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Old 02-20-2018, 10:54 AM   #1
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2018 Jeep Wrangler JL

I am interested in a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited for a toad.
Because of some of the improvements, I have set my sights on a 2018 JL... I hear that they are quieter inside and drive better.
And based on info gathered, sounds like the Jeep Wrangler has, at least in the past, been one of the best options for a toad.

HOWEVER, I have heard tell of the "death wobble" that RV'ers experience, when towing other Jeeps, like the Grand Cherokee.
From nosing around the internet, I learned that the 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL will have electric hydraulic steering. This sounds good, in theory... apparently, the hydraulic pressure to assist steering is developed by electric motors, rather than from a hydraulic pump driven by belt, thus robbing power from the engine.

My question: Is the electric hydraulic steering what causes the "death wobble" with other Jeep models??
If so, this could ruin things with RV'ers for the JL Wranglers.
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Old 02-20-2018, 11:06 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TRebel View Post
I am interested in a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited for a toad.
Because of some of the improvements, I have set my sights on a 2018 JL... I hear that they are quieter inside and drive better.
And based on info gathered, sounds like the Jeep Wrangler has, at least in the past, been one of the best options for a toad.

HOWEVER, I have heard tell of the "death wobble" that RV'ers experience, when towing other Jeeps, like the Grand Cherokee.
From nosing around the internet, I learned that the 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL will have electric hydraulic steering. This sounds good, in theory... apparently, the hydraulic pressure to assist steering is developed by electric motors, rather than from a hydraulic pump driven by belt, thus robbing power from the engine.

My question: Is the electric hydraulic steering what causes the "death wobble" with other Jeep models??
If so, this could ruin things with RV'ers for the JL Wranglers.
That is not problem on most well maintained Jeeps. BTW if you get an 18 opt for the New LED headlights very cool. I may trading in for an 19 next year. My current Jeep only 15000 miles on it and it's like new. Going to be a hard sell with the wife, if you know what I mean.
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Old 02-20-2018, 12:16 PM   #3
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2018 Jeep Wrangler JL

TRebel, since the term “death wobble” originated years ago due to suspension and steering problems, I like to use the term “wobble” instead.

The release of the EPS system in the Cherokee started the “wobble” discussion but Jeep did release a flat wire tow harness in order to fix the problem.

In 2016, the EPS system was incorporated into the Grand Cherokee and as of today the “wobble” exists without a solution.

Jeep has now added the EPS to the. JL and no really knows if the problem will occur.

So for anyone who owns a JL, they can perform a simple steering wheel test. Is should feel the same with the ignition on in driving mode and the same in towing mode.
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Old 02-20-2018, 12:59 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TRebel View Post
I am interested in a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited for a toad.
Troy,

I have a Wrangler and I am in a Jeep group with all kinds of builds. Most of the wobble occurs from a lack of maintenance or poorly chosen and or installed lift kit.

Here is a good read on Wrangler related since you were asking about Wranglers.

BTW Jeep Wranglers are a lot of fun and great TOADS

https://www.extremeterrain.com/wrang...th-wobble.html
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Old 02-20-2018, 01:41 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lass View Post
TRebel, since the term “death wobble” originated years ago due to suspension and steering problems, I like to use the term “wobble” instead.

The release of the EPS system in the Cherokee started the “wobble” discussion but Jeep did release a flat wire tow harness in order to fix the problem.

In 2016, the EPS system was incorporated into the Grand Cherokee and as of today the “wobble” exists without a solution.

Jeep has now added the EPS to the. JL and no really knows if the problem will occur.

So for anyone who owns a JL, they can perform a simple steering wheel test. Is should feel the same with the ignition on in driving mode and the same in towing mode.
Lass ... I have been towing a 2014 Rubicon with no issues and have a 2018 JL Rubicon on order. Can you explain how the "flat wire tow harness" works as it relates to solving the wobble problem?? I guess I might need to find one to use on the JL when I get it

The release of the EPS system in the Cherokee started the “wobble” discussion but Jeep did release a flat wire tow harness in order to fix the problem.

Steve
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Old 02-20-2018, 01:56 PM   #6
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2018 Jeep Wrangler JL

Steve. Someone else may chime in with all of the technical data, but the bottom line is that with the ignition in the off position(towing) the power steering system BUS goes to sleep.

The flat tow harness was developed for the smaller Cherokee and when installed the steering stays active while towing. I doubt that your Jeep dealer will say anything other than there is no problem. I know that the harness is specific to the vehicle because GC owners have tried to install it and couldn’t. So based on that, the current harness most likely would not fit you JL.

I bought my Grand Cherokee Summit last August and have over 50 email with Jeep corporate. They have not released a solution for the GC and so far I have names of 40 owners who have experienced the wobble.

Not trying to say that it will happen every time, but owners need to know and I have actually talked to Jeep about the JL.
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Old 02-21-2018, 03:21 AM   #7
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Lass ... are you referring about the "power steering system" that TRebel mentioned in the 1st post ... or the ESP system ?? One is EPS and the other is ESP. Just making sure we are on the same page.

"Electronic Stability Program (ESP) is a stability enhancement system designed to automatically and electronically detect and assist drivers in critical driving situations and under adverse conditions. Using signals from sensors throughout the vehicle, the system determines the appropriate brake and throttle adjustments for directional stability of the vehicle."
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Old 02-21-2018, 06:03 AM   #8
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2018 Jeep Wrangler JL

Steve. I am referring to the Electronic Power Steering because it is not active in tow mode.

The Electronic Stability Program would be something completely different and would be energized during driving conditions.

The 2 systems may be linked in the software program but are different features.
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Old 02-21-2018, 01:19 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TRebel View Post
From nosing around the internet, I learned that the 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL will have electric hydraulic steering. This sounds good, in theory... apparently, the hydraulic pressure to assist steering is developed by electric motors, rather than from a hydraulic pump driven by belt, thus robbing power from the engine.
Lass ... just trying to understand why EPS causes a problem. The above is what started this thread and if my thinking process is correct ... once the engine is not running (or the key is turned off) there would not be any steering assistance from either style system ... so wouldn't that make them equal during the towing process?

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Old 02-21-2018, 07:28 PM   #10
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Lass ... just trying to understand why EPS causes a problem. The above is what started this thread and if my thinking process is correct ... once the engine is not running (or the key is turned off) there would not be any steering assistance from either style system ... so wouldn't that make them equal during the towing process?

Steve
Steve, your question is taking me beyond my automotive expertise but the answer may be in the last part of the quote "hydraulic pressure to assist steering is developed by electric motors" which would not be active during towing. Your service manager may have a better explanation..

Here's what we know:
1. jeep has a patent on software which prevent the wobble
2. The EPS was first designed into the Cherokee. It had the wobble but was solved with the towing harness, which by the way is actually in RE-DEVELOPMENT and won't be available till next month.
3. The Grand Cherokee incorporated the EPS in the 2016 model and has the wobble. This was first reported 1 1/2 years ago and we do not have a solution. Most service managers will dispute this information. I am working directly with Jeep corporate and FMCA.
4. The JL is incorporating the EPS and the verdict is out on that. Jeep may have added the solution into the design. We don't know.

I'm just trying to make people aware of a potential situation.

In the GC, a majority of the time, it happens only at low speed making a sharp left or right hand turn but we have also had report that it occurs at driving speed.

Some owners have towed the GC thousands of miles before a wobble started, others no so much. It's erratic. I have actual documentation from Jeep advising owners to trailer the GC rather than tow it 4 down.

The only current solution is bringing the RV to a complete stop, the wobble disappears, and than proceed on your trip.

If the JL has the solution, I may be trading a perfectly good GC for something that is safer.
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Old 02-21-2018, 08:38 PM   #11
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Lass---You mentioned that you have a line of communication with corporate, have you asked them about the JL and if they addressed this in the design or not?
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Old 02-22-2018, 04:26 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lass View Post
Here's what we know:
1. jeep has a patent on software which prevent the wobble
2. The EPS was first designed into the Cherokee. It had the wobble but was solved with the towing harness, which by the way is actually in RE-DEVELOPMENT and won't be available till next month.
3. The Grand Cherokee incorporated the EPS in the 2016 model and has the wobble. This was first reported 1 1/2 years ago and we do not have a solution. Most service managers will dispute this information. I am working directly with Jeep corporate and FMCA.
4. The JL is incorporating the EPS and the verdict is out on that. Jeep may have added the solution into the design. We don't know.

I'm just trying to make people aware of a potential situation.
Lass ... really glad you let us know. I had not heard anything about this issue until you did ... and I have a JL on order. Sure hope they got it fixed.

Steve
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Old 02-22-2018, 05:06 AM   #13
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Old 02-22-2018, 05:35 AM   #14
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My understanding is the new JL should not suffer from the towing wobble since its still hydraulic where as the Cherokee is fully electric with no hydraulic system.

The problem with the Cherokee is when the engine is off no power is applied to the electric steering system and therefore offers little resistance to turning from forces on the tires so it wobbles.

Hydraulic steering whether driven from the engine directly with a belt or through a electric motor as is the case in the new JL provides resistance even if the pump is not running due to the valving.

I believe the Grand Cherokee had electro hydraulic from 2010 to 2015 then went to full electric causing it to suffer from the wobble, and the new Cherokee has always had pure electric steering. The fix is a switch that applies power to the electric system even with the engine off so it can provide resistance however this drains the battery.

Will be interesting to see how the JL performs as a toad in real life, hats off to early adopters.
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