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Monday, 4 February 2013

Vehicle Goes Opposite direction at Sharp Turns

Turning Issues and Thumping Problem

Q: While engage the 4WD on 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee, and turn to sharp corner, the front wheels sort of take me in the opposite direction and a thumping takes place...it is also really hard to steer. This only happens when I take a sharp turn doing 5 mph or when I turn at a green light, turning sharp while accelerating in the turn. Others have told me that they have the same problem with their Jeep. Is it true that Chrysler Corp had a recall for this problem in 1996?

A: Did you know that many 4x4 or All Wheel Drive (AWD) vehicles are not really 4x4/AWD? Many of these vehicles are either a front or rear wheel drive. It’s the technology designed into the drivetrain of these vehicles that allows them to transform, in merely a second, into a 4x4 or AWD vehicle, and you’ll never feel it happen, unless there is a problem with a device called a Viscous Coupler. A Viscous Coupler compares front wheel speed to rear wheel speed. If a difference is noted (rear or front wheels spinning) the Viscous Coupler engages and directs power to the wheels that are not spinning as well, making them all work together. If your vehicle is feeling jerky, and acting as if something is binding while turning sharp at low speeds, then the Viscous Coupler should be inspected. Diagnosis of the coupler takes a whole 5 minutes, but the repair will put a sizable dent in your checking account.

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