Copyright 2019 Discovery Owner's Association, Inc.

Testing the Late Jeep Cherokee (2014-2018) Mopar Flat Towing Kit Installation For Proper Operation

All of the flat towable Jeep Cherokee models between 2014 and 2018 that can be flat towed behind our motorhomes MUST have a MOPAR Flat Towing Kit installed according to FCA Jeep. Flat towable Jeep Cherokees starting with model year 2019 DO NOT require the kit installation.

The purpose of this kit is to prevent the oscillating build up of a steering swinging motion that can progress to the point of a so called “Death Wobble”. This condition is serious enough to have the towed Jeep Cherokee actually swaying the entire motorcoach while driving and can only be stopped by coming to a FULL stop.

If you want to see what it looks like WITHOUT the Flat Towing Kit or with a Flat Towing Kit that is not correctly installed then watch this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fwgUAJaeECI

Unfortunately, even those who have installed the MOPAR Flat Towing Kit have found that several installations were not done correctly. The towing kit is designed to activate the Electronic Power Steering (EPS) even though the ignition of the vehicle is turned off. This is the condition you would have while flat towing your Cherokee behind your motorhome. It is not enough to believe that if the wobble has not occurred to you, then it won’t!! This wobble usually first starts occurring at a relatively high mileage when the steering has become a bit looser (but certainly not worn) than it was while newer. Typically at about 20,000 miles on the odometer (plus the towing miles that do not show on the odometer). Customers where this has occurred have in fact gone to the nearest dealer and asked them to insure that the kit is in fact working as designed. Unfortunately the Flat Towing Kit instructions DO NOT include a satisfactory method for insuring that the installation was performed properly and the dealers often are not familiar with the kit or the problem! You will almost always get the answer that all is OK. Sadly, the kit instructions basically only say “drive the car and if it doesn’t wobble then all is well”. Well, the car will NEVER wobble while being driven on a test drive, it is the flat towing over bumpy roads that interests us!!

There is only one way to insure that the system is working correctly –

  1. Park the vehicle, shut off the engine and remove the key.
  2. Exit the car (with the key if keyless) and wait for 2 minutes. During this time the EPS (Electronic Power Steering) can still be active and will stay active if there are any steering inputs to the steering wheel. All systems must turn off prior to proceeding.
  3. Open the door, reach in to the steering wheel and try to turn the steering. It should be very hard, if not impossible, to turn the steering wheel at all. If that is not the case you cannot proceed with the test. Wait another 2 minutes.
  4. Once the EPS is OFF, open the center console, open the red switch cover and flip the switch with the red cover to the “on” position. This switch disconnects the CAN-BUS for the EPS from the vehicle diagnostics system so that no faults are thrown when the EPS is activated without the ignition being on.
  5. Open the hood and insert the 10 amp fuse into the MOPAR Flat Towing Kit fuse holder. This will activate the Flat Towing Kit relay which will activate the EPS if all is installed properly.
  6. Reach in through the driver’s door and now try to move the steering wheel. It should be very apparent that the EPS is active and you should be able to turn the steering quite easily because the power steering is assisting you. If that is the case, then the MOPAR Flat Towing Kit has been installed correctly.
  7. If the steering wheel is still hard to turn (like in Step 3) then the flat towing kit is not activating the EPS!! In the cases that are known up to date, the two wires that enter the PDC (Power Distribution Center) and are spliced into the EPS wiring have been hooked up REVERSED. These are the kit wiring harness wires Pink and Pink/DarkBlue.
  8. After you are finished testing, remove the fuse from the fuse holder and switch the switch with the red cover in the center console back to the “normal” (off) position with the cover closed.

There is NO OTHER WAY to test the system. Any dealer that wants to start the vehicle, roll the vehicle, shift the transfer case into neutral, take the steps on the Flat Towing Guide, etc. does not understand what the Flat Towing Kit is supposed to do which is only to activate the power steering. All other preparations for flat towing are completely irrelevant to the operation of the Flat Towing Kit.

If you have any questions on this procedure then please contact:
al-karin@rvhome.de

Submitted by - Al de Haas


WHO WE ARE

The DISCOVERY OWNERS ASSOCIATION, INC, was formed to promote the sharing of information and the camraderie of fellow Discovery motorhome owners. Membership in the club is limited to owners of Fleetwood Discovery motorhomes.

GET IN TOUCH

Website Questions
Email Webmaster
Membership Questions
Email Membership Coordinator

SEARCH THIS SITE