Question about 1993 Jeep Grand Cherokee

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Have just bought a 93 jeep Grand Cherokee. At slow speeds when you turn the wheel full lock in either direction the car nearly stops dead. Power steering fluid is fine, tyres aren't rubbing on anything but there is a huge amount of straining from the engine when turning sharp??

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Classic symptom of a binding axle universal joint. Best real way to test them though is to remove them and check to make sure they move easily in both directions. Always use a good quality synthetic grease on the new ones as once installed you can't grease them. One way I've found to make them last a bit longer is to slightly lengthen the turn stops on the steering knuckles. most are set too far in and allow the joint to bind on sharp turns. Doing that will increase your turning radius but if you don't go overboard with it it isn't even noticeable. I actually go out so far on some that the bolt needs to be replaced with a longer one but if you do that you need to use grade 8 bolts and solid spacers to prevent the bolt from snapping off.
Even new joints may bind slightly, especially in 4wd. That's why on later models they used C/V joints which are smoother....there's a trade off though. C/v boots tear and the joints then fail. Off road that happens a lot.
To remove the axle, you need to remove the axle center nut, the wheel, brake caliper and rotor and the bearing hub. When re-installing, don't drag the axle along the bottom of the housing tube or you will push the seal out and cause a leak. The seal is inside next to the carrier. Support the axle so it goes through the center of the seal and into the carrier gear splines. Any problems with that, just ask.

Posted on May 24, 2011

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