Your Guide to Installing Larger Tires on Your Jeep

by Ike Eguzouwa 3 min read

Your Guide to Installing Larger Tires on Your Jeep

Installing larger tires on your Jeep Wrangler can provide a variety of benefits to your vehicle, especially if it will be going on a bunch of off-road adventures. In addition to an added mean and menacing look, larger tires will provide your Wrangler with better performance on and off road, depending on which size you go with. Below are the most common options for tire upgrades on the Jeep Wrangler. All options have pros and cons and you should determine which is right for you based on your car’s main utility (daily drive vs. weekend off roader), your budget, and the extent to which you value the Wrangler’s stock driving experience.

 

32” Tires

Specs 

Stock Bridgestone Dueler

32x10.5” tire size

All Terrain Tire Thread

18” wheel size

 

This is the factory tire that comes with all Jeep Wranglers, so you’re likely very familiar with the drive experience, even if you didn’t realize it! The Bridgestone Dueler is an all-terrain tire that will give you lower tire noise when driving through the streets with your Jeep. The reduced tire wear will also allow you to avoid replacing your tires so soon. With wider aftermarket tires, you’ll notice them wearing down faster on the road, as they are normally suited for off road use.

 

Pros

  • More backspacing, tucks closer into the jeep
  • Very little tire noise
  • Very little tire wear
  • Small side wall
  • Better handling and drive experience

 

Cons

  • Slightly boring look
  • More difficult to clear obstacles

 

33” Tires

Specs

Nitto Terra Grappler G2

33x12.5”

All Terrain Tire Thread

17” Wheel

 

These aftermarket 33-inch tires are a light upgrade to the stock 32 inch wheels found on Jeep Wranglers straight off the assembly line. The wider tire comes with more sidewall, which will generally make for less firm turns and handling. For off road enthusiasts, these tires allow for decompressions, giving your Jeep a bigger footprint and for better traction and capability to climb obstacles easier.

 

Pros

  • Better off road handling
  • More traction on and off road
  • Slight increase in ride height over stock option

 

Cons

  • More sidewall, which will affect handling
  • Very minimal upgrade for the cost

 

35” Tires 

Specs

Nitto Trail Grappler MT

35x12”

Mud Terrain Tire Tread

17” wheel

 

These knobby mud terrain tires are made for off road performance and climbing tough obstacles. However, they may not be practical for daily driving due to their increased wear rate. Going up to a 35-inch tire will present two main concerns: tire height and tire weight. The larger tire will change your final drive gear ratio, which can make your Jeep feel incredibly sluggish if you don’t adjust it – and doing so isn’t cheap. The additional weight will also add to the sluggish feeling of your Jeep Wrangler.

 

Pros

  • Large off-road performance improvement over 33” wheels
  • Cool knobby tire tread look
  • Increased footprint to climb tough terrain

 

Cons

  • Increased wear rate
  • Tire height and weight may make your Jeep feel sluggish
  • Increased cost to fix handling issues on these wider tires

 

37” Tires

Specs

Nitto Trail Grappler MT

37x12.5”

Mud Terrain Tire Tread

17” wheel

 

The 37-inch wheel is the largest tire you can get without having to cut the body to clear the tires. Both practical and aesthetically pleasing, this wheel provides much less resistance when climbing obstacles off road. While you can get away with not adjusting the final drive gear ratio on the 35-inch, failing to do so on this bigger tire will make your vehicle nearly undrivable. The wear associated with these larger tires can also get bothersome, but it is all made up for in its vastly improved off road performance.

 

Pros

  • Largest tire you can get
  • Incredibly aesthetically pleasing
  • Less resistance when rolling off obstacles
  • Better off road performance

 

Cons

  • Jeep’s final gear drive ratio mustbe adjusted, which will be a large expense
  • Sluggish feel when driving down the road

 

A large majority of Jeep owners want larger tires and often opt to doing so within the first three to six months of owning their Jeep Wrangler. The biggest con to larger tires is the loss in handling you’ll find when daily driving your vehicle. For some, this may not be as much of an issue. It is important to weigh the pros and cons of all options before plunging in and investing in a new set of tires for your Jeep Wrangler.

Ike Eguzouwa
Ike Eguzouwa


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