Here’s everything you need to know before buying a used Jeep Wrangler

Few names can hold up against the rumor about Jeep Wrangler as a robust off-road vehicle. Originally, the Wangler was intended to assist the US military during World War II. But as it became a huge success, it soon found its feet as an adventure-oriented civilian car.

Buying a jeep can be an exciting experience, but it can also be tricky. If you are looking for a used Wanger, there are year models that you should skip. Let’s take a look at the Jeep Wangler’s worst year, its longevity and everything else you need to know before buying one in the used car market.

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2008, 2012 and 2014 are among Jeep Wrangler’s worst model years due to expensive reviews

According to Car complaints website, the 2008 model has the most overall complaints from the owner. Of the 400 registered complaints, more than 150 relate to electricity problems. Owners have complained that the total integrated power module (TIPM) does not work, which leads to the windows, dryers, locks and horn being switched on randomly. On average, it costs over $ 900 to replace the module with a new one.

Another common problem with the 2008 Jeep Wangler is “death wobble”. Many owners have complained that the suspension wobbles uncontrollably at highway speeds. “The first fatal turn occurred at 40k, changed tires and got a super heavy stabilizer. About every 10,000 returns the wobble, and nothing solves the problem completely. I have replaced all the recommended parts at least once or twice. It can not be fixed,” one quoted owner in October 2016.

The TIPM error is also a widespread problem with the 2012 Wrangler, with 50 ownership complaints registered to Car Complaints. However, the average mileage for this model year is 52,200 miles, and the repair cost is over $ 1,300.

Several owners have complained about expensive engine overhaul in their 2012 Jeep Wrangler. According to the information, the owners have had to change engine heads well below 100,000 km. The symptoms of defective heads are overheating of the engine, loss of power and excessive oil combustion. Failure to take care of a defective motor head can quickly damage the entire driveline.

The most common problem with the 2014 Jeep Wrangler is oil leaking from the house. The question mainly concerns models equipped with the 3.6L V6 engine. The oil housing cracks prematurely and leaks oil all over the engine. The average cost of parts and labor to fix the problem is $ 710.

Finally, the 2014 Wangler owner has cited dealing with electrical problems, especially when it comes to starting the engine. “Started noticing problems when starting the jeep. It would hesitate, then turn around. Then, when I drove 30 minutes from home, it did not go over. After a few tries, it started. That’s when I realized I could not trust to drive it far ”, wrote an owner in November 2021.

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Take care of your Wrangler, and it will provide 200,000 miles of reliable service

Based on various reputable car sources, the Jeep Wrangler boasts 200,000 miles on the odometer. That means over 15 years of service that has driven 13 000 km in one year.

Although it differs from one model year to another, owners can usually avoid expensive transmissions and engine overhauls by following the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance routines.

Some of the critical services include:

  • Every 20,000 miles: replace the air conditioning filter, inspect the transmission fluid, inspect the brake pads and check the CV and universal joints.
  • Every 40,000 miles: change front and rear axle fluid, especially if you use your Wrangler for towing or off-road driving.
  • Every 60,000 miles: change gearbox oil and gearbox oil.
  • Every 100,000 miles: check the belts and replace the PCV valves.


According to RepairPal website, a Jeep Wrangler would cost $ 694 to maintain in a year, about $ 150 more than the average for compact SUVs. But most of it is because jeeps are exposed to abuse and extreme conditions much more than Toyota RAV4 or Subaru Foresters.

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Avoid problematic year models to ensure that you reduce the risk of buying a lemon

A jeep can be the beginning of many adventures. If you are in the market for a used Wrangler, it would be a safer card to avoid 2008, 2012 and 2014 year models due to their widespread problems at relatively low mileage.

Other than that, ask a trusted mechanic to inspect the car before you complete your purchase. Since jeeps are commonly used for off-road driving, some important parts are to control the rear and front axles, the transmission system and the engine.

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