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Jeep Cherokee Weird Clunking Sound

Q. I have a 1997 Jeep Cherokee, 4.0 liter, 4X4, automatic transmission, 114,000 miles.

Question 1: I tuned it yesterday and when I started the engine, I had forgotten to place one of the ignition wires totally onto the cap. Naturally the engine ran rough. I checked it and placed the wire onto the cap properly.

Jeep Cherokee Weird Clunking Sound

The engine is running fine but now I have a check engine light illuminated on the dash. How do I shut this off?

Question 2: There is a weird clunking sound coming from the rear end when I slow down almost to a stop. When the vehicle stops, the sound stops. I had a mechanic look at the rear end and he could see nothing wrong. The U-joints were fine. The mechanic detected no damage in the rear end. What do you think this is?

Thanks for you help,

A. You can clear the stored DTCs by disconnecting the negative battery cable for about five minutes. You will need to drive it for about 10 or 15 miles for the computer to "relearn" you driving situation.

There was a TSB issued with the symptoms you describe. It is due to the rear brake drums moving during braking.

Number: 05-05-00
Group: Brakes
Date: May 26, 2000

Rear Brake Clunk Or Thump When Brakes Are Applied

1997 - 1999 Cherokee

Overview: This bulletin involves installing a rear axle shaft(s).

NOTE: this bulletin applies to vehicles equipped with an 8¼" rear axle.

A clunk or thump may be heard coming from the rear of the vehicle when the brakes are applied on some vehicles equipped with an 8¼" rear axle. This may be caused by an axle shaft, which does not have a correct size brake drum pilot flange.

Jeep Cherokee Weird Clunking Sound

If the vehicle exhibits the condition, remove the rear wheels and brake drums and inspect the rear axle shafts at the center pilot for the wheel and brake drum. There must be two separate pilot diameters on this area (See Figure 1). The outboard diameter for the wheel (2.812-2.808 inches) and the slightly larger inner diameter to support the brake drum (2.832-2.826 inches). The brake drum pilot may be missing or may not be deep enough to support the drum. If the drum pilot does not adequately support the drum, some movement of the drum may occur when the brakes are applied causing this noise. If this condition is present, install a new axle shaft or shafts, P/N 05018393AA, as necessary.

I think it's worth a look.

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