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Old 11-16-2011, 11:39 AM   #1
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Winter Driving Question

Hi, i'm new here, and i'll say i'm sorry ahead of time if this has been covered here already. I've never had a Jeep and this is my first winter so I have a couple questions. 1990 YJ, Ohio weather

I have a hardtop on mine, and heater seems to blow good, but do these get warm in the winter?

I have bought a little rennegade rear seat electric heater, do these work?

Do I need to put weight in the rear end?

Sorry for all the questions but I have two young kids and I want them to be safe and warm. Thanks in advance

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Old 11-16-2011, 11:49 AM   #2
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Theres no dumb questions and safety is aways important for both you and your kidos. I got a 93 with hard top and full doors it stays very warm inside. If its not blowing hot air check your theromstat make sure its 195degree and it works. Fail safe on those is open so if it fail it will stick open and thats not good if your trying to heat your jeep. As for weight in the back i wouldnt worry about it if you start sliding pop it in 4H. Im not too sure about those electric heaters one of those buy it and see if its any good things. If not take it back.

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Old 11-16-2011, 11:58 AM   #3
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Great! Thanks for the response
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Old 11-16-2011, 06:15 PM   #4
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Welcome to the forum!

Got any pictures of your jeep?

Off of what was said above, if it isn't blowing hot hair, you may need to flush the heater core which is a fairly simple job. I just did mine last weekend. Other than that, you and your kids should be warm over the winter. There's no need to of weight in the back of the jeep. Jeeps have, from my experiences, a great 4x4 system!
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Old 11-16-2011, 07:48 PM   #5
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welcome.
if the road is covered in snow or ice put it in 4w high and drive easy( 45mph or less) and you will not have a problem. if you have to drive in the ditch around a stuck car or not jeep 4x4 put it in fwd low and drive easy around them and then put it back in high and go or leave it in low and pull them out ( always pull out a stuck hummer ).
remember in low you have to drive really slow.
the best thing you can do is find a area off road and practice shifting and using the fwd system. Do not use the fwd on dry pavement .
put a piece of cardboard in frt of your radiator so that 1/2 to 3/4 is covered on really cold days and the heater will heat faster and maintain better.
your jeep does not need weight in the back it was built for harsh conditions.
feel free to call if you need fast help on your jeep.
happy holidays!!!
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Old 11-16-2011, 11:23 PM   #6
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I'm in the same boat as the OP, so thanks for posting and for the info! I have another question that is in the same realm as the OP: Does the heater blow through the main vents or only the lower ones by your feet? If I set mine on heat and turn the fan up it only blows on my feet. Can you redirect it to the main ones?
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Old 11-17-2011, 06:17 AM   #7
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The only vents are the floor(heat) or the defroster vents. I have seen some yj's with xtra vents and I believe those are for ac. Not sure if the heat can be directed to them or not.

And to the OP. When it snows take your jeep to a parking lot and see what it does. The only thing to consider is short wheel base. Jeeps tend to get out of control very quickly when they get squirly and most of that is because the drivers over correct.

Also most of the time when in 4wd and bit of wheel spin can help you turn. Don't get crazy with it but...

Practaice is the best way. Also just keep in mind that while you have 4wd and you can do a lot with it, your not invincible. Finally, and not sure if this applies. DO NOT USE ANY CRUISE CONTROL ON THE HIGHWAY when the roads are slick.
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Old 11-17-2011, 06:31 AM   #8
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Welcome, also I would make sure the 4wd system works in hi and low range if you have not done so already. ALso check things like the front axleshaft u-joints to make sure they are good. Nothing like getting into snow then seeing you have an issue.
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Old 11-17-2011, 08:36 AM   #9
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Thanks for all the help, no pictures yet Jeep is being painted right now. I have drove several 4x4's, but my main fear was the short wheel base and experience all you "Jeepers" had with them. I always heard stories about them being great in the snow but the wheelbase made me worry. I will follow advice drive sensible and hope it goes great. Again thank you all for the help, this is the best forum around with some great people.
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Old 11-17-2011, 08:42 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scott howard View Post
welcome.
if the road is covered in snow or ice put it in 4w high and drive easy( 45mph or less) and you will not have a problem. if you have to drive in the ditch around a stuck car or not jeep 4x4 put it in fwd low and drive easy around them and then put it back in high and go or leave it in low and pull them out ( always pull out a stuck hummer ).
remember in low you have to drive really slow.
the best thing you can do is find a area off road and practice shifting and using the fwd system. Do not use the fwd on dry pavement .
put a piece of cardboard in frt of your radiator so that 1/2 to 3/4 is covered on really cold days and the heater will heat faster and maintain better.
your jeep does not need weight in the back it was built for harsh conditions.
feel free to call if you need fast help on your jeep.
happy holidays!!!

Very cool of you to offer phone assistance.
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Old 11-17-2011, 08:54 AM   #11
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The wheelbase is not the problem with jeeps. It is rugged and designed to do things many other vehicles can do. Therefore Jeep owners put there jeeps in situations that normal vehicle owners wouldn't even attempt. We see it as a challenge. Will the jeep do this? Sure it will... and if it doesn't, lesson learned. A normal vehicle owner says, "I am going to get stuck if I try to go around... so I won't do it." That is where the danger comes in.

Tell me, how many vehicles do you see climbing mountains? Generally, only jeeps. Now isn't climbing mountains dangerous and aren't you inherently more likely to roll over if you do? Does that make Jeeps more unreliable? No... it just make jeep drivers more adventurous (some call it stupid, but that is another story.)

I remember when Jeep was being "exposed" by 60 minutes under the claim that Jeeps were unsafe because of their taller center of gravity. The argument was that in a highway emergency, the jeep would flip over. 60 minutes showed a video of this happening on a test track so it must have been true, right? The only problem was that it was a lie. The whole thing was fabricated by 60 minutes. Jeep had a major problem with this video BECAUSE THEY KNEW IT WAS BALONEY. What the infamous 60 minutes did was rig the jeep. You see, they couldn't get the jeep to flip over like they claimed it always did. In over 300 tries, they couldn't get it to flip SO... don't let facts get in their way. They rigged a hydraulic arm to spin the steering wheel faster than any human being could ever hope to do. It still wouldn't flip over. Then they added 300 pounds to the top of the roll bar. Now with that extra weight and the hydraulic arm, the jeep flipped over ONCE!! Does that make the jeep unsafe? No. It makes 60 minutes a bunch of liars.

Now, can you get the jeep to flip over at highway speeds? Sure, if you try real hard BUT THAT ISN'T NORMAL DRIVING CONDITIONS, now is it? If you really want to, you can make any vehicle flip over if you try hard enough BUT WHAT WE REALLY WANT TO KNOW IS IF THE JEEP HAS A TENDENCY TO FLIP OVER AT NORMAL OPERATING SPEEDS DURING NORMAL DRIVING CONDITIONS. No, it does not.

Take care,
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Old 11-17-2011, 09:32 AM   #12
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I agree with the above. I was going around a corner at 50 faster then I should have. A car was in part way in my lane. I swerved the jeep leaned and skidded around but did not roll even when I went in the ditch. I popped out of the ditch and kept on driving. With 8in lift, no sway bar, no trac bars, and 36" tires.
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Old 11-17-2011, 10:33 AM   #13
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The short wheel base can make things interesting. While travelling down the interstate at about 55 during slightly harsh winter conditions (in 2wd); I took the off ramp, touched the brakes and sent the Jeep spinning up the ramp about 2 times. Kind of scary, kind of fun but definitely a lesson learned. Don't get overconfident!
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Old 11-17-2011, 11:44 AM   #14
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I was surprised last year when I drove my wrangler in the snow for the first time. I drive a Cherokee as my DD, but it was broken down. I spun 180 when I left my parking lot at work .

The short wheel base takes a little getting used to for sure. It's going to want to come around much faster than a long wheel base truck or SUV.

Once you learn how it reacts, adjust your driving style and it'll be fine.
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Old 11-17-2011, 01:34 PM   #15
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Showville,

I apologize about my above post. I meant to say that "Jeeps are vehicles that can do what many other vehicles CANNOT DO."

Sorry I goofed.

Take care,
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Old 11-17-2011, 04:49 PM   #16
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These Wranglers have without a doubt THE best turning radius I have ever seen...
Only vehicle that comes close is a motorcycle..
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Old 11-17-2011, 05:16 PM   #17
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^Second that! I can turn around in mere feet, whereas my buddies with rucks have to backup, and then go.

Things can get hairy when driving in wet weather, but if you have good tires rated for your locations conditions than you won't have issue. If you get to a point where you feel the rear end washing out, let off the gas and if you have to downshift, or put it into a lower gear and slip the clutch a bit. The drag in the rear will center the vehicle.

I experienced this first had last weekend, when driving in POURING rain. Buckets of water were falling from the sky, I think I might have hit 45mph at one point on the highway.

Otherwise, a Jeep is as safe as can be for how primitive of a vehicle they are.
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Old 11-17-2011, 05:21 PM   #18
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Scott Howard is correct with the cardboard idea. I do the same thing. It heats up way quicked but doesnt over heat. I dont use card board though. Do you know that stuff that is like card board but made of plastic? They make alot of signs out of it, such as people running for office or coke and cigarette companies use it also at gas stations. Anyway, I cut a piece the same size as the area where the air flows through the radiator and cut a 12" square hole right in the middle of that. I doesnt matter if it rains 900 times it wont fall apart like card board. You should try it, you can get it at just about any convenient store after they use them for a sale or something they just pile them up in a corner somewhere. Congrats on the jeep and welcome to the greatest jeep forum on planet earth, I always visit this site while Im hear on vacation.
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Old 11-17-2011, 06:02 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Beaver5 View Post
Scott Howard is correct with the cardboard idea. I do the same thing. It heats up way quicked but doesnt over heat. I dont use card board though. Do you know that stuff that is like card board but made of plastic? They make alot of signs out of it, such as people running for office or coke and cigarette companies use it also at gas stations. Anyway, I cut a piece the same size as the area where the air flows through the radiator and cut a 12" square hole right in the middle of that. I doesnt matter if it rains 900 times it wont fall apart like card board. You should try it, you can get it at just about any convenient store after they use them for a sale or something they just pile them up in a corner somewhere. Congrats on the jeep and welcome to the greatest jeep forum on planet earth, I always visit this site while Im hear on vacation.
lol...I live in wichita falls texs where so far this year we have got less then 2 and a half inches of rain so cardboard does great here but i see where you need the plastic board in the rest of the world...lol
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Old 11-18-2011, 03:43 PM   #20
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Thanks for all the great tips!
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Old 12-18-2011, 12:22 PM   #21
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Hi, Guys;;I'm new, female, from WI and prolly old enuf to be your mother..I have 2 Jeeps, grand cherokee and a yellow wrangler ragtop. I love'm both. Just sent last payment in for for the wrangler(Merry Christmas to me). N E Wayz thanks for all the good comments and a little of my experiences..to the how roll over is a wrangler? 2 weeks into owning mine(I had been driving G Cherokke for 3 years ineverything) someone cut me off on wide city st & I braked like I was in the big guy, did a 360 , bounced off a lite pole, another 360 straightened out & drove to neartesr parking lot. All I got was a 1 in black mark by my windshield (ragtop) and a flat from popping the wheel rim, never flipped or broke anything....Heat inside, until now my heater alweays ran so good I would have to turn it down & I have rips in my softtop.....my 2.5 yr old granddaughter rides in the back (WI winters) I just tighten the carseat down with all my strenghth. I can get out of anywhere even have had to climb embankments (It's a Jeep lol) Love my Jeeps, they'll die in my arms. Love all your input. I will get my old for sale sign and use it for my radiator cover(so glad he never sold-I refused to come down in price-guess I didn't really want to sell). C U all and have a wonderful Christmas, whereever you are!!
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Old 12-18-2011, 01:39 PM   #22
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would suggest flushing heater core--both ways actually very easy to do---will prolly restore your heat.

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