Is '94 jeep grand cherokee worth repairing?

150k miles, no radio/no a/c, runs fine. Needs new rotors/pads, water pump and coolant flush. Dealer want $1700 to repair. Do not need the car. My options are a). fix, b). donate, c). put on Craigslist as is. What should I do?

I would check out a local independent mechanic:

I bet they could do the work cheaper, and I wouldn’t take any vehicle out of warranty to the dealership for repair work. As far as what to do with it, get another estimate before you make that call

thanks for your suggestions

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Estimate seems a bit high.Ask a few more places.

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It’s one thing if you were doing the repairs yourself, but if you’re paying someone else to do these repairs, and you don’t even need the vehicle?

I’d have it repaired so it can be sold. Or sell it as a repairable.


These things are all routine maintenance issues. And the price is quite high. If you explain to a local mechanic that you want to fix and then sell what you can honestly say is a functional car, you’ll get a better set of facts to help you decide.

If it’s 2 wheel drive w/o ABS I would be more apt to consider repairing it while a 4 wheel drive leans heavily towards donation. I’ve owned 5 Cherokees dating back to 1990 and all had 100K + miles when I bought them and all went well beyond 200K. 90 model was 4 wheel drive and I spent a bundle on the transmission at ~ 200k then at 290k it failed again and I scrapped it. All of them got better fuel mileage than various mid size sedans. I doubt if Jeep will ever build another Cherokee that will live up to the reputation built with that 90s model with the 4.0 engine and Toyota transmission.

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As alluded to above, the early 90’s era makes for an excellent vintage for older cars. Vehicles then got all the benefits of computerized electronic fuel injection, but little to none of the other stuff that makes new cars somewhat annoying: complicated evap systems, ABS, air bags in every nook and cranny, hydraulic clutch release bearings, 8-10 speed automatics, etc.

I concur w/ Rod Knox above, providing this is a simply configured JGC — 2 wd, even better if manual trans — its likely gonna be a highly sought after vehicle at some point. So either fix it and use it, fix it and sell it to somebody who appreciates it, or sell it as is to somebody who appreciates its intrinsic value, like a teenager looking for their first fix-it-up car.

If it was a 2004 , I wouldn’t have much opinion one way or the other. That one would be a leaner. I’d lean toward tossing it myself But a 1994? That’s the sweet spot. It’s a keeper.

Appreciate all the input. Car is 8 cylinder automatic JGC Ltd. Checking some private repair shops for estimates. Suggestions have helped focus alternatives, many thanks.

if considering selling:
It will be worth more if the repairs needed are done, but you aren’t likely to recoup the amount spent in repairs when you do sell it.

Example: if the jeep is worth $3000, and you spend $1700 to repair it’s current needs, you aren’t very likely to now be able to get $4700 for it.

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Jeeps in my area ( Oklahoma - Missouri - Arkansas ) are ridiculous in price used .

Most of those items are maintenance items, not repairs. If the water pump is working fine, and they want to replace it prophylactically (before it fails), it’s a maintenance item too.

How is the vehicle’s overall condition? If you think this work will extend the vehicle’s life for another year, I’d get the work done, because $141.67 ($1,700 divided by 12 months) is lower than any car payment you can get right now.

Offering the 318 V8 as an option in the Cherokee was Chrysler’s first effort to shoot itself in the foot. While it was a great engine it offered nothing to benefit the owner while drastically reducing fuel mileage. If it’s 2 wheel drive and I owned it I would likely lean toward keeping it but for the most part there isn’t much that was mentioned that needed attention that I couldn’t take care of and I work real cheap.

lol … reminds me of a story, the rain finally let up out here in San Jose a couple weeks ago so I decided to mow the lawn. Lawnmower wouldn’t start of course. Starter spray into the air intake proved it was a fuel problem, so was pretty sure it was the carb’s jet was clogged. That’s easy to fix on Sears lawnmowers, less than 15 minutes. Still I spent a good 45 minutes from start to finish before the lawnmower was running. If I had to pay someone to do that workit would have cost too much to justify. I work cheap too :wink:

I’m turning into a hoarder @George_San_Jose1. I have DR super weed eater that is a cobbled up contraption from discards left on the curb by disgusted owners and 3 lawn mowers that were salvaged from the curb and all that was needed to get them running was cleaning that bowl jet and replacing the plugs. And I can’t count all the running mowers that I have given away to young wannabe entrepreneurs looking to get rich cutting yards. I have 20+ feet of starter cord and a carton of J19 plugs in a milk crate along with some serviceable blades in the shop and it’s spring so the discarded mowers will soon be showing up on the curb.


The estimate for the work seems awfully high. The water pump on a 318 / 5.2 liter is easy acces and can be changed in a couple of hours. And you’d generally flush the coolant changing the water pump anyway. Brakes are a pretty simple repair too, and usually not terribly expensive. I’d definitely get another estimate if I decided to have the work done. I think if I didn’t need the car, I’d probably sell it as it is. Most mechanically inclined buyers aren’t going to see brakes or a water pump as a deal breaker.

Rod, 4wd would probably add $1k to the sale price vs a 2wd. And I have to say I prefer the 318 over the 4.0. I owned both at the same time. 4.0 in a Wrangler and a 318 in a 1/2 ton work truck. I’d much prefer the power of the 318 in either vehicle.

Are the transmissions different models in a 2wd vs 4wd in a Cherokee?

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The Cherokee never came with a V-8, the OP has a Grand Cherokee, a larger more comfortable SUV. Beginning in 2005 the Grand Cherokee offered the 5.7 L Hemi engine (and later the 6.1 and 6.4), many vehicles sold with that option.

Well ain’t that GRAND…

I have a tendency to collect discarded vacuum cleaners. Most are just clogged with something like a toothpick or a hair pin blocking the passages.

Unfortunately for the OP, the regular old boxy Cherokee (XJ) is more popular as a used vehicle with the Jeep off-road crowd.

I wouldn’t mind having one myself, with a manual transmission. I doubt they ever sold the grand Cherokee with a manual. If they did, it would be an oddity.