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Here Are The Jeep Wrangler Years To Avoid

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Red Jeep Wrangler on a desert road

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The Jeep Wrangler is an icon, loved by generations of drivers. One of the main reasons everyone loves it is because of its tough look that has a perfect look for roads of tar and dirt. The Jeep Wrangler has been around for a long time and, unfortunately, not every year was built to perfection. 

Below, we’ll share some Jeep Wrangler years to avoid, keeping you out of the hot seat when it comes to purchasing an older model. 

Wrangler Years to Avoid

When taking a look at the worst-performing models of the Jeep Wrangler, 2012 took the win. Among the issues that it had, there have been a total of 9 recalls, making it the worst for Jeep. Not too far from that are the 2007 and 2008 Jeep Wranglers, as they have 10 and 9 recalls, respectfully. Though these might have the most recalls, there are different issues throughout the years that drivers and buyers should be aware of, a few of which we’ll address below. 


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1997 to 2002

The late 90s were a great time for the Jeep. They were making a splash in American pop culture and raved about by teens all across the globe. Still, it was at this time up until 2002 that the Jeep started to have some issues. First of all, the major issue between these years was the seals. They would break and leak because of a bolt that wasn’t secure. 

Unfortunately, that wasn’t the only issue. In addition, models from these years also had issues with the fuel pump, resulting in pressure buildup that could have potentially damaged the engine. Lastly, there were a lot of reports with the fuel tank too, which resulted in cracks that were costly to repair. 

2002 to 2006

A lot of the issues from before were taken care of, and the Jeep Wrangler was back to being the well-oiled machine that it was built to be, or so we thought. 2002 to 2006 didn’t have the same issues but, there were still issues, some of which included: 

  • Leaks in the axles 
  • Wiring harness connections resulting in inaccurate gauge readings 
  • Lots of vibration and shuddering while driving 

2007 to 2018

From 2007 to 2018, the Jeep was much better built. Still, they weren’t perfect, with most reported issues involving the Telematics Integration Module (TIPM). This system deals with the audio control and the climate system, two areas that could lead to major issues if not fixed promptly. 

While these are still issues, they are not the same as those from earlier years and are much less grave. One of the top reasons why some of these issues popped up more was because of poorly maintained vehicles or those that were driven far beyond the car’s means. 


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The Golden Years of the Jeep Wrangler 

Just like there are Wrangler years to avoid, there are also blissful years where the model outperformed its expectations. Some of the best Jeeps out there are from earlier years than you might think, and we’ll tell you why. 

Generation YJ and TJ 

The Jeeps from the 80s to the 90s are said to be the sturdiest and long-lasting out there. In particular, the models built from 1987 to 1995. One of the reasons why the models from these years performed so well is because of the new and improved quality, which included things like roll bars, enhanced safety features, and improved suspension. 

Even at higher mileage, these Jeeps were going strong and still are. Those that are out there on the road today are going strong, though they have likely had a few parts replaced. Still, with the sturdy frame and overall well-built structure, with proper maintenance, these Jeeps can last a lifetime. 

The 2019 Jeep Wrangler

Though all of the tough years, Jeep got things back together when they released the 2019 model, as it had sturdier axles and lockable differentials. On top of that, there was a massive improvement in the safety features, with a sturdier roll cage and an improved airbag system that got the brand back on the map. 

Some Issues to Know About

The Jeep Wrangler isn’t short of issues. As a popular brand, there are bound to be things that pop up here and there, as no brand can produce 100% perfection. A few of the top reported issues that those looking to buy should keep their eyes open for include: 

The Death Wobble

The Death Wobble is something that a few Jeep drivers have experienced, especially when driving at speeds over 65 MPH. If drivers hit a pothole or some other kind of bump in the road, the steering column shifts out of place, and the steering wheel is impossible to move. 

The entire vehicle starts to shake violently (hence the name) and could be highly dangerous. This results in costly repairs or, even worse, serious injury. 


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Wireless Controls

Another issue is with the electrical fobs. This system tends to wear out pretty fast or just doesn’t work, leading to necessary repairs or replacement. In some cases where the automatic start is used, the Jeep will not start, which can cause a lot of frustration until it’s finally fixed and back up and running. 

Jeep Wrangler Years to Avoid: The Takeaway 

The Jeep Wrangler is a model that is highly sought-after. There are several drivers out there that know and love the model, and it’s definitely not going anywhere. Still, there are things that buyers should keep a lookout for, making sure that they don’t run into any issues with some of the Jeep years out there. 

Apart from checking the year, it’s a good idea to buy with someone you trust, which is what we’re here for. Here at CoPilot, we know a thing or two about the best models and are here to help. We can guide you to the best picks in your area, and we won’t ever deal with a dealership.

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