really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
123,900 miles
Total Complaints:
47 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace engine (35 reports)
  2. not sure (9 reports)
  3. repair engine parts (3 reports)
2002 Jeep Liberty engine problems

engine problem

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2002 Jeep Liberty Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #47

Jan 182019

Liberty Limited 3.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 142,000 miles


Jeep started up, drove to the other end of parking lot. Then it started missing and gas smell odor was bad. Got it pulled home started checking stuff that could be wrong, but found none. I started it back up. It was smoking white smoke bad and missing. I could hear knocking sound. I got someone to come look at it. They said the valves had broken off of the right head and it blew and one of the pistons was melted some. Only had 142,000, only had it 8 months and still owe 5 more payments. It's my girls first car and she loved it but now don't have no money to fix it.

We will never buy a Chrysler product again. They know that the heads are sh*t. Here we are still owing for it but cannot drive it or have no way to fix it for her and she needed it to go to college, then she is going into the United States Navy.

They need to the right thing and recall these 3.7 AND 4.7 engines.

- bigfoot tn, Mooresburg, US

problem #46

Jan 012017

Liberty Limited 3.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 155,000 miles

The 2002 3.7 is the worst motor I ever. I drive mostly Chrysler products. Hate to say, if this is what they are building now, I will not be buying any more.

- hartung, Stover, US

problem #45

Dec 222017

Liberty Limited 3.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 195,000 miles

Driving fine, then all of a sudden the ABS light turns on. Then the airbag light... then the parking brake light, then check engine light, then battery light... then headlights shut off leaving me to drive in the dark. Cannot get it started from here on out.

- Jesse G., Longmont, US

problem #44

Jan 052017

Liberty 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 200,000 miles


Why the hell is there no recall on these 2002 engines. Every mechanic in the world knows these 2002 engines were made horribly. Every person with a Jeep 2002 complains of engine failure, so why do we not have the option to have our engine replaced or swapped with a working one????!!!!!!! So annoyed!!!!!!! Someone offer me a solution that will not break the bank please!!!!!

- Jenny D., East Stroudsburg, PA, US

problem #43

Oct 112016

Liberty 3.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 173,000 miles

Engine blew in middle of Route 70 West in Colorado.

- Harry S., Littleton, CO, USA

problem #42

Apr 152016

Liberty Sport 3.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 160,000 miles

I have to say this is a bad situation. Very hard to find an engine and very costly.

- Anthony C., Moorefield, WV, USA

problem #41

May 112016

Liberty Limited 3.7L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 126,570 miles


click to see larger images

engine failure engine failure engine failure engine failure

Car was purchased new by my wife. Fully loaded, always serviced at the dealership, babied. Body, paint, interior, etc. nearly perfect. All records available. A little wear on drivers leather, but no rips or tears anywhere.

Ran fine the day it died. Zero issues.

After second stop running errands, it did not want to start. Would start, then die. No other noises or anything.

Had it towed to the local dealership, where we had been getting it serviced since relocating 2 1/2 years ago, after calling to advise it was inbound. The service writer called after receiving it, and I related what happened. I specifically asked then to hook it up and check codes, as it had a sensor fail once before causing a similar failure to run some years ago.

I called the dealership late the following day to check up on it. I was told that the technician started and ran the engine. In his opinion, there was a "valve problem", and it would be $400 - $500 to diagnose. I asked if they check for codes, service writer said he didn't know, but would ask and call me back. He did.

What he said astounded me. Nothing about checking the computer or codes, just that he restarted the engine and ran it. At that point he commented on major noise, and began talking about a new engine.

I had the car picked up, and taken to a private shop operated by a member of a car club where my father in law is a member.

Result, number 2 had a valve seat fail, destroying the head and piston. I soon discovered that this was a recurring, major issue with this engine. Two fatal flaws exist in the engine design, rendering it a virtual time bomb. The car has never overheated. In fact, per the temperature gauge, didn't reach halfway. That always impressed me, as the car was in Phoenix from new until November 2013.

We have an otherwise nearly perfect car, with a blown engine. KBB range for the car is $4600-$4900 in it's condition, private party, the day before the engine blew. About a thousand less if traded in.

We intended to keep the car, and add a new Ram Laramie 2500 4x4 to the mix with our F250 Lariat 4x4 "dirt, plants and lumber" truck and the Jeep.

Under no circumstances will we ever buy another Mopar product.

Several mechanics and enthusiasts we've spoken with have expressed incredulity that a class action suit has not been brought already with regard to this defective engine. To a lesser degree, all Mopar engines using the same materials and design are failing. It's a widely known issue.

Now we're shopping GMC Denali instead of Ram, and Kia, Hyundai, Toyota and Honda to replace the Jeep.

I'm angry.

More here:http://www.torquenews.com/397/two-fatal-flaws-ruining-chrysler-engines-catastrophic-breakdowns and here: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/why-some-late-model-dodgechrysler-vehicles-are-prone-to-catastrophic-engine-failure-210043421.html

- Rob L., Caldwell, ID, USA

problem #40

Mar 122010

Liberty Limited 3.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,000 miles

Engine sputtered while driving occasionally. Check engine light came on and I took it to the dealer. It was there for two weeks before they figured out one of my engine valves failed. Cost $1,800 to repair it.

- spashworth1, Tulsa, OK, USA

problem #39

Mar 252016

Liberty Sport 3.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

Motor just quit on my way home. No warning or signs of a problem. Number 2 cylinder has no compression. Unable to find another motor that makes sense, besides a re-man. This is the second Jeep i have owned in 8 years. This is the second motor I have replaced in a Jeep in 8 years. I have read multiple complaints regarding the same issue with the 3.7. Upon trying to find a replacement, all of these motors across the country seem to have this same problem! WHY IS THIS NOT AN INVESTIGATION OR A RECALL? MY JEEP IS IN EXCELLENT CONDITION. Is this and should this fall under the statutes of a lemon law? I don't believe I will ever own another jeep........

2700.00 dollars for a re-man (before labor and core charge) that is completely unreliable before or after X amount of miles! I'm very upset and feel let down by what I believe to have been a part of an American icon. I suppose in hindsight I should of bought a Hyundai.

- Christine L., Swanton, VT, USA

problem #38

Feb 152016

Liberty Sport 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,013 miles

This Jeep has been nothing but a headache since 2012. In 2012 without warning, the 2nd cylinder of the engine needed to be rebuilt. The engine drew in the exhaust valve and combusted it down to the first ring of the piston. I have had constant misfires, replacing spark plugs and coils. I had to replace a fuel rail. Finally, in February of 2016, the engine spun a rod bearing and rendered itself useless. Thousands of dollars into a car now worth completely nothing. The junk yards won't even take it, saying they have yards full of them with no buyers. At 115,013 miles I don't feel these sort of major issues should have ever happened.

- Casandra R., Torrington, CT, USA

problem #37

Feb 162016

Liberty Limited 3.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 123,191 miles


Like most, I purchased this vehicle in May of last year, it seems that I had some work to be completed. I replaced a lot of parts over the past year including exhaust, ECM, AC unit, radiator and other things. The Check Engine light went on and within a few days (ironically right after it was serviced at Canadian Tire) and died, from the sounds of what happened it blew a head gasket or dropped through the oil pan. So now I have a nice Jeep with no engine and no way to fix it. Just adding to the pile of people who seem to have had the same problem at the same time, like someone put time bombs in the engines.

- Jeff Z., Bowmanville, Ontraio, Canada, L1C0R, ON, Canada

problem #36

Jan 012016

Liberty Limited 3.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles

Ok so I have had this 2002 Jeep Liberty for about 2 years. The first owner worked for Jeep and had a huge file folder of everything that was fixed and oil changes on the Jeep. Now 2 years later I have replaced so much on this Jeep. A heater core, Air Cond. Compressor and NOW THE ENGINE ISN'T WORKING. I have done all the upkeep on the Jeep. Oil changes and everything suggested by Jeep. Since the day I had the Jeep I have received so MANY RECALLS..

Now with 150,000 miles on the Jeep the ENGINE STOPPED WORKING. With no notice or warning at all. I wonder why Jeep hasn't had a recall on the engine?????????? So many people have made complaints and stated that the Engine just stops working and Jeep has done NOTHING AT ALL.



- Rosemary L., Bridgeview, IL, USA

problem #35

Oct 022015

Liberty Limited

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,000 miles

We took out Jeep Liberty to a repair service that our insurance person recommended. This was to repair a fender bender and scrapes on the rear passenger side. We received a phone call from the car repair dealer with the news that the engine would not start. He claims that there was only 2 cups of oil present in the car. He recommends a new engine for $2000. We drove the car in there; now it won't run at all? a few times, we have had the engine light go on for a few seconds and then go off on it's own. The oil light NEVER went on. There NEVER was a sight of an oil leak. This car has had at least 3 recalls for various reasons. I think I bought a lemon.

- Yvonne W., Oak Park, IL, US

problem #34

Jun 152015

Liberty Sport 3.7L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 121,000 miles

Car ran fine, issues I had were the kind all cars seemed to have. I had to replace the radiator at 100,000 due to a crack in the side of it, The water pump at 109,000 miles. Still expected this motor to last at least to 200,000 miles. My gripe is it lost oil pressure and the oil light never came on. Seem this years car was truly a transitional piece everything on it is a little different and expensive to repair! Should've bought a Land Rover, couldn't cost any more to repair and at least its known to last only 100,000 miles!

- Ray B., Little Rock, AR, USA

problem #33

Sep 122015

Liberty Limited 3.7L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 146,400 miles

Bought the vehicle in March of 2015. Ran well, but weird things started happening almost right away. Oil light would go on and off on occasion until it warmed up, rear drivers side window went out and fell into door panel, strike latch on back hatch window fell off the window, and could not be reattached, AC drained water into passenger side of vehicle soaking the carpeting, and the coup de grace- catastrophic engine failure. One of the rocker arm literally exploded off the cam shaft on startup (it sounded like a gun shot went off) and cracked the cylinder head. The mechanic, a reputable shop I've dealt with before in our area) said the best bet was to replace the engine at a cost approaching 4k.In addition to that, they told be there was an impending problem with the power steering that needed to be addressed sooner rather than later at an additional cost of 1.5k. I had noticed some grabbing issues going into parking spots from time to time, so I suspect that was what was up with that.

So the short of it is, she's back in my driveway with a blown engine and I'm looking for a new ride. I have backup vehicles so I'm going to do my homework first.

From what I see below, looks like I joined the club!

- Steve H., Algonquin, IL, USA

problem #32

Aug 122015

Liberty 3.7L

  • Manual transmission
  • 134,000 miles

Had this Jeep since 2006. Electrical system was always issue. Headlights and dome light consistently went on and off. Engine and oil lights went on enough to compare the car to the boy that cried wolf. I was consistently changing head lights and tail lights. Engine always made funny sounds but mechanics would say it's normal for a Jeep. Today the engine blew on the highway. Engine lights were on and checked by mechanic but was told it was ok, just a broken sensor. All this for a guy that gets picked on for driving like an old lady so its not like I was hard on it.

No more Jeeps for me. Our family also leased a Wrangler in the late nineties. Electrical system broke pretty quick. Had to bang on the dashboard to get speedometer to work until it stopped altogether. Oh, and my Liberty's hvac system only worked on level 3 and 4 for most the time and only 4 for last few months before stopping altogether. Also had to replace pinion twice in short time. Top of hatchback also rusted really bad surprising the body shop. Overheat issues too. Might've just been a lemon but be careful before picking car.

- Kris S., St Petersburg, FL, USA

problem #31

Jan 032015

Liberty Renegade 3.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 162,986 miles

Driving to work, all of a sudden engine begins to knock, then loud bang and oil running behind Jeep. Upon further inspection found a chunk of metal from the block. About the size of a half dollar right above oil pan on drivers side. I have always kept oil changed and performed maintenance on it. Now after reading other stories like this, it seems Jeep knows about this but isn't doing anything.

- Joseph S., Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #30

Jan 252015

Liberty 3.7V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 136,027 miles


- pryan0419@gmail.co, Carmel, NY, USA

problem #29

Jun 102012

Liberty Limited 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120 miles

I wasn't expecting to need an engine, I had to get the money from my mother to pay for it.

- kmazz!!, Belen, NM, USA

problem #28

Aug 092014

Liberty Sport 3.7L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

I returned from a individual augmented deployment last year with the Navy to East Africa at the beginning of September. On September 14, I decided to purchase a used car and spied a 2002 Jeep Liberty Sport (Limited) at this dealership. I asked the clerk what type of shape this vehicle was in and he answered "...good shape," without elaborating. The dealer, M. Amine Khedar, declared the vehicle to be in good shape. I purchased the car and drove it without incident for a couple of weeks.

On my way back home to Northern Virginia on Oct. 6 near the end of Interstate 64 West, the engine light came on and my car began suffering engine failure in very heavy traffic. I panicked, not knowing what was happening and pulled off to the side of the road to figure out what was happening. Too far from Virginia Beach, I decided to press on, with plans to find a mechanic as soon as I could . When I reached the DC Metro area near Woodbridge, I pulled into a service station and a mechanic scanned the motor and told me [mechanic's language] that my vehicle was in need of some serious repair.

I took it to a Jeep dealership service department and was forced to rent a car for two weeks while the mechanics feverishly worked on the engine. When I explained to the mechanics that the dealer told me that this car is in great shape, they scoffed at that and said that the dealer sold me a bill of goods, that “this vehicle has not been properly maintained…”, which runs counter to what the salesman told me when I asked about the condition of this vehicle. I attempted to contact Mr. Khedar several times with telephone calls and e-mails, but was stonewalled each time. I wanted him to explain how his clerk could proclaim the car to be in "good" shape when I had to shell out an initial $2,100.16 for repairs, and more than $1,000 for a rental. I have had to replace three of the four tires, and the fourth tire will have to be replaced soon. Two weeks ago, the engine went up on me and the mechanic hinted that I may be out of pocket for an additional $3,000 for parts and labor. This means that I would have paid out more in repairs than the price of the car.

While Khedar did offer me a warranty for an additional $300, which I declined, his staff cannot claim the vehicle to be in good condition if more than $2,000 in repairs is required. I want him to reimburse me for these repairs and the cost of a rental that I had to have for a couple of weeks. Khedar and his staff lied to me about the condition of the vehicle and I want him to account for that lie. He has a saying that streams across his page that his is a family owned business that is committed to selling quality cars at affordable prices, and that customer satisfaction is their goal. Really? Because the “quality” car he sold me is a piece of junk, and he could care less about this customer’s satisfaction. My complaint to the Better Business Bureau is attached. The following is his contact information:

I believe, in all fairness, that this guy should at least pony up the cost of an engine to make things right with me for shaking me down like this. Anything less than trying to make this right is a moral failure on the dealer’s part. I have contacted the state Better Business Bureau, the state Consumer Affairs Division, the state Attorney General, the Navy Legal Service Office in Washington, D.C., and Naval Station Norfolk Public Affairs. I am committed to getting some results from this campaign to overturn a crooked bargain. I will find someone to assist me, because I have a relentless nature that refuses to give up. The dealer’s information is below:

M. Amine Khedar Automotive Sales Dealer Operator Beach Auto Sales 748 South Military Highway Virginia Beach, VA 23464 E-mail: www.beachauto748@gmail.com Web www.beachauto.net

- navyguy4ever, Washington, DC, USA

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