A few months ago, I took advantage of the Northridge 4x4 deal on the Tereflex HD tire carrier combo. Yesterday, I had a free afternoon to wrench and got to installing things.
A few things first: The instructions and various installation videos on the internet make a big point of supporting the tailgate with wood blocks or similar to keep the bolt holes aligned while doing the install. I did some measuring and hand-fitting. I made my blocks from pieces of 2x4 and mine measure just about 1-7/16 of an inch. Assuming that you have a stock bumper, I'd cut the blocks to 1.5" and then remove material with sandpaper or a file until you get a tight fit.
I remove the stock carrier and this is what I see:
I am surprised at the amount of crap that collected under the carrier in only one year. I did a good cleanup in an attempt to keep abrasive material from screwing up the paint on the door.
Then, the hinges come off. As expected, the are under the hinges was unpainted and had a tiny amount of rust. Some 400 grit sandpaper removed that nicely.
Then, a little bit of masking in prep for primer and paint:
Removing the masking tape, we have some freshly-applied MOPAR granite-crystal spraypaint. I got some runs because I was extra worried about overspray but I doubt they will be noticeable under the new carrier.
Then, we can re-assemble the tire carrier on the jeep. I'll note that I had to remove and reattach the carrier several times due to fitting issues. I ended up using several screwdrivers to keep the various bolt holes aligned while I tightened the T50 size bolts incrementally.
After all that, Viola:
Everything function checked appropriately. I drove to work and nothing fell off so I feel like that is a success. I have an offroad trip planned later this month which should be a real test.