Replacing Bumps stops on the Jeep Cherokee
The bumps stops can take a lot of abuse on the Jeep Cherokee. Evan a street driven Jeep may need to have the bump stops replaced after a few years. It is important to keep good bump stops in place because the suspension can over travel without them. In the front, the axle can damage the transmission cooling lines and in the rear, the leaf springs can become damaged.
The rear bumps stops are very easy to change. Usually there will just be a steel plate bolted to the unibody frame rail where the rubber has broken away. This plate is held in place by two bolts with 13mm heads. If they are rusted in place, it may help to spray penetrating oil inside the frame rail. If the bolts break off, you can simply weld the new bump stops in place.
New bump stops are available in a variety of lengths to compensate for larger tires. The stock length bump stops are available for around $10 each.
In the front, the bump stops are located inside the coil spring. This means the spring must be removed to access the bump stops. On the AMC built XJs the bump stop screwed into the tube inside the coil. On the Chrysler built Jeeps, the holder is welded to the tube and the new bump stop slips into the cup. To install the new one, I found that lubricating it with hand soap makes it slide in easier. If the spring is removed, you can use the weight of the Jeep to press the bump stop into place.
Longer front bump stops are available, but I have had better results using the stock sized bump stop and placing a spacer at the bottom of the spring seat. Spacers can be made of wood or plastic. I have even seen tennis balls placed inside the spring to lengthen the bump stops.
Bumps stops should be inspected before and after each off road trip to ensure that they are in present and in good condition. Having the proper bump stops in place will help your suspension work properly and keep your tires from rubbing the fenders.