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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee V8 that has a burned valve. That mess led me to pick up the Element. The Jeep has been awaiting its fate for over a month at a mechanic and they quoted me around $2400 to repair a burned valve, replace the head gasket and give it a valve job.

My inclination is to find a hobby-mechanic or someone who will do the work on the side. I am handy with tools but do not have the experience to take on this kind of task. I can change oil, install fog lights and intakes and haven't really tried anything else.

What is the best path to take on this kind of repair?
 

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I would pay the mechanic to just freaking repair it, because my brother had the same car, and he's still making payments on half of it, and by half of it, I mean only half the car survived the engine fire that occured after it threw a rod. Then we had the engine replaced, then the engine exploded and lit the car on fire a second time. Those things cannot be repaired by a DIY'er, trust me, we tried, The burned valve may seem like no big deal to fix, but then again, neither is installing a new block, even if it's done correctly. Gran Cherokees are junk and best left to be broken by professionals, so that they have to repair it at their cost.
 

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I have a 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee V8 that has a burned valve. That mess led me to pick up the Element. The Jeep has been awaiting its fate for over a month at a mechanic and they quoted me around $2400 to repair a burned valve, replace the head gasket and give it a valve job.

My inclination is to find a hobby-mechanic or someone who will do the work on the side. I am handy with tools but do not have the experience to take on this kind of task. I can change oil, install fog lights and intakes and haven't really tried anything else.

What is the best path to take on this kind of repair?

It's difficult to tell you if I think it's worth putting that much money into. If your over 95,000 miles with it, I would not do it. I have seen people put money into Grand Cherokee V8's with about that on them, only to have it start burning oil, or snap a rod. I also know of people with 140K and 165K on the engine with no trouble at all. So it's up to you.

Dom
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I plan on getting it fixed, just want to know what a good price will be and what if any can I do my self. Would buying used parts be better/cheaper than repairing certain parts?

I would pay the mechanic to just freaking repair it, because my brother had the same car, and he's still making payments on half of it, and by half of it, I mean only half the car survived the engine fire that occured after it threw a rod. Then we had the engine replaced, then the engine exploded and lit the car on fire a second time. Those things cannot be repaired by a DIY'er, trust me, we tried, The burned valve may seem like no big deal to fix, but then again, neither is installing a new block, even if it's done correctly. Gran Cherokees are junk and best left to be broken by professionals, so that they have to repair it at their cost.
I am not going to do it, I am looking for a mechanic to do it, not a DIYer. I am well aware that it isn't a small fix, I have read up on it quite a bit online. Mine has 150K on it and the engine has worked well up until this point. Don't get me wrong, I have had my fair share of issues with it but most are related to none motor issues, fairly typical of the Chrysler brand.

My list of repairs so far are quite extensive :
a/c Blower motor
Blend doors (for climate control system)
a/c compressor
PCM (twice in 1 week)
water pump
fan clutch
2-3 CV boots (I blame that on the AZ desert)
2 Door locks
1 window regulator
2 taillight housings
 

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I would just personally get rid of the cherokee while it's still worth something, and not a smoldering pile of metal and plastic. That's just my take. $2,400 now, $3,000 later, $5,000 after that and so on...
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I would just personally get rid of the cherokee while it's still worth something, and not a smoldering pile of metal and plastic. That's just my take. $2,400 now, $3,000 later, $5,000 after that and so on...
I forgot to mention that I plan on selling it immediately after getting it fixed. I am also trying to sell it as is on CL. That person can pay the 3k later, and 5k after that. :cool:
 

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If you're gonna sell it afterwards anyway....just sell it for a discounted price now and save the hassle.

A head gasket type job runs about $1000 to $1500 for most "typical" cars. Throw in some valve work, or the cost of some replacement heads, and $2000 ain't out of the question. (for your Jeep, or most v6 or v8 cars/suvs)

What is it worth in "normal" running condition? I'd try selling it for that price, minus $1000 for "head work" and see what happens. you could even take $1500 or $2000 off and unload it quickly and the agrivation savings would be a bonus.

If you were up to a DIY, it might be worth trying to repair yourself in order to get top dollar.

JMHO...my advice is free...and ya get get what ya pay for. :)
 

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If you're gonna sell it afterwards anyway....just sell it for a discounted price now and save the hassle.
I completely agree, though it will be a shorter time to sell a completely working car without a bad valve. But then again, all you get more is what you paid to fix it, so... kinda at a crossroads.
 

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...though it will be a shorter time to sell a completely working car without a bad valve. But then again, all you get more is what you paid to fix it, so... kinda at a crossroads.
Yup....but it'll take some time to fix it anyhow... Plus the "low price" can be very attarctive on CL and other sites and it could sell even quicker.

The big plus about selling it for a discount now is you won't have to deal with any surprise charges/problems/issues....the new owner gets all that along with the money he/she has saved. :wink:
 

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What about a used head? Pay someone for a side job then sell it.

My advice is worth slightly less that Apguy's:D

Or just drive it until it catches fire and have your ins co buy it.:lol:
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
What about a used head? Pay someone for a side job then sell it.

My advice is worth slightly less that Apguy's:D

Or just drive it until it catches fire and have your ins co buy it.:lol:
I am looking in to picking up a used head. Will I be okay with one from a different Jeep? Or will I want it to be repaired/cleaned in anyway before reinstalling? How much should it run to have the head done the right way?

Six? If so could be a fun project.
It is a V8 if that is the question. Will I need to remove both heads to do it the right way?
 

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I am looking in to picking up a used head. Will I be okay with one from a different Jeep? Or will I want it to be repaired/cleaned in anyway before reinstalling? How much should it run to have the head done the right way?

It is a V8 if that is the question. Will I need to remove both heads to do it the right way?
If you source a head from a similar vehicle you should be ok. Mind that there were two versions of V8 in the GC's, reg'lar and a high output version. That exhausts my knowledge of jeeps. Maybe pm ApriliaGuy isn't he a jeepster?

If you do locate a compatible head from a decent place it should already be clean and in good repair. If you go to some u-pull-it place there will be more work involved and even then it's no guarantee that it will even be usable.

Personally, I wouldn't mess with the other unless it's having problems since you're getting rid of it.
 

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Personally, I wouldn't mess with the other unless it's having problems since you're getting rid of it.
Yup.

When I do a head gasket, I like to do both sides....but if you're selling it doesn't really matter....save the money & effort and just do the "bad" one.

I'm not sure of the various heads/configurations....do be sure to get the correct one. :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I finally got my poor Jeep towed home and will attempt this myself, or with the help of someone else. The mechanic did not do a drip down test so a burnt valve is not confirmed. He said they did some sort of gas test with the coolant and it confirmed a blown head gasket. Either way the head is coming off, and if there is a valve issue, I will address that.

I am uncertain what I need to take off to access the head. A guy at work said the alternator and radiator must come off. I don't remember what else, it was a bit overwhelming. If anyone has any tips for this task, I am all ears.
 

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I don't want to be the one to deliver the bad news... but to get to where you need to be - you need to pull the bumper off, pull the radiator off and the condensor of that model had it up there, pull the alternator off the top. Pull the fuel rail off - it wraps around the top of the engine, and then pull the valve covers off, etc... there were a few more electronic components sitting on top, like the solonoid and other things (I forget) that need to come off to get to either head. Chrystler makes stupid engine bays. On my Chevy truck I can sit right on top of the engine, put my feet inside, and work on it all day very comfortably, you could crawl all over the engine bay, and you could pull the whole engine right out if you just removed everything it was attached to, nothing would be in the way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I don't want to be the one to deliver the bad news... but to get to where you need to be - you need to pull the bumper off, pull the radiator off and the condensor of that model had it up there, pull the alternator off the top. Pull the fuel rail off - it wraps around the top of the engine, and then pull the valve covers off, etc... there were a few more electronic components sitting on top, like the solonoid and other things (I forget) that need to come off to get to either head. Chrystler makes stupid engine bays. On my Chevy truck I can sit right on top of the engine, put my feet inside, and work on it all day very comfortably, you could crawl all over the engine bay, and you could pull the whole engine right out if you just removed everything it was attached to, nothing would be in the way.
The bumper needs to come off? Dang! I obviously don't know anything about other brands of engine but I do know the entire dash needed to be removed to access some a/c parts and to replace blend doors for the climate control. Gotta love ripping the dash apart to replace a faulty, poorly designed plastic part that costs a few pennies. I am searching Jeep forums and will attempt this once I am a little more prepared. Thanks for more bad news Serj ;-)
 

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How much would it cost if you replace the motor vs replacing just the TOP, just saying! I know some GC V8's motor sells for cheap, sounds like a lot easier than messing with something your not familiar with...i know you don't have this experience either but it's a lot less headache if having someone install it for you.

Check this link: http://phoenix.craigslist.org/evl/pts/1168144342.html
Heres another one, there all in AZ, i dont know exactly witch is closer to you.
http://phoenix.craigslist.org/nph/pts/1191658575.html
 
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