Having a Jeep Wrangler is one of the most incredible things that can happen in your garage. The off-road features and other functionalities make this vehicle unique and special. However, this vehicle does not come cheap, which means not everyone can afford it.
For this reason, some Jeep enthusiasts result in buying second-hand Jeep Wranglers to minimize the cost. But how to buy a used Jeep Wrangler and still maximize its full features and functionalities? Let us find out below.
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What to Look For When Buying a Used Jeep Wrangler
Buying a used Jeep Wrangler needs you to pay attention to some essential details about the vehicle before buying it. Vehicle inspection is crucial should you decide to go for a used Jeep Wrangler instead of buying a new one.
There are many things to look for when buying a used Jeep Wrangler. I suggest consulting a professional mechanic to help you choose your vehicle options. But in this article, we will list some of the things you need to look for as a simple guide to help you select the right used Jeep vehicle for you.
Checking the Front Exterior of the Jeep
The first thing to look for when buying a Jeep Wrangler is the front portion of the vehicle. I feel that the quality of the front exterior part of the Jeep symbolizes the overall current condition of the vehicle.
Most of the Jeep’s bumpers are built with plastic material. Be it the stock bumper or an aftermarket replacement, make sure to see if it’s in tip-top shape. Plastic bumpers fade quickly, but there are restoration products you can use, so it should not be an issue. Just make sure it is of excellent quality.
It is also normal to see some parts of the Jeep that are made of plastics. The fender, side mirrors, and door handles are some of these parts. They are bound to fade over time, so make sure to thoroughly inspect the condition of these parts and make sure all of them are still in excellent condition.
Jeep Wrangler’s headlamps are usually made of halogen lights which are not the brightest, making most Jeep owners upgrade it to LEDs. So, if the lights are upgraded, it should be favorable to you. If not, then that is something you can work on as you negotiate the price.
Checking the hood latches is also essential to know if it is upgraded or not. The stock hood latch is usually made of rubber which will cause some hood flutter if you are driving fast and navigating on bumpy trails. If it is upgraded, the better.
You will also need to check the tires to see if it is still in excellent condition. If it is upgraded to a larger one, check on the lift kit and see if it is working well. See if there is any rubbing on the tire, which indicates using a wrong size tire that rubs on the bumper or the sway bar.
Checking Inside the Hood
Looking inside the hood is also important to check the engine’s overall condition and other components. It is normal to see a dirty and dusty engine once you pop on the hood, but there are things you need to inspect in this part of the Jeep Wrangler.
Quality of the Wiring
You will need to pay attention to how well the vehicle is wired. Does it come with a really nice wiring or a very bad one? If you see that wires are all over the place and are not fully arranged, I advise you to check them cautiously.
Installation of Superchargers
A supercharger is usually installed in the Jeep Wrangler to get some extra horsepower to the vehicle. If the used Jeep Wrangler has one, you need to have it checked and inspected by a mechanic to ensure if it is working perfectly.
Depending on the models, the Jeep Wrangler comes with different types of engines installed. Knowing what type of engine is installed is crucial because these engines come with distinct features and functionalities.
For example, the 3.8 L motor is an excellent engine well known for being bulletproof. However, after consuming 1000 miles, this engine is prone to consume more oil which should be crucial to you.
Meanwhile, the 3.6 L motor is an upgrade to the 3.8 L in terms of horsepower, but the issue with this engine is the cooler, which is prone to leakage. Radiators are also prone to leakage under 1000 miles with this engine.
All in all, the Jeep Wrangler comes with dependable engines as long as you do proper maintenance consistently. But make sure to check it thoroughly during your inspection.
Checking Underneath the Vehicle
You will also need to check underneath the vehicle to see its current condition. Doing it will allow you to see if the owner is taking care of it. Is it generally beat up, or are there any bent, scraped, or scratched components? Have they painted it and done some maintenance stuff?
All of these questions must be answered when checking the condition underneath. You can also check on the transfer case and the differential and ask the seller when was the last time the fluid was changed because these parts need routine maintenance.
Inspecting the Other Exterior Part of the Jeep
Checking the Quality of the Paint
It is normal to see some paint stripes on the exterior part of the vehicle, especially if the owner likes to go on off-road activities. Make sure to check the quality of the paint vehicle by checking if there is some buffing on the surface because it can be used for your price negotiation.
Check on the Vehicle’s Top
Inspect the current condition of the top and look for any signs of deterioration or abuse. It does not matter if it is a hard top or soft top, just make sure they are all in good condition. Check for possible leakage around the corners or any evidence of water damage.
Checking the back of the Jeep
There is not much to check on the back of the Jeep, but there is one thing you need to check thoroughly: the tire carriers. The owner must upgrade the carrier to a large one, including the hinge, if they upgrade the tire and wheels of the vehicle.
Checking the Interior of the Jeep Wrangler
When checking the vehicle’s interior, look at the edges of the driver and passenger seat and see if they are smashed down. The seats are very important in providing comfort during the ride.
You also need to check on the floor and its present condition. I like the rubber format more because it is easy to clean up. Check on the dashboard to see its current condition. Ask the owner if all the features are working, or you can test it yourself if all are fully functional.
Lastly, you need to make sure that you test drive the vehicle. You need to see how the vehicle performs on the road in terms of its acceleration, brake quality, and steering quality. The steering must be nice and firm when you are driving on the road.
Learning how to buy a used Jeep Wrangler is an essential skill to have if you are a Jeep enthusiast. You may find yourself or your friend buying the used Jeep Wrangler in the future and knowing what to inspect and make sure that everything is working in the vehicle.