Click on thumbnails below for larger pics....
This 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk Diesel was purchased from Joe Vogel and Tim McGaha at Lake Keowee Jeep.
Professional, easy, and quick transaction- THANKS!
Bittersweet day trading in the JK that I had put a good bit of work and $$$$$ into but the new Jeep should fit our current needs a bit better.
Our new Grand Cherokee uses the VM Motori 3.0-liter V6 Diesel engine introduced in the 2012 model year, More info HERE.
Dealer Ad is HERE (CarGurus), window sticker is HERE, build sheet is HERE.
First two pics below were taken at dealer, remaining pics were taken about a month later when the rain finally stopped. At this point we had transferred the old tag over, hard wired the V1, bought the WeatherTech Black Cargo Liner (P/N 40469) / Envelope Trunk Cargo Net / Genuine Jeep Accessories Portable Cargo Tote (P/N 82208566) for the back, installed the rock rails, installed the BOLT 5/8" Receiver Lock (P/N 7018448) and Jeep Hitch Receiver Plug (P/N 82208453AB), and had the entire front end (front bumper/hood/fenders) covered in Xpel Ultimate Plus Paint Protection Film (VIDEO) by Sun&Shield Automotive Films- AWESOME work. Note, this will make the flat black hood decal shiny, but we were OK with that.
SO the dealer sales dept was great but service did not top off the DEF (Diesel Exhaust Fluid) when they did the PDI.
I initially thought I would do what most do, buy the Peak BlueDEF sold by WalMart and other hardware stores and top off myself, but when I received it via FedEx the date was almost a year old. The fluid expiration date was less than 3 months away so that was GAME OVER, back to WalMart it went. The Peak BlueDEF might be OK if you check the date code prior as outlined HERE.
Peak BlueDEF: Flyer, Brochure, Safety Data Sheet.
You can also buy DEF at the pump where big trucks go to get Diesel, but some DEF pumps have a magnetic lockout. I sourced the Five Star DEF Magnevator 2 from Amazon to keep in the Jeep, now we can get the same cheap and fresh DEF trucks use even where the magnetic lockout is in play. That said, the local QuikTrip with DEF does not have magnetic lockout but better to be prepared.
Also, if you ever let the DEF fluid get low enough your Jeep will lock you out from starting the Jeep....not super safe but this is what the Eco Nazis have done for us. In case of low DEF AND starter lockout, you can follow these instructions courtesy of GDE and Davemd: LOW DEF EMERGENCY START
Valentine V1 radar detector installed beside rearview mirror and direct wired (hard-wired)- V1 Manual HERE.
Rearview mirror top plastic trim piece removed first, and then lower piece. Radar Detector Hardwire Power Cord Mirror Plug Tap with Inline Fuse from Amazon used in mirror plug to get -/+ for V1 adapter, routed up/over to V1 and tucked in. Bottom plastic piece snapped on to mirror base and then upper piece snapped on to lower piece. 15 minutes and done, more details in pics below.
[EDIT] NEW V1 Gen2 replaced prior V1 (Owners Manual, Quick Start Guide, Programming Guide, Troubleshooting, How To Upgrade)
Mod#1- Mopar Rock Rails (P/N 82213525AD, old P/N 82212157AB with tube) sourced from Group1 Auto Parts.
I found they had these for the cheapest shipped price, a new-to-me wholesale online parts dealer AND they could get them. I had many canceled orders from dealers that couldn't get them or wanted $$$ to ship.
MANY dealers said they would not fit a 2018......but they come from the factory on 2018 models.....not sure why they did not include them with the skid plates that the Trailhawk comes with?
Good idea to check hardware that ships with rock rails on delivery, my bag had no holes and I was short ONE bolt and had to wait for the selling dealer to rectify, what a way to screw up a planned installation weekend because Mopar QA was out late partying and couldn't count to 24 when they packed my hardware.....McMaster Carr was my backup plan if the dealer didn't deliver but still a few days out on delivery and additional $$.
Mopar will refund me the cost of the bolts I had to order but we're almost at 1k miles and I am just now getting ready to install these after receiving the missing bolt. Group1 staff was great after I reported the missing bolt, but Mopar couldn't get it together.
Overall, the installation was not difficult but just required a bit of time. Having helpers is better than flying solo, we were able to get this done in about 6 hours spread out over 2 days with me doing most of the work- it can be done and it can be done on a 2018 Trailhawk
I assembled some pics and notes to supplement the factory instructions here:
BillsWebSpace: 2018 Grand Cherokee (WK2) Rock Rails Installation
BOLT 5/8" Receiver Lock (P/N 7018448) and Jeep Hitch Receiver Plug (P/N 82208453AB) installed. Bolt locks are coded to your key.
WeatherTech Black Cargo Liner (P/N 40469) installed.
GJ forum's antsjeep found that an ECU cover from a Durango fits our JGCs, P/N 68334597A. Sourced from Mopar Wholesale Parts, this piece easily clips to the ECU bracket for a cleaner looking engine compartment.
10k miles, time for oil/filter change and since I get two years for free under the Jeep Wave program (limited to 4 oil changes/tire rotations within 2 year time frame, summary HERE), off to Akins Jeep I go. Fuel and any residual water were drained from the fuel pump/filter assembly at 10K miles, and again at 20K miles when both fuel filters were changed (27mm or 1 1/16 socket, I used the 1 1/16 since it was a 6 point and less apt to round off the plastic hex nut on the filter).
After the Jeep Wave Program has been used up:
OE Mopar Oil Filter [P/N 68229402AA] and 8 qts/2 gals Shell Rotella T6 Full Synthetic Heavy Duty Engine Oil 5W-40 sourced from Amazon for oil/filter service every 10k miles.....also plan to install a NoSpillSystems drain valve (P/N 10-14150-01 (Standard Design Drain Valve and 1001 (Small Straight Drainer)).
(2) OE Mopar Fuel Filters/Water Separators [P/N 4726067AA] sourced from Amazon for fuel filter service/replacement every 20k miles.
(NOTE: ECOGARD X10232 Engine Oil Filter and ECOGARD XF10307 Diesel Fuel Filter are great value alternatives and offer their own warranty. I recently found a deal on K&N Professional Series Engine Oil Filters (P/N PS-7042) at Amazon and stocked up.)
The Shell website, technical data sheet, and data sheet all list API CJ4 on the specifications/approval list but not MS-10902. However, Shell Rotella T6 5w40 is the OE Mopar oil and can be seen on TSB 18-078-16 when FCA changed the oil spec in 2016 for the Jeep/Dodge EcoDiesel motors.
I may also use Amsoil Signature Series Max-Duty Synthetic Diesel Oil 5W-40 later, old comparison of Amsoil to T6 HERE.
I have some pictures below that outline my process, and also found an EcoDiesel Oil/Filter change DIY video HERE and EcoDiesel Fuel Filter change video HERE.
Some helpful forum threads: Diesel Oil Change DIY - A Few Lessons Learned (disregard OLD oil spec in this writeup).
GDE recommends checking oil frequently and keeping it towards the MIN range, I shoot for the middle- in between MAX and MIN.
Another tip is to slightly release the dipstick to break the o-ring seal, and then push it all the way in before pulling out to check level as detailed HERE, HERE, and HERE.
BEM-Auto OBD2 Port Lock (aka "Tune Saver", SKU: BTS-U1A) installed. Peace of mind that I will know when my ECU OBD2 port requires access at the dealer and we can discuss whether they really need to flash my ECU, some of the "improvements" they install make things worse.
The principal is that the lower piece that goes over the tab is not clamped tight until the bolt is tightened with a proprietary key, this is a much better solution than the other items that clamp into the plug itself and risk damage.....and MADE IN THE USA I asked that the unit they shipped me not include any verbiage/logos and they obliged, great customer service and very responsive to my email queries.
Installation and operating instructions HERE.
[UPDATE] BEM still manufactures these but they are sold through Geno's Garage now.
Block Heater Wiring Harness (P/N 68186526AB) purchased from Group1 Auto Parts.....block heater already installed in the block from the factory so all you need is the wiring harness.
Some helpful information/pics/diagrams can be found on WK2 Jeeps. Also JeepGarage Forum threads HERE and HERE, Jeep Forum thread HERE, YouTube Videos HERE and HERE.
Front windows and windshield top strip tinted by Mr. Tint. We have been going to Barry Wood for years and he never fails to impress, great work and reasonable price.
At around 30k miles, the OE Goodyear Wrangler AT Adventure with Kevlar (265/60R18) tires were almost at the treadwear/replacement indicators (at these indicators there is about ~2/32 tread remaining). We had been pretty satisfied with the Cooper tires we had on the old JK AND Cooper tires are still MADE IN the USA so I started looking to see what would work for the current WK2. Cooper now has three different Discoverer AT3 tires, video HERE.
Cooper Discoverer AT3 4S (265/65R18) were selected and with the larger than OE size, 65k mile warranty (specs HERE). I also replaced the spare with a Cooper Discoverer SRX (265/65R18) to match, the SRX was a little better styled/sized to fit in the spare tire well......I guess that is why the non-matching Kumho Solus 245/65R18 was selected as the spare for the OE tires. Per this forum post I reduced the air pressure in the spare to ~30PSI, still above the TPMS threshold. And although it might not seem like much, I did trim the noise dampening/felt from the base of the tire well to allow the tire to fit with the cover latched (tight but latched) and the plastic storage bins were removed to accomodate the larger spare too. Some additional forum discussion on full size spare tires HERE and HERE.
To correct the speedometer and odometer with larger diameter tires AlfaOBD and maybe a KAOdTECh security bypass will be required. KAOdTECh forum thread HERE, Generic RAM bypass harness installation instructions HERE- to see where the two CAN terminal blocks in the Jeep can be accessed this guide, although not specifically for the bypass, shows location/access points. There are some other security bypass methods and harnesses out there but the KAOdTECh seems to be the least complex to install. Chris Briggs assembled some excellent instructions HERE for the AlfaOBD process required to update tire circumference. I used a level and tape measure to measure the tire diameter on the Jeep and plugged that number into this calculator to derive the circumference (which was 780mm diameter=2451mm circumference). It is recommended that the bypass module only be installed when needed to use AlfaOBD and then removed to maintain security from hackers. More on AlfaOBD features can be found HERE and HERE.
UPDATE: You can NOT set a new larger tire size without getting a B222A fault that can NOT be cleared, this results in disabled Park Sense. Tire size reset to OE circumference of 2382mm and then code could be cleared, Park Sense enabled. More information in forum threads HERE and HERE.
Since Kauffman Tire sold out to a lesser brand, I had been driving all the way to Butler Tire. My son had an awesome experience at University Tire-Loganville so I thought I would try them. I submitted a quote request at 6:30AM and had a response back shortly after they opened, QUICK. Prices were competitive with TireRack so no need to haggle. They ordered the tires that morning and received/installed them that afternoon- Installation was perfect. Crystal Sands went above and beyond, University Tire really puts customer service first- THANKS Crystal and UT staff
60k miles, time to change fuel filters again AND the transfer case and differential fluids. I went with Valvoline 75w90 SynPower Gear Oil from Amazon for the differentials and Valvoline ATF+4 with MS-9602 spec from Amazon for the transfer case.
Next time I will try Amsoil: Severe Gear 75w90 (with LSD additive) and Signature Series Multi-Vehicle Synthetic Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF). Good video HERE, but watch the video in it's entirety as he corrects a few initial statements later in the video.
I always take drives prior to change to warm up the fluid to get a more complete drain....YMMV.
This installment will include only the differential fluid change, as I was prepared to also do the transfer case fluid change the dash lit up like a Christmas tree. After a trip to the dealer they replaced a few things and then ultimately the entire transfer case, along with fluid, was replaced. Some more info on the MP3023 transfer case HERE.
In anticipation of a ZF 8HP70 transmission fluid change, we decided to upgrade to a PPE Transmission Pan for ZF 8-Speed - Heavy-Duty Cast Aluminum (P/N 228053400), sourced from ECS Tuning. The nice thing about this pan, even though it might be a bit more expensive initially than the OE plastic pan with integrated filter, is that when I change it again I will only have to replace the ~$30 filter (P/N 228058700) and not the entire pan at hundreds of dollars. PPE 2020 catalog HERE, transmission pan on p. 79 Acrobat reader/p. 157 printed.
I will also need to source a new gasket (Mopar P/N 68172556AA if the old one cannot be re-used) and transmission fluid, either ZF Lifeguard 8 (P/N S671090312) or Mopar 8&9 Speed ATF (P/N 68218925AA)....some on the forums have used Valvoline Multi-Vehicle (ATF) Full Synthetic Automatic Transmission Fluid with good results, Data Sheet Here (READ the second paragraph).
Usually one of the first things I do is replace the OE lug nuts with Gorilla (in this case years after purchase when I discovered the lug nuts I had purchased for my old GT350 also worked for the GC). The OE steel lug nuts with thin SS caps don't look great after a few rounds with a lug wrench and pose some concerns as outlined by Auto Fanatic. I have never had catastrophic failure as he did but just want something solid so......Gorilla it is, part number 61147CX sourced from Autoplicity but just get them from Amazon.
In the pics below you can see where Autoplicity sent me two different types of lug nuts with the same part number, it looks like the part changed at some point and they just shipped what they had with no regard for their customer. I unsuccessfully tried to get a return authorization, many emails but no RA......they then tried to blame the manufacturer for no response. RA still unresolved after a month so they were just riding the clock to push my return outside their return window- credit card company and BBB seem to be the resolution here, no more Autoplicity for me.
Well, I decided to follow up with Gorilla and they had no idea who Autoplicity was, it seems Autoplicity takes your money and a distributor drop ships the product. Shortly after I reached out to Gorilla, Jon Collier (National Sales Rep) was emailing me to see what he could do to resolve an issue he did not really own. Super over and above customer service on his part, he went through his samples to find me another 16 matching lug nuts for the better/older parts I had received from Autoplicity and shipped them to me- THANKS Jon!
Kudos Gorilla , BOO Autoplicity
The 6 year old OE AGM battery had not left us stranded but remote start worked intermittently along with some other intermittent electrica issues so I decided to purchase and install an Odyssey battery-
An Odyssey ODP-AGM49 H8 L5 from FCP Euro with their LIFETIME guarantee (Odyssey specifications HERE), Also available from Amazon.
Good video that shows the battery R&R process: Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel battery replacement DIY video.
-I raised the seat and moved forward to max,
-Removed the plastic battery cover, 4 retainers to unsnap starting at the back and working forward
-loosened the 10mm nut for the ground terminal and removed the ground terminal/IBS assembly carefully from the battery post,
-removed the two 13mm nuts on the rear mounting plate at back/base of the battery and removed mount (have to do this to slide battery back far enough to remove positive terminal in next step),
-loosened the 10mm nut for the positive terminal removed the positive terminal carefully from the battery post,
-Finally, I removed the vent tube.
To remove and install the replacement battery, it helps to have another set of hands to hold the wiring/vent tube out of the way.
-When installing I was careful to slide the battery in to go under the fixed front battery mount,
-reinstalled the positive terminal tighten the terminal nut,
-Next, bolted rear mounting plate in place,
-installed ground terminal/IBS assembly and tighten nut,
-installed vent tube,
-snapped battery cover into place.
Additional items purchased were:
Schumacher BAF-B1 Battery Terminal Cleaning Brush to clean both the post and terminal
Permatex 22058 Dielectric Tune-Up Grease applied to all surface areas of both -/+ posts before reinstalling terminals to prevent corrosion
Dual USB Car Charger,4.8A Output,Cigarette Lighter Voltage Meter to monitor battery voltage
Jeep Grand Cherokee Documents/Files:
- NHTSA ID 20V699
- Jeep Grand Cherokee Recall W79: Diesel EGR Cooler Update
- NHTSA Safety Recall Report
- New Safety Recall Advanced Communication W79
- NHTSA W79 Recall Acknowledgement
- Dealer Service Instructions for Safety Recall W79 / NHTSA 20V-699 Diesel EGR Cooler
- NHTSA ID 22V406
- Jeep Grand Cherokee Recall Z46: High Pressure Fuel Pump Update
- NHTSA Safety Issues Campaign 22V406000
- NHTSA Safety Recall Report
- New Safety Recall Advanced Communication Z46 6/10/22 and 6/16/22
- NHTSA Z46 Recall Acknowledgement
- NHTSA ID 23V411
- NHTSA Safety Recall Report
- New Safety Recall Advanced Communication Z46
- NHTSA Z46 Recall Acknowledgement
Jeep Grand Cherokee TrailHawk Reviews:
Jeep Grand Cherokee Diesel Reviews:
Jeep Grand Cherokee Video: *High Speed Connection Recommended*
Jeep Grand Cherokee DIY Guides/Installation Instructions:
Forums / Clubs / Vendors:
(RAM EcoDiesel AlfaOBD Forum Thread HERE) - Parts Diagrams and Wholesale Parts - Parts Diagrams and Wholesale Parts - Parts Diagrams and Wholesale Parts REBUILT AIR SUSPENSION PARTS GDE EcoDiesel 3.0L V6 Tune Details (Archived- 1, 2, 3, 4) GDE Installation Instructions GDE Installation Instructions- Easier method for later model year WK2s JeepGarage Forum GDE Thread - GDE and EPA NCI September 2019: JeepGarage Forum Thread, EcoDieselRam Forum Thread, Ram1500 Diesel Forum Thread - GDE and CARB November 2019: JeepGarage Forum Thread, Ram1500 Diesel Forum Thread 2014-2019 GRAND CHEROKEE 3.0L ECO DIESEL DPF, EGR DELETE KIT (HAND HELD DEVICE/Software and Exhaust) 2014-2019 GRAND CHEROKEE 3.0L ECO DIESEL EGR Hardware Delete/Removal KIT (Instructions HERE)