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#4651262 - 01/30/18 03:03 PM 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for?
TinyVoices Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 482
Loc: Vienna, VA
Looking at potentially buying a 1995 XJ. 2 door 4x4 4.0L which I understand is a rare and desirable combo. Automatic trans. No modifications.

I have never had a Jeep and I'm not a "jeep person". My SUV knowledge starts and stops with 4runners.

What should I look for when going to see this truck? Its got 200k on it, supposedly little to no rust, and everything works.

I know about the door hinge rust, but what else should I be aware of. This truck is a bit of a fixer upper but I am looking for a project/daily driver type car so that's fine. Everything for the truck seems to be dirt cheap on RockAuto and they are plentiful in junkyards.
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1993 Toyota MR2 Hardtop N/A - 157k miles - Valvoline Max Life 5w30
2006 Toyota Matrix XR AWD (Fiancee) - 126k miles - Valvoline Max Life 5w30

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#4651290 - 01/30/18 03:27 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: TinyVoices]
JustN89 Offline


Registered: 06/27/17
Posts: 472
Loc: DFW
The headliner will probably start sagging soon, unless it likely already is.

It will develop a leak at the oil filter adapter.

Jeeps of this era also suffered from weak solder points, so expect intermittent electrical issues.

However these are awesome vehicles and are very reliable mechanically.

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#4651293 - 01/30/18 03:28 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: TinyVoices]
Dyusik Offline


Registered: 09/26/14
Posts: 1984
Loc: US-WA
Doors falling off was a pain, but everything else is straight forward with this thing. My 95 gave me not troubles. Shocks went, an excuse form a lift, Dana turdy five leaked at the wheel, an excuse for an 8.8. Other than that all the things that happened to it I caused.
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07 IS250 97K FB ?w??,FULL
04 YZF-R1 19K DELO 15w40,XG7317
99 HD XL1200S 18K VR1 20w50,1515
14 RX450h 30k PP 0w20,NAPAG

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#4651309 - 01/30/18 03:38 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: TinyVoices]
Driz Offline


Registered: 09/23/07
Posts: 261
Loc: northern NY
Is this going to be a daily driver or toy? If needed to live Iíd say RUN. Straight off youíll never get anywhere near the reliability of what you are used to. Engine at 200k just has to be near itís end of life and need a rebuild . Tranny, uhhhhh Jeep has far from the best and thatís being kind. Unless itís a newer replacement you can expect issues soon.
4 wd is decent in those really . Brakes tires average, gas mileage average.
We had 2 96 and 2000 grands Nice to get around in but boy I changed nearly everything on that 2000 to get 155 k from it. Engine and had servos replaced on the tranny. Lots of little stuff , more than anything I ever owned.
On the other hand Iíve seen a couple at 200 that were fine . Iím just not sure how honest the owners were with me about itís past issues. Some seeem like that while many are not.
For a toy if you can get it cheap it could serve you well just donít expect the reliability for a dependable car wspecially with that age and miles.

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#4651354 - 01/30/18 04:02 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: TinyVoices]
Leo99 Offline


Registered: 03/30/14
Posts: 3050
Loc: NJ
I had a Cherokee of about that vintage.

I would stay away from it. Most Cherokees seemed to last about 225k miles on them. This one is getting close. The elastomers and seals on mine started to go and that is what caused its demise. That was 15 years ago. Can't think 15 years more is going the seals any good.

Every Cherokee I looked at had the windshield washer fluid dashboard light lit.

Mine was spewing oil out of the RMS. I was commuting 60 miles each way and the Jeep was real shaky over 85mph. It was time to get something that didn't spew oil or shake at highway speeds.

But if you want something to go off road with, they are great! I used to take mine on the beach and have a great time. Even went down some trails here and there.

Also, if you're comfortable changing a RMS, then have at it!


Edited by Leo99 (01/30/18 04:03 PM)
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2003 Corolla 250,000 miles
2004 Rav4 359,000 miles
2015 Camry 59,000 miles

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#4651362 - 01/30/18 04:07 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: Driz]
mechjames Offline


Registered: 01/16/08
Posts: 516
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Around here it'd be more desirable as a 4 door and a manual trans.

Originally Posted By: Driz
Engine at 200k just has to be near itís end of life and need a rebuild .

At 200k, the 4.0 Inline 6 is just broken in.

Originally Posted By: Driz
Tranny, uhhhhh Jeep has far from the best and thatís being kind. Unless itís a newer replacement you can expect issues soon.

XJ's have Toyota built Aisin Warner Transmissions. The AW-4 to be exact. Far cry from the weaker electronically controlled torquefiltes, and even then most issues are just electrical solenoids, easy fixes. [/quote]


Originally Posted By: Driz
4 wd is decent in those really . Brakes tires average, gas mileage average.

I agree with you there.

Originally Posted By: Driz
We had 2 96 and 2000 grands Nice to get around in but boy I changed nearly everything on that 2000 to get 155 k from it. Engine and had servos replaced on the tranny. Lots of little stuff , more than anything I ever owned.
On the other hand Iíve seen a couple at 200 that were fine . Iím just not sure how honest the owners were with me about itís past issues. Some seeem like that while many are not.
For a toy if you can get it cheap it could serve you well just donít expect the reliability for a dependable car wspecially with that age and miles.

I've owned an 95 5.2, a 96 5.2 and now have a 99 5.9 ZJ. All depends on the maintenance. The 96 was great, only thing was wheel bearings and oil changes over a few years.
The 95 ate a map sensor, a IAC valve, had leaky rear main, and fuel pump went all in a year.
Currently on my 98, doing the plenum gasket, and already had to do IAC and MAP sensor.

Engine sensors are common issues and aftermarket ones aren't that good, better to use OEM mopar if you can.

At this age, if you can take care of repairs yourself, then get it. If youre planning on paying a shop to do repairs as they come along, not a good buy.


Edited by mechjames (01/30/18 04:08 PM)
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86 Mustang 5.0L 170km - Amsoil XL 5w30 / Baldwin B2-HPG
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98 Jeep ZJ 5.9 - Amsoil OE 10w30 / Baldwin B34

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#4651370 - 01/30/18 04:11 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: Leo99]
mechjames Offline


Registered: 01/16/08
Posts: 516
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Originally Posted By: Leo99


Every Cherokee I looked at had the windshield washer fluid dashboard light lit.

Simple sensor change in the washer fluid reservoir. Or just jump the wires at the sensor and light goes out forever.

Mine was spewing oil out of the RMS. I was commuting 60 miles each way and the Jeep was real shaky over 85mph. It was time to get something that didn't spew oil or shake at highway speeds. [/quote]

Rear main seals are definitely an issue in vehicles that are 15-20 years old.
I bet if you replaced track bar and all the bushings in the suspension and got an alignment then it wouldn't be shaky on the highway.
_________________________
86 Mustang 5.0L 170km - Amsoil XL 5w30 / Baldwin B2-HPG
14 Ram 1500 5.7 - Amsoil XL 5w20 / Baldwin B7443
98 Jeep ZJ 5.9 - Amsoil OE 10w30 / Baldwin B34

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#4651400 - 01/30/18 04:38 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: mechjames]
Leo99 Offline


Registered: 03/30/14
Posts: 3050
Loc: NJ
Originally Posted By: mechjames
Originally Posted By: Leo99


Every Cherokee I looked at had the windshield washer fluid dashboard light lit.

Simple sensor change in the washer fluid reservoir. Or just jump the wires at the sensor and light goes out forever.

Mine was spewing oil out of the RMS. I was commuting 60 miles each way and the Jeep was real shaky over 85mph. It was time to get something that didn't spew oil or shake at highway speeds.


Rear main seals are definitely an issue in vehicles that are 15-20 years old.
I bet if you replaced track bar and all the bushings in the suspension and got an alignment then it wouldn't be shaky on the highway. [/quote]

That windshield washer fluid dashboard light used to drive my girlfriend (now my wife) nuts. "I can't believe you drive around with a dashboard light lit up." We has a lot of fun in the jeep.
_________________________
Without data you're just another person with an opinion. W. E. Deming

2003 Corolla 250,000 miles
2004 Rav4 359,000 miles
2015 Camry 59,000 miles

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#4651408 - 01/30/18 04:45 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: TinyVoices]
TinyVoices Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 482
Loc: Vienna, VA
Thanks everyone for the info. I'm not opposed to doing any and all work myself in my garage. I have everything buy a lift and I have done mos tall types of repairs under the sun.

I'll be on the lookout for rust and RMS leaks.
_________________________
1993 Toyota MR2 Hardtop N/A - 157k miles - Valvoline Max Life 5w30
2006 Toyota Matrix XR AWD (Fiancee) - 126k miles - Valvoline Max Life 5w30

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#4651426 - 01/30/18 05:28 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: TinyVoices]
Kira Online   content


Registered: 08/19/10
Posts: 5245
Loc: Champlain/Hudson Valley
Determine if it's SelecTrac (4FULL TIME, 4W PART TIME, N, 2WHI) or Command Trac (4WLO, 4WHIGH, N 2WHI)
Sis had an '88 2 door Pioneer and a '99 4 door Sport over a 15 year period.
Both had the NP242 (SelecTrac) and 4.0l 6. Pay no premium for any claimed "rarity".
The '88?.....RockAuto had rear bumper brackets for it! I fitted thick aluminum to patch the driver's foot well.
The '99 went off to college with 171K.
'99 was the last year for the distributor.
Cap, rotor, plugs and wires are best done at 80K unless some "super products" have come down the pike in the last 5 years.

Check for rusty door panels. Rust below the belt-line. RF needed a 24 ' X 7" oval patched in. I saw that repeatedly.
I did a VC gasket. It was expensive because it had 19 separate weird hard button gaskets for the bolts. No probs.
I don't know what style you'd use.
The brittle PCV hosing, elbows and VC grommets were cheap to replace and kept the engine compartment sparkling.
Unscrew the trannie drain and EXACTLY ONE GALLON of common Dex/Merc (NOT ATF+4) comes out. Very coool.

Those brake lines will rust some day. This comes from my neighbor's '95. What a mess.
A mech omitted the weather seal for the radio antenna. Nabe was plagued with an interior leak.

Sis' AC compressor exploded. A quality unit from NAPA was truly reasonable.
No shock absorber ever wore out or leaked! No heater fan or W-wiper probs.

See if "yours" has a pay-out reel work light mounted under the hood. The wire reaches the rear wheels!

Gluck


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#4651463 - 01/30/18 06:32 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: TinyVoices]
HoosierJeeper Offline


Registered: 11/23/16
Posts: 1276
Loc: WI
Love my 96 XJ. It's a pleasure to drive. Rides nicer than my new Cherokee and is a comfortable ride on the highway at 75-80MPH. Has 140k on it. Make sure the floors are good (got mine redone for $1200).

Otherwise, I'd count on doing a cooling system rebuild (rad, cap, water pump, tstat, hoses). Only leaks mine has are a slight oil leak (about a quart per OCI), a weepy freeze plug and a weepy front pinion seal.

I'd get it for sure.


Edited by HoosierJeeper (01/30/18 06:33 PM)
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15 Jeep KL Limited V6: Formula Shell 5W20
07 LR3 SE V8: Maxlife 5W30
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#4651468 - 01/30/18 06:42 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: TinyVoices]
DemoFly Offline


Registered: 06/03/12
Posts: 994
Loc: Bremerton, WA
There's not much wrong with this era Cherokee.

Cooling systems are problematic if they've been worked on by an idiot mechanic. They are prone to driveline vibrations at high-speed even with a balanced driveline. They are also prone to oil filter adapter o-ring leaks. That's about it. Sometimes they have HVAC blend door issues.

Otherwise a totally solid vehicle. Replace all fluids when you buy it, diffs included, because even something like a pinion bearing repair will total the vehicle.
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#4651510 - 01/30/18 07:30 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: mechjames]
dlundblad Online   happy


Registered: 09/30/13
Posts: 10044
Loc: Indiana
Originally Posted By: mechjames
At this age, if you can take care of repairs yourself, then get it. If youre planning on paying a shop to do repairs as they come along, not a good buy.


Pretty much sums up my opinion.

I'd personally buy it.
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03 Jeep WJ 4.0 199k Castrol Edge 10w40 HM Fram XG16
02 Volvo S60 2.4T 177k M1 0w40 Mahle OX149D
97 Chevy Blazer 4.3 145k Rotella T5 10w30 Fram TG3980


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#4651517 - 01/30/18 07:37 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: TinyVoices]
Nick1994 Offline


Registered: 02/19/13
Posts: 10115
Loc: Phoenix, AZ
Cooling system is a trouble spot. Theyíre often neglected and get real nasty. Fan clutches seem to die easily. Make sure electric fan works with a/c on.

The AW4 transmission is about as reliable as it can get. Grand Cherokees had bad transmissions.

As said above headliner will fall down.

Crank position sensors and cam position sensors are common problems on these, theyíll just randomly die. Rear leaf springs sag and RMS likes to leak. Mine continued to leak after I replaced it...

If you buy it, they like Champion copper spark plugs. Green coolant is fine, 10w30 oil of any kind is fine in the summer and 5w30 in the winter.

This is not a refined car, if youíre expecting a comfortable daily driver, this probably isnít it. Itís good enough, but not that comfortable.
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2015 Hyundai Sonata 2.4L 79k PU 5w30 & OEM
2000 Toyota Camry 2.2L 228k M1 AFE 0w30 & Wix
1996 Jeep Cherokee 4.0L 146k M1 HM 10w40 & Fram Ultra

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#4651553 - 01/30/18 08:28 PM Re: 1995 Jeep Cherokee. What to look for? [Re: TinyVoices]
Thax Offline


Registered: 11/07/10
Posts: 786
Loc: VA
Ive had a 99 and 94 XJ before. Great vehicles , they just have their quirks. A two door is pretty rare, Id jump at a chance to get one. If your up for a bit of a challenge and have a vision of where you realistically want to do with it , jump on it. That vintage 4.0L is a good engine. Known issues are crank sensors, exhaust manifolds cracking, oil leaks from rear main and filter adapters. Cooling system , should be addressed at purchase. Honestly I would really refurbish the cooling system. Fan clutch,elec fan , water pump , hoses and radiator are gravy to do on these engines. Suspension usually needs new track bar and sway bar links to smooth out the ride. PM me if you need any help , looks like your in Vienna . Im up the street in oakton. Good luck with the XJ.
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