Mystery Oil Filter Problem On '94 Cherokee - JeepForum.com
 
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post #1 of 5 Old 11-19-2016, 08:44 AM Thread Starter
Justin Brimm
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Xj Mystery Oil Filter Problem On '94 Cherokee

My brother purchased a '94 4.0L, manual, 4x4, 4dr Cherokee a few months back (I know, it's a unicorn), and yesterday was the first time we went to change the oil on it (along with about a dozen other small tasks between 3 different vehicles).

Long story short, the entire day was a fiasco from beginning to end (I've learned to hate previous owners and the stuff they pull), but possibly the worst of it, was that the Cherokee only fits a mystery oil filter. In fact, the O'Reilly people were nice enough to go through every different filter they had on the shelf, and check them against the old filter, and none match.

So here's what we do know:
  1. The old filter (back on the vehicle for now) is a FRAM Extra Guard PH3985 (further points explain why it's a mystery filter)
  2. The old filter isn't even close to the same filter as a brand new PH3985 that the store had in stock. We couldn't make heads or tales of it, because two filters with the same part number should never be incompatible.
  3. The old filter is the exact same size as the WIX 51085, which is the filter I use on my '05 Rubicon and my father uses on his '89 Comanche. The reason the WIX and all other "compatible" filters don't fit, is that they have a fine thread, and the old FRAM PH3985 has about half as many threads, which are about 3 times thicker. We're talking drastically coarser threads.
  4. The older filter is engraved with 2V on the bottom, and has A40941 printed lengthwise on the body of the filter. The second almost seems like it's just a lot number, but better to list them and not need them, than to leave them out and have them be identifiable information.

The problem here is obvious; the threads are so different from each other, that attempting to thread on a new filter simply doesn't work. If you try and force it, it'll machine all the threads out of the new filter. On the 4.0L, the oil filter housing is removable from the block, so I'm beginning to wonder if the old owner didn't replace it with a housing scavenged from an entirely different vehicle, because although it looks like a standard 90* housing found on the XJ 4.0L, that FRAM PH3985 isn't listed as a Jeep compatible filter.

P.S. Please tell me if you know what vehicle the old filter is supposed to belong to, and if you know anything about why a brand new filter with that part number, doesn't match the older filter.

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post #2 of 5 Old 11-19-2016, 09:12 AM
cruiser54
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89 should not take a 51085 unless someone changed the nipple on the oil filter adapter.

As for the new Jeep, go get a 53007563AB nipple from the dealer and use the 51085.

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post #3 of 5 Old 11-19-2016, 10:22 AM Thread Starter
Justin Brimm
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Thanks for your help; we don't have a service manual for it, so I made the oil filter choice based off online oil filter guides and also what they said in the store (both sources quote the same filter as the newer Jeep). Swapping for that part and using the same filter for both vehicles, sounds like a great solution compared to trying to figure out what filter it's actually meant to use.

Once that problem is solved, I'll have to figure out what to do about changing the transmission oil (I did say the entire day was a fiasco). The previous owner had rounded off the fill plug (at least I remembered to always remove the fill plug first). I managed to grind enough of a flat on the plug, that I could grab it with channel locks, but even with a cheater bar on it, I couldn't make it budge at all. I don't have a welder, so I'm thinking I need to take it into a shop, where they can weld on a nut to the head of the plug, and try to knock it out with an air ratchet. Obviously going to need a new fill plug too.
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post #4 of 5 Old 11-19-2016, 02:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin Brimm View Post
Thanks for your help; we don't have a service manual for it, so I made the oil filter choice based off online oil filter guides and also what they said in the store (both sources quote the same filter as the newer Jeep). Swapping for that part and using the same filter for both vehicles, sounds like a great solution compared to trying to figure out what filter it's actually meant to use.

Once that problem is solved, I'll have to figure out what to do about changing the transmission oil (I did say the entire day was a fiasco). The previous owner had rounded off the fill plug (at least I remembered to always remove the fill plug first). I managed to grind enough of a flat on the plug, that I could grab it with channel locks, but even with a cheater bar on it, I couldn't make it budge at all. I don't have a welder, so I'm thinking I need to take it into a shop, where they can weld on a nut to the head of the plug, and try to knock it out with an air ratchet. Obviously going to need a new fill plug too.
And that part is only $6 or so.

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http://cruiser54.com/?p=257

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post #5 of 5 Old 11-19-2016, 02:34 PM Thread Starter
Justin Brimm
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Yep, already ordered the part, as it's cheap enough that I don't see a reason not to just go this route. Now if only someone could magic me a simple and easy solution to the buggered fill plug.
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