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Jeeps are by far one of the most reliable vehicles that ply both on and off-road. However, if you use your jeep to commute to work daily, it’s natural for you to worry about its lifespan. People who cover long distances or go off-roading on weekends often start worrying as the jeep crosses a certain age.
So, how long do jeeps last? After in-depth research, I can safely say that unlike other cars that start having issues after 5 years, jeeps can easily surpass this milestone and last 10-15 years. Some jeep models like the Cherokee can last up to 20 years with good maintenance and care.
This is a significant achievement and reflects the reliability of jeeps, given the fact that they do a lot of off-road trips as well. They are undeniably the master of rugged terrains, with the ability to take a lot of beating and still keep going strong for several years.
The most popular and highly enduring of the jeep models are Jeep Wrangler and Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, as they are built to handle the most dreadful terrains. Jeep Cherokee comes close and sometimes even surpasses the longevity of Wranglers with good care. Let’s take a look at some of the top jeep models and their average life span.
Average Miles For Jeeps
While standard cars start experiencing difficulties in performance after 100,000 miles, most jeep models are capable of lasting for more than 100,000 miles. A few models such as a well-maintained Jeep Wrangler may last a maximum of 400,000 miles before it encounters any issues.
As the jeeps come with a 4×4 capability, they can ride on the rugged and uneven terrain, and still function perfectly. Similar to the pickup trucks, the jeeps are also built to glide off-road with ease and hold-up much better than any other vehicle.
A car usually starts asking for mechanical or electrical repairs after they go above the 100,000-mile mark. However, a jeep smoothly crosses a 150,000-mark without requiring any huge repair work or leaving you frustrated at the side of a road.
|Jeep Models||Average Lifespan (years)||Average Miles|
|Wrangler Unlimited||15-20||Up to 400k|
Top Jeep Brands Lifespan
Let’s take a brief overview of the top Jeep brands (some discontinued but parts are still available) with details of how long they last and the average miles.
#1. Jeep Wrangler
Named as the MotorTrend SUV of the Year 2019, the Jeep Wrangler is built for adventure seekers who are always enthusiastic to take the road less traveled. The features include a removable door and roof to give you an ultimate outdoor experience. It comes in five different models Sport, Sport S, Rubicon, Sahara, and Moab.
With a standard 285-hpm, 3.6L V6 engine, the models are available in turbo 2.0L 4-cylinder and V6 engines. They include a standard 4-wheel drive. With good care, a Wrangler can last for 15-20 years. The average miles they can cover in a life span is 100k-280k.
#2. Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
This is the four-door version of the iconic Jeep Wrangler SUV. With the classic rugged and distinctive appearance, the Unlimited version comes with a longer wheelbase for better rear-seat access. Just like two-door Wrangler, the Unlimited comes with a removable roof, several trim levels, and several accessories.
The Unlimited was designed to stay true to the roots but improve the overall life span with new power trains for better on-road performance. With good maintenance, they can last for up to 20 years with average miles up to 400 k.
#3. Jeep Cherokee
As the largest of Jeep’s fleet of crossovers, the Cherokee stands out with its off-road 4×4 capabilities. They offer a comfortable ride in both front-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive configurations. The Cherokee has a major overhaul with cosmetic and mechanical updates for the 2019 year model.
With a standard four-cylinder engine and turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder, the Cherokee offers 295 lb-ft of torque and 270 horsepower. They have an average lifespan of 15 to 20 years, and they can run an average of up to 400,000 miles with good maintenance and care.
#4. Jeep Renegade
This subcompact SUV is great for people looking for towing power. Powered by a standard 2.4L 4-cylinder engine, the vehicle is also available in a turbo 1.3L 4-cylinder engine upgrade. The Trailhawk model comes with off-road credibility with all-terrain tires, skid plates, and a 2-speed transfer case.
The latest versions come with a new telematics unit and a 1-year free subscription service that enables owners to remotely lock, unlock, or start the jeep using the Uconnect app. The average lifespan for Jeep Renegade is up to 5 years and the average miles run is up to 45,000.
#5. Jeep Patriot
If you are looking for an affordable off-roader then check out the Patriot that offers a 172-hp 2.4-liter or 158-hp 2.0-liter, both of which are four-cylinders. For transmissions, riders may select a six-speed automatic, a five-speed manual, and a CVT. Patriot is offered in Sport, North Edition and Limited models.
Some of the advanced features include power six-way driver seat, leather-faced seats, power sunroof, power windows, and locks, leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, and a unique exterior appearance. The average lifespan is 15 to 20 years, and it can give you up to average 200,000 miles.
#6. Jeep Liberty
Jeep Liberty offers you serious off-road abilities in a small and compact SUV, along with refined on-road manners and a spacious interior. Introduced in 2002 and last upgraded in 2008 with a Sky Slider canvas roof and MyGIG navigation radio. The Liberty was discontinued in 2012.
If you own a Liberty, you can still find its parts and accessories online. With good maintenance, the vehicle can last for maximum 15-20 years. The average miles for Jeep Liberty are up to 300,000 miles.
#7. Jeep Commander
The first Jeep Commander was launched in 2006 and the last one was rolled out in 2010. This 7-passenger seater sleek SUV sports a well-designed interior with plenty of legroom, cargo space, and storage. The Commander is a well-performing, safe, and reliable off-road vehicle.
Also known as the truck of all trades, it caters to both daily commuters and outdoor enthusiasts. The average lifespan of Jeep Commander is 15-20 years, while the average miles run is close to 200,000 miles.
#8. Jeep Compass
The Jeep Compass is a comfortable, capable off-road vehicle that comes with an outstanding infotainment system. However, its sluggish engine, poor fuel economy, and small cargo area drag it toward the bottom of our compact SUV rankings.
Jeep Compass allows you to stay connected in numerous ways that you never thought was possible with a touchscreen that controls a lot of features. The average lifespan of Jeep Compass is 10-15 years with good maintenance and the average miles is up to 200,000.
#9. Jeep Gladiator
Bestowed with the title of North American Truck of the Year, this midsize pickup truck is manufactured by the Jeep division of FCA US. Designed similar to the Wrangler JL, the Gladiator serves the Jeep’s first-ever pickup truck after the Comanche was discontinued in 1992.
Engineered in a way to leave the pavement behind, the Gladiator boasts a sturdy suspension, large off-road tires, and standard four-wheel drive. The average lifespan of Jeep Gladiator is up to 10 years and more with good maintenance.
Common Issues In Jeep Models
Jeep’s robust façade and off-road ability lets you drive in challenging terrains, tough trails and then switch over to normal roads with equal ease. Many people use jeeps both for outdoor weekends and as daily commute cars, however, they are not immune to electrical and mechanical breakdowns. Some of the common issues are as follows:
Due to their 4x4s ability, the jeeps are more susceptible to electrical problems. If the vehicle gets submerged in water, this could lead to malfunctioning of the electrical wires, resulting in loss of gauges, loss of lights, and hard starting. Over the years, several jeep models have been recalled due to electrical issues.
Electrical problems may arise anytime during a jeep’s lifespan. Some common issues include power windows not working, horn not functioning, brakes locking up, doors locking/ unlocking without your command. If you notice any of these problems, take your jeep for a check-up. Most affected models are 2011 Grand Cherokee, Jeep Liberty, and the Jeep Wrangler.
Window Regulator Problem
Windows not functioning properly is one of the most common problems faced by jeep models and Jeep Liberty is known to have the highest number of issues. Both 2006 and 2007 Jeep Liberty’s window regulator is known to malfunction leaving the window glass open or closed permanently.
Some models of Jeep Wrangler are also known to face this problem and at times the windows stay partially open or closed at the point where the failure occurred. This can turn out to be quite an inconvenience depending on the weather. So far, no recalls have been done for this issue, and fixing the problem can be expensive for owners.
You will be surprised to know that the popular Jeep Wranglers have often been recalled to power train and automatic transmission problems. The gears often get stuck or start slipping, requiring immediate attention to prevent any mishaps or accidents.
Jeep recalls do not cost anything to the owner. A common example was found in 2014 Cherokee, which was reported to shift gears roughly. The transmission issues can get hazardous when the vehicle is on the highway at a high speed.
Another common problem that impacts the lifespan of jeeps is interior issues resulting in the dashboard material getting bubbles or going wrinkly. The 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee is known to face this problem when exposed to too much heat for an extended period of time.
The interiors of a Grand Cherokee looks posh and shiny when new, but over time, deterioration effect sets in and the material starts to look damaged and cheap.
Often referred to as the ‘death wobble’, this issue crops up as an after-effect when the Jeep hits off a bump while running at a high speed. Post the impact, the steering wheel wobbles in a jarring way and feels like something has become loose in the front steering.
This problem commonly occurs in a few models of the Jeep Wrangler model but no official recalls have been done by the company. Despite the name ‘death wobble’ there are no reports of deaths due to this problem.
Rear Main Seal Leakage
Oil leaks from the rear main engine seal is a common problem that occurs mostly in Jeep Wrangler models. If not checked and corrected in time, this can turn to be an expensive repair later on. Thus, we suggest jeep owners to always keep a check on oil gauge and puddles.
Leak In Radiators
Every jeep model, no matter how good may have a leaky radiator sooner or later in its lifespan. It is one of the inevitable problems every jeep owner has to face. So, make sure you keep a check on the temperature gauge to identify signs of a leaking radiator.
The leakage may occur on the top or bottom of the radiator. For a temporary fix, you may use water to cool off until a suitable coolant is found. Take the jeep to a professional mechanic for repair as soon as possible.
Aluminum Valve Stem Corrosion
Some jeep models come with an aluminum and metal cap found in the tire pressure monitoring systems or TPMS. They tend to corrode easily and may develop cracks through which air from tire gets released. Another common issue is the TPMS warning light going on due to a faulty sensor or stem.
This issue related to stem corrosion is common in Jeep Liberty and Jeep Grand Cherokee models. In the later models, the stems are upgraded to prevent this issue.
Failing AC Units
Well, this is not directly related to the performance and functioning of the vehicle. It will not bring the car to an immediate halt but it may prove to be uncomfortable depending on the weather conditions in your area. If it gets super cold or hot, a poor AC unit can make it difficult to drive.
The problem typically arises due to the excessive use of air conditioners. After some time, the airflow weakens and malfunctions resulting in various issues.
What Makes Some Jeeps Last Longer Than Others
Just like anything thing else in life, jeeps also live longer if you take good care of them. If you regularly take your vehicle for maintenance, check and repair after every off-road trip, and attend to any of the above issues immediately, you will likely get more value in return.
No wonder jeeps have a rugged beast image and they are mostly built for longevity and off-road experience. So, even if you use them on rough terrains constantly, they are more likely to outlive their competitors.
Despite their ability to perform well off-road, even a workhorse like Jeep Wrangler may develop issues if the owner does not take good care of it. Another reason behind some jeeps having low longevity is the confusion of owners and the type of driver who uses it.
If you bought a jeep thinking you will go off-road someday but instead, use it for daily commuting and take it for tough rides on weekends, this is certainly not a clever strategy. While you don’t have to drive like a granny, excessive abuse of the vehicle may result in problems setting in quickly.
5 Tips To Help Your Jeep Last Longer
Jeeps don’t come cheap and for outdoor enthusiasts, they are a symbol of pride and status. You would not want your investment to shrink its lifespan. With proper care and maintenance, you can optimize your jeep and get more years out of it. Here are a few tips.
#1. Stick to a strict scheduled maintenance
Make sure you follow strict schedule maintenance to enable the jeep to last longer. If any mechanical or electrical issues occur, we suggest that you deal with them in an early stage and this is possible only if the vehicle goes for regular maintenance. If you have good maintenance records, this also improves the resale value.
#2. Replace tires frequently if needed
Most jeeps are capable of handling both pavement driving and rough terrain with equal ease. However, the tires may often get worn out quickly due to different driving conditions. So, keep an eye for tire replacements to make your jeep last longer.
#3. Change oil per 5,000 miles or 6 months
To keep your jeep in great working condition, we suggest that you change the oil every six months or after the vehicle runs 5,000 miles. This will of course depend on how frequently you use the vehicle and on what type of terrain. If you constantly take on challenging terrains, it will need more oil checks as the probably for leaks will be higher.
#4. Wash and wax to shine
After every dirty ride and even if you primarily use the jeep for the daily commute, make sure you wash and wax the vehicle to keep it rust-free and spotless. Regular washing and maintenance prevents a rusty paint job, protects the color, and keep the jeep good for longer.
#5. Always park in a garage
Avoid exposure to harsh sun, bitter cold, and other adverse weather conditions by always parking your jeep in a shaded garage. Overexposure to the sun is known to fade the pain and deteriorate the interior. The Grand Cherokee is known for damaged dashboard material due to extreme temperatures.
Parking in a garage can reduce the effects of UV radiation on the vehicle and also save it from snow and hail storms. No wonder jeeps are robust and bulletproof to some extent but let[‘s not forget that everything eventually comes to an end.
Why are jeeps more expensive
Jeeps have a status-quo associated with them and manufacturers know that people pay for them. It’s hard to find any vehicle that lets you remove the top, windshield, and doors for daily drive. Furthermore, a jeep has much more mechanical equipment than any other vehicle, and they last much longer to pay your back for the investment.
Are jeeps very higher on maintenance
No, given the kind of off-road ability, they are certainly not on higher maintenance. Most of the things can be fixed by a weekend mechanic or with some basic mechanical knowledge.
See Also: Why are Jeep Rubicons so Expensive