Jeep Wrangler 35-Inch Tires

Acing the Challenge: Making Jeep Wrangler 35-Inch Tires That Work Without a Lift

There’s no question that Jeep Wrangler is a popular choice for off-roading enthusiasts around the world. Its rugged, sturdy build makes it a reliable companion on any terrain, while its unique design allows for significant customization. One such modification, often debated within the community, is upsizing tires from Jeep Wrangler 33-inch tires with no lift to Jeep Wrangler 35-inch tires. Yet, many questions if such a jump is possible without adding a lift kit. 

This article is designed to settle the debate, offering a detailed guide on making those 35-inch tires work on your Jeep Wrangler with no lift. So, buckle up as we navigate this adventurous path together!

Understanding the Basics: Jeep Wrangler 35 Inch Tires vs 33 Inch Tires 

Before we dive into the practicalities, let’s grasp the fundamental differences between Jeep Wrangler 35-inch tires and stock tires, which on a stock Jeep Wrangler JK typically measure 33 inches with no lift.

  • 35-inch tires, such as those you might consider for your Jeep Wrangler JK, are larger than the stock tires, meaning they will provide your vehicle with enough clearance for off-road adventures. However, this also introduces potential issues of rubbing against stock wheels, especially during maximum flex and tight turns.
  • 33-inch tires, which are the stock tires for a typical Jeep Wrangler, are smaller and fit comfortably on stock suspension. But they may not deliver the same level of off-road performance as their wider, 35-inch counterparts.

Fitting 35-Inch Tires on Your Jeep Wrangler with No Lift

Now, let’s delve into how you can fit those coveted 35-inch tires on your Jeep Wrangler JK without resorting to a lift.

Making Use of Flat Fender Flares

One solution is to install flat fender flares, which provide extra clearance for your larger, wider tires, allowing you to flex and turn without rubbing against the front bumper or the body of your Jeep. 

Adding Wheel Spacers

Another practical solution is to consider adding wheel spacers. These help in pushing your wheels a bit further away from the body of the Jeep, reducing the chances of the tires coming into contact with the body or suspension components. 

Considering High Clearance Fenders

High clearance fenders not only provide additional room for larger tires but also bestow your Jeep Wrangler a more aggressive, off-road look, complementing the aesthetics of a stock Jeep Wrangler. 

Is It Really Worth It?

We’ve now reviewed how to make those 35-inch tires fit on your Jeep Wrangler JK with no lift. But let’s look at the potential impact on fuel economy and the trade-offs involved.

The Advantages

  • Better Off-Road Performance: Larger tires often equate to better off-road capabilities. The 35-inch tires can handle more challenging terrain and give your Jeep a better grip on the ground. 
  • Enhanced Appearance: There’s no denying that the 35-inch tires give your Jeep a more formidable look. It’s a quick way to turn heads and stand out on the trails. 
  • Better Off-Road Performance: Larger tires often equate to better off-road capabilities. The 35-inch tires can handle more challenging terrain and give your Jeep a better grip on the ground. 
  • Enhanced Appearance: There’s no denying that the 35-inch tires give your Jeep a more formidable look. It’s a quick way to turn heads and stand out on the trails.
  • Increased Ground Clearance: Bigger tires mean your Wrangler sits higher off the ground, allowing you to navigate more challenging terrain without damaging the undercarriage of your vehicle.
  • Improved Traction: The wider contact patch on 35-inch tires can provide better traction, whether you’re off-roading or driving in adverse weather conditions. 
  • Enhanced Wheel Protection: The larger the tire, the more wheel protection you have from rocks and other road debris.
  • Greater Load Carrying Capacity: Larger tires usually come with a higher load rating, which can be beneficial if you’re hauling heavy gear for camping or other outdoor adventures. 
  • Better Towing Ability: If you often tow heavy trailers, the increased tire size can provide better stability and control, improving the overall towing experience. 
  • Resale Value: The rugged, ‘upgraded’ look of your Jeep with 35-inch tires can potentially increase its resale value, especially among off-road enthusiasts.
  • More Comfortable Ride: Bigger tires can absorb bumps and shocks better, making your ride smoother, especially over rough terrain. 
  • Versatility: With 35-inch tires, you’re not limited to off-road trails. You can comfortably use your Jeep for daily commuting or long road trips without any issues.

The Disadvantages

  • Potential Rubbing Issues: Even with modifications, you may still experience some rubbing issues, especially in extreme off-roading conditions. 
  • The strain on the Drivetrain: Larger tires put more strain on your vehicle’s drivetrain and suspension. This might lead to increased wear and tear and potentially more frequent maintenance.
  • Increased Fuel Consumption: Larger tires add weight and increase the rolling resistance, leading to a decrease in fuel economy. That means your gas mileage will take a hit when you switch to 35-inch tires.
  • Speedometer and Odometer Inaccuracy: The larger tire diameter can cause your speedometer and odometer readings to be off, which could require recalibration.
  • Altered Braking Dynamics: The larger tires can change the braking dynamics of your Jeep, potentially increasing stopping distances.
  • Cost: Bigger tires are typically more expensive than their smaller counterparts. Additionally, the cost of potential modifications to fit these tires can add up.
  • Altered Steering Dynamics: Larger, wider tires can lead to a vague steering feel, especially at higher speeds. They can also affect the vehicle’s turning radius.

Factors to Consider Before Switching to 35-Inch Tires

Before jumping into the upgrade, it’s essential to consider several factors to ensure that your Jeep Wrangler JK can handle 35-inch tires without a lift.

Understanding Your Jeep’s Axle Strength

Different models of Jeep Wranglers come with different types of axles. Some axles may not be robust enough to handle the stress of larger tires. Therefore, understanding your Jeep’s axle strength is crucial before making the switch.

Considering Your Driving Habits

If you regularly go off-roading or traverse rough terrains, larger tires can provide better ground clearance and traction. However, if you primarily use your Jeep for city driving, the benefits might not outweigh the drawbacks.

Taking into Account Modification Costs

As discussed earlier, fitting 35-inch tires might require additional modifications, like installing flat fender flares or wheel spacers. Make sure to account for these costs before deciding on the upgrade.

Checking Your Local Regulations

Lastly, some regions have strict laws regarding vehicle modifications, including tire sizes and lifts. Check your local regulations to ensure your proposed changes are legal.

Now, with these considerations in mind, you’re in a better position to decide whether upgrading to Jeep Wrangler 35-inch tires without a lift is the right choice for you.

Final Thoughts

While fitting Jeep Wrangler 35-inch tires without a lift isn’t a straightforward plug-and-play process, it is indeed possible. It involves careful planning, some modifications, and a thorough understanding of your Jeep’s capabilities. Though not without its challenges, the benefits of enhanced off-road performance and aggressive looks make it an enticing venture for many Jeep Wrangler owners.

However, always consider the potential downsides, and make sure you’re willing to accept the necessary trade-offs. Remember, the key is to take into account all the necessary considerations before making the switch.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *