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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I come to the interwebs for its collective wisdom. While I wait, 2 hours for a tow truck to come save me in my perilous journey to work today...

I have a 2019 Trailhawk with 76665 miles. I've had it since 49500. When, I first started the vehicle the "A" (what I call the Avengers) symbol shows up on my dash. Its happened before. Usually its nothing. I stop at my local convenience store to grab a candy bar. When, I return to the vehicle the Avengers symbol is gone. I figured the battery might have been a smidge lower than the TH liked. Well, I'm driving down route 22 in Pennsylvania on my way to work. I get about 2 miles past the convenience store. Then, I hear a BANG! Then it shudders a little. Then, it's just making grinding noises and no power is getting to the wheels.

I managed to coast it to a nearby parking lot and make it to safety. I climb on the ground to try to look around (that skid plate is in the way) there's no fluid leakage. The CV boot looks fine. No obvious signs of what it could be. I get back in. I try to change the driving modes to see if anything changes. It doesn't. I put it into 4WD low. I am mobile once again! I try to shut off 4wd low and the grinding returns.

I am hoping its just a broken axle or CV joint that I just can't see because of the skid plate.

Anyone else have something similar happen to them? What was it? Any tips or advice? If it's just the axle, I'll just change it myself. If it's anything else, transmission related. I purchased the extended warranty when I bought it.

Thanks, in advance!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Update: I did manage to get under there enough to check the axles. They're fine. I am starting to think it's something inside the transmission. I did purchase the extended warranty (a real one from the dealership) I apparently, bought the deluxe/highest tiered package. I'm going to have it towed to a local Jeep dealer. Let's, hope it's covered.

"J.E.E.P. = J.ust E.ats E.veryone's P.aycheck"
 

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Update: I did manage to get under there enough to check the axles. They're fine. I am starting to think it's something inside the transmission. I did purchase the extended warranty (a real one from the dealership) I apparently, bought the deluxe/highest tiered package. I'm going to have it towed to a local Jeep dealer. Let's, hope it's covered.

"J.E.E.P. = J.ust E.ats E.veryone's P.aycheck"
Hmmm. Not sure here. Good thing you have that warranty though, could be PTU related. especially if 4WD Low works and normal AWD doesn't.
 

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Its most likely the ptu. Just out of curiosity how fast were you going? Had you just sped up or were maintaining a constant speed? Are your tires at the same wear level (ex keeping up with rotating them) and pressure? Its possible a weak battery might cause an issue if its engaging/disengaging the ptu when there is a voltage fluctuation, but I would thing that its a very low probability. Most of the time these things just seem to go for no reason. Curious if there was something that might have caused it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I was driving 55mph. I hadn't accelerated hard and my tires are good. It's a newer battery and I check my voltages regularly. The dealer said they won't be able to look at it until tomorrow.
 

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I was driving 55mph. I hadn't accelerated hard and my tires are good. It's a newer battery and I check my voltages regularly. The dealer said they won't be able to look at it until tomorrow.
dang. Well then I would lean toward ptu for sure. I had rear diff in the back of my mind, but it should have been in fwd then. Also shouldn't have been shifting into awd either. Transmission is possible, though ptu is usually much more likely.
 

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I was driving 55mph. I hadn't accelerated hard and my tires are good. It's a newer battery and I check my voltages regularly. The dealer said they won't be able to look at it until tomorrow.
Any other lights or messages besides the "Avengers" light??? Check Engine, 4X4 Not Available, flashing things on the EVIC screen??? Check the Message screen...Whatever it takes, it doesn't sound good, or cheap to fix. I'm guessing tranny, RDM, and or PTU???😎
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The yellow Avengers light. Lol.

No other lights or messages. I'm thinking its the PTU. I'm not sure how these drivelines are configured. I haven't had the need to rip into one...yet. I know they're not traditional 4wd. Meaning, traditional is rwd engine placement. Runs on RWD and then when 4wd/awd is engaged it uses both front and rear. I had a 2010 Patriot and that seems like it's probably closer to these cherokee's. I rebuild the transmission in that patriot. It was a 5 speed 4wd. That was setup like a fwd and the PTU bolted to the transmission on the side and one axle went through it.

What makes me think PTU (Transfer case) is that it moves when 4 low is engaged. Now, it could be the transmission where it mounts to the PTU. I should know tomorrow.
 

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The yellow Avengers light. Lol.
Well, that's actually the Service ESS, and there should be a stored message saying that on the message screen. This could be voltage, and or IBS (Intelligent Battery Sensor), but that doesn't explain the drivetrain failure. Usually, there will be a "4WD not available", and or "Service 4WD" message as well with PTU or RDM failure...

That was setup like a fwd and the PTU bolted to the transmission on the side and one axle went through it.
That's exactly how the Cherokee is. Whether they're exactly the same or not, I'm not sure, but it's very possible...Whatever it is, I think your extended warranty is about to pay for itself. Good luck, and keep us posted...😎
 

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I will also add that as others have said you have to be religious with tire rotations on these things. The AWD system is constantly engaging and disengaging the rear wheels depending on how the vehicle is being driven. Also note that using manual shift mode locks in the rear drivetrain, so only use that if you're confident that your tires are nice and evenly worn in order to avoid stressing the (poorly manufactured?) PTU parts.

Weirdly, I've done some somewhat gnarly stuff off road with mine now, (diff lock on rocks, etc) and it has never given me any issues doing that. Only ever did weird things on the highway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I recently put all seasons (Firestone Destination LE3) on because of the cost of gas and I have a long drive (150 miles round trip 99% highway) to work. They have less than 2k miles on them. No uneven tread wear. I also religiously rotate my tires when I change my oil.

They didn't look at it, yet. They're saying first thing in the morning.
 

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Ok, that rules out uneven tire wear then. I didn't think that was the case for mine either, as I also had fairly new tires on and they measured even.
Like Mike said, sometimes they just explode for no reason. There was a recall on the PTUs up to 2018 I think, perhaps our Jeeps got built with bad ones even though they claim 2019s weren't affected?

If they "can't find anything wrong" like the dealer that dealt with mine said initially, tell them to try draining the PTU fluid and see if they find metal chunks in the fluid.
 

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I will also add that as others have said you have to be religious with tire rotations on these things. The AWD system is constantly engaging and disengaging the rear wheels depending on how the vehicle is being driven. Also note that using manual shift mode locks in the rear drivetrain, so only use that if you're confident that your tires are nice and evenly worn in order to avoid stressing the (poorly manufactured?) PTU parts.

Weirdly, I've done some somewhat gnarly stuff off road with mine now, (diff lock on rocks, etc) and it has never given me any issues doing that. Only ever did weird things on the highway.
do you have any codes? no engine light would come on, and some of the codes are b or C im pretty sure. but I do get a P code(most people can get those read) and its for implausible data in ___ module, usually abs or steering or similar, but it shuffles around. I go to the live data for the ABS and it shows the brake pressure sensor(??????) has erratic, always overshooting, going negative(vacuum) swinging to thousands of psi ,etc and it does react withpedal lol.

but after looking at the "stability" live data for wheels, im about 15% convinced the car is doing very very quick, small "corrections". I know gm uses stabilitrak for their "nudging" system, idk what jeep calls it, but the data seems to indicate its intervening at the wheels really minorly and its not always going to do that for me. i still need to watch itm ore, but Ive seen TSBs for "implausible" data elsewhere
 

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do you have any codes? no engine light would come on, and some of the codes are b or C im pretty sure. but I do get a P code(most people can get those read) and its for implausible data in ___ module, usually abs or steering or similar, but it shuffles around. I go to the live data for the ABS and it shows the brake pressure sensor(??????) has erratic, always overshooting, going negative(vacuum) swinging to thousands of psi ,etc and it does react withpedal lol.

but after looking at the "stability" live data for wheels, im about 15% convinced the car is doing very very quick, small "corrections". I know gm uses stabilitrak for their "nudging" system, idk what jeep calls it, but the data seems to indicate its intervening at the wheels really minorly and its not always going to do that for me. i still need to watch itm ore, but Ive seen TSBs for "implausible" data elsewhere
I’ll tell you like Gene Kranz told it when they had an issue with Apollo 13:

“These people are talking about bangs and shimmies up there…that doesn’t sound like instrumentation to me.”

I would have to agree…MUCH more likely to be the actual PTU or some other physical failure than a bad sensor somewhere.
 

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I’ll tell you like Gene Kranz told it when they had an issue with Apollo 13:

“These people are talking about bangs and shimmies up there…that doesn’t sound like instrumentation to me.”

I would have to agree…MUCH more likely to be the actual PTU or some other physical failure than a bad sensor somewhere.
well the car thinks the brake pedal is being pressed with thousands of psi and then hundreds/thousands of negative psi in matters of just existing not being touched. then when pressing it its just doing it faster and more intensly.

logically, there is probably some stability or drivetrain abuse parameters related somehow with that, but i would not know
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Its the PTU and front passenger axle. The dealer said that when the PTU failed it damaged the axle. The warranty company sent out an adjuster to try to find a reason to deny the claim. The dealer said they see no reason for it do be denied, but I'll know next week. He said that the PTU can be there in a few days. The axle is back ordered for 30+ days. I can't wait that long. He said that if I can procure one before then. They would put that in.
 
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