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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all!

I'm hoping to join the Wrangler family soon. I'm currently weighing my options between a 17 JKU from the factory and loan payments for years, or a high mileage 12+ JKU out of pocket. With my current financial situation, I'm leaning towards the latter option.

After weeks of looking, I've stumbled upon this guy:

https://www.cars.com/vehicledetail/detail/683661733/overview/?aff=tyeminvu&cmp=usedinv


It's got most of the things I'd want in a new JKU... 6 speed, hard top, side airbags, connectivity group. From the pictures, it looks nice... clean, no visible dents/scratches/tears, no modifications, dirt-free engine bay. It's also only an hour away, so I could get over to check it out without too much hassle. And the price tag, which I assume I could get below 19k out the door, is very appealing, compared to 33.8k for the factory 2017 I optioned out. Problem is, of course, almost 134k miles on the odometer, and an expired warranty.

So, am I crazy to consider this option? If not:

1. What serious issues should I look out for most? I'll have an independent Jeep dealer perform a pre-purchase inspection. What should I point out specifically that I'd like investigated?

2. What less serious but still potentially costly maintenance may be needed in the short and long term?

3. I've never owned a 4WD vehicle before. How can I ensure the system is functioning correctly? I would like this vehicle to perform well in mild off-road conditions, with the option to pursue heavy modification for moderate to severe off-roading in the future.

4. Are there any warranty options I could buy? I see Mopar only offers extended warranties on used vehicles with less than 125k miles.

5. Anything else I should consider before taking the time to visit the dealer, go for a test drive, order a history report, and have an inspection done?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
 

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I bought a 2009 JKU Rubicon used with 120K miles on it. In my case, it was a one owner vehicle with all service records. It had a 2" lift and 33's on stock rims. 6 speed and no other mods. It had been well cared for. The tires were about shot, but I'm planning on modding it anyway, so no big deal.

So far, I have had no problems. My experience having had other jeeps is that they are pretty well built. If I were you, I would look at the CarFax on it and try to get the service history.

I would check for signs of flood damage (there have been a lot of floods in the US this year). You can fix a lot of problems with the money you will be saving.
 

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I have 102k on my 2011 and no major issues. Had cracked exhaust manifold replaced at about 90k and front drive shaft shortly after for a bad boot slinging grease. Both under warranty. Other then that it runs great and I expect to get a lot more out of it. Of course mine is a 3.8 not a 3.6 engine too. Just do your best to look it over and maybe have a mechanic give it a once over if you decide to go that route. Good luck! Let us know what you end up with!



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I think a valid question would be how many miles are you planning on putting on it a year? Are you planning to keep this for several years or trade in again in a few? To sway you towards the new option, jeeps hold value very well, even if you have your payments out 5 years, if you put 15,000 miles on a year, a jeep with 75k will be worth your investment, not to mention $0 in maintenance costs.
 

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Don't know of one 2012 over 100K miles in which the defective head didn't go, but definitely make sure it was replaced.
^This.

I have a 2009 with over 120K miles on it and it still runs great. The only thing needing replacement was plugs and wires at 110K miles.

However, 2012 was the 1st year they came out with the new 3.6L engine (previously 3.8L). I would avoid purchasing any 2012 and look for something older or newer to avoid the potential head replacement issue. I'm sure there are many 2012's which didn't have the problem, but not worth taking the risk, especially if you're going into it with financial concerns in my opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I think a valid question would be how many miles are you planning on putting on it a year? Are you planning to keep this for several years or trade in again in a few? To sway you towards the new option, jeeps hold value very well, even if you have your payments out 5 years, if you put 15,000 miles on a year, a jeep with 75k will be worth your investment, not to mention $0 in maintenance costs.
I typically drive between 10-15k miles per year.

If I go the used route, I'd most likely trade in a few years down the road. If I go new, I'd keep it for the long haul.

I guess it really is a money game at this point. Do you think I could realistically get $15k+ out of the used JKU if I sell privately in a two years, assuming it gets up to 160k miles, but is well maintained? Or $25k+ out of the new JKU in 5+ years?

And, I guess the point of this thread, what kind of maintenance costs might I be looking at for the used option? Perhaps my decision will come down to what maintenance costs I could expect vs. cost of loan payments.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I have 102k on my 2011 and no major issues. Had cracked exhaust manifold replaced at about 90k and front drive shaft shortly after for a bad boot slinging grease. Both under warranty. Other then that it runs great and I expect to get a lot more out of it. Of course mine is a 3.8 not a 3.6 engine too. Just do your best to look it over and maybe have a mechanic give it a once over if you decide to go that route. Good luck! Let us know what you end up with!
Beauty!

Out of curiosity, do you know or can you estimate how much the manifold and drive shaft replacement would have cost out of pocket? Are we talking a couple hundred bucks, a k or so, or a multi-thousand dollar repair?

Also, I thought the JKU warranty was 5yr/60k miles. How'd you get warranty repair on those issues at 90k? Extended warranty purchase?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
^This.

I have a 2009 with over 120K miles on it and it still runs great. The only thing needing replacement was plugs and wires at 110K miles.

However, 2012 was the 1st year they came out with the new 3.6L engine (previously 3.8L). I would avoid purchasing any 2012 and look for something older or newer to avoid the potential head replacement issue. I'm sure there are many 2012's which didn't have the problem, but not worth taking the risk, especially if you're going into it with financial concerns in my opinion.
This is actually one of my biggest questions. I'm typically a proponent of the 'latest and greatest' tech, so that's why I opted to search for a 12+. But perhaps in this case, the more seasoned pre-2012 model would be a better option? Do you know about maintenance issues of 07-11 vs 12 vs 13+?
 

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Beauty!



Out of curiosity, do you know or can you estimate how much the manifold and drive shaft replacement would have cost out of pocket? Are we talking a couple hundred bucks, a k or so, or a multi-thousand dollar repair?



Also, I thought the JKU warranty was 5yr/60k miles. How'd you get warranty repair on those issues at 90k? Extended warranty purchase?

Thanks!
Mine had 5yr/100k powertrain factory warranty. Not sure if it is less now days. If I had not been under warranty I would have fixed both myself. You can get an exhaust manifold for about $75 and a front drive shaft for probably under $200 if you find someone wth a factory take off. Although the driveshaft issue was not common. Mine just lost the clip that seals the boot to keep grease in. They just chose to replace the whole shaft instead of having to tear the CV joint down to replace the boot. I could have fixed it, but why not get a new one since it's under warranty right! Lol. I'm sure dealer prices to fix both would have been about $300-$400 for manifold and probably $500 for replacement drive shaft. Just taking a wild guess though.


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I bought an '07 in 2014 with about 65,000 miles and didn't think twice. For the right price, I would buy a Jeep with well over 100,000 miles without hesitation.

I think they're asking too much for the Jeep you posted, but if they would knock a little more off the price, I'd think about it.
 

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The dealer does not have maintenance records. Is this something the Carfax would show, or a dealer would now how to verify replacement?And would replacement solve all issues, or are there lingering effects from this defect?

2012 and early 2013's made before 7/26/12 will have the defective head. Left side with defect related to single exhaust port getting overheated. You can check the number on the head which will give you the Julian date to determine if it had been replaced. It isn't a question of "if" it will fail, just when it will fail. Chrysler has offered a 150K warranty on these motors for this. Other than a sloppy job, once replaced it should be OK.
 

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I wonder if the Sahara wheels/tires were just a cheap way to get 5 new tires, or if it originally had something different that was swapped out before trading.

Wonder why the front air dam is removed on a basically stock JK.
 

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I wonder if the Sahara wheels/tires were just a cheap way to get 5 new tires, or if it originally had something different that was swapped out before trading.

Wonder why the front air dam is removed on a basically stock JK.


Maybe it had a tow bar for being towed behind a RV? I took mine off just because I didn't like the look of it though. And I didn't want to rip it off on the trail. LOL


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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
2012 and early 2013's made before 7/26/12 will have the defective head. Left side with defect related to single exhaust port getting overheated. You can check the number on the head which will give you the Julian date to determine if it had been replaced. It isn't a question of "if" it will fail, just when it will fail. Chrysler has offered a 150K warranty on these motors for this. Other than a sloppy job, once replaced it should be OK.
Is this date easy to find by popping the hood and looking in the bay? Basically, can I verify this repair has been performed before spending money on a pre-purchase inspection?

Does the 150k warranty have a corresponding year deadline? Do you have a link or documentation that speaks to this issue?

What symptoms might I look out for on a test drive to assess this issue?

Sorry for all the questions, just trying not to get screwed. I sincerely appreciate your help.
 
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