Picture this: you’re all set for a drive in your trusty Jeep Grand Cherokee, only to find that the engine is playing hard to get. Frustrating, right? If you’ve ever found yourself in the frustrating predicament of a non-starting Jeep, fear not – you’re not alone.
There can be several parameters that are responsible why Jeep Grand Cherokee won’t start. The parameters include the issues associated with the battery, throttle body, ignition switch, fuel pump, failure of the starter motor, thermostat, and failure of the engine.
In this article, I’ll delve into each potential culprit, providing insights and practical solutions to get your Grand Cherokee back on the road where it belongs.
Reasons Why Jeep Grand Cherokee Won’t Start:
I have created the infographic below explaining why Jeep Grand Cherokee won’t start. (You are welcome to use and share, but please credit back if you do so.)
1. Weak Battery:
If your Jeep Grand Cherokee can’t crank or cranks very slowly, the most likely problem is a weak battery. To check whether it might be a battery problem, determine the battery voltage.
A test can help provide insight into whether the battery requires further service or replacement. Standard tests include checking the voltage, acid level, and condition of the starter battery.
New car batteries take some time to reach their total capacity. The best thing to do when this happens is to check the battery.
How to Test the Battery in Jeep Grand Cherokee?
The voltage of your Jeep Grand Cherokee’s battery can be measured precisely with a multimeter. Directly before the measurement, the multimeter is set to the voltage range of your battery and connected to its positive and negative poles.
When testing, you would expect a range of 12-13 volts for most car batteries. If the voltage is 14 or more, or less than 11.5, an expert should be consulted for a check. In the worst case, the battery might have to be replaced.
How to Start Jeep Grand Cherokee by Jumper Cables?
If your Grand Cherokee has a dead battery, you can try to jump-start it. Using jumper cables and a healthy battery from another vehicle is one of the easiest ways.
Turn both cars off
Connect the jumper cable in the order listed below:
Turn the key to start the engine of the functional vehicle. Leave it on for a few minutes while the dead battery charges.
Turn the key to start your non-operational jeep. Leave it on for a few minutes.
Now remove the cables in reverse order of how you connected them.
2. The Issue with the Throttle Body:
There are various causes behind the occurrence of the bad throttle body.
First, a flap with the throttle body opens by pressing the gas pedal and closes when the pedal is released. The pedal is released to control the airflow toward the engine. The issue with the flap can cause a lousy throttle engine and is detected in the 2005-2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee models.
How to Detect the Issue with the Throttle Body:
The throttle body is an essential component of the Jeep Grand Cherokee. The error in the throttle body can be detected through various symptoms, including:
- Vehicle not stalling properly
- Rough and idle ride
- Checking the engine light code, which is P0122
Fixing the Lousy Throttle Body:
There are two ways of fixing the lousy throttle body:
Cleaning the Throttle Body
Replacing the Throttle Body
3. The Issue with the Ignition Switch:
The ignition switch is responsible for starting the vehicle and helps to keep the car running. If there is an issue with the ignition switch, it can cause a starting problem.
Some symptoms can help to detect the ignition switch problem in Jeep Grand Cherokee, including:
- Electrical issues or a flickering dash light on the vehicle
- Body control module reading the code C140F using an advanced scanning tool
Fixing the Bad Ignition Switch:
You can fix the issues with the ignition switch by replacing it with the new one. Sometimes, people confuse the ignition cylinder with the ignition switch.
Both are parts of the vehicle in which the ignition cylinder is an object where keys are connected.
4. The Issue with the Fuel Pump:
When your Grand Cherokee’s fuel pump fails, the engine won’t work. The fuel pump is responsible for passing the fluid from the tank to the injection system. It also ensures that sufficient fluid pressure is maintained.
How do You Detect the Fuel Pump Failure in Your Jeep Grand Cherokee?
Keep your engine running smoothly by checking your fuel pump.
- Frequent engine breakdown
- Shake in the engine
- Significant performance drop in the engine
- Chocking of the Engine
- Engine Overheat
- The ‘Check Engine’ indicator can be turned ON.
The pump usually fails due to wear or contamination. This can be determined by inspecting the pump for leaks, observing the power contact to see whether it’s broken, and checking the lines and levers.
Fixing the Issue of the Fuel Pump:
Using the rubber mallet
If there is an issue with the fuel tank, you can fix it using a rubber mallet. This is a temporary fix for the fuel pump.
It is recommended to seek help from an assistant for this case. You can tap the gas tank using the rubber mallet which can loosen the starter. It helps build the fuel pressure for starting the Jeep.
Replacing the fuel pump
You can replace the faulty fuel pump with a new one in the workshop.
5. The Issue with the Starter Motor:
The starter is an essential part of the engine of your Cherokee and is responsible for starting the car. They typically last between 100,000 to 150,000 miles and can be shortened if you want to turn on your engine more often.
So, like, the starter motor has a limited life, so you know it will have to break down after using the car for a long time. If that happens, the engine won’t start up.
How to Detect a Faulty Starter:
- A clicking sound when you turn the key to start the car signifies a bad starter motor.
- If smoke comes from underneath the hood, the starter probably isn’t working.
Fixing the Bad Starter Issue:
Tapping the Starter with a Hammer:
You can fix the lousy starter temporarily if you turn the key while tapping the starter with a metal tool. This fix is effective when the parts within the starter are stuck together and/, or there’s barely any misalignment between gears.
Replacing the Starter:
If the starter does not work with the trick mentioned above, it is possible at the end of its lifespan. Therefore, you need to replace the starter in this scenario.
I recommend to check this starter for Jeep Grand Cherokee on Amazon.
6. Issues with the Thermostat:
Various causes are responsible for thermostat issues, especially in the Jeep Grand Cherokee models of the years 2005-2010.
The thermostat is responsible for controlling the flow of coolant toward the engine. It controls by letting the coolant flow through the engine when it reaches the operating temperature.
An ample amount of coolant flows through the engine when the thermostat is left open. The engine becomes overheated when the thermostat gets stuck in one place, which creates an issue.
Symptoms to Detect a Thermostat Issue in Jeep Grand Cherokee:
Different symptoms help to detect a lousy thermostat, including:
- The engine light code of P2181
- Leaking of coolant at the front of the engine
Fixing the Bad Thermostat:
If there is an issue with the thermostat, you can replace it with a new one. Unfortunately, this breaks down and leaks over time. The thermostat is a part located below the serpentine belt on Jeep’s engine.
Cooling down the engine first and draining the coolant before replacing the thermostat is recommended. Next, remove the hose and bolts from the thermostat and clean the surface.
After that, you can install the new thermostat and can add the coolant to the coolant system.
7. Issue of Corroded Battery:
The batteries can become corroded due to various reasons. It can lead to loss of contacts and poor current flow in which the engine cannot start properly. You can investigate the problem of starting with your Jeep Grand Cherokee if it is due to a dirt battery.
You can also check out the corroded terminals of the battery whether there are white or silver-green deposits on the battery with no cracks, there is no need to replace the battery; you can clean the battery.
Cleaning and Fixing the Corroded Battery:
It is recommended to remove the pole cables if you are willing to clean the battery of the Jeep Grand Cherokee.
- STEP 1: First, remove the black cable from the negative pole. You can open the pole clamp using pliers. Make sure not to touch any other body parts using metal pliers.
- STEP 2: After that, unplug the red positive pole cable.
- STEP 3: Now you can clean the corroded battery after removing it from the circuit.
- STEP 4: Reconnet the battery after you finish cleaning.
8. The issue of Weak Key Fob Battery:
The vehicle sometimes might not start due to a weak key fob battery. However, the battery sends the signals for locking and unlocking, and you can still start the car. It is applicable if your Grand Cherokee has push start/stop button.
The door cannot lock or unlock when the key fob battery is empty. Therefore, you should check that the door must be opened manually.
The immobilizer in the vehicle is controlled by the passive transponder that does not require a power source.
Fixing the Dead Key Fob Battery:
If there is no place to insert the key, and the Jeep Grand Cherokee only has a key fob, you can place key fob near the start/stop button and start the vehicle.
In case your jeep key fob is not detected, read this detailed guide.
9. The Issue with the Alternator:
The alternator in the vehicle is a generator that helps produce electricity. However, electricity is not produced when the alternator of the Jeep Grand Cherokee fails. Therefore, the battery is not able to get charged.
In such a situation, if you prefer to replace the battery and think that the issue is due to battery failure, the engine will still not start, and the battery will soon run out.
The alternators in the vehicle break down rarely, and in today's car, they can last for more than 300,000 miles. Their breakdown depends on the way of using them.
Fixing the Issue with the Alternator:
Although the alternator failure is very rare, you have to replace them in case you face this issue.
You can buy this alternator on Amazon. I use it for my vehicle.
10. An Issue of Clogged Fuel Filter:
The fuel filter of the Jeep Grand Cherokee does not wear out like other mechanical parts of the vehicle. Instead, it creates an issue of clogging due to dirt or airborne particles.
When the fuel filter is dirty, the engine cannot perform at its total capacity and might not start. You can change the filter by cleaning it.
How to Detect a Clogged Fuel Filter in Jeep Grand Cherokee?
There are a few symptoms of fuel filter clogging that you can feel.
One possible thing to check is the trouble codes. A P0087 might mean that the fuel pressure is too low. When there is an issue with the engine's performance, it may be necessary to do more in-depth troubleshooting to identify the root cause. An oxygen sensor-related trouble code might indicate an issue with low fuel pressure.
Fixing the Issue of Clogged Fuel Filter:
The filter cannot be cleaned, you can only replace it.
11. Blown-Out Fuses and Defective Spark Plugs:
Blown out fuses of the Jeep Grand Cherokee can also be the rootcause of the breakdown and hindrance of the Jeep’s performance.
You can check all the fuses in the fuse box before starting the engine. The fuse box is under power, and it is recommended to repair it in the workshop.
Sometimes, defects are also seen in the spark plugs, due to which the engine might not start.
The defect does not affect the spark plug; instead, the plug connections on the ignition systems become loose and cause an issue.
Fixing the Issue of Blown-Out Fuses and Defective Spark Plugs:
You can fix the spark plug by replacing it.
For Fuse, you can get it checked in the workshop and replace the faulty one.
12. Failure of Engine:
Engine failure is rare, but this issue can cause starting problems in the Jeep Grand Cherokee. The vehicle will not work if there is an engine failure.
The common causes of the failure of the engine include a tear in the timing of the belt, incorrect fueling, and overheating of the engine. In addition, the issue can be due to excessive speed range due to continuous driving.
Fixing the Issue of Engine Failure:
Engine failure can occur due to n number of reasons, and it needs a veteran’s assistance to find out the root cause and take necessary actions.
How to Diagnose Jeep Grand Cherokee Starting Problems?
The Jeep Grand Cherokee is OBD-equipped, so you can find out which fault caused your car to break down with a diagnostic.
To troubleshoot your car, you must first hook up the diagnostic tool. The OBDII connector is usually under the dashboard. Connecting with the wire, start the Ignition and make sure not to start the engine.
Most diagnostic tools will ask for information about the vehicle. If you provide this information correctly, it ensures that you will get accurate results.
Apart from the vehicle manufacturer and model, ensure you also enter the engine and vehicle ID numbers to troubleshoot a problem precisely.
There are various reasons why your Jeep might have starting problems, so you should look at the issue before investigating further.
Call a breakdown service or take your car to a workshop if you’re not an expert. When something goes wrong, they can fix the problem without you having to do anything.
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):
Why does the Jeep Grand Cherokee indicate the issue with trouble starting?
There are common reasons why Jeep Grand Cherokee faces trouble in starting. These issues include the problem of a dead battery, a failed starter, and an alternator problem.
What can a person do when the Jeep Cherokee is stuck and doesn't start?
The Jeep Cherokee sometimes face problem in starting, which can be due to a bad starter or a drained battery. A person can hook up the battery charger to the battery if there is an issue.
Why does the Jeep doesn't starts randomly?
The reason behind this issue can be due to a dead battery, a failed start, or due to an alternator problem.
Why does the Jeep shows the issue of cranking but not starting?
The reason behind this issue can be due to a faulty crankshaft position sensor. This position sensor is responsible for the relayed information connected to ECU. This unit ignites a spark, and when the spark is not produced, the engine faces a problem in starting.
Why does the Jeep not starts with the new battery?
If the Jeep does not start with a new battery, the issue can be due to the battery’s wiring to the starter. Another issue can be the presence of a weak key fob.
How long do the batteries of the Jeep Cherokee last?
The batteries of the Jeep Cherokee last between 3-5 years. The better functioning of the battery depends heavily on the type of battery, condition of weather, the size of the battery, and driving habits.
How much does a Jeep Cherokee battery costs?
The cost of a Jeep Cherokee battery replacement ranges between $300-$400. Additional labor costs fall in between the range of $40-$50.
This is Surya. I am an experienced off-roader. I have been off-roading for many years across several terrains. I am passionate about 4×4 driving and want to share my knowledge and experience with others.
My goal is to provide you with the most comprehensive and unbiased information about off-roading.
I curated this article through my personal experience and expertise, and I hope it helps you with what you are looking for.