Saturday, December 23, 2006

problems with the Jeep

Laura's had a minor problem with her Jeep for a few months now. If the Wrangler sits in the rain for too long it refuses to start. We first noticed this when we took our anniversary trip. When we packed up to leave, the Jeep wouldn't start. When it finally did start an hour later, it sounded like someone had installed a bug zapper under the hood. The problem was obvious: wet spark plug wires. On my Saturn this would be an easy repair: pop off the old wires, replace them with new wires. On a Jeep to get to the spark plugs you have to remove the air filter assembly, the serpentine belt, the air conditioning pump, and the intake manifold. I keep noticing this whenever I do any work on the Jeep; when I replaced the radiator a while ago, I was amazed at how complicated a radiator replacement could be. I'm pretty sure it's on purpose, that the new Wranglers (1997 or later) are difficult to work on by design. I've found too many little problems for it to be coincidence; it defies probability that they could make a vehicle so difficult to work on by accident. I'm also a little fuzzy on why the all-American Wrangler is assembled entirely with metric bolts. I've got metric tools, but my metric collection isn't as robust as my SAE toybox. So any work I do on the Jeep is just that little tiny bit harder than the same work on my Saturn.

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