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1999 Jeep TJ shifting problems

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New User

Jul 21, 2017, 2:11 AM

Post #1 of 6 (928 views)
1999 Jeep TJ shifting problems Sign In


I have a 1999 Jeep TJ, 4.0L I-6 with a 5 speed manual transmission, 159k miles

When the engine is cool or off it is easy to shift into any gear, however as it heats up it becomes progressively more difficult to shift.

There is no grinding at any point throughout the sequence, however there is grinding in reverse (but only after the car has reached temperature). It feels as though a "gate" is preventing the shifter from going into gear, as the jeep heats up the gate becomes harder to open. 1st is the worst with each following gear being easier. I have found double-clutching at stops makes it significantly easier, though the gate feeling is still there. In all occasions it is clutch pedal to the floor, very little give before the clutch is red-engaged.

There is a distinct "click" sound as the gear finally goes into place. On rare occasions 2 clicks can be heard, usually when going into first. The sounds are present at all stages, even when the car is off.

Your thoughts are much appreciated.

(This post was edited by Jak03e on Jul 21, 2017, 2:59 AM)

Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Jul 21, 2017, 6:16 AM

Post #2 of 6 (912 views)
Re: 1999 Jeep TJ shifting problems Sign In

Could be clutch release hydraulic issue. What is the fluid level and condition in the clutch master reservoir? Watch the clutch slave and compare the movement when it is cold to when it is hot.

Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.

New User

Jul 21, 2017, 12:19 PM

Post #3 of 6 (879 views)
Re: 1999 Jeep TJ shifting problems Sign In

The fluid in the clutch master reservoir is full but it doesn't appear to be clean, there are particles of sand or dirt floating around and some of the sand or dirt has collected at the bottom of the master reservoir underneath the removable rubber cup.

The physical condition of both the slave and the master seems good. I didn't see anything that would lead me to believe either was leaking at any point though I could be mistaken.

*Some updates: I drove it around for about an hour to heat it up. I cut the engine and had a friend sit in and let the clutch in and out while I looked at the slave cylinder. I'm not a mechanic so I wasn't sure what movement to look for but the cylinder didn't move at all (by that I mean there's just a solid outer casing, I didn't see any bellows or pumps). There are however some dry clacking sounds as the clutch went in and out.

(This post was edited by Jak03e on Jul 22, 2017, 2:07 AM)


Jul 21, 2017, 3:50 PM

Post #4 of 6 (852 views)
Re: 1999 Jeep TJ shifting problems Sign In

When the car is hot, how does it shift through the gears with the engine off? Gary

(This post was edited by gsferraro on Jul 21, 2017, 3:52 PM)

New User

Jul 21, 2017, 5:12 PM

Post #5 of 6 (845 views)
Re: 1999 Jeep TJ shifting problems Sign In

Hey Gary, with the car hot but the engine off it seems to shift through just as it does when the engine is cool and off.

With the car hot or cold and *off*, the first shift into a gear meets the aforementioned gate. Every shift into that gear following the first is as smooth as if there were no problems at all, even when going from one gear to another and back.

If there was an issue with something inside the transmission, for example the syncros or gears were damaged in some way, would I not feel some resistance every time?

Could it be that the clutch is not disengaging from the shaft enough to allow the syncros to slow down?

(This post was edited by Jak03e on Jul 22, 2017, 2:24 AM)


Jul 23, 2017, 12:05 PM

Post #6 of 6 (771 views)
Re: 1999 Jeep TJ shifting problems Sign In

If this shifts fine with the engine off, and has trouble with the engine running, then you have a clutch problem.

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