Without getting into the nerd territory, let us say that the u-joint is a vital part of any vehicle. It looks like a cross and has only one goal: to connect different mechanical components. Mostly, u-joints connect the driveshaft to the differential (or the transmission). Just remember that this is a very important detail, and if it fails in the middle of the road, you’ll lose control over the Jeep.
In this post, we’ll talk about the best Jeep Cherokee driveshaft u-joint replacement options on the market. Cherokee might not be the most popular vehicle for off-roading, but it still gets to places, and without a proper u-joint, you’ll run the risk of getting stuck in the middle of nowhere. Let’s go ahead and check out the three leading u-joints that I picked after meticulous testing.
Best Jeep Cherokee Driveshaft U-joint Replacement (Updated March, 2021)
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Best Jeep Cherokee Driveshaft U-joint Replacement Review
1. Spicer 5-153X U-Joint Kit
When it comes to u-joints, Spicer is one of the obvious leaders. That’s because this company invented them back in 1904 and has been in the business ever since. This particular 10-series u-joint, 5-153X, comes with snap rings and case-hardened and heat-treated bearing cups. Add nitrile rubber seals that protect the cross from contamination, and you’ll get one of the best options on the market of universal joints.
Installation won’t take you long, and even a novice will make sense of everything. My biggest complaint about this product is the lack of quality control. Many buyers report that the packages lack links, clips, and zerks. To a certain extent, that’s compensated by lightning-speed shipping. Overall, Spicer did a solid job with this u-joint.
If not for the disappointing quality control issues, the 5-153X u-joint is a near-perfect purchase. It’s made of durable materials, cold-forged, and heat-treated for maximum efficiency. The price is reasonable, especially since u-joints usually last for a lifetime, and this will be a reasonable investment for any Jeep Cherokee driver.
2. Spicer 5-760X U-Joint Kit
Next on the list, we’ve got another Spicer u-joint. This is the most expensive pick, but the steep price-tag is justified by the incredible attention to detail. Installation is easy and straightforward. The build quality, in turn, deserves our praise: the engineers at Spicer did their best to ensure longevity and durability. Made in the United States, the 5-760X u-joint successfully passed numerous quality control tests.
It doesn’t really have any cons except for the price. It’s not too high, though, and if you’re doing a lot of off-roading, you might want to invest in something that will always have your back. In many ways, it’s like the “elder brother” to 5-153X and comes with the same pros. The case-hardened and cold-formed bearing cups, along with the tight seals, are even more reasons to consider it over the competition.
Cherokee drivers looking for the best u-joints for off-roading will probably like what Spice has to offer with 5-760X. Designed and made in the US, this is a dependable piece of gear that’s worth every single penny you pay for it. On the other hand, folks on a budget might want to go with something simpler.
3. Moog 369 Universal Joint
Last but not least, let’s see what Moog has in stores for us with 369. First of all, this is a highly affordable purchase, and that’s already a big pro. Secondly, it boasts a 360-degree lube distribution system that keeps everything nice and smooth. Made of high-strength steel, the cross won’t rust or break over time. Add precision-ground needle bearings, superb bearing cups, and seals (that keep contamination out and the lube in), and you’ll get a bargain.
The only minor con is the confusion about where this Moog u-joint was made. While Moog is, indeed, based in the United States, not all of its products (including the 369 universal joints) are made in the States. That doesn’t mean they don’t meet the highest quality standards, though.
Moog might not be as legendary as Spicer, but it is still on par with the leaders. The 369 u-joint is easily greaseable and comes with top-quality needle bearings and snap rings. Consistent heat treatment, in turn, means the cross is strong and durable enough to withstand harsh weather conditions.
The u-joint is a relatively small component, but without it, the driveshaft, the transmission, and the brakes won’t be able to work properly. And if it breaks, the Jeep may tip over with the driver still behind the wheel. In most cases, the u-joints last for many years (if not decades), but still, keep your eye the road. And, when it’s time to change the driveshaft u-joint, don’t hesitate to cash in for a new one.
In this post, we reviewed three high-quality universal joints that will fit your Jeep Cherokee perfectly. Moog is the most affordable pick that’s still on par with the rivals. With Spicer’s 5-760X, you’ll get a reliable and easy-to-install product. Finally, 5-153X (also made by Spicer) is an expensive purchase, but this u-joint will be money well spent. So, make your choice wisely. And if you need the Best Grease for U Joints, make sure to check out my list of the top picks!