well call it a build thread. keep an eye on your coolant, if you start losing small amounts and have no idea where its going then watch for sludge on oil cap. That's how I identified my 0331 head crack. This is a super Forum. have fun and good luck.
Hey, Montz and 5speed,thanks for the encouragement!
I am really loving this jeep. Daily driving it for 3 weeks, and I ignored my poor 05 neon. She threw a fit, but that doesn't belong in this thread.
I passed PA inspection/emissions the end of March a few days after welding on a new cheapo Walker muffler. I also replaced the front brake pads at the shop's suggestion. The next day I took a camping trip with my bro. As this was my first road trip with the jeep, we drove country roads for a while and discovered I have a wheel balance issue (vibes at 50-60 in front end). Continued the trip and got use to the bumps, jerks and vibes. Ended up at a state park in central PA and used the jeep to setup my tarps the first night.
During the weekend I found a new quirk: P0303, cyl 3 misfire... After parking for 2 minutes after a long drive, the engine ran like crap with no power for a few minutes. I pulled into a lot and scanned the code. Once I saw the P0303 I opened the hood and let it cool down for 20 or so. Restarted and good as new. This has since happened one more time on a 60F+ day after a long drive and pit stop. I guess I need to look into an injector heat shield, maybe a hood vent or van switch?
As the weather has been warming up, my hatch struts now choose to work occasionally. Also, electrical issues appear and disappear periodically. For instance, I was sure that the blower fan resistor was shot because it was either full power on setting 4, or nothing. Just today it started working again. Also, my front speakers choose to work more days than now lately. I like.
The most frustrating thing right now is my turn signals... Sometimes the left turn signal activates the hazards, but on the back end only. I think I have tested it with every combination of headlights on/off, brakes on/off and right/left signal or hazards. It seems to only happen when my brakes lights and head lights are on and I activate the left signal. My plan of action is to just replace the flasher/hazard relay I read about on here. For $15 it may just make comments in traffic a lot more pleasant. If not, maybe the multi-funtion switch.
Oh, and no chances to wheel yet, but a few good puddles.
The jeep is good at holding my beer as I work on a neglected car.
So yeah, been busy with non jeep stuff lately. 2 other broken cars in the family now, so I have been Dd'ing the jeep for the last 2 months. This jeep is a champ for me.
In May I greased the slip yoke and topped off the diff fluids. So far ny coolant system has been working, and no visible signs of mixed fluids.
I recently did an oil change and replaced the oil pressure sensor. Its nice to actually see an oil pressure value.
This jeep is my fun time utility vehicle. I frequently cart around hand tools, lumber, camping gear, kayaks or old furniture. I have had it filled to the ceiling with art show supplies, and folding tables on the roof (they HAD to fit!)
We took a vacation upstate Pa last month and explored all the vistas in Loyalsock state forest. Mostly scenic dirt road drives, and only used 4hi on a game land access road.
Still looking for puddles and fields to play in locally. I hope to be in Ny soon to explore some property.
I can't sleep, so may as well upload some jeep photos.
High Knob Vista
Sharp's Point Vista
Loaded with event stuff... There was a 10' pop-up tent next to my face while driving. This is what you get when 2 other SUVS drop off things, and 1 picks them up. If only I had more ratchet straps!
Taking a two-cherokee caravan to explore in NY for the holiday. The plan is to find a camping area the first night, then work on clearing a jeep trail across a field, creek, and maybe uphill. Lots of hand tools, a chainsaw and 3 spares between us.