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Jeep Cherokee Grand Cherokee Steering Stability and Suspension



  • jbstormjbstorm Posts: 6
    I have already changed the tie rods. The other item I changed in the very beginning was the master cylinder. This is where it gets very interesting. The most recent thing I did was take it to a shop I know to have the ABS system checked out. It was fine but, they said the new master cylinder was defective (A-zone part) which was leading to brake drag when the car heated up. The drag lead to occasional rotor warp on the passenger side .....and to the death wobble. I replaced the master cylinder again with a better one...and problem solved. I also replaced the calipers on this car with Akebono vs the Teves that were on it OEM. The Akebono are original on 2002 on. They are actually an upgrade per a service letter over the Teves calipers which can cause rotor warp due to unequal pressure in the caliper cylinders (2 per). I also installed cross drilled rotors just before putting the new master cylinder on. This is when the death wobble disappeared and allowed me to feel the brake drag. They were dissipating the heat from drag very quickly. The bottom line is a lot of $$$ later, and mostly my labor, I have it closed
  • To me, it feels like a vibration from the automatic hubs, it is a 1996 Cherokee SE 4x4, I-6, Auto tranny. I had a auto hub vibration from my old dearly departed Suburban that feels very similar to this. It's only noticable at highways speeds and thats it. My girlfriend is ready to freak out thinking the thing is about to fly apart. It's not a wobble or anything like that as it is straight as an arrow and no wierdness from the suspension. This is my first Jeep, and other then this complaint my girlfriend has, I think it's great. Anyone hear of this or know of something that actually might be causing it or is it just the nature of the beast?
  • No weirdness from the girlfriend, but my girlfriend really likes the way it feels. Whatever is causing it??? all is good. Yeeha!
  • Hey everyone,

    I did what he said on message 144 and I still have the death wobble:( Anyone else do this and still have the problem? Any other ideas?

  • If the trac bar didn't fix, the next step would be the steering stabilizer strut.
  • I read your post and have similar issue but it sounds related to your fix. My 99 GC Ltd has already had the rotors replaced due to warping and the wobble would only occur during braking and would be worst after highway driving. That was about 4 years ago. Then, in the last few years the braking wobble is getting worse. Highway driving at any speed is fine, just braking is the problem, the steering wheel will oscillate violently and the front end does the same depending on brake pressure and speed.

    In the city, the wobble is not nearly a problem but it seems to come and go. The explanation in #166 of a dragging brake would seem to be a good thing to check. I will go check rotor temps after a drive using my IR gun and see if there are differences. I'm assuming I can jack up the car and see if there is any drag on a brake? Any other suggestions before changing our calipers or master cylinders a in #166? This fix has been a real help since the mechanics have only offered to replace rotors and the problem comes back. Thanks all.
  • Your issue sounds purely like a rotor/caliper issue, not a master cylinder issue dealing with brake drag. I too replaced rotors several times on my GC without doing anything to the calipers. It was only a matter of time after replacing them that the shaking would start again. After looking into this in more depth, it turns out that the calipers are basically causing the problem. You may want to upgrade to the akebono calipers. I also upgraded to cross-drilled rotors as well. It is nice to finally push the brake pedal without experiencing some type of shaking.
  • It is a death wobble alright. Sent me into a high pitched squeal for the first time in my life. I thought the motor mounts had come loose. It actually snatched the negative cable wires out of the connector on the battery. I will change the tie rods, Bjoints, traction bar and hopefully this solves the isuue. I had a bad vibration at 60+mph. I took the front driveshaft off and it smoothed out like butter. Found a damaged driveshaft knucle and slightly hampered slide on the driveshaft.
  • I had a bad vibration at 60mph. I took the front driveshaft off and it smoothed out like butter. Found a damaged driveshaft knucle and slightly hampered slide on the driveshaft. 1993 Grand Cherokee automatic, so this problem has been around for awhile on Jeeps. I also experience the "death wobble" still when I hit a bump at highway speeds though the vibration at 60+ went away.
  • I looked at the calipers and they are the originals. I tested your comment out yesterday and slightly depressed the brakes while driving and the pulsing was definitely there. The brakes just grab a few times per revolution so it must be more than one wheel affected. It just gets violent at highway speeds and tends to come and go--perhaps related to braking, heat or some other factor. Unlike the death wobble posts there is never a wobble until the brakes get hit and it disappears when brakes are released. I will try your suggestion for the akebono calipers and different rotors. Thanks for the assistance.
  • topat46topat46 Posts: 20
    Hi all !..........My GC does not wobble or shimmy or shake. What it does is where there is a rut in the road when comming to a stop it will pull in the direction of the rut. When traveling at high-way speeds the car will not wander on a straight and rutless road. I notice though that I have to make very slight steering corrections at high-way speeds on all types of road surfaces. I recently changed the steering damper because it was leaking. The tie rod can be swiveled easily down but stiff in the up swivel motion. Everything looks and feels tight. The jeep has 93k miles on it. With each wheel jacked up there is no play in the wheels. Is this the price to pay for having 17 inch tires or ? Any suggestions would be appreciated.............Topat46
  • My jeep has the wobble. Whenever I hit a bump, such as coming onto a bridge or a small dip at highway speed (45-75MPH) the front end begins to shake so bad I have to pull over quickly. I replaced all the stabalizer bar bushings and the steering damper. I still had the problem yesterday at about 45MPH when I came onto a bridge. Should I replace the trac bar? I noticed the control arm bushings looked pretty worn. I had it jacked up and placed a jack stand under the control arm and noticed some play when I put weight on it. What do i do first? trac bar or the control arm bushings?
  • The steering stabilizer strut and trac bar should take care of your problem. Worked perfectly for me. Had very bad wobble on my 92 cherokee. The steering stabilizer strut is cheapest and then the trac bar but both aren't that bad. $200 including labor for both approx. if you take it somewhere. I replaced both at the same time on mine.
  • Well the sway bar bushing kit was about $40, The stabilizer shock was $35, I bought a control arm bushing kit for $70 (have yet to install it), and I found a new trac bar for about $40.

    I have 265/70/R15 Goodyear Fortera tires on stock alloy wheels, but for the first 20,000 miles or so on that tire I never experienced the shake. I have a 2" rubicon express budget lift on it, but that was about 25,000 miles ago, and this problem just began maybe 5,000 miles ago.
  • As your tires get more worn and subsequently slightly out of balance, that will aggravate the shake. Perfectly balanced new tires help it out. The older your suspension gets,also will show more signs of aggravation also. With a lift, that may pose some other problems unto itself as things wear but I think your on the right track with the parts your planning. Should help anyway.
  • I have a 2000 Grand Cherokee. I recently had a very dead battery and had to be towed. A new battery was installed. Since then I have several power losses. My map/dome lights do not work when the car is off. The headlights do not flash when I lock or unlock the doors with the remote. The horn does not sound with the remote lock and unlock function. The panic button on the remote does not work. The warning sound does not buzz when you shut car off and leave keys in the ignition. The main door lock does not work at first when car is powered off. No warning sound when you forget that you left your headlights on when you exit the car. Etc., etc. etc. Does anyone hae an idea what my mechanic did or not do?? Thank you.
  • myposmypos Posts: 5
    The problems I am experiencing with my 1993 Jeep Grand Cherokee are similar to those describing the death wobble except one minor difference. I experience this wobble, of oh my god i am seriously going to die and have no control of my car, going around curves coming off a mountain at about 40 to 45 mph (more prevalent the faster I am driving) and lightly applying the breaks. The wobble presents itself more so when I am going through a left had curve (turning towards the driver side), more so than in a right hand curve. I have been to many mechanics that suggest different things that may cause this wobble (from the U joints to the rear break drums being warped and now cheep shocks), which none of which are the problem. I am about to replace all 4 shocks to see if the problem is fixed but will this problem just come back again like it does with everything i have done thus far to fix the problem. Would the suggestions of # 60 and #144 posts fix the problem or is this something else. Any Idea's??????
  • tuggajbtuggajb Posts: 646
    i would defenetly try there fixes before i spent any more money for other things
  • agillagill Posts: 19
    First get under the front, the pitman arm should have a bar to the passenger side, grab it and try to move it. It should be stiff. If not you need the tie rod end for that bar. Second, there is a bar that links both wheels together, grab that try to move it. If it move you need those tie rod ends. Third jack up each side of the front, so the wheel is off the ground. Grab the top of the wheel and push and pull if it moves you need ball joints. Now I am not sure how to check these but there are bushings on the control arms. These are the bars that connect the axles to the frame. On the frame side, these bushings are replacable, like 10 bucks each. Also check front hub/bearings. All of these can cause the death wobble. Even the stearing gear box. In short, the entire stearing system should be tight, no play what so ever. This is your death wobble. Chrysler aslo has a TSB(technical service builitn) regarding the front break calipers. Causes pulsating and wobble when breaks are applied.
  • myposmypos Posts: 5
    Thanks for the post. The caliper issue would make sense in this case because the wobble only happening while light to moderate brake application. I plan to get under there to check all the steering to make sure its tight this week. But every time I take the car in right after i replace the pads and rotors they keep telling me the rotors are warped and grooved and the pads need to be replaced as well. ahh peace at mind finally! :surprise: :shades:
  • I brought a used '03 JGC last year and have had some problems. Yesterday, with no previous warning, the steering is obstructed when I turn to the right. It is fine if I turn left, but about 3/4 of the way to the right, something is keeping the wheel from moving all the way to the right. At one point, I forced it, and it did turn all the way, but I heard something snap (not as if it broke, but as if the obstruction gave way) The problem did not go away after this, and as of this morning, it is still an issue. Any suggestions.
  • mikeyp53mikeyp53 Posts: 55
    Brake pulsation has nothing to do with suspension. I have had this symptom on almost every car I have owned with front disc brakes. Replace the rotors and it will cure it. As far as other suspension components, start with the steering box and work out from there. My son and I replaced the steering box on a 98 2 months back. My 2004 GC came with a defective steering U joint (replaced under warranty) and 4 years later its still fine, no problems, front end is tight. I suggest you get a good front end shop for these symptoms. Discount auto repair shops do not have the training or technical specialty to do more than change components and guess at the problem. Worse yet, don't do it yourself if you have no knowledge of front end geometry.
  • sixdayssixdays Posts: 10
    hi there i have the 97 laredo 2.5 td 4x4,can you help me ,if i put my jeep in to 4x4 and turn right or left it make a bad sound juddering i have to stop but if i dont turn its ok ,this is ok if i was born in the roman days were all roads were stright lol.thanks porscha
  • acommeroacommero Posts: 8
    You have a 4wd - If you use it on dry ground , it will do this - front and rear wheels are trying to turn at the same speed with 4wd locked in and when you turn, it tries to compensate by slipping one of the wheels on the ground thus giving you your 'judderring'. This is normal. You also own a Jeep so using 4wd on the pavement or other surface providing traction is not recommended. It is made to use when you may experience loss of traction - a true 4wd (or as close as you can get nowadays). Jeeps are not all-wheel drive vehicles to use all the time. Hope this helps.
  • sixdayssixdays Posts: 10
    sounds good but why dose it still do it off road in the wet at very slow speed ,and when i say noise i mean heavy teeth missing not sincing noise re porscha
  • acommeroacommero Posts: 8
    Well now you may have other problems - one thing to check first might be your front u-joints unless its coming from your front diff. Hopefully you don't have any gear damage but if you hear teeth grinding, its hard to say. Doesn't sound like a typ. problem per sae. Sorry couldn't be of more help. If you find it, post it so others can see. Best of luck.
  • tuggajbtuggajb Posts: 646
    could be your viscuss coupling inside the transfer case

    what lettering do you have on your transfer shifter 4hi n 4lo
    or 2hi 4 hi n 4lo?
  • sixdayssixdays Posts: 10
    hi command trac,,from top to bottom,,is. 2WD/4PART TIME/N/4LO.
  • sixdayssixdays Posts: 10
    hi took it a run this morning,off road up the nearest big hill put it in 4 LO.
    and it felt like it was jumping a tooth somwere like the sound of a chain slipping a tooth ,that was streight up the hill no turns ,it did make the climb ,re porscha
  • tuggajbtuggajb Posts: 646
    have you changed the oil in the transfer?

    as for the chain jumping a tooth wouln prob bust the transfer case

    there vis a oil shifted clutch pack inside the transfer and could be not getting enough oil or the oil has thined out or you are low on oil
  • sixdayssixdays Posts: 10
    hi yes i changed the oil when i took a look in side the case,and i cleaned the iol strainer ,and the case did have a crack in it which i welded up its now fine ,re porscha
  • rmosh12rmosh12 Posts: 2
    i have a 98 jeep grand cherokee laredo and i had the same problems. i replaced my u-joints and the problem was fixed.
  • rmosh12rmosh12 Posts: 2
    hi, i have a 98 jeep and have some problems. i dont know if its the sway bar in the front or what the deal is. i was hoping someone could help. when im driving straight down the road it wants to wonder back and forth. also when i hit small bumps it seems to shift around and also when im turning the rear end seems like its shifting back and forth. hope you can help!
  • cbstormcbstorm Posts: 1
    hi - i have a 98 gr/ch/laredo with 51K miles. it is now making a horrible creaking noise in the steering section - Jeep Service Ctr says i need a new gear/steering box, to the tune of $1500. is this worth the cost of fixing? i am in queens, ny. i hate to pay the Service Ctr a lot of $$ if it is not necessary. they also said it was dangerous to drive.

    many thanks!
  • topat46topat46 Posts: 20
    Hi All ! I need to change the steering damper on my GC. Could I put a moog trail boss or should I just replace it with the stock one ? Thanks to All...Topat46
    PS# The GC is stock and not raised.
  • mrblack54mrblack54 Posts: 1
    my 94 GCL 4x4 V8 starts to skake/vibrate only when in overdrive and will stop if i let off the gas. have replaced shocks motor and trans mount steering damper and removed front driveshaft without success........
  • andymlmandymlm Posts: 1
    Hi guys,

    A friend of mine has asked me to help with repairs on his 98 grand cherokee, it had worn out upper and lower ball joints on the front both sides and play in the rear trailing arms.

    Is this repair work straight forward with normal tools and do replacment arms come with the ball joints fitted?

    Thanks for any advice,
  • rmm149rmm149 Posts: 1
    rmosh12, did you figure out your problem. I have the same symptoms.
  • gurrrfussgurrrfuss Posts: 4
    I have a 1988 Cherokee Ltd. I have been the primary Owner/Mechanic since 1990. I also have the DEATH WABBLE in the front end, at speeds over 40 MPH. Long Story Short: Inspection and Balance of all TIRES (All 80% new and fine)...Locked the Steering Wheel by taking key out... Raised the Front Axel on 2 Jack Stands... Had a VERY large friend SHAKE the tire back in forth to jar the steering... All TIE ROD ENDS are FINE. BUT, BINGO!!! The Steering Gear (Box) is VERY VERY LOOSE!!! I have been told by 5 mechanic friends, that have looked at it, that I should Replace the Steering Gear with a swap out at "AUTOZ***" with a Lifetime Warranty ATSCO Part#:7525...
    I have been told (and am holding the instructions with all Diagrams) that the replacement is rather easy for someone as experienced as me. Problem is: "I am a Power Steering Repair Virgin" and BROKE. I can afford the $141 (after CA tax) for the part, but That is "IT". I have been told that the Stabilizer Shock is definitely not the problem...The Extremely Loose Steering "Gear Box" explains EVERYTHING. I have always had the same HUGE (2nd Generation owned) Wheel/Alignment shop do all my work, but DAMN, THEY SOLD the shop to a Shopping Mall Developer!

    ANY feedback would really Help me out! Please reply to this message Post with ANY AND ALL IDEAS!
  • for some reason the front calipers on my 95 chrokee limited move when fully tightened has anyone seen this before?
  • tuggajbtuggajb Posts: 646
    there suposte to move some that is how they work (the capalers pinch the roater betwene the pads it were not some what loose would not work
  • I bought a '99 Cherokee Sport 4WD recently. When I bought it I didn't find out about the "Death Wobble" until I took it out onto the highway. I got the truck up to 80 mph before I hit a bump on I295 and almost lost control of the truck! It scared the crap out of me! I thought it was just the tires, but since have found out that it isn't. I have replaced the U-Joints (they were so rusted that the needle bearings were actually dust!), the ball joint (from the track bar), and will be getting new tire as they are also shot. From what I have read it seems that the track bar, and or, steering stabilizer/dampner are the most common culprits. It's just a matter of process of elimination I guess. Check the obvious first then go from there. I am in the military (AGAIN!!) and am getting transferred to Ft. Hood,TX. And...I have to drive there from NJ! So, I'm trying to get my Cherokee fixed...Like everyone else! LOL! Good luck!
  • gurrrfussgurrrfuss Posts: 4
    yikes!!!! OEM only!!! Only put in what the Stock Part should be, nothing less, nothing more. Unless you have done something dumb, like give it a lift, or change anything at all from what should be stock. If you go outside stock, ....Well, Cherokee Ltd 88 takes a Monroe 2928 every 6 years, like clockwork, as well as all tierod ends, track bar, drag link, all bushings, AND STEARING GEAR BOX....Hello!!! JEEP...HIGH PERFORMANCE....EXPENSIVE!.....EVEN IF YOU LEAVE IT STOCK!!!

    You want cheap, get a Toyota Corola, and let your teenager tear that up.
  • rlipcz01rlipcz01 Posts: 11
    Has anyone had problems with the steering of a 03 Jeep? I have new tires, front end alignment, brakes, power steering unit, and gear box. No leaks just the steering wheel has a mind of its own. It pulls to the left and the right. I live in MI and you know how the roads are here. Any answers to this???????????Nobody knows. :confuse:
  • gurrrfussgurrrfuss Posts: 4
    Sounds like your steering is DRIFTING (SOMETIMES LEFT, SOMETIMES RIGHT).
    I don't think your front end alignment is SQUARE. This is how I check MY ALIGNMENT: Parallel Park on a street with no other parked cars. Set the 2 CURP SIDE tires snug with the curb, so at least the 2 passenger tires are referenced to being STRAIGHT AHEAD (not turned at all). Now walk ahead of the Jeep by about 30 yards. Look back to see if the driver's wheel is pointed straight also. I have personally given up on computer alignments. The KIDS and Primitives trying to use the computer alignment are not very smart. And lets face it, its not their auto, they don't care.
    I use the method that has been around before computers exhisted, and the methoid that still works where there are no computers (most of the world). I pin a piece of string to the front (center level of the) tire and stretch it to the tire behind it, then pin that string to the rear tire. Repeat the process with the other side. Now you have 2 references for straight and parallel. Jack up the front end 1/2 inch. Not preform your Toe Alignment. For Camber Adjustment: Use a Plumb Bob on a string as your true vertical reference. Folks, my good friend from El Salvador let me in on that secret. A REAL ALIGNMENT SHOP uses a T-SQUARE the size of your car. The computer is just for show, and is VERY inaccurate due to a number of factors that would take me all day to explain.
    Driver, If your alignment is fine, do what we all do: Jack the front end up 1/2 inch, and get 2 FOOTBALL PLAYER SIZE MEN to shake the hell out of the tires (side to side). Look for ANY play in the steering componants/suspension componants. ALSO, do you have DEATH WABBLE at speeds above 40 MPH? If so, do a search on this site for JEEP DEATH WABBLE. Have you ever gone too fast down hill on a skateboard and went in to a DEATH WABBLE, then fallen off the skateboard? THATS DEATH WABBLE!
  • gurrrfussgurrrfuss Posts: 4
    I just Changed my steering GEAR BOX.
    Part=$260 at AutoZone
    Part=$39 at PepBoys
    Changed 1 Ball Joint BOOT.
    Part=$5 at Pep Boy's HELP section.

    Thats about $304 + tax in parts (guaranteed), Labor is not more than 3 hours.
    Labor is about $45 an hour (No tax)....Thats about $480....
    if were adding things while your already in there...
    Center Link-Part=$36
    Tie Rod w/ End - Part=$30

    You get the idea. This shouldn't cost over $650
    for everything... I say $800 and your getting WAY
    RIPPED OFF for replacing everything infront of the Steering Wheel Shaft, and to the Tires.

    OH, the creaking is probably the whole set of 4 springs that support the Vehicle... Mine squeek. If your Steering is GROWLING when you try to turn the steering wheel; WELL, then, its your power steering gear box....Ever done one of those?

    It took me a few days but
  • rlipcz01rlipcz01 Posts: 11
    I had the steering gear box rebuilt on Groesbeck in Michigan. $300 installed. The powr steering box new installed by me. $can't remember. Every mechanic I talk to say "everythings tight". ????
    I wonder why is the steering wheel going all over-hell. I'm still searching for the answer??? I don't want to spend money on nothing. :lemon:
  • hy, i am going to do what u say and if it works i how u big time, i thought of going to my dealer and having them do this for me free of charge, i have been there before and they say they have never heard of this and wouldnt help me, i will go to kragen this week and get that bolt and do the work , i have been driving like this for about five years just learned how to drive it and have changed the track bar every year, i will try this and after it work i dont care what they say UR THE MAN, thanks for using ur brain
  • fpd048fpd048 Posts: 1
    I have the same problem with my Jeep....Did you ever find out what the problem was?
  • Mike,
    Same problem. I have googled dozens of people with this squeak, but have never found a solution posted. Mine is not the clock spring, and not the firewall boot. I have lubed all the accessible fittings. Sounds and feels like it's somewhere between the steering wheel and the firewall, but where? Has anyone ever found how to fix this?

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