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My 2013 wrangler sahara with 70,000 miles started blowing cooler air out of drivers side vents 2 years ago. If you closed the passenger vents it would force warmer air out drivers side. I took it to dealer last winter and he reverse flushed the heater core and said it was blowing warmer air. Maybe a tad, but not much. I reversed flushed it (with a pond pump and CLR for radiators in a 5 gallon bucket, changing direction every 1/2 hour for 6 hours) then flushed the complete system and replaced thermostat. It did not effect the air temps coming out of the vents. The next day, I did the quick heater core removal, and replaced the core, now HOT (195) air out of all four vents. I then welded the metal frame piece back in. It took about three hours to put it all back together. Just in time, the highs for the next ten days are single digits, with negative double digit lows.


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So to confirm, even though this thread title says 2012-2017 this problem exists for us 2018 owners?
Yea I think this thread started a LONG time ago, but us 2018 JKs still have same issues.
 
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A few years ago someone had asked me about the difference in heat between driver's side and passenger side. This was more related to the known casting sand issues, along with the heat core issues - something this thread seems to have derailed off into more.

The backstory on my Jeep is that it's has an antifreeze smell since the day I bought it, coupled with disappearing antifreeze - no smoking, no contaminated oil or coolant, and no obvious leaks. At one point a few years ago, it did finally show some pink antifreeze crust and they warrantied the radiator for me, saying it's known to happen and it cracked along a seal.

Getting back to the derailment now - so someone had asked me about the temp coming out of my vents as they were working on their Jeep issues, so I took these photos for them, back Jan 6, 2018. My Jeep has had other issues, waterfall sound behind the dash (air), squealing water pump/later replacement (flush both times), etc... so my Jeep had been flushed early on for reasons outside of just casting sand - yet I had a solid inch of casting sand in my overflow at one point and it's not just a quick spray in there to get it out - you throw some nuts and bolts in there and shake it to break it up - it's a goopy mess.

I have never had a heater core issue though - and I strongly believe it's because the other issues required a lot of flushes and that saved my heater core - I hope at least.

So now for the photos for those reading through and commenting on what temps should be. Mine always has run this hot, and still does (I think). I consider this the real normal here though, I did notice some posted lower temps and I have had a few suggest the dealer has called their lower temps "normal" as well - I think the person asking for help had the dealer saying that 140 was plenty hot and considered "normal" - that's low. It was done on a cold day as well, so that plays into it a bit too, but 166 is what I consider in the normal range at least.

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Yeah, I def agree this thread eventually became the F*-The-Heating-Core thread, but in fairness, with somewhat of a good reason. Being new to the Jeep family (coming from Rovers), these are the main things I noticed that caused me pause, and some of the solutions...

The engine's running temp! THIS freaked me out, as my 'new-to-me' 2018 Rubicon with 15,000 miles coolant temp runs between 205* and 235* on long Colorado hills; then the thermostat kicks in and it drops like a lead balloon to 205-ish, only to start the process again. Heat works great. AC works great. No other issues.
So three (3!) calls to DIFFERENT dealers' service managers + many comments here + many other opinions/information on other Jeep forums convinced me this was Jeep's 3.6L Pentastar's engine "NORMAL" running temps. Crazy to me being old school, when you used to freak out if your temp ran above 190*, but I finally understood EPA, MPG, and other factors leaned Jeep/Chrysler in this new direction. So fine, all good.

The "automatic temp control" cluster! THIS was also difficult to fully understand upon driving my new Jeep. The way is presented in the dash, you'd imagine it works like every other SUV out there (I.E. Range Rover, Disco, Lexus, Mercury, etc...) This has nothing to do with these brands being "luxury" by the way. The way the Wrangler's "auto temp" control works is very different in the sense that there is no real difference between the temp settings in the dial, other than basically 3 settings: warm-hot-lava hot. The dial shows 72*-74*-76*-78*-80*-82* but in reality, the blend doors and actuators work hard to get your Jeep's cabin hot, then it's "ehhhhh, it's pretty warm in here; take what you got and smile." So fine, all good.

The faint, faint, faint, coolant smell upon engine shut off! THIS made me think I was crazy or at least slowly loosing my mind. Like @Lusus_Naturae above, when I stopped for gas at a station or in my driveway after a long drive, I could SOMETIMES catch a faint woof of coolant. Never any signs of anything, anywhere. I also eventually flushed the coolant system (some sediment in the reservoir bottle present), and I conducted several "back-flushes" of the heater core (also sandy sediment clearly exiting the system under pressure). Never overheated. Never puddles of anything under the Jeep; and I believe my temps at the vents are hot as hell, but never actually measured them. I think I wanted to keep my sanity.

*I have not have any issues with the radiator OR the oil cooler, that I know of. While I did my radiator flush, I was NOT able to unscrew the plug at the bottom. so I ended it up removing the big hose and flushing it that way. But other than that, no other obvious issues. Fingers crossed.

I now only still have 23,000 miles. These are just "glitches" to me cuz' I always wanted to have a Jeep and now I'm balls deep into it with modifications and overlanding set up. There's no going back. I hope to get 250,000 miles out of it, but I have posted on other threads to get owner user feedback, and to be honest, while a FEW have reported good high mileage, most owners have bragged about "87,000 miles...and counting" LOL so far. We'll see.
I see no reason not to get this high mileage of these engines but time will tell....
 

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I've got to do my thermostat so the hose will be comming off to avoid an issue. I have an extra gallon of Mopar OAT ready. When and if the radiator goes I'll R&R all the hoses and water pump then. I have replaced the heater control unit as I was getting the flashing light and fan delay. No longer an issue. If you want to get some high miles out of these I think you avoid sand dunes and revving it's balls off. My oil cooler is still factory and I do my own oil changes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,029 ·
Yeah, I def agree this thread eventually became the F*-The-Heating-Core thread, but in fairness, with somewhat of a good reason. Being new to the Jeep family (coming from Rovers), these are the main things I noticed that caused me pause, and some of the solutions...

The engine's running temp! THIS freaked me out, as my 'new-to-me' 2018 Rubicon with 15,000 miles coolant temp runs between 205* and 235* on long Colorado hills; then the thermostat kicks in and it drops like a lead balloon to 205-ish, only to start the process again. Heat works great. AC works great. No other issues.
So three (3!) calls to DIFFERENT dealers' service managers + many comments here + many other opinions/information on other Jeep forums convinced me this was Jeep's 3.6L Pentastar's engine "NORMAL" running temps. Crazy to me being old school, when you used to freak out if your temp ran above 190*, but I finally understood EPA, MPG, and other factors leaned Jeep/Chrysler in this new direction. So fine, all good.

** This often freaks out Jeepers coming from a TJ. I had a TJ, always sat there at 210, got up to 220 if you were really working it, and you don't want to stay there long. The coolant cycling between closed loop and open loop is roughly 206 - 226 degrees. Perfectly normal to get up to 235 when working it on a hot day, I did that a few times in the canyons, but it never stays there long, just while actively being worked.

The "automatic temp control" cluster! THIS was also difficult to fully understand upon driving my new Jeep. The way is presented in the dash, you'd imagine it works like every other SUV out there (I.E. Range Rover, Disco, Lexus, Mercury, etc...) This has nothing to do with these brands being "luxury" by the way. The way the Wrangler's "auto temp" control works is very different in the sense that there is no real difference between the temp settings in the dial, other than basically 3 settings: warm-hot-lava hot. The dial shows 72*-74*-76*-78*-80*-82* but in reality, the blend doors and actuators work hard to get your Jeep's cabin hot, then it's "ehhhhh, it's pretty warm in here; take what you got and smile." So fine, all good.

I don't even know where to begin on this mess. First with some interesting stuff you might like, the automatic HVAC has a humidity detector and temp detector, located behind the dash where the slotted circle is by the key. My Jeep has a manual system, yet when I'm driving around and it's humid and I just some fresh air flowing in so I set mine on the coldest setting and just the fan mode (no defrost, no a/c) - mine will still freak out about what we think is humidity detected - even though it doesn't have the right HVAC brain for that, and it automatically turns my a/c on and the a/c light won't come on - but you can tell the a/c is blowing cold. nobody has figured that one out - and they replaced my HVAC brain twice, and still happens...

The faint, faint, faint, coolant smell upon engine shut off! THIS made me think I was crazy or at least slowly loosing my mind. Like @Lusus_Naturae above, when I stopped for gas at a station or in my driveway after a long drive, I could SOMETIMES catch a faint woof of coolant. Never any signs of anything, anywhere. I also eventually flushed the coolant system (some sediment in the reservoir bottle present), and I conducted several "back-flushes" of the heater core (also sandy sediment clearly exiting the system under pressure). Never overheated. Never puddles of anything under the Jeep; and I believe my temps at the vents are hot as hell, but never actually measured them. I think I wanted to keep my sanity.

Ever since I bought it..still drives me crazy..

*I have not have any issues with the radiator OR the oil cooler, that I know of. While I did my radiator flush, I was NOT able to unscrew the plug at the bottom. so I ended it up removing the big hose and flushing it that way. But other than that, no other obvious issues. Fingers crossed.

I now only still have 23,000 miles. These are just "glitches" to me cuz' I always wanted to have a Jeep and now I'm balls deep into it with modifications and overlanding set up. There's no going back. I hope to get 250,000 miles out of it, but I have posted on other threads to get owner user feedback, and to be honest, while a FEW have reported good high mileage, most owners have bragged about "87,000 miles...and counting" LOL so far. We'll see.
I see no reason not to get this high mileage of these engines but time will tell....
I'm getting up there in miles.. watch for 'the tick'.. known issue with the cams/lifters.. the left side usually goes out about 70k, the right side 140k... the only other issue I see long term right now is the 3.6 may have a design flaw allowing piston slap as it ages. Seeing some of that now..
 
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... reverse flushed the heater core and said it was blowing warmer air. Maybe a tad, but not much. I reversed flushed it (with a pond pump and CLR for radiators in a 5 gallon bucket, changing direction every 1/2 hour for 6 hours) then flushed the complete system and replaced thermostat. It did not effect the air temps coming out of the vents.

The next day, I did the quick heater core removal, and replaced the core, now HOT (195) air out of all four vents.
I don't know why people still try to 'reverse flush' the system. Just swap the core. Save yourself hours of time and futile effort.
 

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.... If you want to get some high miles out of these I think you avoid sand dunes and revving it's balls off. My oil cooler is still factory and I do my own oil changes....
THIS seems like a good advise all around.
 

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It was settled with terms not disclosed.

So, nothing came of it. Sadly.
I had not seen this. UGHHH......well, I have an 18'. Maybe by then CJD tried to do something on their own.
In fact, I have such a late-production JK, that my Recon came off of the line in April of 2018 with a VIN# that contains the letters "JL" midway through :D
 

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Just as usual, the lawyers win.
 
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I had not seen this. UGHHH......well, I have an 18'. Maybe by then CJD tried to do something on their own.
In fact, I have such a late-production JK, that my Recon came off of the line in April of 2018 with a VIN# that contains the letters "JL" midway through :D
The JK and JL are/were made in different facilities.

Only solution the dealer should offer you is to do a 'power flush' and replace the coolant. These vehicles all left the factory with whatever in the cooling system and it's later kills your heat. Sooner you flush and replace the coolant, the better. Even of they don't, make an effort to flush and replace the coolant on your own anyway. You may get lucky and save your core.
 

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The JK and JL are/were made in different facilities.

Only solution the dealer should offer you is to do a 'power flush' and replace the coolant. These vehicles all left the factory with whatever in the cooling system and it's later kills your heat. Sooner you flush and replace the coolant, the better. Even of they don't, make an effort to flush and replace the coolant on your own anyway. You may get lucky and save your core.
Agreed. I did do that ALREADY, at about 20,000 miles.
Right before that however, I had tried the famous (infamous??) reverse-flushing flush thingy, and while it might not have "fixed" anything, it was astounding the amount of sand (if it wasn't sand, I don't know what it was!) I saw going through the clear hose with my own eyes. Both ways, backwards and forward, and for awhile too.
Ehhh...it is what it is. I get it. When you take the top off in Summer all seems forgotten and forgiven, but at SOME point, JCD is going to "pay" for their carelessness while riding the popular Wrangler wave. The huge rush of new Bronco owners/orders might be a fair indication of unpopular feelings with Jeep's antics....just sayin'
 
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Just as usual, the lawyers win.
For sure.

I was in a Class Action. The settlement was I got $0.03 and the lawyers got $7,000,000.00. What did I expect? Well, at least back the $35 I was wrongly changed. :mad:
 

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For sure.

I was in a Class Action. The settlement was I got $0.03 and the lawyers got $7,000,000.00. What did I expect? Well, at least back the $35 I was wrongly changed. :mad:
Righteous cents!
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2013 2 door JKS, 2.5" Rubicon Express, 33sx17, Eaton E locker, Smitty winch, Poison Spyder bumper
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For sure.

I was in a Class Action. The settlement was I got $0.03 and the lawyers got $7,000,000.00. What did I expect? Well, at least back the $35 I was wrongly changed. :mad:
We are currently in a class actin against Mercedes for emission onour 2015 Mercedes chassis and will receive over 3k! Never disregard the class action suits! 🧐
 
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