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Old 07-11-2013, 06:37 PM   #1
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General YJ Question

Hello everyone, I new to the Jeep scene and I have a few questions. What are some things I should avoid when looking to buy a used Jeep? Are there any red flags I should keep my eyes open for? Also, what's the best axle upgrade? Are the D30/35 worth keeping? Are they able to keep up with mild to moderate wheeling, while staying street worthy? Thanks everyone, I greatly appreciate it!

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Old 07-11-2013, 06:41 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by j.thomas7521 View Post
Hello everyone, I new to the Jeep scene and I have a few questions. What are some things I should avoid when looking to buy a used Jeep? Are there any red flags I should keep my eyes open for? Also, what's the best axle upgrade? Are the D30/35 worth keeping? Are they able to keep up with mild to moderate wheeling, while staying street worthy? Thanks everyone, I greatly appreciate it!
Rust being #1 I think. Also custom suspension lifts. D30 isn't all that bad for mild wheeling. D35 with mild wheeling its hit and miss. Mine went out with prolly 87k and am currently swapping it out. Just try and stay away from inheriting someone else's problems.

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Old 07-11-2013, 07:21 PM   #3
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I agree depending on where you live rust may be first, if it has carpet pull it up under the driverside. Also check fluids and if they have service records that's always good. Really comes down to the same things you would check on any used car, but understanding this is a jeep which means it may have never left the paved road, or may have many miles of rock pounding fun. Don't be afraid to crawl under it and see if things look bashed in.
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Old 07-11-2013, 07:51 PM   #4
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A deal breaker for me would be frame rust at the spring shackles. I looked at a few like that before I bought mine.
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Old 07-11-2013, 07:59 PM   #5
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What are some things I should avoid when looking to buy a used Jeep?
In addition to what others have said I would add rushing. Do not be in a rush to buy the first one you see. Take your time dont talk yourself into something just because it's in front of you.
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Old 07-11-2013, 10:17 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by j.thomas7521 View Post
Hello everyone, I new to the Jeep scene and I have a few questions. What are some things I should avoid when looking to buy a used Jeep? Are there any red flags I should keep my eyes open for? Also, what's the best axle upgrade? Are the D30/35 worth keeping? Are they able to keep up with mild to moderate wheeling, while staying street worthy? Thanks everyone, I greatly appreciate it!
All good advice so far. Rust for sure is a deal breaker. I'm not talking surface rust.
Also (and this is just my opinion), but I would insist on a 6 cylinder. Plenty of YJ's run the 2.5 so I'm sure some will chime in, but I personally would only go with a 6. And if you find one with an 8 cylinder conversion, make sure you look into it very diligently. You don't want to buy someone's Frankenstein project if they didn't know what they were doing.
Another important thing to consider is the tranny. Again, I insisted on a stick. And, even further, I insisted on the AX15 trans which went into production in March 1989. Anything before that had the BA10 which is not nearly as good as the AX15.

As for the axles, they are moderate. The D35 rear isn't great, and you'll find that most serious folks swap it out. The Ford 8.8 is a common option and can be found fairly inexpensively. Several other options too. But all depends how serious your gonna get off the pavement.

Good luck and welcome
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Old 07-13-2013, 11:22 PM   #7
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I had a 2.5 TBI, and ended up getting rid of it for a 4.0 HO. So count my vote for looking for a 4.0.

A few things i'm always sure to check on when looking at a YJ (or TJ for that matter).

Blow-by. Open up the air box, and look for oil on the filter. There's a good chance that a dealer, or seller, may change the air filter to cover for that, so be careful. Check out the air intake and air box for oil residue. If you find enough of it, its likely that the rings are going in the motor. In the 4.0 this is pretty common.

Transmission.. The AX5 and 15 manual transmisions have synchro problems if the wrong fluid was used in the trans. Its more common than you might think, but if the common GL-5 is used in these transmissions, the brass synchro rings are eaten away during daily use. This causes the common grinding while shifting problem that a lot of yj's have. I had it happen to my old YJ with the ax-5 before i sold it, and then again with the ax-15 behind my 4.0 yj. Replaced that trans with a used trans from a junk yard, and within a year that one started doing the same thing. I swapped in an nv3550 after that.

Otherwise, just look for general signs of abuse, a lot of people get a wrangler and think they can drive it through a lake without any ill effects, and then try to drive it through a lake, and end up swimming to shore. On the bright side, YJ's are uncomplicated enough that you can really dig in and identify possible issues before buying.
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Old 07-14-2013, 07:32 AM   #8
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I have been told the 4.0L can see 200k-300k,is this true? I found a 98 TJ with the 4.0L, 5 speed for $8200. It has 135k on the clock. It looks.super.clean but I'm not for sure. Why are jeeps so expensive?
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Old 07-14-2013, 07:38 AM   #9
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And its completely bone stock.
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Old 07-14-2013, 09:43 AM   #10
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Jeeps are so expensive because they can last 200, 300, even 400k with proper maintenance. ;-)
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Old 07-14-2013, 10:25 AM   #11
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Jeeps are so expensive because they can last 200, 300, even 400k with proper maintenance. ;-)
They are so expensive because they are so much fun that everybody wants one!
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Old 07-14-2013, 01:32 PM   #12
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That too... :-)
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Old 07-14-2013, 10:04 PM   #13
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If maintained, they are extremely reliable. And yes, fun as all hell.
They are also very easy to work on. You don't need to be a master technician to work on your own jeep and they are very easy to mod if you wanna have fun off the pavement.

If a tranny goes... So what, rebuild or replace it. If a block goes... So what, rebuild and replace it. An axle pops... so what, just replace it.
You can keep your jeep for the rest of your life if you want to. Just maintain it.

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