I have a 97 Jeep Cherokee Sport. A few months ago, when I went to step on the gas, my car wouldn’t accelerate and it made a clicking sound and rumbled a bit. I took it to my mechanic immediately and he didn’t find anything wrong with it - though that maybe a cylinder wasn’t firing, something was clogged, etc etc and suggested to use the fuel filter liquid when I get gas. After using the fuel filter, it only happened every once in a while, and would usually stop in a few seconds and it would let me accelerate again. Well, I have just recently moved 800 miles away from home, and therefore have been using different gas stations that I do at home. The clicking this week has happened every single time I try to drive my car. I try to accelerate, it won’t let me, it clicks and rumbles. Last night however, it didn’t let up like usual. It clicked and wouldn’t accelerate, and then my speedometer just dropped to zero. My wheel tightened and I couldn’t move it; both my pedals were hard and I couldn’t press the brake or gas… it just essentially died. I forced it into park, restarted it, and it ran normally for about 2 miles before doing the exact same thing (dying) again. PLEASE HELP.
Where is this mysterious click? Is it under the dash, or, is it in the engine compartment?
If the speedometer dropped to zero, while the car was still moving, that indicates that the VSS (vehicle speed sensor) signal is being lost. The same signal usually goes to the engine computer. If it’s lost, it might be causing the engine to stall. Might.
The clicking is hard to pin-point but I would say more from under the dash. It sounds like something is trying to turn over but can’t… and the clicking is directly linked to the acceleration. As soon as it clicks, my car won’t accelerate and loses speed, or sometimes will stay at the same speed I was going but just won’t accelerate.
Could it be the sound of an electrical short?
Could definitely be a short. Thanks a lot to both of you for your insights. I really appreciate the help.
I think the click is a relay. It’s hard to determine if the relay is in the dash, or on the firewall in the engine compartment. You should try to localize where the click is, as best you can. Mark the dash with an X.
If the relay can be identified, the cause might be found by troubleshooting the wiring circuits which energize that relay.
To insure that the cause isn’t low voltage, which can cause a relay to drop out, have the voltage checked at the battery. The voltage should be 12.6+ volts with the engine off. It should be 13 1/2 to 14 1/2 volts at idle, and should not drop as the engine speed is increased.
If you can find a repair shop which specializes in automotive electrical troubleshooting, that would be your best route to take.