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Bug out vehicle: geo tracker

1994 Geo Tracker
1.6l 8v I4
4 wheel drive
25+ MPG

I got another bug out vehicle this past week from my father in law. The old saying never look a gift horse in the mouth only applies till you get home. When I picked this little 4x4 up it was running like complete shit
. I was having trouble going 45 on the freeway and it died every time I stopped.
I've spent the last week fixing what was wrong and now she runs like a dream. 
Fuel injector seals- to find the correct o rings go to Orielly auto and look at the box of rings they have this is where you will find the upper o ring then order the package that has the two lower o rings.This is a throttle body injected motor so there is only one injector when the seals go you are not moving. The motor will flood every time you try to start it. If you find yourself in this situation put the gas pedal to the floor to kill the fuel injection.
New spark platinum plugs be sure they are the plugs for the 8v and gapped to .028
Cap and rotor make sure you put the rotor on right
New plug wires
Air filter
Fuel filter
Replaced fuel line
Iac valve. There are three screws holding the iac valve cover in place. It is located on the lower left of the throttle body. Remove the cover and spray the piss out of the inside with carb cleaner. While spraying, gently push the valve spring in. If you still can't get the valve to work your idle will be royally screwed up. A quick fix is to take 6 quarters and electrical tape them together then shove this in the iac housing.
Exhaust manifold- the stock one is a garbage thin wall casting and they love to crack. You can pick up the aftermarket one it is a lot better quality or you can patch it temporarily with quick steel. That's all I did and its still on.
O2 sensor- surprisingly easy to remove I put a vice grip locked as hard as I could on it then used a 6' pipe for a breaker bar and got it to come off right away.
Be sure there is gas in the tank I know it sounds stupid but just check.
Oil change- 4.5q of 5w-30 full synthetic and a filter. Changing the oil is a priority as soon as you fix the fuel injector seals. When the engine floods it pisses gas into the crankcase and out the exhaust THIS WILL CAUSE A NO START AND KILL THE MOTOR IN SHORT ORDER. When I changed my oil no bullshit it was so diluted with gas it poured out just like water. 
Now start the little beast and adjust the idle. There is a screw on the front left of the throttle body cover by a rubber plug. The idle at a cold start should be 2000 rpm for a little bit then drop to 1500 then when fully warmed it will drop to 800 rpm.
The timing belt should be replaced
The body of this geo was pretty rotted out and I didn't have any sheet metal around so I just screwed some pressure treated plywood to the whole floor.

The back seats are pointless to me because it is only me and the wife and the dogs so I removed them completely. Now there's actually a decent amount of room in the back for cargo.
The headlights on trackers are pretty dim so I mounted some halogen off road lights in front of the grill.
Finally I took care of the paint. It used to be purple with 90s graphics on the side. I redid the paint with 4 cans of dark forest rust oleum camo spray paint. Then I bombed the ugly peeling rims and trim with flat black. Looks pretty good for about 30$ in paint.
Geo trackers may not seem like much when you think about it because of their low power and small size but that's what makes them awesome. If you don't believe me take one off road. I can chock any one of the tires with a cinder block and drive right over it no problem. These little trucks are very nimble and fuel efficient too. There is a pretty decent aftermarket for them and if you do a little research you will find what they can actually become. Every time I drive this little green beast it reminds me of the old military jeeps just cool as hell.

See what Ive done to it now
Part 2
Part 3


  1. If you're storing it, use a tarp so the rotors and drums don't get 'lot-rot'. You can't turn them after they rust up, they must always be replaced. Lift the wheels off of the ground, away from the soil and inflate the tires to 40 psi. Don't leave the gas to just sit and turn to sterno in the tank--run the thing, and not just at idle. Good luck, see you WTSHTF.

  2. If you're storing it, use a tarp so the rotors and drums don't get 'lot-rot'. You can't turn them after they rust up, they must always be replaced. Lift the wheels off of the ground, away from the soil and inflate the tires to 40 psi. Don't leave the gas to just sit and turn to sterno in the tank--run the thing, and not just at idle. Good luck, see you WTSHTF.

  3. Mine won't be getting stored i love drivin this ugly little thing. It's fun as hell kinda reminds me of a utv when you take the top off. But yea definitely take it for a drive now and then. As far as jacking it up though I wouldn't worry to much about lot rot as long as you take it out a couple times a month.

  4. A friend of mine put a very poorly maintained Tracker through hell for couple years. We're talking small jumps, high speed trails, bashing against trees and rocks. All on stock everything. These are unsung heroes, but find a way to protect the rad, and perhaps reinforce the belly pan. Even with a tree puncturing the rad, and the rear passenger brake fused, it still managed to get us the 100 miles back home.

  5. Nice, yea these things are tough as nails. Calmini actually sells full skid plates for the undercarriage.

  6. If you do pop a hole in the radiator bars leak stop works great. I have used it before on a 97 mountaineer and it lasted till I sold the truck. Didn't cause the stat to stick or screw up the water pump either. Good shit to keep in your bov.

  7. I saw where someone had taken a road sign, made of sturdy metal, and with a trim, bolted it to the bottom of his vehicle as a skid plat to protect the oil pan and such. It might not be classy and certified, but it should help protect you on some rougher trips.

  8. Damn gunner that's a pretty good idea. Couple self tapping screws and away you go.


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