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Lower Back Pain 2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland

I just bought a new 2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland 4x2 and love the vehicle but cannot drive it because the seat has given me lower back pains. I am a healthy 5’9’ 163 lb.male and I can ride my bicycle 50-70 miles in a day with no problems. I have a 1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee with 71,000 miles and have enjoyed every mile of driving. My back problems began the day after I drove the new Overland 60 miles back from the dealer. There are now 600 miles on my new Jeep and every time I drive it, I have extreme pain and discomfort from my lower back. I have tried adjusting my lumbar and seat positions with no help. I am not getting old and I have three other vehicles I drive and none of them have this debilitating effect on me. If you have the same problems and had previously always had a healthy back, I would like to know.

If you had the same problems and have found a solution, I would also like to know. Additionally, if I do not drive or ride in the Overland for a few days, the pain goes away and does not come back until I drive this vehicle. Even when I drive one mile for 5 minutes, the pain comes back and will stay for days. Any help out there? emailharold@cox.net

Comments

  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 40,160
    Check around for a local upholstery shop. The Jeep dealer may be able to recommend one they use for aftermarket leather or repairs.

    Unless the side air bags are too much of an issue (I think yours are mounted on the ceiling and not actually in the seats?), the upholstery folks should be able to rebuild the seats - change the type and density of the foam, lengthen or shorten the seat bottom, change the height, and maybe even tweak the angle of the seat back, etc.

    It that's not feasible, maybe the shop or an auto body shop could recommend an aftermarket seat, like something from Recaro.

    Moderator
    Need help navigating? stever@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • [Update 4/8/2008] I contacted the Chrysler customer care unit and they were absolutely no help. They referred me back to the dealer for a possible exchange to another vehicle. I thought that was ridiculous and not very customer friendly of Chrysler to suggest.

    In fact the best suggestion came from Steve the moderator of this site. He suggested I get in touch with an upholstery shop, so I went to my local Jeep dealer and they had a recommendation for me.

    As it turns out, the bottom portion of my backrest sticks out too far at the bottom and it is hitting my lower back area. This pressure on the lower back is creating my discomfort. So the upholstery guy is cutting a small portion away and this seems to have solved my problem.

    It would have been nice if Chrysler customer care [are you listening Susan, in customer care?] would have been a little more sympathetic with my problem and suggested the same course of action instead of brushing me off to the dealer for an exchange vehicle.

    The photos in the link below will illustrate how I concluded that my back seat was hitting my lower back in the wrong spot.

    Visually it was nearly impossible to see the slight difference in the backrest, but when I put some PVC together and took careful measurements, I found the slight difference that caused my problem. I took measurements from three vehicles. My new Jeep and my existing two cars and I found that my older cars [2004 MBZ S430 and 2007 C 350] had a 1 1/2-inch difference in the lowest part of the back seat.

    Yes, just one and a half inch of extra padding caused my back pain. So if you have a similar problem, look carefully at the smallest difference because it could make a BIG difference.

    I hope this will help anyone else with a similar problem. By the way, the cost to fix the problem was $85 per seat and Chrysler could have been a hero. Instead I will always remember the deaf ear and blind eye of their customer care unit.

    http://www.carspace.com/emailharold/?50@@.5bcd1464
  • alvbalvb Posts: 1
    My husband recently purchased a 2009 Liberty and almost the exact same issue. As a matter of fact, it was so bad, we traded in my Jeep so I could take his (it didn't bother me) and he purchased a 2009 Commander. It was better for awhile, but it didn't last long. We have been searching for a solution so I decided to do some searching online and found your post. Your issue is exactly what he is feeling!

    How did you decide how much padding to remove? What type of person did you take your car to for this adjustment? Thanks very much! Andrea
  • I could have signed my name to the same article .I had a Grand Cherokee Overland. Finally realized that my chronic & sometimes acute back pain was from the seats. Had a 2002 which was great. Hated the new one (2006)& had to sell it. Actually talked to Jeep main office & that was a total waste of time.
    Good looking, great performing car but UNDRIVABLE!
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