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Go Back JeepForum.com > Models > Jeep Grand Cherokee & Commander Forums > Grand Cherokee General Discussion > Going to be 5 degrees Tuesday morning, anything I can do to prep?

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Unread 01-06-2014, 12:45 PM   #46
PolkaPower
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1998 ZJ 
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
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AGM batteries do better in the cold.

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Unread 01-06-2014, 01:08 PM   #47
streetzj
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Ok, so I'd like a summary of the major mechanical issues with extreme cold, whatever that means to you.

1. The jeep should be driven gingerly (I like gingers and blondes and dark hair, too) the first few minutes to get oil to the top of the engine.

2. It should be driven on the freeway for ten minutes to warm up the coolant, tranny fluid, and transfer case/diff lube.

3. What about the brake and power steering fluid? How do those warm up?

4. Last two points -- check your tire pressure because that plummets, and don't even think about rolling down your windows in -20.

Any disagreements or dos or do nots?
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Unread 01-06-2014, 01:19 PM   #48
DKARM
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This has already been mentioned to an extent, but make sure you are not low on oil and have a fresh oil change. Also make sure you use the appropriate oils for the temperatures you will be experiencing (found that in my manual).

My niner was being difficult in the cold and wasn't wanting to start, even though it had a fresh battery. It was due for an oil change and after changing the oil and topping off the coolant, it starts just fine. Fired up in 4 degrees this morning.

Older oil thickens more in the cold and makes it harder for the Jeep to start. Oh, I have also heard it is helpful to turn the key on for a few seconds prior to starting to get the fuel system going.
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Unread 01-06-2014, 01:31 PM   #49
WNUNEZJR
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Any one elses tries freeze to the pavement in the mourning? or is it just me?
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Unread 01-06-2014, 05:03 PM   #50
Gearhead31
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if the wind chill is going to be getting -30s or so, definitely make sure your coolant mix is rich in antifreeze(iirc, a 70/30 is the top end), otherwise having a good battery(maybe a trickle charger hooked up) and fresh 50/50 coolant will be about the limits of it. If you want that little extra, you can drop some coins for a block heater. I've been debating getting the kind that replaces one of your "freeze caps" in the block, 120v 4.5a outlet. That's a bit more labor intensive than most but I believe that is the OEM style for the motors that recieved a block heater off the lot(at least with the TJ's, CJ's, Comanchee's, etc it was)
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Unread 01-06-2014, 05:07 PM   #51
Gearhead31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by streetzj View Post
Ok, so I'd like a summary of the major mechanical issues with extreme cold, whatever that means to you.

1. The jeep should be driven gingerly (I like gingers and blondes and dark hair, too) the first few minutes to get oil to the top of the engine.

2. It should be driven on the freeway for ten minutes to warm up the coolant, tranny fluid, and transfer case/diff lube.

3. What about the brake and power steering fluid? How do those warm up?

4. Last two points -- check your tire pressure because that plummets, and don't even think about rolling down your windows in -20.

Any disagreements or dos or do nots?
the tire pressure shouldn't drop more than around 4psi between room temp(76ºF) and 0ºF as far as I know.. Doesn't hurt to make sure anyways. The rest seems pretty spot on. Fresh "winter" oil can help make those cold morning starts easier too. If it's too cold, turn the steering wheel full lock to full lock a few times after the motor starts to rise in temp. That will help "warm" up(more like loosen up)the power steering. Brakes, not sure. They will be fine for you though
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*In peace, sons bury their fathers. In war, fathers bury their sons. - Herodotus
[QUOTE=JasonStebbins]We can call it the Whoosh King Catalog System. :D[/QUOTE]
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Unread 01-06-2014, 06:12 PM   #52
nodoze
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I left work about 30 minutes ago, it was -18F actual temp. Jeep started right up I had lukewarm heat about 4 minutes later, but it didn't start blowing hot hot until I was almost home. She did good
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Unread 01-07-2014, 09:04 PM   #53
Compgeek789
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjorn17 View Post
I have seen a professional AA guy use a regular heat gun in the area of the lock/latch on the door. A few minutes and everything was ice free inside and outside. Just place your hand next to the metal where you give heat to avoid paint damage.

B.
This is probably a terrible idea, but I use a mapp gas torch. I just wave it around at a good enough distance to get the surface warm, but not close enough to cause damage.
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Unread 01-08-2014, 01:56 AM   #54
JapJohn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gearhead31 View Post
if the wind chill is going to be getting -30s or so, definitely make sure your coolant mix is rich in antifreeze(iirc, a 70/30 is the top end), otherwise having a good battery(maybe a trickle charger hooked up) and fresh 50/50 coolant will be about the limits of it.
Why go through all the trouble of over mixing when this little cold snap is only going to last for a week?

50/50 will be fine. When your done with the cold send it back up north, 30+f is too hot this time of year.
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Unread 01-08-2014, 08:41 PM   #55
RoldGold
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JapJohn View Post
Why go through all the trouble of over mixing when this little cold snap is only going to last for a week?

50/50 will be fine. When your done with the cold send it back up north, 30+f is too hot this time of year.
I just flushed the coolant with a 50/50 flush about 2 weeks ago, so I left it unchanged. She took a couple cranks to turn over, but other than that, no problem. It barely reached operating temp in the 15 minute drive, but I expected that.
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Unread 01-08-2014, 09:10 PM   #56
LouC
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If you deal with close to zero cold on a regular basis, use 5w/30 semi syn or full syn oil in winter and replace your battery very 4-5 years. That will minimize the chance of a dead battery when its most inconvenient. I keep the old batts if they are still good, and keep one for each vehicle in the garage. I cycle them on the batt charger every few months and then if the batt in the vehicle dies I just change it out and replace it when I can.
On the old school RE series trans, they do not pump trans oil in Park, so the trans will warm up faster in very cold temps if you idle it for a couple of minutes in Neutral. That is why you also have to check the trans oil idling in Neutral not in Park...
Just keep a good batt in it and proper winter weight oil in it and you're good to go. I always like the nice slow idle my ZJ has even when real cold. My Hemi idles much faster like 1200 for the first few seconds, so does our 98 Subaru.
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Unread 01-08-2014, 09:39 PM   #57
970001zj
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LouC View Post
If you deal with close to zero cold on a regular basis, use 5w/30 semi syn or full syn oil in winter and replace your battery very 4-5 years. That will minimize the chance of a dead battery when its most inconvenient. I keep the old batts if they are still good, and keep one for each vehicle in the garage. I cycle them on the batt charger every few months and then if the batt in the vehicle dies I just change it out and replace it when I can.
On the old school RE series trans, they do not pump trans oil in Park, so the trans will warm up faster in very cold temps if you idle it for a couple of minutes in Neutral. That is why you also have to check the trans oil idling in Neutral not in Park...
Just keep a good batt in it and proper winter weight oil in it and you're good to go. I always like the nice slow idle my ZJ has even when real cold. My Hemi idles much faster like 1200 for the first few seconds, so does our 98 Subaru.
thanks for the good info

i did not know this i just idle in neutal because starting it cold in park makes the trans do this high '' wonawonawona '' noise













thumbs up if i made you go wonawonawona in your head
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Unread 01-09-2014, 01:55 AM   #58
ElCaminoManT
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i cant wrap my head around what i happening around the rest of the country with this crazy weather. it was 70*F out in the desert this weekend when i was wheeling.

i can kind of relate tho. im born and raised here in so cal so when i moved to wyoming 13 years ago for the winter, boy was that a shock! i was driving a 90 astro van at the time and until it was below 0*F, starting was not an issue. i made sure to flush the cooling system and refill with an adjusted coolant mix for MUCH colder temps than it had ever seen before. probably could have helped with at least an oil pan heater but never did install one as was only there for 6 months. we had a couple days that were pushing near -30*F in the mornings, the van had issues starting then. VERY slow cranking with a pretty much new battery. coughed, farted and smoked like crazy for 5 or so minutes before it got some heat and smoothed out
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Unread 01-10-2014, 04:20 PM   #59
Gearhead31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JapJohn View Post
Why go through all the trouble of over mixing when this little cold snap is only going to last for a week?

50/50 will be fine. When your done with the cold send it back up north, 30+f is too hot this time of year.
Good point... I was thinking of regularly being that cold. 50/50 stands fine, even though it's passed OP's needs right now
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1995 ZJ ltd, 4.0 i6, *cough stock cough* 253,xxx and still pumping strong
1998 Chevy Cheyenne K1500, 5.7L Vortec, mostly stock
*In peace, sons bury their fathers. In war, fathers bury their sons. - Herodotus
[QUOTE=JasonStebbins]We can call it the Whoosh King Catalog System. :D[/QUOTE]
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Unread 01-10-2014, 07:11 PM   #60
LouC
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50/50 gives you -34* protection. You can go up to 70% AF/water but 50/50 gives you better heat transfer.
Other things I forgot to mention, take a good look at the batt cables, it is not uncommon for the neg clamp on ZJs to crack. I cut that clamp off and got a marine cable terminal, used an HD marine crimper to crimp it on the neg cable and bolted on a marine style clamp. So this way if I ever had to replace that clamp its easy. Also go back and check all the grounds, make sure that they are tight and clean. Make sure your serp belt is tight. Do not let the gas level get too low, fill it when you get to a quarter to cut down on condensation (like if its warm and damp out and then the temp drops quickly, condensation can happen in the tank and that can freeze). Keeping these things up I have never had problems getting a ZJ to start at close to zero.

You youngsters have it easy....engines with EFI that start by just turing the key....we old guys...had to deal with chokes....like this one on the pic of a Marine Quadrajet....that needed maintenance, adjustment and proper driver intelligence.....
quadrajet-choke-rod.jpg  
batt-cable-terminals.jpg

batt-clamp.jpg

crimping-tool.jpg

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