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Discussion Starter #1
Well, I've decided I need a Wrangler and wondered if there are any specific things I should consider with the YJ's. Mainly, do earlier models ('87-'90) have more problems and how much should mileage figure into my decision. The ones I'm considering have between 70K and 155K. I don't want to have to rebuild it right after I buy it. BTW I previously owned a 2001 Cherokee. Never had any problems. Thanks!
 

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i bought one with 120k on it, have had no engine problems or mechanical problems since i got it. if you didnt know, the earlier ones have carbs, if you like carbs , then go for it, i prefer injected. Also, look for frame rust , thats a big problem . Either way your never gonna find a perfect one but thats the fun part.
 

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Research lots on here. Be patient. Rust is the #1 enemy. #2 is previous owner butchery. IMO, the fuel injected models are better, so 91 and newer. Everything else is standard used car stuff you should check out.
 

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personally I would go for a 92-95 with the 4.0. The 87-89s had junk carbs and really bad transmissions behind them.
 

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Look for a 95 model, first year of a galvanized frame. Less likely to have rust issues.
 

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94 or 95...external slave cylinder for clutch is nice compared to the problematic internal slave. They all have pros and cons, but I always like to buy the last years of models since they have all the "bugs" worked out of them from a production and quality stand point. Choose something, if you can, that is mostly clear of rust and as close to stock as possible so you know exactly what you have, then build to suit you and your needs/wants instead of guessing and fixing someone else's hodge-podge of mods. That would be my goal.
 

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All years are generally solidly built, but there are a few things to look out for.

1987-mid1989 had a bad 5 speed behind the 4.2, the rest have a amazing 5 speed behind the 4.2/4.0
4.2 carb was 1987-1990, carb is a pain but can be fixed by replacment, otherwise rock solid
2.5 was all years, auto only in 94-95, injection system changed in 91. undrpowerd for the highway, but can hold its own offroad. relatively solid engine
4.0 fuel injected, and rock solid
all auto trannys were reliable
the 5 speed behind all 2.5's is worthless, prepare to have trouble with it at some point
general mileage that most get to before rebuild
-2.5-200k
-4.2-250k-300k
-4.0-350k
rust is the big issue,
-bodies were galvanized in 93-95
-frames were in 95 as well
- galvanized parts helps, but it really has to do with care, don't expect a rust free 95 just cause it has a galvamized body/frame.
-Fuel mileage is pretty much the same between both 2.5/4.0 engines, you get 1 more city with the 4cyl over the 6cyl, and 2-3 more highway with the 6cyl over the 4cyl. adding lift/tires will give you worse mileage. the 4.2 get generally worse than the 2.5 of similar year due to the carb

Most important thing is to figure out what you want, and be patient. figure out the color/engine/trans and all the other things you want, and get as close as you can.
 

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personally I would go for a 92-95 with the 4.0. The 87-89s had junk carbs and really bad transmissions behind them.
I 2nd that. If you do decide (Iwould advise against it) to get a 2.5 4 cylinder, I would look for one post 91
 

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I have a 89 that is carbd. I had to replace the crappy Carter carb with the Motorcraft 2150, so that cost me some money. The BA-10 transmission is garbage so I have to replace that as well. Luckily I didnt pay much for the Jeep and can turn a wrench so it gives me something to do. I would recommend getting a fuel injected 4.0 if possible.
 

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judging from your 1st post you are looking for a problem free jeep. I'd buy the newest, lowest mile stock jeep I could find. keep in mind that the newest yj is over 17 years old.
maybe a tj would suit you better.
when I was looking for a jeep I wanted a new project and would have bought a CJ if I could have found one for the right price.
my 87 is right for me but I love the simplicity of a carbed motor and how easy it is to modify.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for all of the info! I found a '95, Black SE with 63,000 miles, 5-speed, with AC, hardtop, and nice alloys. The only issue I saw was surface rust on the suspension. Is that common? How much of a hassle is it to get that cleaned up and painted? Other than that, it just needs bigger tires. I'm getting it checked out at a mechanic Monday.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Definitely one of my favorites! Glad you caught the reference. I have my "Who is John Galt?" sticker. Now I just need my Jeep to put it on.
 
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