Question about 1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee

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What is the front differential on a 97 Jeep grand cherokee, is it a locker or a straight?

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Unless someone changed it, the front differential is always an "open" style. If it was not, it would make it difficult to make turns. There are kits available to install either a positraction center section or a "spool", but those are used primarily in vehicles that are used off road where sacrificing drive-ability is not an issue. The easiest way to determine if a particular unit has a posi is to lift both wheels off the ground and turn one side. If the opposite wheel turns in the same direction it is a posi. If it fails to turn or turns in the opposite direction it is an open unit.

Posted on Nov 10, 2010

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Should be a dana 30 ft diff and it could be a open diff but some grand cherokees came with quadro trac locker in the 30 front end diff

Posted on Dec 03, 2010

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Jeep grand cherokee quadra drive


Differentials.

The Jeep Quadra Drive systems have a limited slip differential in the transfer case as well as the front and rear axles - which allows you to run all wheel drive on all surfaces. This matters because without limited slip capability your transfer case & axles would break.

Have your transfer case and axles serviced by a dealer, really a real dealer for Chrysler Jeep. These diffs and transfer cases can use unique gear oils that you don\'t want to mix up with regular gear oil.

That howling, clunking, grinding noise is your dog-clutches slipping (as designed) as you go around the corner.



Additional Details below:

So what\'s the Diff?



All differentials are is a way to allow for different wheels to travel different distances on the same vehicle. What-he-say? Yep, when we turn a corner all 4 wheels go a different distance around that corner... oh yeah well everybody knows that. Think about it, your making that hard left turn at your favorite Fast-Food joint; your left front wheel is 2 feet away from the curb, but the back left wheel rubs the curb... why?

As you make that 90 degree turn, your left back wheel travels 4 feet, your left front wheel travels 6 feet, your right rear wheel travels 7 feet, and your right front wheel travels 8 feet.



Ok you say, what\'s the big deal? A couple feet slip here a couple of feet slip there... Well remember your sticky rubber tires on dry asphalt don\'t really give very much and u-joints, axles shafts, and even pinion and ring gear damage can occur. Fortunately for us, Leonardo DaVinci (yeah really) saw this problem coming and designed the Open Differential. There are mini-gears inside your open differential that allow for that slippage, these mini-gears are called spider gears. Problem is when your in snow, ice, mud the spider gears of the open diff allow all your power to go to the wheel with the least traction (and your stuck).

Ok let\'s put another powered axle up front and call it 4x4. Umm no.

A normal 4x4 is not really true four wheel drive. At best it\'s the worst 2 wheels you\'ve got - driving you forward. Until both wheels on the same side are in a ditch, and your stuck.



Well what the heck Leonardo? I want something better than stuck!



The old-time dragster dudes of the 50\'s & 60\'s agreed with you and they welded those little spider gears together for true positraction across both wheels. Ever been close to a big monster truck in a parking lot and heard its tires chirping around the corner? Or an old Jeep crow-hopping it\'s way around a corner - Letting out little tire noises (like "erp" "erp" "erp")?

That\'s because these 4x4\'s have been modified to not have any differential action. None. This is great in a 1/4 mile dragster race or a mountain climbing rally car. A locked front differential can (and most likely will) cause you to crash... not good for daily drivers.



You\'re in luck, the Limited Slip Differential (LSD) has clutches instead of spider gears, which engage as wheel slippage increases. Subaru and Audi are 2 companies that really brought this to market with All Wheel Drive decades ago. Jeep and other SUV/Pickup manufacturers have utilized clutch-based LSD\'s as well. Clutch-based LSD\'s however, have a limited lifespan and can require special gear oils. When Clutch-based LSD\'s fail, they basically become an Open Diff.



Automatic locking differentials were brought to market in the 70\'s & 80\'s by companies like Detroit Locker, and these engage a fully locked set of gears as soon as any slippage occurs. Problem is it can become very difficult to steer, at all. Forget about U-turns, just go around the block. And while your at it, stop and pick up another set of tires because it will feel like you are dragging your outside tires around every corner.



Jeep and Daimler-Chrysler developed another type of LSD that utilizes a small hydraulic pump to engage a set of clutches and gears, which lasts much longer than traditional LSD\'s. It was called a Gerodisc differential, and it worked fairly well. Not as much traction as a full locker, but good LSD performance. The problem was the Gerodisc couldn\'t control itself in the car-washes, and would build-up pressure as the tires slipped over the soapy rollers, and launch the Grand Cherokee across the car wash. Yeah, it was freaky. So freaky that the National Car Wash Association of America (yeah they have an association, who knew?) prohibited all Grand Cherokees. Look it up.



The King Daddy of differentials is the selectable locker. These little gems are very expensive, but you get all the benefits of both the open diff for maneuvering, and lockers for traction only when needed.



So that noise, while it may not spell imminent doom, surely ain\'t good.

Jan 02, 2014 | Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

Are any of the parts on a 1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee interchangeable with a 1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee? rear axle,wheels, power-steering, hood hyrdraulics?


A few parts should be interchangeable. Most of them will not be however since the Grand Cherokee underwent a complete re-design for 1999. Some engines and transmissions will switch out. The rear axle in the 97 was commonly a Dana/Spicer 35. This was replaced with a larger rear differential in 1999 for increased towing capacity. The wheels should interchange ok, power steering system was pretty much the same and as long as the hydraulics (supports) on the hood are the same length they should work

Mar 22, 2013 | 1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

My front differential went out on my 97 Jeep Grand Cherokee about 8 months ago. Since then Ive replaced it three times with a new front end (used). Last time it lasted one day before going out. Am I...


If that's a 4 wheel drive make sure the front gear ratio matches the rear ratio or you'll destroy the gears everytime. I had the same problem with my '97 Grand Cherokee..

Feb 15, 2011 | 1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

My differential went out on my 97 Jeep Grand Cherokee about 8 months ago. Since then Ive replaced it three times with a new front end (used). Last time it lasted one day before going out. Am I getting...


If that's a 4 wheel drive make sure the front gear ratio matches the rear ratio or you'll destroy the gears everytime. I had the same problem with my '97 Grand Cherokee.

Feb 15, 2011 | 1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

Hose from the front differential.


This hose you refer to is the breather tube for the differential. It connects to a fitting at the top of the differential housing and runs up the back side of the radiator so you won't run the risk of water entering the differential if you submerge the front axle in water. Reconnect the rubber hose to the fitting on the differentail.

Jan 17, 2010 | 1998 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

Whouling niose when speed increses and decreses on my jeep grand cherokee 1998


You need differential carrier and pinion bearings. Jeeps had many problems with the differentials in these years.

Jun 02, 2009 | 1998 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

May buy a Cherokee with a front differential problem.


if you don't have experience with working on cars .... i recommend you take it to a mechanic you trust to assess what kind of work it would need. it's a small investment compared to buying someone elses problem

Mar 24, 2009 | 1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

Front end and rear end differential


The 99 Jeep Grand Cherokee was prone to bad diff bearings because they changed the plant where they were made. The new plant used inferior materials. The only way to fix it is to replace and set the diff clearences.

Feb 17, 2009 | 1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee

1 Answer

99 Jeep Grand Cherokee rear end humming


check the differential fluid in the rear differential. if the fluid is low, add fluid and see if the noise is still there, if the fluid level is ok see if the fluid appears metallic, if it is metallic looking or excessively thick it would be a good idea to have the bearings checked out. i am in the process of rebuilding a front differential on a 98 jeep grand cherokee for the same problem. the bearings inside the differential on the carrier and pinion gear were worn out causing a humming noise. if the wear is excessive the gears might also need to be replaced

Feb 17, 2009 | 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee

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