Last post on Sep 06, 2013 at 3:11 PM
You are in the Jeep Wrangler
What is this discussion about?
Jeep Wrangler, SUV
#20847 of 23397 Been there, done that
Jan 13, 2006 (5:53 am)
Welcome to the world of a teenage driver in the family. It's great and it sucks at the same time!
I had the same line of thought you did. I got my daughter a 97 TJ SE a few years ago AFTER she turned 16. We made her take a defensive driving class at Willow Springs, and I think it taught her to be more aggressive. When she would drive the Wrangler, she would take turns too fast and a couple of times, nearly rolled it. While a Wrangler is VERY easy to do DIY stuff to, I didn't want to risk her flipping it. She ended up getting a Honda Civic (less likely to roll over, but still a tin can) for college and I haven't worried nearly as much. She knows if she hits anything or gets hit, she's in that tin can, so it settled her down a bit. Now if I could just get her to not want to do the wheels, exhaust, lowering, turbo, etc, it'd be great (yeah she's been around me and cars too much).
Regarding the ease of repair, if she was driving the Wrangler, a LOT of the work, including body work can be done simply by covering it up with body armor and/or flat fenders and such. This also makes it more trail ready (who'd a thunk it?). The rockers I have also protect it from shopping carts and car doors (yeah, go ahead and hit my 1/4" thick steel sides with your aluminum doors).
The only mechanical issues I have had that were not self induced are:
1. Exhaust manifold cracked (as mentioned by Tom). I think they fixed this on 99 or 2000 and later TJ's.
2. Catalytic converter broke. Replaced by dealer.
3. Radiator leak (VERY common on ALL TJ's). Replaced with aftermarket radiator and did the work myself. Replaced thermostat at the same time.
4. Slight pinion seal leak from front differential. Will fix when I regear.
That has been IT. Our 2000 Grand Cherokee only had issues with the pinion seals, and after several visits to the dealer, they finally fixed it.
Now that my daughter is in her Civic, the Jeep is mine, all mine! I've had a blast driving it, even with only 4 cylinders firing. I keep up with Tom and the group at Turkey Bay, but I have to understand my engine's limits and deal with my lower clearance (I'm on 30" tires still - Tom is on 31's and has lockers).
When looking for a used Jeep, be sure to check the undercarriage for visible signs of offroading - scratches on the frame and transfer case skid, anything bent (or missing), check for rust spots on the frame and bottom of the tub.
If you get an SE, I'd stay away from the automatics. The manual does a pretty good job of keeping the 4 cylinders up in the torque band, instead of letting the computer tell you when.
If you have any questions, just ask away! Welcome to the site!
#20848 of 23397 Re: Trying to figure out what kind of wrangler to buy [coug2]
Jan 13, 2006 (6:43 am)
You'll love the Jeep so go with what you can afford. But I would never, never let a 16 year old drive an SUV. Paul is right, the daughter needs a Civic or something similar. If you do a search of previous posts you'll find a great article from USA Today regarding teenage drivers and SUVs. I have two 16 year old nieces who have rolled SUVs and were lucky to walk away. One rolled a 4 Runner and the other an Explorer.
Jan 14, 2006 (5:03 am)
Does anyone know where I can find pics of TJs with different sized tires and lifts. Looks are not the first thing I look for in a lift, but it is a consideration. I'm looking to run 33"s but don't want a big gap between tires and body, won't even consider more than 1" of body lift. I prefer to just go with suspension but may require a body lift if I decide to go with the avenger supercharger I am considering.
#20850 of 23397 Re: TJ lift kits [rich5166]
Jan 14, 2006 (10:36 am)
I believe this is your first post, so welcome to the board. Your proifle says you are Army and are deployed. Thanks, Rich, for serving our country. Be careful over there and come home safe. Are you by any chance part of the 101st? I Jeep with some of those boys at Turkey Bay. Ft. Campbell is not too far from there. You are welcome to join us anytime.
Are you going to "wheel" your Jeep? If so, you will need more room for axle travel to keep the tires from rubbing the flares. If you are not going to do any offroading with the sway bar disco'd, then I believe you could get by with an OME 2" lift, which gives most people almost 3" of lift with the HD version. If you are going to "wheel" and disconnect the sway bar, then I think you will need a 1" body lift as well, or go with a four inch suspension lift.
I will try to find you a link to that website that shows Jeeps with various lifts and tires. There is such a place.
Have you hugged your Jeep today?
#20852 of 23397 Re: TJ lift kits [jeff62301]
Jan 14, 2006 (1:03 pm)
Good job, Jeff! I'll bet that is exactly what Rich was looking for. I was trying to find that same thing for him, but I wasn't having any luck.
Have you hugged your Jeep today?
#20853 of 23397 sway bar/articulation question
Jan 14, 2006 (3:31 pm)
Well, with my new mud tires, I'm planning on hittin' the trails soon. However, I have a few questions:
I've never disconnected the sway bar, and am well aware of the benefits of doing this. I want to try now, but how do I get it off? I know I need a t55 torx and the wrench, but do I unhook both sides, just one side? I have the tools, so the only problem should be the 9 years of (likely) never been disconnected. Should I expect a tough time?
Also, because I have 31's, I'm aware of the potential of fender rubbing; is this bad or severe? Could it damage anything severely? Is it stupid to disco with 31's and no lift? Anyone do this?
As you can see, I have a few questions that need answering before I take Black Betty (yep! ) to the trails.
As always, thanks, and I look forward to some great responses!
#20854 of 23397 Re: sway bar/articulation question [barnz_69]
Jan 14, 2006 (3:45 pm)
Disconnect both sides, then rotate the bar up and out of the way and secure it there with zip ties.
Disconnecting and reconnecting will be much easier if you do it on a clean flat and level surface.
Unless you're conducting some kind of banzai high speed maneuver you shouldn't damage anything, though you'll probably rub a tire on the inside of one of your fender flares now and again.
#20855 of 23397 Re: sway bar/articulation question [barnz_69]
Jan 14, 2006 (6:01 pm)
Check these pictures out.
You can check out my website for a little more info.
Go get 'em!
Have you hugged your Jeep today?">link title
#20856 of 23397 Tire Rotation
Jan 16, 2006 (7:44 am)
OK Jeep buds, there has to be an easier way. Just rolled 5K miles and decided to rotate my tires, rotating in the spare as suggested by more knowledgable posters. Seems like this would be quick and painless with a lift, but it is cumbersome with only a floor jack and a couple of jack stands. Any suggestions on how to speed up the process? I do have a high lift jack and a second small floor jack--and a credit card that I intend to use unless someone has a time saving suggestion