The Jeep Wrangler is among the most popular SUVs for serious adventure seekers. Many people love its superior off-road capabilities. If you want to avoid the expense of a brand-new Jeep Wrangler, considered buying a used one. However, you must make sure it’s in great condition. Here are a few of the most important things to check when shopping for a pre-owned Jeep Wrangler.
Look Underneath the Vehicle
Are You Buying A Used Jeep Wrangler? Even if the SUV’s exterior finish is in great shape, this doesn’t mean you should buy it. Before exchanging any money, inspect underneath the Jeep Wrangler. By closing examining its undercarriage, you can get a good idea of how much abuse it’s taken over the years. If the frame looks bent, quickly run for the hills.
Jeep Wranglers that are used for off-roading can endure a lot of punishment. Take a close look at the SUV’s protective skid plates. Extremely battered skid plates will ultimately need to be replaced.
Watch Out for Unprofessional Modifications
When done correctly, some Jeep Wrangler modifications can greatly enhance the SUV’s styling and performance. On the other hand, certain customizations can ruin its long-term dependability.
Many 4X4 enthusiasts like to install suspension lift kits. Unfortunately, some of these kits can severely compromise the SUV’s driving dynamics. Furthermore, they can make it more difficult to maintain proper wheel alignment. This means you’ll have to replace your tires much sooner than expected.
Inspect the Powertrain
Before you decide to buy a used Jeep Wrangler, it’s a wise decision to first have its powertrain looked over by a professional mechanic. They can perform a pre-purchase inspection, which will help prevent you from making a poor investment. It’s definitely important to examine the health of the engine and transmission.
Typically, dark-colored transmission fluid is a big warning sign. It points to a transmission that has been overheated, which is unlikely to last long. Meanwhile, wetness underneath the engine bay could stem from an oil leak. Both of these issues can be disastrous.
Beware of Rust
Take your time when examining the Jeep Wrangler for rust. It’s a sign of even bigger problems to come. Be especially careful when buying a used model in snow-prone regions. If the owner allowed road salt to collect on the various components, don’t be surprised to discover rust buildup. Failing to rinse away mud can also contribute to decay.
Don’t be fooled by deceptive owners who try to camouflage rust spots by painting over them. The door hinges, body, exhaust system, and cabin floor are all prone to rusting. However, a corroded frame is especially dangerous. In severe cases, you can literally poke a hole through the frame. Because this problem impacts the vehicle’s structural integrity, it’s a definite safety concern.
Check the Vehicle History Report
When preparing to purchase a pre-owned Jeep Wrangler, a vehicle history report can prove to be extremely valuable. Carfax is especially popular. It should reveal exactly how many people have owned the vehicle. Ideally, you should try to find a model that has no more than two previous owners.
A vehicle history report will also help you to identify any previous accidents. While a simple bumper replacement may not be a big deal, a severe collision is definitely something to worry about. Flood damage is just as bad.
Far too many people neglect the importance of a test drive. When you’re test-driving a pre-owned Jeep Wrangler, be sure to take it for at least a 15-minute drive on the open highway. While you should never attempt to abuse someone else’s property, don’t be afraid to punch the throttle. This will help reveal any performance issues.
Also, pay attention to the responsiveness of the brakes. While cruising along in an empty parking lot, see how well the Jeep Wrangler performs during hard braking. We hope this comprehensive list has helped you when buying a used Jeep Wrangler.