Jeep Cherokee
 Owners Manual
What to do in emergencies
Freeing a stuck vehicle

If your vehicle becomes stuck in mud, sand or snow, it can often be moved using a rocking motion. Turn the steering wheel right and left to clear the area around the front wheels. Press and hold the lock button on the shift lever. Then shift back and forth between DRIVE and REVERSE, while gently pressing the accelerator.

NOTE: Shifts between DRIVE and REVERSE can only be achieved at wheel speeds of 5 mph (8 km/h) or less.

Whenever the transmission remains in NEUTRAL for more than two seconds, you must push the brake pedal to engage DRIVE or REVERSE.

Use the least amount of accelerator pedal pressure that will maintain the rocking motion without spinning the wheels or racing the engine.


  • Racing the engine or spinning the wheels may lead to transmission overheating and failure. Allow the engine to idle with the transmission in NEUTRAL for at least one minute after every five rockingmotion cycles. This will minimize overheating and reduce the risk of transmission failure during prolonged efforts to free a stuck vehicle.
  • When "rocking" a stuck vehicle by shifting between DRIVE and REVERSE, do not spin the wheels faster than 15 mph (24 km/h), or drivetrain damage may result.
  • Revving the engine or spinning the wheels too fast may lead to transmission overheating and failure.

    It can also damage the tires. Do not spin the wheels above 30 mph (48 km/h) while in gear (no transmission shifting occurring).

NOTE: Push the "ESC Off" switch (if necessary), to place the Electronic Stability Control (ESC) system in "Partial Off" mode, before rocking the vehicle. Refer to "Electronic Brake Control" in "Starting And Operating" for further information. Once the vehicle has been freed, push the ESC Off switch again to restore "ESC On" mode.


Fast spinning tires can be dangerous. Forces generated by excessive wheel speeds may cause damage, or even failure, of the axle and tires. A tire could explode and injure someone. Do not spin your vehicle's wheels faster than 30 mph (48 km/h) or for longer than 30 seconds continuously without stopping when you are stuck and do not let anyone near a spinning wheel, no matter what the speed.

    More about «What to do in emergencies»:

    Hazard warning flashers

    If your engine overheats

    Wheel and tire torque specifications

    Tire service kit - if equipped

    Jacking and tire changing

    Jump-starting procedures

    Freeing a stuck vehicle

    Recovery strap - if equipped

    Shift lever override

    Towing a disabled vehicle

    Jeep Cherokee Owners Manual / What to do in emergencies / Freeing a stuck vehicle

    Jeep Cherokee Owners Manual


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