Question about 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee

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1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee: engine intermittently "surges" in gear at idle speed. Check engine light does not come on, and a computer check revels no problem. Seafoam, Z-Max, and Heet have all been tried. Tach fluctuates 400 rpm when idiling in gear.Problem seems to have developed after water pump was replaced and tank filled with Holiday gas. Not sure if either of these are cause of the problem?

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  • Sandy Kehm May 06, 2010

    It starts to surge after approx. 30 seconds in all gears when idiling except in Park and Neutral. What are the torque converter issues you mentioned?


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After this changes, you reset the ECU? Sometimes this is need to recognize variations.

Are you make scan to read fault codes?

When it dies (if do it) does the Engine Light come-on and stay-on? If so there are codes which are present that can isolate/point you to a more specific problem.

I would first check your spark plugs, wires, and coil. When were they last replaced? If these are fine: when was the fuel filter replaced? air filter?

Check the fuel pressure at the port located on the fuel rail in the engine compartment. If those check out OK; I would check and/or replace the Idle Sensor and/or the Throttle Position Sensor.

Basic rules on bad idling:
* Fuel, is there enough getting to the cylinders?
* Spark, is there consistent spark getting to all the cyclinders?
* Air, is there a air shortage = clogged air filter?

Tell us news.

Posted on May 06, 2010

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Not saying that your concern is not fuel related, but have you tried manually shifting into a gear other than drive during the concern.... I've seen some torque convert issues on these vehicles

Posted on May 06, 2010

  • Sean Reisdorf
    Sean Reisdorf May 06, 2010

    I remember two specific concerns
    one involved the governor pressure sensor and the other was the torque converter
    cannot recall the TSB #'s off the top of my head and since I'm not at Jeep anymore i can't get them either

    That being said, I also remember an off bucking/surge concern in older Broncos that I saw beat-up a lot of tech that turned out to be a fuel tank concern

    So, at this point, with the surge only in DRIVE gears I will assume it is trans related

    try so of the Lucas trans additives


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While driving my jeep seems to be shifting gears the rpms rev up and then goes back down almost as if surging I changed speed sensor as a guess so far but did not work?

old 1995
we need vastly more symptoms then that,sorry
if the engine surges, that is first. (surges in 1 gear)
but if a transmission down shifts that is normal, rpm rises
(after all its a lower gear) (higher numeric ratio)
find any machanic in town
ask him test drive it.!
10 min.later he wilt tell you
its trans issues.
or its engine, super easy this is driving.

seems you can not, and learning is 1hour in car class..or 10x that lacking facts of drive train functions.

stop guessing. why spend cash on a useless sensor now.
spend cash on $1 shop diagnosis and WIN.
i promise !

or get it scanned.
and post all those DTC errors. P0700? and more.

Jan 24, 2016 | 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4.0 auto idles good but will only move with it wide open or just barely any throttle

what transmission, mines a 5 speed stick so?????
idles good, well that dont take much.
will only move, car moves?
with what wide open ,the throttle?
well just barely throttle is normal, why say that?

my guess is car has low power, or can not go fast in all gears.
is that it?
if yes, that is transmission slip or a weak engine,
transmission slip is easy RPM goes way high car dont move
weak engine acts like brakes stuck on , low RPM deep right foot.
post all symptoms and win, big time.

Feb 22, 2015 | 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

1997 jeep grand cherokee 4.0 has no check engine light but engine loses powerv intermittently while driving t

No check light does not mean no codes stored

We can't diagnose any vehicle problems from the internet

Go for a test drive with a mechanic & explain all the issues

Feb 17, 2013 | 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee. When I stop at a light engine revs up and feels like it is trying to push the car. Then the car dies.It will start back and run fine after that.

Could be a sticking idle air control valve, or dirty throttle body.
The computer uses the valve to control idle speed by regulating the amount of air into the intake.

Jul 18, 2012 | 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

1996 jeep grand Cherokee. It has 221,000 miles on it and when put into gear it wants to stall. Is this the torque converter itself or could it be the torque converter solenoid?

Try this.

Engine stalling and rough run issue at low speeds

This problem is commonly caused by a dirty automatic idle speed control valve and throttle valve. Buy a can of throttle valve cleaner (do not use carburetor spray cleaner!) from NAPA or Carquest (made by CRC chemicals) and spray it into the air intake while the engine is running, use up about 1/2 the can, engine will try to stall hold the speed up, shut it down and let it soak for 30 minutes, restart and blow out the remaining fluid, shut it down and disconnect the negative battery cable for 5 Min's to reset the base idle control

Jul 06, 2012 | 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

Losing power on acceleration and surges when coming to a stop

Have your local parts house run a obd2 scan if your check engine light is on. I had similar problems traced back to a IAC sensor. Idle air control. It controls your idle speed by controlling the fuel and air mixture. It will surge forward when stopped much like you feathering the throttle. It will also hinder your fuel economy and driving power.

May 18, 2010 | 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

96 gc 4.0 that has intermittent low speed engine

Hi MakGrif,

I've got a Wrangler with a 4.0L that was doing the same thing. On mine it turned out to be the injectors were getting gummed up.

You can try the additives they sell but I've never really seen them make a difference. Maybe I like immediate results.

If you decide to clean them yourself, comment back. There are some precautions you need to be aware of and some parts you will need in advance.

Best regards

Nov 10, 2009 | 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

My transmisson makes a weezing sound when im at low speed

You sure its the transmission? Wheezing sound is usually the catylitic converter becoming plugged. 3-5K rpm you are not idling, you are reving the engine...(in that case, trans may be slipping or flairing between shifts, unless the unit is staying in one gear and just delaying shift till you reach that rpm. actual shift point should be close to 2,000rpm) I'd check the cat first.

Apr 17, 2009 | 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee Converted to 5 speed -- engine light on

go to qudratec
they should have bypass ecm to plug in it solve that pesky light.
please rate thanks.

Aug 18, 2008 | 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee

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