1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo will not start and has no ignition coil spark

August 1, 2009

1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo (straight 6 cylinder; 4WD)

164,611 miles

What is wrong with it? : Will not start. NO spark from ignition coil.

Here is what happened:

About 5 nights ago at 9pm I went out to the garage to drive to the food store in my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo. I cranked it and, to my recollection, the Jeep either noticeably took some seconds longer than usual to start or it failed to start and I cranked it a second time. I am no longer clear on exactly which one of those it was, but my point is there was something noticeably odd about the way my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo STARTED.

The store is right around the corner, not even a 1/4 mile away. I got to the food store and parked my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo and turned it off. I did not leave it running. I probably spent 30 – 45 minutes in the food store.

When I came back out to the Jeep from the food store it STARTED in the usual manner and I drove back home and put the 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo in the garage.

The next morning, probably between 9am and 10am, I tried to start the Jeep and discovered that it just cranks, but WILL NOT START.

I felt I was overdue for a tuneup anyway so I went to the parts store and got distributor cap, rotor, plugs and wires. Installed distributor cap and rotor yet 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo continued to fail to start in the exact same manner as described above.

Removed distributor cap end of IGNITION COIL wire, stuck a dinner knife in it, and cranked to see if the ignition coil would spark. The ignition coil did not spark.

I kicked myself for telling the parts store guy that I was not going to buy a new ignition coil and, eventually, got back to the parts store and bought a new ignition coil.

Installed the new ignition coil and cranked. The 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo continued to fail to start in the exact same manner as described above. Checked the newly installed ignition coil for spark. The ignition coil did not spark.

I switched the relays(asd, fuel pump, a/c) around. Still no start.

Next. I got a really sick butterfly feeling in my stomach and, maybe, lump in my throat…

The computer error codes to the check engine light appear to be 12 and 55(end). Code 12 is something like “Direct battery input to PCM was disconnected within the last 50 Key-on cycles.” I guess the true error codes were erased since I disconnected the battery to install the new parts, etc., long before I knew there was a way to get the car to give me the error codes. Am I right? Were the true error codes erased when I disconnected the battery?

The overdrive on/off switch appears to be giving code 55(end) only.

I have not been getting any problem or check engine lights and I have not been experiencing any issues at all that can account for why my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo will not start. I am completely shocked and surprised that my very clean 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo will not start.

note: The temperature was about 75 degrees or so that day and only slightly cooler overnight.

note: I went to the self service car wash and high pressure washed my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo, like I have done every car I ever owned, about 3 or 4 weeks ago. I walked around spraying the high pressure wash UNDERNEATH the Jeep, like I always do, as well. I did not, however, open the hood and wash the engine and I do not believe I ever have since I have owned the Jeep.

What am I doing to fix my Jeep? (I am POSTING this question in the hopes that you guys and gals can tell me what to do to fix my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo.)

Well, I want to replace the “Crankshaft Position Sensor”, but wow is it difficult to get to. There is some type of cable with a silver/gray protective sheath that rubs tightly up against what I believe is the Crankshaft Position Sensor. The cable goes through the firewall of the car and the other end(bottom) of the cable connects to metal rods and various linkages near the center and underneath the car.

I do not see how I can remove the 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo Crankshaft Position Sensor bolt from the top side (under the hood) of the car. An autoparts store employee is going to let me borrow some magnetic socket extensions, joints, etc., because I can clearly see the bolt holding the 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo Crankshaft Position Sensor in place if I turn my body/head parallel to the car and facing the rear of the car, BUT I can not get my hand up there to attach a socket and turn.

Even if I manage to get the 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo Crankshaft Position Sensor bolt out how do I get the new CPS in place and bolt it in since there is no way I can see to get my hand within 14 – 20 inches of where the 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo Crankshaft Position Sensor needs to be installed?

The autoparts store employee said I should not use the magnetic socket attachments while installing the new 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo Crankshaft Position Sensor because the Crankshaft Position Sensor itself is a magnet and he feels the magnetic socket might damage the new 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo Crankshaft Position Sensor. I assume the 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo Crankshaft Position Sensor is an ELECTROmagnet so that it only behaves as a magnet when electricity(current) is applied to it, but I really don’t know.

Can anyone point me to, or give me, instructions for replacing the 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo Crankshaft Position Sensor? I sure would like to avoid removing any other parts in order to get to the 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo Crankshaft Position Sensor if possible.

While underneath the 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo I sprayed lithium grease all over the 1 bolt that appears to hold the 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo Crankshaft Position Sensor in place.

H8RC4

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8 Responses to “1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo will not start and has no ignition coil spark”

  1. srhaydon Says:

    I am having the same problems on my 1993 Cherokee. Did you get it fixed and if so what was the cure?

  2. h8rc4 Says:

    Hello Srhaydon,

    Yes, I fixed my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo all by myself. I replaced “the ‘Crankshaft Position Sensor’ …[on my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo]…, but, wow, it …[was]… difficult to get to.”

    If my arms, wrist, hands, were moderately larger I probably would not have been able to replace my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo’s Crankshaft Position Sensor at all.

    I did need to purchase some “specialized” tools to repair my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo, though.

    Still, even after purchasing tools to repair my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo, I spent, probably, a fraction of the money to repair my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo myself compared to what it would have cost me to have the dealer repair my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo AND I got a good education and some tools by doing it myself.

  3. Jd Says:

    ignition control module is common on the jeeps for no start sputtering misfire no power and it does not through a code unless you floor the pedel but goes away after you restart it hard start rough idle, that and the crankshaft are common on the jeeps hope this helps

  4. Jonathan Says:

    HI I have a 95 grand Cherokee Laredo….I put a new t case on mine…it ran fine before…not it just cranks an cranks….i left the key in it all night with no battery now it wont run….any thoughts? i unplug the cps an it wants to run but it wont it just sputters for 2 seconds.

  5. h8rc4 Says:

    Hi Jonathan,

    It looks, to me, like you are saying that you are trying to start your 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo AFTER unplugging the cps. As far as I know, a 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo is not intended to start, ever, IF the cps(crankshaft position sensor) is unplugged. If you re-read my original post you should notice that my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee’s ignition just cranked and cranked; the Jeep did not “sound” like it “wanted” to start at all, UNTIL I replaced the failed crankshaft position sensor with a new one. You made your comment, here, 1 month ago, though; so, I guess you must have gotten your Jeep repaired and running again by know, right?

  6. Steve Says:

    I have a 95 [jeep] grand cherokee limited and for the past week or so i will go out to start my jeep and it will only crank with no start. about 20 to 30 min. later .. [my jeep] … will start and run fine. This has happened five or six times now any ideas on this problem ?
    Steve M.

  7. h8rc4 Says:

    Hi Steve,

    Well, the primary reason I bought, specifically, a 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo, when it was already well over 8 years old, was because I wanted a car that, historically, was somewhat trouble free and, maybe more importantly, when car trouble did arise, I wanted to be able to easily diagnose and repair a good percentage of car problems myself. I did a lot of research on older model, straight 6 cylinder, Jeep Grand Cherokees and the 1995 model year Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo, certainly not later, and not much older, seemed to suit my needs; so, I bought a used one.

    One of the most important “selling points” that helped me decide on a 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo was the fact that it is, I think, the last model year Jeep that, in a manner of speaking, has a “built-in”, “on-board”, vehicle diagnostic system. That Jeep vehicle diagnostic system, on 1995 and some earlier model year Jeeps, allows “trouble codes” to be extracted by simply turning the Jeep’s ignition on and off, without actually cranking the Jeep, in a specific “pattern”. Just a year later, if I recall my Jeep Grand Cherokee research correctly, Jeep made significant changes to the engine on Jeeps. So, on 1996 and newer Jeeps a “scan tool” is needed to extract trouble codes. That meant the vast majority of Jeep Grand Cherokee owners who might previously have, at least, extracted the “trouble codes” from their Jeep themselves would now, more than likely, take their Jeeps to a Jeep dealer or a repair shop; where it would, likely, cost lots of money simply to have Jeep trouble “diagnosed”. Further, based on my interpretation of the changes made for 1996 model year and later Jeeps, durability was dramatically reduced. In my opinion, whether the motivation was “pressure” from Jeep dealers who wanted “repair” revenue, or not, Jeep “re-designed” what was, historically, a “work-horse” of a motor, the straight 6 cylinder, to make it far more likely, some might say “prone”, to break down far earlier in its lifespan.

    So, Steve, if it were me the first thing I would do is extract the trouble codes from my 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee. It is possible, of course, for it not to give any trouble codes, but the most important thing I learned is that, apparently, the trouble codes on a 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo get “deleted” whenever the Jeep’s battery is disconnected. So, I always remembered, since I did all that Jeep Grand Cherokee repair research over 3 years ago, never to disconnect my Jeep Grand Cherokee’s battery, or let it “run-down”, while I am trying to diagnose car trouble, until I have already extracted whatever “trouble codes”, if any, are “stored” in my Jeep Grand Cherokee’s “system”.

  8. Jeff Says:

    the cps is actually really easy to get at. Remove water overflow tank,3 bolts. Remove harness from computer,1 bolt. Wedge harness over AC lines to keep it out of the way. Finally,remove two bolts on bypass tube coming off manifold. This allows tube to pivot up and out of your way! this gives you PLENTY of room to get at CPS with 1/4 hex and a 12 inch extention. Tear down to rebuild can be done in 15 flat!! Just watch the 1/4 hex,they have lock washers that you do not want falling into bell housing! IF it does though, remove cover plate on bottom of bell housing and slowly move crank till washer falls out or is accessable. But my advice,dont drop the washers!


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