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Jeeps are by far one of the most reliable vehicles for both on- and off-road use. However, if you use your Jeep to commute to work daily, it’s only 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 approaches a certain age.
So, how long do Jeeps usually last? After some in-depth research, it’s safe to say that—unlike other cars that start having issues after 5 years—Jeeps can easily surpass this milestone and last up to 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, especially 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 beatings and still keep going strong for several years.
The most popular and highly enduring of the Jeep models are the Jeep Wrangler and the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, both of which are built to handle the most dreadful of terrains. The Jeep Cherokee comes close and sometimes even surpasses the longevity of Wranglers when they receive years of good care.
Let’s take a look at some of the top Jeep models and their average life spans.
Average Miles For Jeeps
While standard cars start experiencing difficulties in performance after 100,000 miles, most Jeep models are capable of lasting far longer than that. A few models, such as a well-maintained Jeep Wrangler, may even last up to a maximum of 400,000 miles before they encounter any issues.
As Jeeps come with 4×4 capabilities, they can easily go on rugged and uneven terrain and still function perfectly. Similar to pickup trucks, Jeeps are built to travel off-road with ease and hold up much better than any other vehicles.
A car usually starts needing mechanical or electrical repairs after they pass above the 100,000-mile mark. However, Jeeps often smoothly cross the 150,000-mile mark without requiring any huge repair work or leaving you frustrated on the side of the road.
|Jeep Models||Average Lifespan (years)||Average Miles|
|Wrangler Unlimited||15-20||Up to 400k|
Top Jeep Brands Lifespan
Let’s cover a brief overview of the top Jeep brands along with the details regarding how long they last and the average mileage. (Note: Some models are discontinued, but parts are still available for these.)
#1. Jeep Wrangler
Named as the MotorTrend SUV of the Year in 2019, the Jeep Wrangler is built for adventure seekers who are always enthusiastic to take the road less traveled. The features of this model include a removable door and roof to give you the ultimate outdoor experience. The Wrangler has five different models: Sport, Sport S, Rubicon, Sahara, and Moab.
With a standard 285-HP motor, 3.6L V6 engine, the Wrangler is available in both turbo 2.0L 4-cylinder as well as V6 engines. They also include a standard 4-wheel drive. With good care, a Wrangler can last for 15-20 years, with the average miles they are capable of covering in a life span being 100,000 to 280,000 in total.
#2. Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
This is the four-door version of the iconic Jeep Wrangler SUV. Along with the classic rugged and distinctive appearance, the Unlimited version also comes with a longer wheelbase for better rear-seat access. Just like the two-door Wranglers, the Unlimited comes with a removable roof, several trim levels, and a variety of accessories.
The Unlimited was designed to stay true to the original’s roots but improve the overall life span with new power trains for better on-road performance. With good maintenance, these models can last for up to 20 years with an average total mileage of up to 400,000.
#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 model.
With a standard 4-cylinder engine and turbocharged 2.0L 4-cylinder engine option for those who like a little more kick, 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 up to an average of 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, this vehicle also comes available in a turbo 1.3L 4-cylinder engine upgrade. The Trailhawk model comes with off-road credibility with its 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 a Jeep Renegade is typically up to 5 years, and its average lifetime mileage is up to 45,000 miles.
#5. Jeep Patriot
If you are looking for an affordable off-roader, check out the Patriot. It offers both 172-HP and 2.4-liter or 158-HP and 2.0-liter option, both of which include a 4-cylinder engine. For transmissions, riders have the option to select a six-speed automatic, a five-speed manual, or a CVT. The Patriot is available in Sport, North Edition, and Limited models.
Some of the advanced features include a powered adjustable driver seat, leather seats, a power sunroof, power windows, and locks. It also includes a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls and a unique exterior appearance. The average lifespan is 15 to 20 years, and it can travel up to an average of 200,000 miles.
#6. Jeep Liberty
The Jeep Liberty offers some serious off-road abilities for a small and compact SUV, along with refined on-road manners and a spacious interior. Introduced in 2002, it was last upgraded in 2008 with a Sky Slider canvas roof and MyGIG navigation radio. The Liberty was, however, 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 a maximum of 15-20 years. The average lifetime mileage for a Jeep Liberty is up to about 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, sleek SUV sports a well-designed interior with plenty of leg room, cargo space, and storage space. 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 as well as outdoor enthusiasts. The average lifespan of a Jeep Commander is around 15-20 years, and its average lifetime mileage is close to 200,000 miles.
#8. Jeep Compass
The Jeep Compass is a comfortable and capable off-road vehicle that comes with an outstanding “info-tainment” system. However, its sluggish engine, poor fuel economy, and small cargo area drag it toward the bottom of our compact SUV rankings.
The Jeep Compass allows you to stay connected in numerous ways you never thought possible with a touchscreen that controls a lot of features. The average lifespan of a Jeep Compass is 10-15 years with good maintenance, and the average lifetime mileage is up to 200,000 miles.
#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 similarly to the Wrangler JL, the Gladiator serves as the Jeep’s first-ever pickup truck after the Comanche was discontinued in 1992.
Engineered in a way to easily leave the pavement behind, the Gladiator boasts a sturdy suspension, large off-road tires, and a standard four-wheel drive. The average lifespan of a Jeep Gladiator is up to 10 years and even longer with good maintenance.
Common Issues In Jeep Models
A Jeep’s robust façade and off-roading abilities let you drive in challenging terrains and on tough trails, switching over to normal roads with an equal amount of ease. Many people use Jeeps both for outdoor weekend activities as well as for daily commuting; however, these vehicles are not immune to electrical and mechanical breakdowns. Some of the common issues are as follows:
Due to their 4×4 ability, Jeeps are often 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 trouble starting. Over the years, several Jeep models have been recalled due to electrical issues as well.
Electrical problems can arise at any time during a Jeep’s lifespan. Some common issues include the power windows not working, the horn not functioning, the brakes locking up, and doors locking and/or unlocking without your explicit command. If you notice any of these problems, take your Jeep for a check-up.
The most affected models are the 2011 Grand Cherokee, Jeep Liberty, and Jeep Wrangler.
Window Regulator Problem
The windows not functioning properly is one of the most common problems faced by Jeep models, and the Jeep Liberty is known to have the highest number of issues. Both the 2006 and 2007 Jeep Liberty’s window regulator is known to malfunction, leaving the window either open or closed permanently.
Some models of Jeep Wrangler are also known to encounter this problem, and—at times—the windows stay partially open or closed at the point at which the failure occurred. This can turn out to be quite an inconvenience depending on the weather. So far, no recalls have been issued for this problem, and fixing the problem can be expensive for owners.
You may be surprised to learn that the ever-popular Jeep Wrangler models have often been recalled due to power train and automatic transmission problems. The gears often get stuck or start slipping, requiring immediate attention to prevent any mishaps or accidents.
A common example was found in the 2014 Cherokee, which was reported to shift gears roughly. Transmission issues can get hazardous when the vehicle is on the highway and travelling at a high speed. Luckily, Jeep recalls do not cost anything for the owner and can be resolved in a timely manner after the recall is initially issued.
Another common problem that impacts the lifespan of a Jeep is its interior experiencing issues resulting in the dashboard material getting bubbles or going wrinkly. The 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee is known to develop this problem when exposed to too much heat for an extended period of time.
The interior of a Grand Cherokee looks posh and shiny when new, but over time, deterioration effects set 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 a Jeep hits a significant bump while running at high speed. After the problematic impact, the steering wheel wobbles in a jarring way and feels like something has become loose in the front steering.
This problem occurs most commonly in a few certain models of the Jeep Wrangler, but no official recalls have been issued by the company. Despite the name “death wobble,” there have been no reports of any deaths occurring due to this problem.
Rear Main Seal Leakage
Oil leaks from the rear main engine seal are a common problem that occurs mostly in Jeep Wrangler models. If not checked and corrected in a timely manner, this issue can turn out to be an expensive repair later on. Thus, we suggest that Jeep owners always keep a check on their oil gauge as well as being observant of any puddles.
Leak In Radiators
Every Jeep model—no matter how good—may have a leaky radiator sooner or later over the course of its lifespan. this is one of the inevitable problems every Jeep owner has to face, so make sure you keep an eye on the temperature gauge regularly to identify any signs of a leaking radiator.
The leakage may occur on the top or bottom of the radiator. For a temporary fix, you can use water to cool it off until a suitable coolant is found. When this occurs, though, 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. These tend to corrode easily and may develop cracks through which air from the tire will get 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 mainly common in the Jeep Liberty and Jeep Grand Cherokee models. In the later models, however, the stems are upgraded to prevent this issue from occurring.
Failing AC Units
This issue is not directly related to the performance and functioning of the vehicle, but it still a significant factor for many drivers. A faulty A/C unit will not bring the car to an immediate halt, but it may prove to be very uncomfortable for both the driver and any passengers depending upon the weather conditions in one’s area. If it gets overly cold or hot outside, a poor A/C unit can make things miserable and make it difficult to drive.
This problem typically arises due to an excessive use of air conditioners. After some time, the airflow ends up weakening and the units malfunction, resulting in a variety of issues.
What Makes Some Jeeps Last Longer Than Others
Just like anything thing else in life, Jeeps will also live longer if you take good care of them. If you regularly take your vehicle in for maintenance, check and repair after every off-road trip, and attend to any of the above issues immediately when they occur, you will likely get more value back from your vehicle in return.
It’s no wonder that Jeeps have a “rugged beast” image as they are mostly built for both longevity as well as off-road experiences. 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 though, even a workhorse like the Jeep Wrangler may develop issues if the owner does not take good care of it. Another reason behind some Jeeps having short longevity is the confusion of owners along with the types of drivers who primarily use them.
If you bought a Jeep thinking you would go off-roading someday but instead use it for daily commuting and just take it for tough rides on the weekends, this is certainly not a clever strategy. While you don’t have to drive like a granny, excessive abuse of your vehicle may result in problems setting in more 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 by simply not taking care of it. With proper care and maintenance, you can optimize your Jeep and get many more years out of it.
Here are a few tips:
#1. Stick to a strict scheduled maintenance
Make sure you follow a strict schedule of maintenance to enable your Jeep to last longer. If any mechanical or electrical issues occur, we suggest that you deal with them during an early stage, and this is possible only if the vehicle goes in for regular maintenance. If you have good maintenance records, this also improves the vehicle’s resale value.
#2. Replace tires frequently if needed
Most Jeeps are capable of handling driving on both pavement and rough terrain with equal ease. However, the tires may often get worn out quickly due to the variety of driving conditions. Keep an eye out for when your vehicle may need 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 each time the vehicle runs another 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 landscapes, it will likely need more oil checks as the probably for leaks will be much higher.
#4. Wash and wax to shine
After every dirty ride—and even if you primarily use your Jeep for daily commuting—make sure you wash and wax the vehicle to keep it both rust-free and spotless. Regular washing and maintenance prevent a rusty-looking paint job, protect the color, and keep the Jeep in good shape 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 both fade the paint and deteriorate the interior. The Jeep Grand Cherokee is known for developing a damaged dashboard due to extreme temperatures deteriorating the dash materials.
Parking in a garage can reduce the effects of UV radiation on the vehicle and also protect it from snow and hail. Jeeps are robust and seemingly indestructible to an extent, but let’s not forget that everything eventually comes to an end, so it’s wise to care for your vehicle as well as possible.
Why are jeeps more expensive?
Jeeps have a status-quo associated with them, and manufacturers know that people will pay for them. It’s hard to find any vehicle that lets you remove the top, windshield, and doors for your daily drive. Furthermore, a Jeep has much more mechanical equipment than any other vehicle, and they last much longer to pay you back on your investment.
Are jeeps very higher on maintenance
No. Given their off-road abilities, they are certainly not on higher maintenance compared to other models of vehicles. Most of the common issues can be fixed by a weekend mechanic or by someone with basic mechanical knowledge.