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Unread 07-06-2012, 07:14 PM   #1
edmck101
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1999 WJ 
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Mesa, Arizona
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When to Replace the Fuel Filter

As new Phoenix resident, we recently purchased an old 1999 Grand Cherokee (78,000 miles) for use in exploring the backroads just outside of Mesa. Never having owned a Jeep before, I'm doing my best to learn all the preventative maintenance steps I need to take to insure that my wife will be safe from mechanical failure on these isolated mountain backroads. Because I don't know the service history of this vehicle, I'm wondering if I should replace the fuel filter (the secondary filter just in front of the fuel tank) even though the car is running fine. The owner's manual says it should be replaced every 30,000 miles but the dealer cost to replace it is pretty stiff, $170. A clogged filter will cause the engine to run rough, I know, but is there any other way to tell if the filter needs replacing? Does a bad (clogged) filter throw a code? Any ideas from experienced WJ owners? Thanks.


Last edited by edmck101; 07-06-2012 at 07:28 PM..
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Unread 07-06-2012, 07:21 PM   #2
elcorvino
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$170 from a dealer... yeesh. Go to a reputable private shop if possible for less $. I didn't change mine till 150K w/ fuel pump. Can't ever hurt to change early.
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Unread 07-06-2012, 07:33 PM   #3
PhantomWJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edmck101
As new Phoenix resident, we recently purchased an old 1999 Grand Cherokee (78,000 miles) for use in exploring the backroads just outside of Mesa. Never having owned a Jeep before, I'm doing my best to learn all the preventative maintenance steps I need to take to insure that my wife will be safe from mechanical failure on these isolated mountain backroads. Because I don't know the service history of this vehicle, I'm wondering if I should replace the fuel filter (the secondary filter just in front of the fuel tank) even though the car is running fine. The owner's manual says it should be replaced every 30,000 miles but the dealer cost to replace it is pretty stiff, $170. A clogged filter will cause the engine to run rough, I know, but is there any other way to tell if the filter needs replacing? Does a bad (clogged) filter throw a code? Any ideas from experienced WJ owners? Thanks.
Do it yourself....
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Unread 07-06-2012, 07:37 PM   #4
Gunrunner23
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Replace it. Mine was a pain. Put some PB blaster on the 3 quick connects twice a day for like 2 days. Makes it easier. Also contact Kolak on here and shoot him a PM for a Mopar fuel filter. He lives by you.
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Unread 07-06-2012, 07:43 PM   #5
elcorvino
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Also, check on this site or WJJEEPS.com for a write up on how too. I just replaced my PCV and CCV valves. Without the help from this site, I would have never even known what they were. I got the part numbers and picture by picture how to. Not hard at all when its broken down in simple terms.
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Unread 07-07-2012, 01:45 AM   #6
Planetcat
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I thought the owner's manual said that the fuel filter is "designed" to not needing to be replaced and non-serviceable. I was in denial, replaced mine (PITA by the way) at 80K miles with a Napa Gold one, and it did nothing. Don't waste your time unless you think you have a fuel delivery problem related to a clogged filter.
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Unread 07-07-2012, 08:12 AM   #7
Gunrunner23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Planetcat
I thought the owner's manual said that the fuel filter is "designed" to not needing to be replaced and non-serviceable. I was in denial, replaced mine (PITA by the way) at 80K miles with a Napa Gold one, and it did nothing. Don't waste your time unless you think you have a fuel delivery problem related to a clogged filter.
Did you cut it open to see how dirty it was? I did mine was awful but I've got more miles than you.
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Unread 07-07-2012, 08:28 AM   #8
marcall
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunrunner23 View Post
Did you cut it open to see how dirty it was? I did mine was awful but I've got more miles than you.
The way to see if it's clogged is to blow through it with your mouth. It could be dirty inside but not restricted.
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Unread 07-07-2012, 08:43 AM   #9
Davebutch
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I replaced mine around 130,000 miles. The Jeep wasn't running rough, I just thought it was time. One of the "quick" disconnects was a pain to get loose, but using a small open-end wrench did the trick. I bought the replacement filter from Amazon for around $30. After I put the new one on, the acceleration was noticeably smoother. I don't know if it helped anything else, like gas mileage, though. It's worth doing, but do it yourself, and unless the vehicle has been in the dust most of it's life, I'd wait till around 100K miles.
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Unread 07-09-2012, 09:44 PM   #10
stone white 99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marcall View Post
The way to see if it's clogged is to blow through it with your mouth. It could be dirty inside but not restricted.
Do not blow through it with your mouth. It has a pressure regulator built in to it so your going to have to blow pretty hard.

Change the WJ fuel filter every 75K-100K
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Unread 07-09-2012, 10:12 PM   #11
KTMrida4life
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What are symptoms of a "bad" fuel filter.
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Unread 07-10-2012, 07:16 AM   #12
logisticalstyle
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I think I need to replace mine. The Jeep (1999 GC Laredo 4.0) is really hesitating when I Accelerate or drive up hill. I was able to locate the secondary filter under the chassis near the fuel tank. It looks like I can reach in there and replace it. I was also considering changing my spark plugs as well. Hopefully this will fix my problem. I'm glad I found this thread. Do I need to depressurize the fuel system or remove the gas to replace the filter? I hope not, since I just filled the tank up last night.
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Unread 07-10-2012, 07:41 AM   #13
Gunrunner23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by logisticalstyle
I think I need to replace mine. The Jeep (1999 GC Laredo 4.0) is really hesitating when I Accelerate or drive up hill. I was able to locate the secondary filter under the chassis near the fuel tank. It looks like I can reach in there and replace it. I was also considering changing my spark plugs as well. Hopefully this will fix my problem. I'm glad I found this thread. Do I need to depressurize the fuel system or remove the gas to replace the filter? I hope not, since I just filled the tank up last night.
Wjjeeps has a write up. Also clean ur throttle body real good, change plugs, etc.
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Unread 07-10-2012, 10:16 AM   #14
logisticalstyle
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Cool. I just found the write up and it looks fairly simple. I'll be doing this in in a couple of hours. I'll try to video and document the process.
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Unread 07-10-2012, 10:42 AM   #15
780406jeeper
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Hello from sunny Gilbert. I would change it myself. The Napa Gold filter is a Wix filter and an excellent choice. It isn't all that much too. Changing it is not all that hard. Is the Cherokee a 4.0 or 4.7? If you run into an issue I would be glad to give you a hand changing it. It take about 10 minutes to do.

As for other maintenance, I would definitely do the basic stuff like plugs, pcv, clean the throttle body, oil and filter.

Then look into the other stuff like all other fluids such as t-case, tranny, power steering, axles and such. If you are to pay someone to do these it will get really expensive really quick. Great vehicle to learn on so check ebay for a service manual. They come up pretty regularly.

As a last note, brake fluid should be changed every couple of years. It's job is to absorb any moisture in the system as well as trap the dirt. I doubt that jeep has had it's brake fluid flushed so get a couple bottles of good quality Dot 3 fluid and have at it.

Again I am local to you so if you run into an issue, shoot me a pm
Kevin
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