WJ overheating in traffic - JeepForum.com
Search  
Sign Up   Today's Posts
User: Pass: Remember?
Advertise Here
Jeep Home Jeep Forum Jeep Classifieds Jeep Registry JeepSpace Jeep Reviews Jeep Gallery Jeep Clubs Jeep Groups Jeep Videos Jeep Events Jeep Articles
Go Back JeepForum.com > Models > Jeep Grand Cherokee & Commander Forums > WJ Grand Cherokee Forum > WJ overheating in traffic

WJ Modular Recovery & Bull Bar Relocation PackagesRough Country Jeep Suspension Deals at Rockridge 4WD!Steinjager TJ tube doors

Reply
Unread 06-18-2013, 08:01 AM   #1
matt21484
Registered User
2004 WJ 
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: St. Louis-IL side
Posts: 169
WJ overheating in traffic

My WJ just started overheating today while I was sitting in traffic. I noticed that the fan would kick into high gear and it took me a minute to realize what was going on. So here is the rundown of my commute this morning.
  • 15 minutes of highway driving at highway speeds - no problem
  • 10 minutes of stop and go traffic on the highway - fan kicks on and engine temp is creeping way up (240ish). I immediatly turn off the AC (it was @ 68F and the fan was on the lowest setting) and the needle slows down it's creep.
  • Another 15 minutes of highway driving at highway speed (half w/ AC off half w/ AC on). - engine temp returns to normal.
  • I then pull into the parking lot and turn the AC back on for maybe 2 minutes while the Jeep is in Park - engine temp starts creeping up a bit.

Help? I am by no means a mechanic and have never done any major work on the Jeep before outside of filters, oil changes & spark plugs. Hoping I can do any repairs in my garage and I'm not afraid to get my hands dirty.

__________________
Blue Jeep Club Member #252

Quote:
Originally Posted by nlynd1978 View Post
Any one who tells me it "can fit" is the person i ask to find me some one more knowledgeable about what im looking for. I mean, diesel can fit in your gas tank, Trans fluid fits in your oil pan, fat women fit in your bed. Just cause it can doesnt mean you should.
matt21484 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-18-2013, 08:24 AM   #2
Caelum
Registered User
2003 WJ 
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Kannapolis, North Carolina
Posts: 121
Check rad, thermstat and water pump
Caelum is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-18-2013, 11:30 AM   #3
Planetcat
Registered User
2004 WJ 
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: West of the Mississippi
Posts: 1,389
My guess is water pump. Have vato zone or pep boys do a pressure test on the system. Takes 5 minutes, but has to be a cold engine/fluid.
__________________
2004 WJ 4.7L, 1959 CJ-5, 1990 XJ Limited, 1996 XJ (sold), 1989 YJ Wrangler 4.2L (Sold)
Planetcat is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-18-2013, 01:55 PM   #4
rdkendrick
Registered User
2003 WJ 
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
Posts: 2,476
Quote:
Originally Posted by matt21484 View Post
My WJ just started overheating today while I was sitting in traffic. I noticed that the fan would kick into high gear and it took me a minute to realize what was going on. So here is the rundown of my commute this morning.


15 minutes of highway driving at highway speeds - no problem
10 minutes of stop and go traffic on the highway - fan kicks on and engine temp is creeping way up (240ish). I immediatly turn off the AC (it was @ 68F and the fan was on the lowest setting) and the needle slows down it's creep.
Another 15 minutes of highway driving at highway speed (half w/ AC off half w/ AC on). - engine temp returns to normal.

I then pull into the parking lot and turn the AC back on for maybe 2 minutes while the Jeep is in Park - engine temp starts creeping up a bit.

Help? I am by no means a mechanic and have never done any major work on the Jeep before outside of filters, oil changes & spark plugs. Hoping I can do any repairs in my garage and I'm not afraid to get my hands dirty.
First things, first. Do you have enough coolant? You might be low. Next, I would agree that it needs to be tested to figure out which is going bad, radiator or water pump. Thermostats don't gradually go bad, they just fail, normally.

Sent from my iPad using Forum Runner
rdkendrick is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-18-2013, 06:57 PM   #5
tim0
Member
 
tim0's Avatar
2002 WJ 
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Kansas City, Kansas
Posts: 209
If it only over heats at slow speeds or standing still. I would start with the radiator fan, make sure the clutch fan is spinning fast enough.
See if it spins easily when the engine is off. Should have some drag to it.

Does it have the electric fan as well? Check to see if it run when the AC is on.
tim0 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-18-2013, 08:30 PM   #6
Scibbyz99WJ
Registered User
1999 WJ 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Howell, Michigan
Posts: 867
I do not know what motor you have, but some 4.0s came with only an e-fan. The early 99-00 models had several problems with relays, sensors, and just bad wiring. With the a/c on your e-fan should come on as well. My suggestion is start there.
__________________
'99 stroked 4.5L WJ 2" BDS lift
2008 Fire Red F150 XLT 4X4 3V 5.4LV8

Closed minds should go hand in hand with closed mouths
Scibbyz99WJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-18-2013, 08:38 PM   #7
matt21484
Registered User
2004 WJ 
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: St. Louis-IL side
Posts: 169
Engine is the 4.7 HO, I'll check the fluid tonight, hoping that is all it is. Kido's just went to bed so it's Jeep time.
__________________
Blue Jeep Club Member #252

Quote:
Originally Posted by nlynd1978 View Post
Any one who tells me it "can fit" is the person i ask to find me some one more knowledgeable about what im looking for. I mean, diesel can fit in your gas tank, Trans fluid fits in your oil pan, fat women fit in your bed. Just cause it can doesnt mean you should.
matt21484 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-19-2013, 01:01 AM   #8
cykaaro
Registered User
2000 WJ 
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: orangville, ON
Posts: 2,804
Quote:
Originally Posted by tim0 View Post
If it only over heats at slow speeds or standing still. I would start with the radiator fan, make sure the clutch fan is spinning fast enough.
See if it spins easily when the engine is off. Should have some drag to it.

Does it have the electric fan as well? Check to see if it run when the AC is on.
Exactly. It's typical sign, if you have the e-fan that either the fan isn't coming on, or the fan relay is toast is you're fine when moving, but running too hot, or overheating in slow moving or stopped traffic. I just went through this. First my relay, then an issue with the fan. The relay MAY cause a check engine light, but not necessarily.

To rule the fan out is easy. Jumper the fan direct to the battery. Does it spin? If so, it may have an issue, but not as likely. The relay is under the header panel beneath the passenger side headlight. You can take a dremel and cut an access hole carefully and save yourself a headache removing the front to replace.


Another thing, is if it HAS thrown a check engine code, the fan/new relay will not work unless it's been cleared.

If you have a local mechanic with a DRBIII scanner, he can easily check to see if the relay is good or bad. Mine was able to do mine. I switched mine from the good one thinking it was an issue. turns out it was fine, and the issue was the fan connector.
__________________
The beatings will continue until attitudes improve!

HID Quad bi-xenon + foglight retrofit
http://www.hidplanet.com/forums/showthread.php?44572-Jeep-2000-Grand-Cherokee-WJ
cykaaro is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-19-2013, 08:22 AM   #9
Cebby
Registered User
2000 WJ 
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Pittsburgh (Oakmont), PA
Posts: 522
Quote:
Originally Posted by cykaaro View Post
Another thing, is if it HAS thrown a check engine code, the fan/new relay will not work unless it's been cleared.
This is not correct. I had a P1491 code and replacing the relay made it spring back to life even with the CEL still on.

I went and cleared the CEL the following day.
__________________
Tech Writeups and more...
2000 WJ Laredo 4.0 4x4 Taupe Frost - Clayton LA Front/Rear | IRO 3" Springs + 3/4" KOR | Bilstein Shocks | JKS Discos/Trackbar/Draglink & Tierod | Dual KOR Stabs | Spidertrax Spacers | 265/70R17 Duratrac's on JK 17's | Black Magic Brakes w/Centric Rotors | Akebono Calipers | Griffin Rad | K&N Drop in | Magnaflow Cat & Muffler shorty setup | Diehard Platinum (Odyssey) | RB1-NAV-Sirius-Chg-iPod | OEM Tow Hooks F/R
Cebby is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-19-2013, 08:57 AM   #10
cykaaro
Registered User
2000 WJ 
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: orangville, ON
Posts: 2,804
Interesting. Mine would not work until the code was cleared.
__________________
The beatings will continue until attitudes improve!

HID Quad bi-xenon + foglight retrofit
http://www.hidplanet.com/forums/showthread.php?44572-Jeep-2000-Grand-Cherokee-WJ
cykaaro is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-19-2013, 11:06 AM   #11
matt21484
Registered User
2004 WJ 
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: St. Louis-IL side
Posts: 169
TBH, I'm not sure if it has the e-fan or a hydraulic fan. Those of you in the know could answer better. The Jeep is in my profile, 2004 WJ w/ the 4.7HO. I can hear the radiator fan (is there another fan somewhere else?) kick on when the temp gets above 210, but still doesn't help move the needle down. Turning the AC off made a huge difference today though when I was driving around the neighborhood; going 25-40 mph for about 20 minutes, temps rose and once I killed the AC, things went back to normal in these driving conditions. The fan was still running though. Any and all help is appreciated, I'm scouring the web for info as well. Seems like the early WJ's had this issue, but it was supposed to be worked out w/ the 04 models?

I did top off the antifreeze last night, but did not seem to be the issue, FYI.

Thanks!
__________________
Blue Jeep Club Member #252

Quote:
Originally Posted by nlynd1978 View Post
Any one who tells me it "can fit" is the person i ask to find me some one more knowledgeable about what im looking for. I mean, diesel can fit in your gas tank, Trans fluid fits in your oil pan, fat women fit in your bed. Just cause it can doesnt mean you should.
matt21484 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-19-2013, 11:16 AM   #12
Scibbyz99WJ
Registered User
1999 WJ 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Howell, Michigan
Posts: 867
Sounds to me like you have an air bubble in the system or need a new thermostat.
__________________
'99 stroked 4.5L WJ 2" BDS lift
2008 Fire Red F150 XLT 4X4 3V 5.4LV8

Closed minds should go hand in hand with closed mouths
Scibbyz99WJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-19-2013, 01:14 PM   #13
Planetcat
Registered User
2004 WJ 
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: West of the Mississippi
Posts: 1,389
The 4.7L does not have a clutch fan. Just the hydraulic one. He says his fan is kicking on "in high gear", so it sounds like it's working. Sounds like a fluid flow problem. I'm sticking with my original prediction that it's the water pump. Rent (for free) if you can from one of the major parts stores, a pressure tester. It just replaces the radiator cap, pump it up, and you'll see leaking if you have a leak somewhere in the system. If you have a lot of miles on your jeep, the water pump blades could be corroded and not pushing fluid like it should. Air in the system will cause a very fast spike and high temps right away, not what you're describing. If the t-stat is stuck closed, that will cause the problem also. Either way, it's a big PITA to remove that housing in front of the engine. The good thing is that you can get to everything, replace the $10 thermostat with an OE or Robert Shaw one, use 195*, check the blades on the water pump and pullies, belt, etc. to make sure they're rolling properly. If none of that fixes it, then your radiator might be clogged. Prolonged adding of hose-water instead of distilled will cause the corrosion and clogging.
__________________
2004 WJ 4.7L, 1959 CJ-5, 1990 XJ Limited, 1996 XJ (sold), 1989 YJ Wrangler 4.2L (Sold)
Planetcat is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-19-2013, 03:02 PM   #14
matt21484
Registered User
2004 WJ 
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: St. Louis-IL side
Posts: 169
I forgot to mention I have the stock tow package as well. Don't know if that complicates things or not
__________________
Blue Jeep Club Member #252

Quote:
Originally Posted by nlynd1978 View Post
Any one who tells me it "can fit" is the person i ask to find me some one more knowledgeable about what im looking for. I mean, diesel can fit in your gas tank, Trans fluid fits in your oil pan, fat women fit in your bed. Just cause it can doesnt mean you should.
matt21484 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 06-19-2013, 04:00 PM   #15
matt21484
Registered User
2004 WJ 
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: St. Louis-IL side
Posts: 169
Alright, so I think I found a problem, I don't think it's the ultimate solution, but there is a lot of air in the system. How this happened, I'm not sure, but please see the video below. From my searches on this forum and the net, this indicates some sort of internal breakage, first sign would be water pump since there is no coolant on the garage floor. Please correct me if I'm wrong. Link goes to my skydrive account, not spam. (couldn't figure out how to upload video)
http://sdrv.ms/11z2rIg
__________________
Blue Jeep Club Member #252

Quote:
Originally Posted by nlynd1978 View Post
Any one who tells me it "can fit" is the person i ask to find me some one more knowledgeable about what im looking for. I mean, diesel can fit in your gas tank, Trans fluid fits in your oil pan, fat women fit in your bed. Just cause it can doesnt mean you should.
matt21484 is offline   Reply With Quote




Jeep, Wrangler, Cherokee, Grand Cherokee, and other models are copyrighted and trademarked to Jeep/Chrysler Corporation. JeepForum.com is not in any way associated with Jeep or the Chrysler Corp.