Question about 2001 Jeep Cherokee

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Jeep cherokee 2001 box shape

Water keeps coming out top of block. Mechanic says it is a welch plug which costs almost nothing, but the head will need to come off(which will cost a fortune). Can I do this myself and if so where can I find some info on how to do it.I have tried radiator seal which helped for a few days, but then blew again.

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  • vaughan247 Dec 21, 2008

    The plug is towards the driver

  • vaughan247 Jan 02, 2009

    I read somewhere on the internet about a guy on a trip in africa. He sealed his welsh plug from the outside with Pratley's steel putty.It held for years. I am going to attempt it.(As the finances to remove the head or block are not currently available)  What do you think ?

  • vaughan247 Jan 03, 2009

    Thank-you all for your help.

    It seems very risky, will get a quote to do all the plugs. Jeep say at 120 000km the timing chain should be done. Is this necessary as if I need to pull the engine I might as well do other necessaries ?

  • Angelo Attard
    Angelo Attard May 11, 2010

    you can try to patch it but remeber it may cost you more in the long run if you cook the motor

    ok this is the way i would do a temp fix on it get a tube of stikaflex ,a thin metal plate big enough to cover the plug and some of the head and a spray can of carby cleaner

    now drain water clean back of head and plug with carby must be perfectly clean apply sealant to plug fill the hole riright up and then apply to plate and fix it to the rear of the head to cover the old plug

    leave at least 24 hours to cure but remeber check water daily and watch temp gauge good luck

  • Angelo Attard
    Angelo Attard May 11, 2010

    hi i would be taking the engine out to do this job i think there is a welsh plug between the motor and gearbox .ther is quite a few welsh plugs on the engine do it right change all of them the others will leak in time

    if u want to pull the head off buy a workshop manual to guide u through

    hope it helps

  • Angelo Attard
    Angelo Attard May 11, 2010

    is the plug in the rear of the head



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Check your coolant to see how low a temp it's good for. What u are describing is the failure of a freeze out plug. They are there to protect your block and head from cracking in cold weather, if you don't have sufficient anit-freeze protection (old anti-freeze, or not enough anti-freeze). If the water in the engine freezes, the freeze out plugs are designed to be a weak point, popping out to relieve the pressure of the freezing water, hopefully saving the head and block from cracking. The other reason for failure is corrosion due to, again, insufficient or old anti-freeze. To remove, u just need an old screwdriver and hammer, knock a hole in the plug w/ the screwdriver, pry it out. Clean up opening, install new one w/ block of wood and hammer. Of course, the location of the freeze out plug is what determines how much room u have to do this, so u have to decide if it's easier to pull the engine, or remove the head. It would be wise to pull the engine, and change all the plugs as angelo63 suggest, when done flush the system, adding a 50/50 mix of anti-freeze/water.

Posted on Jan 02, 2009

  • Curt Downs Jan 03, 2009

    Hey, it's worth a shot to try to stop the leak. A friend of mine had a radiator leak, and he plugged it up w/ his sons chewing gum, finished driving 500 miles home w/out any trouble, so go for what will hopefully work for u too. Good Luck!

  • Curt Downs Jan 03, 2009

    I had an 88 Cherokee 4.0L I-6, ran it to 260k + miles, never changed the timing chain, (still ran well) but they didn't recommend changing it at that time that I remember, of course, they probably are somewhat different as yours is 13 years newer. If they recommend it be changed, yes I would go ahead and do it. I miss my Cherokee, it was a great vehicle, lot of fun to drive.



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