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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When I am driving my CJ-7, I can see the hood rising up and down, against the exterior hood latches. This mostly happens above 50MPH on windy days. I am worried about this issue, so I started doing a walk around inspection on my Jeep each time I drive it, checking my hood latches for security, among other items.

I am afraid one or both hood latches may fail and allow my hood to open while driving at speed. I am also afraid someone may unlatch one or both latches, while my Jeep is unattended in a parking lot, hence the “Walk Around” inspection prior to driving.

A popped hood at speed would probably break my windshield glass, bend my windshield frame, and destroy the hood…it would be a bad day.

I am considering installing of a couple of hood pins, like what some muscle cars had on the front of the hood back in the seventies.

I am also considering a method to assure the internal hood latch, will not allow the hood to open while driving. Maybe a keyed locking mechanism that is designed to deter theft. I am not sure how these devices work, and whether or not it would help to secure the hood while driving.

I’m not so sure the OEM design is actually robust enough to prevent the hood from opening at 50+ MPH, if the external latches were to fail, or left unlatched.

My hood has apparently contacted the windshield frame in the past, but I don’t know if that happened while driving, or if someone just threw the hood open, without using the support rod. My windshield frame has no evidence of damage from hood contact.

The underside of my hood where the internal latch engages, has been damaged in the past as well. I plan on repairing it in the future when I take the Jeep down for a repaint. For now, I kinda feel like I am skating on thin ice.

Has anyone else noticed their hood moving up and down up front while driving at speed?

Has anyone had their hood pop open at speed?

There is a lot of high pressure air up front at speed, and the further the hood comes up, the more surface becomes exposed to that air, the higher it gets the more force it will have. Each time I see my hood bouncing up and down I consider the stress on the hood latches, and wonder how much more they can take?

I’m not sure what I will do to remedy this situation, but I am open to suggestions. In the mean time I will check my latches.

My “Pre-Flight” walk around of my CJ-7 before I strap in, includes the following visual and hands on inspection.

1. Check my hood latches, and raise the hood against spring loaded latches to assure it stops coming up, as the latch spring bottoms.

2. Check my spare tire rack is closed and the lever is engaged with the keeper.

3. Check the tires, for any visible defects and proper inflation.

4. Check the steering gear & hardware for signs of loosening.

5. Check the shackles & hardware for loosening.

6. I nudge my tailpipe with my toe to check for security.

7. Check that my passenger door is closed, fully seated (when installed).

8. Check both rear view mirrors appear to be undisturbed, and still adjusted properly.

I know this is the kind of stuff most people look at, as they approach their vehicle, but some may not.
 

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Axehammer, yes I do see my hood raise and lower above 50, and yes the thought of the hood flying up has crossed my mind before. When my CJ was a DD I use to travel 70mile round trip to work each day most of which was down the freeway, I clearly remember at least on a couple of occasions where I had accidentally forgot to hook the external hood latches, hood stayed in place by the hood release/lock lever. The only time my hood has hit the windscreen was when I had it raised and a gust of wind managed to pop the OEM hood stand and throw it back against it......creating that classic double dent you have. I think you would be okay with the external latches holding if they're in good condition. I do check those latches now though before I head out.
 

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Yes, mine absolutely moves at speed. Seems to move less since my restoration than I remember, new latches seems to be tighter than OEM latches. I also recall driving after forgetting to relatch and the safety latch held.


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The hole in the hood for the safety catch is dented in on mine, and as a result, it JUST latches, with very little free movement of the hood. Not enough to notice while driving I'd guess, but then I haven't had it over 40.
 

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A "preflight" inspection anytime you drive any vehicle is a good idea. I do it. I have an under hood check every I do every Monday or before driving when I haven't driven it for s while. I also at the first of the month I check the tire pressures and lights. This week all of these conditions applied so it took me few minutes. I suspect some folks will call it anal but we both got in this habit in a former life and profession.

I stopped by my lifelong friend Ken's business a while back and he asked me a question about his 2010 Jeep Patriot. I asked him to open his hood and he didn't know how. I severely chastised him for not keeping his oil etc. checked.

Now can you explain how a turn signal light I know was working the last time I drove it didn't work this week?
 

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What I worry most about is someone who wants to see (without permission) what is under the hood. I have not had this problem with my Jeep that I know of but I have had this happen several times with my 1956 GMC pickup when I drove it daily 25 years ago. The feeling I get when I come back to the parking lot after I have been shopping and I find some jackwagon bent over looking under the hood of my vehicle. I know people are curious, but that is over the line. What I always worried about is someone looking and then not getting it latched properly and me having a hood accident because of their prying eyes.

I now have one of these hood locks for my CJ7 just to keep curious people from having a look.

https://www.quadratec.com/p/midwest...U9zxqjMEn5pdlC3_PlOQ1jQ2GZ1nffkhoCZEgQAvD_BwE

It is not that secure of a lock, but it will keep an honest person without tools from lifting the hood and provide a little extra security.

I was much nicer 25 years ago and I am sure I would have a much more negative attitude to anyone messing with my vehicle today.
 

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I'm not so sure the OEM design is actually robust enough to prevent the hood from opening at 50+ MPH, if the external latches were to fail, or left unlatched.

The underside of my hood where the internal latch engages, has been damaged in the past as well. I plan on repairing it in the future when I take the Jeep down for a repaint. For now, I kinda feel like I am skating on thin ice.

Has anyone else noticed their hood moving up and down up front while driving at speed?
There has been a few times I left the side latches undone while tinkering under the hood then taking it for test drive and get that scary feeling when I see the hood trying to rise when I'm pushing the right pedal down hard. Panic stop immediately follows, jump out and latch the hood down.

But I must say, I never had the hood lift up and slam the windshield frame as the internal latch always holds it in place just enough to not allow that to happen but enough to scare the bee-Jesus out of you.
I give that internal latch much more credit now after last years accident when someone turned in front of me. The side latches almost popped and were stretched to their limits but internal latch held. Held so well it starting ripping my hood open like a can opener, but it never allowed the hood to pop open even though it was a hard impact.

Automotive tail & brake light Car Automotive lighting Hood Motor vehicle


Tire Wheel Automotive parking light Vehicle Grille


I won't be so scared anymore if I forget to latch the side latches knowing the internal latch is there and WILL do its job.
 

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A friend had the hood on his M38A1 rise up and come back into his windshield. The windshield frame was badly rusted at the hinges and gave away. As he was trying to pull off the highway while holding the windshield up, some screwball woman driving behind him kept giving him the horn.
 

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My safety latch was missing when I creased the hood/ busted the glass/ broke both windshield hinges off/ warped up the

windshield frame on my 1st Jeep around 1982------I had forgot to latch the latches----Then I cried for a long time.

Weeks later I pulled out in front of a semi, he was doing about 40, He was hurt really bad (my Jeep).

Most I've ever cried!

I traded him for $2000 off on number two Jeep.

Since then, I had forgotten to latch 'em once more on #2, at 55 MPH it lifted a few times and the safety latch held on to it!

So, if you don't have a latch.........I highly recommend you replace or fix it......saves on a lot of tears.

------JEEPFELLER
 

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I have zero movement on my stock 84 hold downs. I used to have a 60 cj5 that (no center latch, just side hold downs). I was out in the desert and a bunch of folks were looking over my Jeep. Didn't notice that the latches were not put back. Hit the pavement and at about 40 the thing flew up...bent my windshield frame and broke the windshield. Definitely no fun. After that and driving for UPS/FedEx I pretrip my vehicles all the time. Even do it now with other folks cars when I'm not driving lol.
 

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I have no internal safety latch.
If my hood ever popped up at speed, I would have nothing of my fiberglass hood left but dust, my steel windshield frame would likely be OK.
PO installed these beefy rubber tie down contraptions, they've survived for the past 27 years that I've owned my Jeep.
There is a fair amount of tensile load on those rubber bungees, so much so that I have never seen my hood wiggle at any speed. (discalimer: never been above 75 mph)

 
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It happened to me this summer. I had been bleeding the brakes and forgot to latch the safety catches. I got out of my neighborhood made it less than a mile and I noticed the hood "jumping". About the time I noticed the movement in the hood and my brain realized I need to pull over the hood slams into the windshield frame. Creased the hood warped the windshield frame and probably the windshield hinges.

A 4lb sledge from underneath fixed the hood good enough for now until I get to the body work stage of the restoration. This week I am gonna pull the windshield frame and hinges and take them to a body/restoration shop to see if they can fix them.
 

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I never see any movement of the hood on my 78 CJ5, it rarely sees speeds more than 60 though. Both of the TJ's I've had freaked me out a lot with the hood jumping up. The hold downs on a TJ are rubber and stretchy. Numerous times when heading into a wind and meeting a semi on a two lane road that burst of wind will send the hood flying upward so fast that I instinctively duck. It's so unnerving that when I see a truck coming I'll move over from the centerline as far as I can. That said the hood catch has always held on both CJ & TJ. This thread makes me want to check the alignment on the safety latches to make sure they have plenty of purchase on the grill.
 

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I have no internal safety latch.
If my hood ever popped up at speed, I would have nothing of my fiberglass hood left but dust, my steel windshield frame would likely be OK.
PO installed these beefy rubber tie down contraptions, they've survived for the past 27 years that I've owned my Jeep.
There is a fair amount of tensile load on those rubber bungees, so much so that I have never seen my hood wiggle at any speed. (discalimer: never been above 75 mph)

I have seen those rubber type hold downs before. Were they ever OEM on jeep CJs?
 

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I would feel safer with OEM metal latches, than the rubber.
Just me....
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks to everyone for all the input, it sounds like I should be GTG for now. When I bought my CJ-7 in 2019 I replaced the hood latches with some SS latches, I installed the Rampage 7401 kit.

I’m going keep an eye on everything as is. Maybe I will go ahead and bond a SS sheet metal doubler to the hood latch area of the hood. I have been planning on doing it during the repaint, but maybe sooner now. Mine has several holes drilled in the area, and the metal seems to have been bent or stretched in this area. And just to be clear, I am talking about the area where Keith’s hood was sliced by the interior latch. This is the area I will bond in a SS sheet metal doubler, adding strength, since mine seems to have been compromised.

Keiths picture tells me that latch is pretty strong, so that it a good thing.
 

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My hood doesn't move at all. My side latches while probably original are very tight. The bumper stops are there but one is missing I need to replace. The bump stops in my opinion are essential to keep the hood stabilized. They are what keeps tension against the hood latch to keep the hood from fluttering. Just my opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
All of my rubber bumpers are in place on my grill, but they look a little flat. I think I have some new ones, maybe if I replace them it will help.
 

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