1997 Jeep Cherokee SE

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  #1  
Old 08-15-03, 05:41 PM
erinsmomma
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1997 Jeep Cherokee SE

Straight 6, 4.0 Liter. Sometimes my back-up lights (the ones that light up for reverse) go on and sometimes they don't. Sometimes I can jiggle the gear shifter and they'll go on, but not always. What/where should I check for problems?
 
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  #2  
Old 08-15-03, 06:00 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 2,538
most vehicles use the nuetral safety switch to work the backup lights and this is usually located on the transmission assuming it is an automatic if a standard it still has a simple switch on the transmission which is likely the problem.
 
  #3  
Old 08-15-03, 08:42 PM
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most likely a neutral safety switch(as previously stated) it's the same switch that's been used since the sixties, cause it's so reliable. they don't like mud and being under water though.

for an automatic---look right above the trans pan gasket area on the driver's side of the trans, there should be a three wire switch right in the middle, reverse lights are the connection of the two outer wires(one is power, the other goes to the reverse lights)the middle is the ground for the starter relay. if you're so motivated, unplug it, put a paper clip or needlenose pliers connecting the two outer wires(e-brake on, trans in park)with the key on, this will light up the reverse lights, but, you already said they worked, so no real need to do this.

the linkage might be sloppy, loose or missing shifter bushings somewhere, if it has a cable, it could need to be adjusted. or you could have an intermittent connection inside the switch, or(the rarest) you might have a broken piece of plastic on the inside of the trans that actuates the switch, i've only seen this once, so it is unlikely(but possible). i just wanted you to know all the possibilities.

if you're into experimenting, park both left side tires up on a curb or whatever you need to do to get the driver's side higher to minimize fluid loss, unscrew the switch(i think it's 1 inch), plug it back in, turn on the key, push in the plastic ring, that pushes the contacts together to make the reverse lights come on(you can also see the pin in the center that is the ground for the relay) the reverse lights need to come on everytime the plastic center is released, if not---you found your intermittent connection.

if it's a stick shift---i haven't seen one, no help here(not very common though)

let us know if this helps you
 
  #4  
Old 08-16-03, 05:23 AM
Joe_F
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I agree with Mike.

Something comes to mind on these with a linkage problem---I thought the government and Chrysler had a spat about that.
 
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