TJ decisions

B1Toad

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Well the 2000 I have been drooling over looks like it will be mine as long as I want it, the owner is back from his trip and saving it for me but the weather turned bad so we are not going to get it till Wednesday. Meanwhile another one popped up, a 2005 X model with only 42,000 miles, garaged., but with a soft top and an automatic. Also priced $3K less than the 2000. I am still leaning toward the 2000 because A. it looks better B. it's a manual which I prefer and C. it already has a factory hard top. The money part is mostly inconsequential as I am not really on a budget and to add a hard top and wheels to the 2005 would end up costing more than buying the 2000 anyway.
The 2000 has 116,000 miles but only 3,000 miles on a fresh rebuild and a fresh transmission rebuild and clutch, also the wheels are 31" which I like. It basically needs nothing but the 2005 will need a top and possibly wheels and tires as they are OEM and boring. I realize there is a bit of a chance buying something with a fresh rebuild but I am willing to take that chance. The pros on the 2005 are the low miles, that's about it besides the color does match our motorhome. (Also I don't know if an aftermarket hard top will be as good as OEM as far as leaks and wind noise) My main uses will be towed behind RV, daily driver for me (no commuting, retired) and cruising on the beach in Mexico and CA.

I'll put pics below, comment's welcome. First is the Khaki 2005 automatic followed by the black and white 2000 5 speed MT

2005 Khaki.jpg


Screenshot 2023-01-15 064957.jpg
 
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JKP

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The '05 has a possible OPDA issue as well as a PCM issue, especially with the auto trans.

The '00 has a possible head cracking issue that was hopefully fixed during the overhaul. Remove the oil cap and look down. If you see TUPY, the head has been replaced with one that doesn't have the cracking issue.
 
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B1Toad

B1Toad

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The '05 has a possible OPDA issue as well as a PCM issue, especially with the auto trans.

The '00 has a possible head cracking issue that was hopefully fixed during the overhaul. Remove the oil cap and look down. If you see TUPY, the head has been replaced with one that doesn't have the cracking issue.

Thanks, I did the research on the heads and from my understanding the TUPY head was the updated factory head but the Clearwater head is the best aftermarket head and may be identifiable by seeing casting numbers in the same location the TUPY is visible on the TUPY heads. From my understanding seeing no letters or numbers at all means an original, weak head but seeing either TUPY or any other letters/numbers means an upgraded head.
 
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Mac57

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Have you seen, inspected, and driven both? To me that would be the first thing to do. Frame condition is critical, rust free and no repairs is what you want. Perhaps not an issue if both grew up in Arizona. If both are 6 cylinders and look OK I'd lean towards the 2005. Less miles , 5 year newer model and presumably stock with those low miles so likely no upgrade or rebuild surprises. With $3000 in pocket you can use that to purchase a hardtop and fix the possible OPDA and PCM issues JKP pointed out. Have to wonder too why the motor and tranny went on the 2000 at just 116K miles.
 
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B1Toad

B1Toad

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Have you seen, inspected, and driven both? To me that would be the first thing to do. Frame condition is critical, rust free and no repairs is what you want. Perhaps not an issue if both grew up in Arizona. If both are 6 cylinders and look OK I'd lean towards the 2005. Less miles , 5 year newer model and presumably stock with those low miles so likely no upgrade or rebuild surprises. With $3000 in pocket you can use that to purchase a hardtop and fix the possible OPDA and PCM issues JKP pointed out. Have to wonder too why the motor and tranny went on the 2000 at just 116K miles.

Thanks, I wondered the same till I read all about the 200-2002 cracked heads.
 
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B1Toad

B1Toad

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I could always solve the dilemma and buy them both, then see which one I like best and sell the other. I have a pretty good feeling though that the 2005 will be gone before I can make the 2 hour drive to go look at it. The CL seller has not yet responded to my 2 emails and I can't very well drive up there and hang around in PHX waiting to hear back. Jeeps in good condition are selling really fast here, this one just went up on CL last night.
 

JMT

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Well the 2000 I have been drooling over looks like it will be mine as long as I want it, the owner is back from his trip and saving it for me but the weather turned bad so we are not going to get it till Wednesday. Meanwhile another one popped up, a 2005 X model with only 42,000 miles, garaged., but with a soft top and an automatic. Also priced $3K less than the 2000. I am still leaning toward the 2000 because A. it looks better B. it's a manual which I prefer and C. it already has a factory hard top. The money part is mostly inconsequential as I am not really on a budget and to add a hard top and wheels to the 2005 would end up costing more than buying the 2000 anyway.
The 2000 has 116,000 miles but only 3,000 miles on a fresh rebuild and a fresh transmission rebuild and clutch, also the wheels are 31" which I like. It basically needs nothing but the 2005 will need a top and possibly wheels and tires as they are OEM and boring. I realize there is a bit of a chance buying something with a fresh rebuild but I am willing to take that chance. The pros on the 2005 are the low miles, that's about it besides the color does match our motorhome. (Also I don't know if an aftermarket hard top will be as good as OEM as far as leaks and wind noise) My main uses will be towed behind RV, daily driver for me (no commuting, retired) and cruising on the beach in Mexico and CA.

I'll put pics below, comment's welcome. First is the Khaki 2005 automatic followed by the black and white 2000 5 speed MT

View attachment 394253

View attachment 394250

I prefer late model 2003-2006 TJ's. I don't like the wheels or tires on either one of them. I don't like the chrome mirrors or running boards on the white one. I do like hardtops. I'd buy the khaki metallic for $3k less, get the wheels and tires I want, find a used OEM hardtop, and enjoy having only 42K miles on it.
 
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Jamison C

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I was tempted to pick up the 05 when I saw it pop up last night but the storms kept me in NorAZ so I guess it wasn’t meant to be. I would buy that Jeep no hesitation. Plus then you can set it up the way you like. Fresh rebuild on something with 116k is concerning. Nothing should fail that soon which says either neglect or abuse.
 
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Jerry Bransford

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With the known potential issues in the 05-06 models I'd definitely go with the 2000 TJ. Especially that the 05 is an automatic which has a known problem with its PCM. The PCM for 05-06 models with an automatic can experience catastrophic failures from heat caused by the transmission controller inside the PCM.
 

AndyG

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I can really see both sides of this-

With an 05-06, you need a code reader, and a parts list for sensors and evap work. But its a nice, clean newer Jeep.

Of course Jerrys’ post is solid and based on experience and reason, and can be used at a congressional hearing.

I lean so hard toward the autos that my opinion is skewed.

I will add you are looking at nice TJs.... hats off for that. Either is likely to need some maintenance and dial in based on what we see a lot, but looks like you are out to get a nice one. I applaud you for that. We see people get on here and show us dogs, and we know they are going to have some real headaches if they aren’t up for a project.
 

JMT

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That could be a significant challenge.

Finding a hardtop could be a challenge, but time and patience are your friend. Not nearly as difficult as finding half doors. The soft top looked nice on that rig. I’ve had one, but it was crap and I hated it. I also don’t like the idea of buying a new one every 5-10 years. I’ve got three hardtops now. One aftermarket, one 97-02’ and one 03-06’. I prefer the 03-06’
 
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Fouledplugs

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If it were me, I’d much rather have the Jeep without the rebuild. The 4.0’s are, “bulletproof,” according to numerous members here. It’s repeated often and what I worry about is the 4.0L should last well past the 116,000 miles in which it was then rebuilt.

The interior on the 03+ models look way better imo.

What does the Carfax have on both VIN’s as far as documentation?
 

JPHikr

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I would go with the hardtop.


Hard top Pluses:
Cool in the summer, warm in the winter.
Security your stuff is not getting stolen by just grabbing and going. I always have a truck long gun and spare pistol in the Jeep.
You can hear the stereo and talk on the phone.
No rust in the floors.

Minuses:
Hot in the Summer Cold in the winter.
Opps your stuff got stolen.
What did you say I cant hear you with all the wind noise.
How do I get all the dust out of my Jeep interior.
Why is my floor rusted thru.
 
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B1Toad

B1Toad

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I was tempted to pick up the 05 when I saw it pop up last night but the storms kept me in NorAZ so I guess it wasn’t meant to be. I would buy that Jeep no hesitation. Plus then you can set it up the way you like. Fresh rebuild on something with 116k is concerning. Nothing should fail that soon which says either neglect or abuse.

By the time the seller replied to me there were 3 ahead of me and shortly after they pulled the ad. They said they would let me know this morning if it sold. A nice looking 2003 with 55K on it popped up in Buckeye this AM priced at $22,500.
 
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Jerry Bransford

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The OPDA and PCM issues found on some '05-'06 models should not be the deciding factor.....they are both easy fixes. Especially since Wrangler Fix solved the PCM issue.
The PCM problem is now easily fixed but the OPDA issue is not always an easy or permanent fix.

There are many threads on various Jeep forums about more serious OPDA issues where even the cam had to be replaced. Replacing parts like the cam and/or installing Crown's OPDA kit are not always permanent fixes. The underlying root cause problem of the OPDA issue is caused by Jeep's redesign of it and that redesign problem is not changed by installing the OPDA kit since the original problem-causing redesign is still there. It's a band-aid fix. Certainly some have no problems after installing the Crown kit but that's not the case 100% of the time.
 

suicideking

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I would go with the 05 because of the miles. About a third of the miles of the 2000. Worth buying a hard top and wheels. You can possibly find an OEM top for around $1000 - $1500. You can get wheels for around $100 each.
 

jeepguy03

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+1 for the 2000.

I'm partial to the earlier TJs and the manual trans. Like Jerry said, while the PCM fix is available, the OPDA issue is not really permanently fixable. You can find the updated part, but that isn't a permanent fix, it just lasts a bit longer.

The mileage wouldn't really scare me at all with a TJ. Condition and maintenance are more important. A 2005 with 42k miles has sat a lot.