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Jeep Grand Cherokee Transmission Problems



  • It sounds like either the transmission or torque converter is slipping. Does your tranny have that AutoStick crap that allows you to manually shift through the gears?
  • The answer for your suggestion #3: Reputable salvage yards will write the mileage of an engine on the engine block or valve cover when it is removed from a wrecked vehicle, as long as they can see the odometer. Sometimes when the vehicle has a digital odometer they are not able to get the mileage because the computer may be too badly damaged to show anything. Now you are right about not really knowing how well they were maintained, which is why you should only get one that comes with a good guarantee (in print)! I just replaced the motor in my 2000 GC with a 2003 model with 75,000 miles on it. This particular salvage yard had a 100 day guarantee on their motors, while a yard across town only gave 30 days! I knew 100 days was plenty to determine whether or not the motor was good (I drove it easy for a week and then gave it hell for a couple of weeks). It turned out to be stronger than the old motor ever was! I did, however, take the opportunity to tear the motor down and replace all the seals and gaskets while it was on the engine stand, which I recommend doing, because this will prevent you from pulling it apart in the truck later to replace leaky seals and gaskets!
  • apnowak66apnowak66 Posts: 3
    when the shifter is in D... I can flick the shifter left to downshift and right to upshift.
  • gharrisongharrison Posts: 1
    transmission wont shift from first gear tried fluid. vacum lines and electrical connector. please help
  • ellery1ellery1 Posts: 2
    97 grand cherokee is leaking from the front end of transfer case. It leaked a little before, but not like it did after setting for a week while we were away. How do you fill that? I know there's a place at the rear of the case, but the leak is higher than the location of the fill hole. I removed the plug and fluid level was high enough to puddle so that tells me there's plenty of fluid. Okay to drive, or take it straight to my mechanic 1/2 mile away?
  • ed7515ed7515 Posts: 1
    I have a 98 jgclaredo with 180,000 miles engine size 6 4.0 4x4. I replaced the radiator,water pump, alternator, new lines to the transmission. Now my problem is that since all this work was done I have a leak in the transmission pan I had the seal replaced and it still leaks why? Also after driving it for a while and it gets warmed up a grinding squeeling sound occurs till i get to about 15mph it sounds like its coming from the transmission or the four wheel drive transmission. Also it does not want to shift properly. Do you think I need to replace the transmission or is it a sensor maybe. Any help would be apreciated
  • rwengrrwengr Posts: 177
    I have a 97 4x2. Originally, JGC used ATF+2 auto trans fluid which was red. It has been replaced by ATF+4 fluid which is clear. First, make sure you don't see red on your dipstick or you may have the wrong fluid. I guess it could be clear and still be the wrong fluid. Double check specs in your owners manual or a Haynes manual and somehow verify what fluid you have.

    Next, because fluid is clear it is harder to read dipstick. I serviced mine. I am paranoid about overfilling. I had all kinds of problems. Turns out my mechanic said I was 2 quarts low. I could swear I had a line on my dipstick, Anyway, all strange behavior went away. The dipstick must look really wet. Plus you have to check it with engine hot and running.

    After removing transmission pan you have to really clean the surfaces of the pan and the transmission before closing it up. Clean bolt threads so they tighten more easily. The bolts have torque specifications. You need to proceed thru all bolts and torque them. Continue the process until you have 1 complete cycle where each bolt will not tighten (i.e. it does not tighten, the torque wrench just clicks).

    If you are lucky, torquing the bolts properly should stop the leak. Otherwise, you will have to put on a new gasket. If you paid for this service you have a legitimate complaint.

    You have a 4x4 and I am 4x2 so you carefully assess my comments. 96-98 are similar so they should apply to you but you never know. You may have additional issues related to 4x4 configuration.
  • I bought a 99 grand cher 4.7 laredo in March 08 for 6500 with leather, quadratrack2, Infinity stereo, heated seats, and a MYRIAD OF PROBLEMS.

    Thanks god for the Chrysler Service Contract.

    I am still losing first (and 4th gear) in what seems like a limp mode, and the check engine light comes on after about 2 minutes of this happening. I have already had 3000 in repairs, new BCM, 4x4 front and rear seals, rotors, brakes, trans pan, front cv's, and paid out of pocket for 900 in maintanence including new serp belt, mobile one, plugs and wires, power purge of tranny, fuel injection servfice.

    This truck is immaculate...most likely because it has been in the shop as much as on the had 98k when I bought has 102k. What is wrong with the tranny or tranny sensors? :lemon:
  • tuggajbtuggajb Posts: 646
    where do you find plug wires on the 4.7 v 8 they have indivaual coils on top of each plug
  • erics72erics72 Posts: 1
    I am sure my question may be answered somewhere in here, but I haven't quite found it. Anyway, here's my problem:

    99 GC LTD 4x4 V-8 w/ 86K on it. Have had no real problems in the years I have owned it, until this weekend on a trip up to the lake. It would occassionally jerk/clunk really hard into the last two gears. Also would shift from 1st to 2nd hard (not as hard as coming down). It wouldn't do it all of the time, and it did it both while pulling our small 16' fishing boat and while not. I checked the ATF and it was a little low, so I put a quart in, but it didn't help. Haven't had it into the shop yet, but want to see if I anyone here as any ideas before I go.

    Thanks in advance for the help!!
  • Sir, I don't have a clue. I paid 220 for a tune up, and requested plugs and plug wires. I assumed it had wires...Do you want to see my repair bill? Your comment made me feel stupid. I just need help with the tranny issue please. Thanks.
  • My experience may or may not be helpful to you.

    To refresh your memory, my '05 GC would randomly drop into 3rd and not be able to get out of it (other than N or R). Several trips to my dealer's shop failed to solve the problem.

    Finally, the service technician refused to give up on the problem. The TSB's evidently were no help. The factory recommendations seemed not to provide any answers either. Finally, he ran it to ground. He suspected the solenoid pack had an internal open circuit. He opened the transmission pan/valve body, replaced the solenoid pack, and refilled the transmission with 7 qts of fluid.

    It has been 4 weeks now and the problem has not recurred. I think he found the solution. I too am thnakful for the extended warranty. I didn't report sooner because I wanted to be sure the problem had been solved.

    Good luck.
  • I have a 2000 Grand Cherokee Limited (WJ) and have a thumping sound (like going over seams in the highway) coming from what sounds like the tramsmission. It only happens after I reach 45 MPH and can be regulated (to some degree) by the gas pedal. I thought it was the Transmission Speed Sensors, but I have replaced both of them and still have the problem. I checked for error codes myself and did not get any or any warning lights. Can any one help me?
  • i have a 98 jeep grand cherokee my transmission will not shift after a few minutes of driving.once this happens,it will not go above 20mph, i unplugged the speed sensor , the engine didnt run as good, but it would shift, so would it be the speed sensor/speedometer adapter or what? any help would be great!!!
  • rwengrrwengr Posts: 177
    You have a tough problem. I live in south where it hardly ever snows so my 97 is a 4x2.

    You might want to buy Chrysler shop manual. I bough mine on ebay for about $100. It has a lot more info about transmissions than the Haynes manual.

    It might be worthwhile to disable 4x4 and troubleshoot 4x2 operation. I mean really disable. Will it run 4x2 without CV joints? Does transfer case have a fuse or circuit breaker you can pull? I would expect it to run 4x2 if you were out on the trail a 4x4 components like a CV joint broke.

    The approach is to get motor & trans working perfect 4x2 with minimal presence of any 4x4 components. Then, plug 4x4 back into the picture.
  • rwengrrwengr Posts: 177
    I have a 97 shop manual and looked at transmission troubleshooting. Most involve a symptom of transmission operation. The only one that sounds close to yours is:


    1. Transmission fluid low (check while hot and running)
    2. Throttle cable misadjusted
    3. Overdrive clutch select spacer; wrong spacer

    You might want to buy a shop manual for your year. I bought the book for $100, but you can also buy it as a pdf file for less. Check ebay.
  • mel40mel40 Posts: 2
    I have a 1994 Grand Cherokee, 4x4 6 cyl. I have trouble getting into first gear. I can hear the engine revving, but it just won't catch. It doesn't happen all the time,and usually catches eventually, but the problem in getting worse. I have heard that I just need to check the trans fluid and filter, or replace the torque converter. How much, ballpark, is a new torque converter?
  • mel40mel40 Posts: 2
    I also have a 94JGC. I remember there being a recall a few years ago (5-10) about the jeep rolling away while it was in park. I am not sure what caused it, but maybe you can research it that way.
  • This is a continuous "clunking" or hard "ticking" that speeds up or slows down as the gas pedal is depressed or released. No problems on shifting that I can tell. Maybe it's a short on one of the connector wires? Surely the two sensors I replaced were not bad...
  • Yeah, It seems to happen only after extended periods of brisk acceleration and highway driving. When I shut off and restart the GC I get my gears back, only to lose them again with a pronounced "thunk".
    Sfter she cools down the check engine light goes off and it drives great as long as my trips are less than 20 miles. It's been in the shop twice, tech cant find any probs. Thanks for response. I am on a first name basis with the service manager now.
  • Other than that, I love my truck, and oh...I want to drive it to Buffalo NY via rt 15 from Virginia 3 times a year to see relatives, so two wheel drive operation is not desirable. I bought it just because It had 4wl drive V8.
  • Update: I went to the dealer today and he said the Transfer Chain needs replaced ($600 - $700). I called around and got quotes (and info) for slightly less so I'm going to have to grin and bear it I guess. At least the dealer didn't charge me for diagnosing the problem (which seems unusual). I will follow-up once it's finished.
  • nene77nene77 Posts: 3
    i just got a 2000 jeep cherokee laredo and i a whining noise when i drive i took it back to where i got if from they said jeeps are loud could i be right by thinking something is up with the transmission or could it be something else.
  • Where is the whining noise coming from? My GC Limited doesn't have a whining noise and it's full-time 4-wheel drive. Did you check your power steering fluid? Is it shifting ok?
  • I have a 98 JGC, that does not want to shift out of 1st gear, if you remove the battery cables and then put them back on the car will start in 2nd gear, if it does not reset itself then it will again not shift out of 1st. I have ran across alot of people with the same problem all with different fixes that someone has told them. I have tried to look up the parts that they say might be the problem and I get no results that those parts are even a match for my Jeep. I need help anybody, any suggestions?
  • nene77nene77 Posts: 3
    i can mainly hear it on the driver side. when i put it in reverse or drive i can feel it but people have told me that i suppose to cuz it's more like a truck....
  • rwengrrwengr Posts: 177
    I have a 97 JGC and the shop manual. 96-98 were similar. I am 4x2. If you are 4x4, there is greater chance you may be different.

    I looked at Troubleshooting guide entry for "Stuck in 1st Gear. Will Not Upshift"

    1) Throttle linkage misadjusted or stuck
    2) Gearshift linkage misadjusted
    3) Governor component electrical fault
    4) Front band out of adjustment
    5) Clutch or servo malfunction.

    There is a cable from the throttle and a cable from the shift lever to the transmission. For (4) there is an adjustment screw. It is sort of on top of the transmission and not easy to get to. I think you need a torque wrench.

    If you are lucky, it is (1), (2) or (4). The Haynes manual has info for these if you want to do it yourself. For (3) or (5) you need a pro.
  • rwengrrwengr Posts: 177
    If the noise seems to be from the front, read on.

    When you start it make sure the A/C is OFF and drive it for a while. If it goes away or is less severe, it could be your serpentine belt or one of the attached components.

    I took my belt off for a repair but when I put it back on I had to stretch it a little. Sometimes it was quiet for days and then it would start to whine. When I start with A/C off it is always quiet. When I get some spare time I will tighten it.

    Anything with a pulley on the belt (water pump, alternator, etc) could be making a noise. Get a long (14-20 in.) screwdriver with a flat blade (Sears). CAREFULLLY place flat blade in contact with each component keeping away from the pulley/belt. Put your ear to the plastic handle. Or you can buy a stethoscope. Maybe you will discover something.
  • tuggajbtuggajb Posts: 646
    harbor fraight sell a good stethoscope for 10 12 bucks works great
  • pell312pell312 Posts: 8
    I have a 2000 GC Loredo 4X4 and I think I know exactly what your problem Jeep's in the shop & I'm having the transfer case replaced for the SECOND time (at $1300 a pop)--the noises you describe are all too familiar! I bought mine used with 32K miles on it (in 2002) and I replaced the transfer case in summer 2006 with an identical part from a junked jeep GC. Needless to say, the part I replaced it with was obviously defective b/c it's now worthless as well. The mechanic who is working on it now seems to be aware that this is a problem inherent in transfer cases installed by Jeep.....he's replaced many. Jeep is aware of the problem, too. I've found out that Jeep GC 4X4's, model years 1990-1998 have been recalled for defective transfer cases. I don't think it's so far fetched to assume the problem extends beyond those model years. I intend to hound Jeep until I get satisfaction......A transfer case is intended to be a lifetime part & it is highly unusual that it needs replaced at all, let alone TWICE, and it is NOT a $20 part (obviously). Anyone else having this problem?
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