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Jeep XJ Cherokee 4WD Sport 4-door (1999)

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XJ Cherokee Common Problems and Fixes

Jeep Cherokee XJ Cherokee Jeep how-to 4.0L Jeep Jeep SUV

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#1 Moses Ludel

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Posted 04 August 2013 - 09:08 AM

Recently, I've found time to catch up on some XJ Cherokee care. Our '99 had issues with the power window/door lock system, the A/C dash panel air flow and the "No Bus" gauge drop-off problem. Each of these problems is common to the XJ Cherokees and TJ Wranglers, making forums all over the internet.  On our Cherokee, I worked through the troubleshooting and solutions for each. 

 

If your Jeep XJ Cherokee or TJ Wrangler is experiencing erratic dash panel air flow with the heater or A/C controls set to different positions, you'll want to check out this new article at the magazine: http://www.4wdmechanix.com/How-to-Jeep-XJ-Cherokee-Air-Conditioning-Fix.html.  Another symptom to consider is the cruise control and the A/C and heater panel settings not working when you're climbing a grade with the Jeep.  I made the Chrysler TSB #24-12-99 available as a PDF download.  This is one cure, but it did not apply in our case...

 

If your power windows, door locks and remote door lock control are not operating properly, you'll want to see my recent article: http://www.4wdmechan...eplacement.html. This includes troubleshooting symptoms and the actual replacement of a door switch module.

 

If your dash instruments suddenly drop-off to zero with the engine running or on the road, or if the "No Bus" signal appears at the instrument panel with erratic gauge activity, you may have the electrical connector issue that I address in the article: http://www.4wdmechan...Gauges-Fix.html.  This how-to goes into detail about the problem, the parts involved and the fix, including soldering a new plug and wires into the dash panel circuit.  I even included a PDF of the Chrysler/Jeep TSB #08-15-99 on this problem for both the Jeep XJ Cherokee and TJ Wrangler.

 

Having troubles in these areas?  Check out the three new articles at the magazine.  Another issue is the rear door latch and having to press the outside door release button with great force to open the door.  Possible remedy:  There is a slot on the rear facing edge of the door that has an adjustable slide for the door button.  Work the button and watch this lever move.  You can loosen the Torx screw and move the lever/button adjuster to allow for a full throw of the outside handle button when you press the button.  This and some white lithium spray lube at pivot points of the latch mechanisms can have your "defective" rear door latches functioning as new!

 

Moses



#2 hsporterfield

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Posted 07 August 2013 - 07:02 PM

"If your power windows, door locks and remote door lock control are not operating properly, you'll want to see my recent article: http://www.4wdmechan...eplacement.html. This includes troubleshooting symptoms and the actual replacement of a door switch module."

 

Thank you for this article, I'm having this exact problem. One question for you is how do I tell if the trouble is from the driver door or the passanger door control module?



#3 Moses Ludel

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Posted 07 August 2013 - 08:52 PM

Thanks for joining the discussion, hsporterfield!  The XJ Cherokee in the article is our 1999 Cherokee Sport 4-door with power windows, power door locks, power mirrors and remote keyless entry (RKE).  The passenger side front door module is the "brains", containing both relays and switches.  A quote from Chrysler helps:

 

     "If the power lock system is inoperative with either front door power lock switch, test the Passenger Door Module (PDM)...If the power lock system is inoperative with only the driver side front door power lock switch, test the Driver Door Module (DDM)."

 

I can help you troubleshoot beyond these symptoms, too.  If your trouble fits either scenario, or your RKE will not activate and you suspect a bad PDM, or if your passenger front window will not open from either the left or right front door switches, then you need the PDM like we did.

 

Many replace both switches, can't hurt, but why pay $175 when you could pay $75 (as we did via an online genuine Chrysler/Mopar parts source, including shipping)?  With the relays and switching that take place within the PDM (right passenger front switch module), it's best to replace this right front door module/switch assembly—in any case

 

Simply replacing the right front passenger door switch/module assembly restored the right front window lift function from both the driver and passenger switches; restored the power door lock function from either front door; and restored the remote keyless entry (RKE) door unlock and lock function from the fob.  Make sure the fob's battery is in good order, too. 

 

Let us know how this turns out, this is a common switch failure, and the part is usually on hand!  We look forward to your topics and posts!

 

Moses



#4 AusJeep

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Posted 15 December 2013 - 09:27 PM

Hi from Australia, Moses! 

 

I'd like to fill you in on the problems of my current 1999 Jeep Cherokee (Country) XJ model.

 

Just to get this out of the way, as you may know we have right-hand drives down-under, so I had to get my head around your tutorial; How-to: Jeep Cherokee Power Window and Door Lock Switch Replacement, haha!

 

Similar to above, I'll list my issues:

 

  • I am unable to use the electric windows from any passenger door panel.
  • I am able to use the door lock from the passenger door.
  • I am able to use both the door locks and the electric windows from the drivers door panel.
  • The RKE also does not work (and have changed to fresh batteries).

If the fix is just as you mentioned in your tutorial (i.e. changing the PDM or DDM) that would be great.

 

Also, cheers for all the helpful tutorials you do mate, you're a real champ!

 

Regards,

 

AusJeep



#5 Moses Ludel

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Posted 16 December 2013 - 01:03 AM

AusJeep, thanks for joining us at the forums!  I became aware of your RHD switch positions when looking for LHD switches.  Your front door switches are opposite to our U.S. '99 XJ Cherokee. 
 
Below, you'll find a PDF from the Mopar parts catalog.  Note the RHD switches versus LHD.  The model codes describe RHD, LHD, 2WD, 4WD, 2-door and 4-door.  The switch listings describe the combinations of power options.  Zoom into this document for a closer read and view.

Attached File  1999 XJ Cherokee Door Switches.pdf   116.58KB   8 downloads
 
For a RHD model, you should need a left front door switch/module, which should have the relay for master circuits covering the windows and door locks.  The article at the magazine provides further details, the URL link to the magazine article is in the postings above.  Just see your Jeep as the mirror image of a LHD model.  If your symptoms mimic my Jeep, you likely need the switch for your left front door, the heftier one with built-in module.
 
Follow the troubleshooting approach I describe...If you narrow the switch to the left front door, I'm curious about the pricing at Australia. The RHD (master module) window switch is quite expensive at the U.S.  I'm trusting it's much less costly in a part of the world where there are many RHD models!
 
If you have further questions, please don't hesitate to ask.  Unless there is a wiring or fuse issue, these switches generally "cure" the problems you're experiencing.  Please confirm, I share the troubleshooting details at the magazine article.  I would comment that on our Jeep, changing the right front door switch has been a lasting fix since.  The driver's door switch still works okay.
 
Moses

#6 AusJeep

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Posted 16 December 2013 - 10:38 PM

Many thanks for your timely response Moses. 

 

Give me some time to try and decipher your attached PDF and do the handywork, and I'll certainly get back you ASAP.

 

Again, thanks for all your help.

 

AusJeep.



#7 Moses Ludel

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Posted 16 December 2013 - 11:21 PM

When I was troubleshooting this issue, I researched the Mopar description of how this window system works. The article at the magazine is useful in that I share the Mopar strategy. This helped me narrow down the switch change to just the one that would make a difference. Take a few minutes to review that article before plunging into a switch replacement:

http://www.4wdmechan...eplacement.html

Moses

#8 AusJeep

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Posted 17 December 2013 - 11:01 PM

Hi Moses, I've got a bit of news for you.

 

Before I went off and bought a new PDM from Mopar Parts (I had much trouble finding an Australian dealer that sold RHD versions, and was only ever directed to US sites which sold them for $175 Aus dollars).

 

So...

 

I went down to my local auto scrap yard, and sought out the single 1998 Jeep Cherokee XJ that they had there.

 

I went to the passenger door and removed the PDM as per your instructions (went off without a hitch!). 

 

I then went home and popped my Jeeps door panel off, swapped PDMs, put it all back, AND....

 

Nothing.

 

The interesting thing though, is that the door lock still worked with the Original PDM, and the one I pulled from the Auto yard.

 

(As I said, the power locks still worked in the passenger door, just not the power windows...)

 

Does this suggest that there is an underlying issue with the power window wiring, deep within the door itself?

 

Just to re-iterate, none of the power windows are able to be used from their respective doors, except from the Drivers door panel.

 

Regards,

AusJeep.



#9 Moses Ludel

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 03:41 PM

Well, the good news is that you now have an extra module, and considering the price of a RHD window module, you'll want a spare on the shelf at your garage!

 

Here is the entire troubleshooting flow for your window problem, the official Mopar version.  I even added a wiring diagram from the XJ Cherokee Manual...Note that the circuit breaker at the Power Distribution box is high on the list.  Read this through, you'll know what to check next.  Let us know what you find.

 

Moses

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#10 AusJeep

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 05:09 PM

Hi Moses,

 

Thanks for your ongoing help, and those PDFs, it's a really great thing you're doing here.

 

Just a quick question;

 

Would changing the Driver Door Module be advisable, as I also managed to grab one from the auto-yard.

 

Even though I can activate all Windows and Door Locks from the DDM...

 

Cheers,

AusJeep.



#11 Moses Ludel

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 10:37 PM

AusJeep, you have me thinking in reverse!...I have reasoned that your RHD driver's door switching is my left (driver's) door in the U.S. model.  (Please look at the PDM module that I replaced in our Jeep; see the magazine article.  Does that look similar to the module you bought at the recycling yard and installed?)  On the U.S. model, the PDM (passenger door module) contains the relay and master switching circuit.  Is that the kind of switch you replaced at your left front door?

 

To answer your question about the DDM, Mopar notes offer a clue.  Keep in mind that they talk about the U.S. model with LHD:

 

"The DDM also contains an integrated circuit to support the one-touch down feature of the driver side front door power window..."  The driver door one-touch down switch would affect the driver's window at least.  See my highlights in the Mopar comments below.

 

The DDM could also have a defect in the power window lockout mode, in which case changing the DDM could resolve your problem.  Again, if that's not your source of trouble, you are still ahead to snag that recycling yard driver's door switch.  The price for a new switch can only go up over time...Generally, the driver's door switches operate more than the other switches and should wear out sooner.

 

At my how-to article within the magazine (click here for access), I offer my comments plus more details from Mopar:

My comment: The symptoms for a defective right front door lock and window switch on our 1999 Jeep XJ Cherokee were three-fold: 1) the passenger could not operate the power window or door lock, 2) the driver could not operate the passenger window or any door locks, including the rear hatch door, from the driver's door switch panel, and 3) the remote key fob door lock activator did not work.  The driver could operate the other three power windows.  (Switch replacement begins with the door panel removal.)

 

Jeep%20Cherokee%20Switch%20How-to-5.JPG

Passenger side (LHD) door lock and window switch.

Mopar's description...Here are the official functions of the Driver and Passenger Door Modules (switches):

 

"A Driver Door Module (DDM) and a Passenger Door Module (PDM) are used on all models equipped with power locks and power windows. Each door module houses both the front door power lock and power window switches. In addition to the switches for its own door, the DDM houses individual switches for each passenger door power window, a power window lockout switch and the power mirror switch. The PDM contains the control circuitry and the power lock and unlock relays for the entire power lock system.

 

"In its role as the power lock control module, the PDM receives inputs from the battery, the ignition switch, the DDM, the driver door ajar switch, the key-in ignition switch, and the headlamp switch. It also receives a hard-wired input from the remote Keyless Entry (RKE) receiver, if the vehicle is so equipped. In response to these inputs, the PDM sends the proper outputs to control the power lock motors through its integral power lock and unlock relays.

"The DDM and the PDM are mounted to their respective front door trim panels. The DDM and PDM are serviced individually and cannot be repaired. If the DDM or PDM, or any of the switches and circuitry that they contain are faulty or damaged, the complete DDM or PDM unit must be replaced."

 

Our system's symptoms met each of the requirements for a defective PDM.  We ordered the right front door switch (your left front door) from a Mopar source.  I replaced the one switch and solved all of our problems at the same time.  Let us know if the DDM completes your repair, AusJeep.  

 

Moses





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