I have just joined this forum, but I have owned my 1991 YJ for, well, 21 years now. This fine vehicle has the 4.0, 6 cylinder engine, power steering and not much else. In fact, the 1991 did not come with air bags and the roll cage is not a full cage, so there are no shoulder harnesses. All that was well and good when I was young, single and bulletproof. Now I am old, cranky, creaky and have a beautiful wife and two young sons that love four- wheeling. On top of that, the good old '91 is experiencing some body rust and I am thinking it's time to upgrade to a late model wrangler for this next phase of my Jeeping Life.
In my area I am seeing 2003 and 2004 Wranglers in the $11,000 -$14000 range, which is about my budget. My questions to the esteemed members of the forum are these - what known production issues come with the 2003 and 2004 models? Assuming normal wear and tear, what items should I have my mechanic look for when I bring in a 2003 or 2004 Wrangler? Any particular quirks or "what the !#@% is THAT noise?" issues I should look out for?
Thank you, members of this forum, for helping me continue my jeeping experience.
For what it is worth......I have an '04 TJ. 151K+ miles on it. Problems or repairs I have made.....there have been some but not bad.
Water pump, clutch, heater blower motor, heater resistor, rear u-joints, power steering line, catalytic converters, o2 sensor.
For further edification.....IMO I caused the issues with the 3 Cats needing replaced and probably the o2 sensor by running premium in it. I wasn't aware that TJ's don't like the higher octane and that it actually causes more problems.
There are a few year specific things I have heard, but not a lot, and NOTHING to reject one year over another from any issues.
The roll bar padding size changed some, speakers were changed/ moved but all the Tjs are pretty much the same.
If it were me I would probably look for a LJ, with the coil rail...think that is '02 and after but not sure, with Dana 44 and 3.73s. It may be a little closer to $15k, if the miles are good.
Once you get to the point of having a little more specific questions may post in TJ thread..probably get more responses.
The only suggestion I give is to try a buy as close to stock as possible.
1. More modified Jeeps tend to have been driven harder
2. With stock you know what you are getting, making it easier to diagnos and make repairs when necessary.
3. You can build it the way you want and be assured that the work is done properly.
The kind of woman that when my feet hit the floor each morning the devil says "Oh Crap, She's up!"
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