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Old 07-27-2014, 09:29 AM   #1
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Lifted Jeep

Hello, I just purchased a 98 lifted Wrangler that I plan on towing all 4 down. Im concerned that the tires are to big. The jeep is lifted 4 inches and the tires are 33" so shes a bit higher than most. My plan is to replace the worn existing tires, but I'm wondering if she will tow better with smaller tires. Any thoughts?
Thanks, Marcdohc
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Old 07-27-2014, 11:51 AM   #2
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I towed my lifted 04 Wrangler for many years with no problems. Also with 4" lift and it had 33" tires back then.
I used Roadmaster XL removable brackets which mounted to the frame below the bumper. The brackets kept the tow bar level without having to have a super tall hitch riser on my motorhome.
We mostly travel within 3 hours from home up to the mountains here in WA.
If you have aggressive mud terrain tires and are planning to tow many hours or cross country, a set of all terrain tires might be a better option. There are also a few tire manufacturers that make a 33x10.5 wide tire that would tow better, due to less width, and still fit the lift on your Jeep.
Did the previous owner of your Jeep re-gear the differentials for the larger tires? Something to check if planning on going with smaller tires.
TJ Wranglers are great roads and the owners manual even tells you how to do it correctly for this model: Transfer case in neutral, transmission in gear or in Park, if it's an automatic. Ignition on first click which unlocks the steering wheel, but sends no power to the Jeep. Towed miles do not register on the odometer either.

Just some things to consider from my experience. Supplemental braking is another topic.
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Old 07-27-2014, 06:21 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marcdohc View Post
Hello, I just purchased a 98 lifted Wrangler that I plan on towing all 4 down. Im concerned that the tires are to big. The jeep is lifted 4 inches and the tires are 33" so shes a bit higher than most. My plan is to replace the worn existing tires, but I'm wondering if she will tow better with smaller tires. Any thoughts?
Thanks, Marcdohc
marcdohc,
Well Sir, you'll have no problems towing your new Jeep, with ANY tires on it. We Jeeped for over 25 years and towed seven different Jeep Wranglers. (3) CJs, (2) YJs, and (2) TJs were in the line up. All were built and lifted with various size lifts and tire sets. The last one we had was an '04 Rubicon with 7" of lift and, 35" all Terrains on it. Despite many who worry about tires and wear, not one of those Jeeps EVER showed any accelerated tire wear after any long length towing stretches.

We towed them from the San Diego area to Moab Utah, for the Easter Jeep Safari, for 14 years in a row. We had as many as ten rigs, all towing various Jeeps, ALL FLAT TOWING THEM, and not one tire issue, EVER! None of us ever put any of them on trailers either. If one chooses a trailer, for whatever reason(s), that's up to them. Everyone has to do what's right for them.

But, carrying an extra set of tires and wheels, and, then taking the time to change them because one worries about towed tire wear, to us, was not in the picture. It's a preference thing. It was always nice to be able to un hook the Jeep from the coach, put it in 4-WD and hit a trail, within minutes. We did that a lot while traveling. Your choice.
Scott

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Old 07-27-2014, 09:17 PM   #4
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No problem at all, just get a drop hitch and turn it around so your tow bar is flat. We've towed our TJ thousands of miles with no issue - 33's and 4" lift.

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Old 07-27-2014, 09:20 PM   #5
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Towed my 12 Rubicon about 20,000 mi with zero problems. Lifted 3 inches and has 35" tires. Requires using a receiver hitch drop down just reversed to make towbar level.
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Old 07-27-2014, 10:55 PM   #6
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Multiple lifted jeeps owned past and present, with oversized tires. No problems at all. Great toads.
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Old 07-27-2014, 11:04 PM   #7
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As others have advised......no problem flat towing with your set up and tire size (or even larger). The only thing you need to make certain of is that the front steering has positive caster angle. If you don't have positive caster the steering wheel will not self-center after a turn. Sometimes when a vehicle is lifted an inexperienced installer will try to make the pinion angle less and sacrifice positive caster.
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Old 07-27-2014, 11:28 PM   #8
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Jeep

I only wish mine would have towed!! I would turn right jeep went left! Stock dropped 2k on 2 inch lift 31 tires I turn left jeep went right! Dropped 2 k more 4 inch lift 33 inch tires I turn left jeep went right 4 different alignments at 3 different shops no luck sterling tow bar dead level to motorhome roadmaster brackets no luck !!! Dropped 1k on a new bumper with tow bar mounts on it no luck I turn right jeep goes left loved that jeep
Traded it in on a new Tahoe and all is right in my world could only find 3 other people that had my issue you will be fine!
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Old 07-28-2014, 10:29 AM   #9
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I only wish mine would have towed!! I would turn right jeep went left! Stock dropped 2k on 2 inch lift 31 tires I turn left jeep went right! Dropped 2 k more 4 inch lift 33 inch tires I turn left jeep went right 4 different alignments at 3 different shops no luck sterling tow bar dead level to motorhome roadmaster brackets no luck !!! Dropped 1k on a new bumper with tow bar mounts on it no luck I turn right jeep goes left loved that jeep
Traded it in on a new Tahoe and all is right in my world could only find 3 other people that had my issue you will be fine!
Very strange. Did you have your steering locked? Sounds like you did.
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Old 07-28-2014, 02:29 PM   #10
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Very strange. Did you have your steering locked? Sounds like you did.
X2. I never had that problem. I was still paranoid about that happening and always tied a white plastic grocery bag at top dead center of the Jeep's steering wheel. I could see it moving during turns through the rear view mirror and rear window or camera. Gave me some peace of mind while towing.
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Old 07-28-2014, 07:15 PM   #11
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OK!! Great news! Thanks for your input, Marcdohc
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:42 PM   #12
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I put 12,000 miles on my CJ last year towing four down with a 3" lift and 33" Goodyear MTR's. No problem. I used a hundred dollar 20 year old (that is how long we have been towing it) Fulton 5000 pound A frame towbar with a BodyArmor front bumper with tow shackle mounts and a brake buddy. I have less in my bumper and towbar than most have in their towbar alone. I was able to flip my 2" drop hitch (from that shown in pic) to level the bar. Tires still look like new.
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:58 PM   #13
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TO answer your Question no steering wheel was left unlocked BUT when i contacted roadmaster they told me to put a bungee cord on it or lock the wheel and DRAG it through the corners ( i wasn't impressed ) there are so many being pulled flat four i think i am the one i a million . I thought about trying another one but now i like the tahoe too much to trade it off.
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Old 07-30-2014, 06:29 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sledwest View Post
I only wish mine would have towed!! I would turn right jeep went left! Stock dropped 2k on 2 inch lift 31 tires I turn left jeep went right! Dropped 2 k more 4 inch lift 33 inch tires I turn left jeep went right 4 different alignments at 3 different shops no luck sterling tow bar dead level to motorhome roadmaster brackets no luck !!! Dropped 1k on a new bumper with tow bar mounts on it no luck I turn right jeep goes left loved that jeep
Traded it in on a new Tahoe and all is right in my world could only find 3 other people that had my issue you will be fine!
The steering getting crossed up can happen due to caster change from lifting, would occasionally occur to a lifted YJ I had. A bungee cord from the bottom of the steering wheel to the seat bottom usually keeps it from occurring, did for my YJ. I have always used a bungee just to be sure.
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