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-   -   Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement (http://www.jeepgarage.org/f203/low-coolant-and-upcoming-shock-replacement-16822.html)

FredoinSF 12-29-2010 12:30 PM

Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement
 
The low coolant warning went off in my 02 GC with the 4.7 V8 and 91k miles. I have not had this car too long (60 days and 5,000 miles), but the warning came up about 1,500 miles after replacing coolant and radiator hoses. I have not seen any leaks nor smelled anything out of the ordinary so I am thinking the radiator cap is no longer sealing properly. I am going to start by replacing the cap and topping off coolant. Any other thoughts?

I ordered replacement shocks and am planning on doing the swap next weekend. I went with Bilsteins due to good experience with other cars and decent feedback on this forum. I mainly use the Jeep on mountain highways and am looking for better handling in the curves with stock ride height so hopefully it was the right choice.
It looks like the procedure for replacement is easy, just two bolts for each shock. Any tips from anyone who has done this? Should I plan for extra hardware, set of hands?

Any other suggestions for tightening up the handling at this age and miles? I know it's not a sports car, but I am looking to clean up the handling while maintaining a comfortable ride.

BLACK DOG 12-29-2010 12:59 PM

Re: Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement
 
best improvement for handling would come from heavier sway bars, then sport springs

Frango100 12-29-2010 04:15 PM

Re: Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement
 
If you are loosing coolant, it should be visible at some place, if it would be the radiator cap or any other place. I have a small leak at the moment from my waterpump, but its quite clear to see. If there is nothing to see at any place, it can be that not all air was bled after filling. I would first fill the reservoir up and see over time what it does.
Regarding the shocks, the rear ones are very easy and don't require to remove the wheel first. You can do it with the weight on the wheels. I only discovered that i could not get the lower nuts loose.............just found out later that they are welded in place. So just loosen the bolt head. There are some people who change the bolts for an other type, to prevent rattling, but i didn't and have no noise.
The front shocks require the wheels to be removed. The 2 lower bolts are very easy to remove. Only when trying to remove the upper nut, the small hex to keep the piston rod from rotating, broke of. I used a grip wrench on the piston rod in the wheel well to secure the rod. Installation is a piece of cake.

FredoinSF 12-29-2010 05:43 PM

Re: Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement
 
Thanks for the info. Can't wait for the shock swap, I think it will make a big difference.

I topped off the reservoir with coolant. I'll keep an eye on it for now and will take a closer look for leaks when I work on the shocks.

vicpick58 12-30-2010 10:21 PM

Re: Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement
 
If you do happen to notice a rattle from the rear shocks, try replacing the factory bolts with a set of M12-1.75x70 class 8.8 bolts. I think they just fit the shocks slightly tighter than the originals.

Denny boy 12-30-2010 10:42 PM

Re: Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by FredoinSF (Post 324941)
Thanks for the info. Can't wait for the shock swap, I think it will make a big difference.

I topped off the reservoir with coolant. I'll keep an eye on it for now and will take a closer look for leaks when I work on the shocks.

are you using pre mix coolant or 50/50 coolant? and how much did you drain out before and how much did you put in?

FredoinSF 12-31-2010 05:04 PM

Re: Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement
 
I was using the 50/50 Peak coolant for top off. I put another 400 miles and had to add about 1/2 gallon. The good news is I found the leak. Looks like it's coming from the radiator. I'm not thrilled about having to tackle that job, but at least now I know it's not a head gasket.

Should I throw a water pump and thermostat at it while I'm in there?

vicpick58 12-31-2010 06:12 PM

Re: Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by FredoinSF (Post 325971)
I was using the 50/50 Peak coolant for top off. I put another 400 miles and had to add about 1/2 gallon. The good news is I found the leak. Looks like it's coming from the radiator. I'm not thrilled about having to tackle that job, but at least now I know it's not a head gasket.

Should I throw a water pump and thermostat at it while I'm in there?

Sorry to hear about your radiator, I understand that is a real pain to change out. My original radiator on my 2000 Laredo 4.7 was still in it when I sold the Jeep a 281k miles. (still good too)

My 2004 Overland radiator needed replacement at about 90k miles, covered by extended warranty.

As far as the water pump, they are pretty good, my 2000 lasted to about 260k miles. But since you are going to have the radiator out and out of the way anyway, it might be a good time to change it.

The t-stat is easy and could be done any time, it is located where the lower hose goes into the engine. But again since you are going to have the radiator out and the hoses loose, why not change it too.

http://www.wjjeeps.com/service/cooling.htm for more information.

When refilling be sure to remove the plug at the top where the upper hose attaches to the engine until coolant starts to come out.

Edit: Also be sure to use the special G-05 HOAT type coolent that these Jeeps require, Zerex makes one that can be used. Prestone DOES NOT make a coolent for these vehicles. Never use dexcool.

FredoinSF 01-03-2011 04:41 PM

Re: Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement
 
I took the car to a local radiator shop and they replaced the radiator. They said they refilled the system with Prestone with Ehtylene Glycol and assured me this type of coolant is compatible with this engine. The WJ Jeeps site also states that it should be refilled with Ethylene glycol. Should I trust them and leave the stuff in there or do a third coolant change in 2,000 miles?

BTW, it's good to see these cars can last well into the 200K mile range. I hope that with good maintenance I can get around 150K with this one without constant infusions of $$$$$ on repairs.

vicpick58 01-03-2011 08:48 PM

Re: Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by FredoinSF (Post 327648)
I took the car to a local radiator shop and they replaced the radiator. They said they refilled the system with Prestone with Ehtylene Glycol and assured me this type of coolant is compatible with this engine. The WJ Jeeps site also states that it should be refilled with Ethylene glycol. Should I trust them and leave the stuff in there or do a third coolant change in 2,000 miles?

BTW, it's good to see these cars can last well into the 200K mile range. I hope that with good maintenance I can get around 150K with this one without constant infusions of $$$$$ on repairs.

Personally, I would not worry about it too much. It should take a very long time to corrode the system and cause problems by using the wrong coolant. Just drive it a while and make sure it is not still losing coolant anymore.

In the mean time, do your research about the recommended coolant and change it later on if you decide you want to.

vicpick58 01-03-2011 08:54 PM

Re: Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement
 
Here is a thread on the subject that may help you decide: http://www.jeepsunlimited.com/forums...highlight=HOAT

straty1987 01-03-2011 10:02 PM

Re: Low coolant and upcoming shock replacement
 
you have a mix right now which is not good.

if you can i would say flush it out with water 3 times at home with a garden hose and then fill up with the right coolant.


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