1. Welcome to Jeeps.net!

    You are currently viewing as a guest! To get full-access, you need to register for a FREE account.

    As a registered member, you’ll be able to:
    • Participate in all Jeep discussion topics
    • Transfer over your build thread from a different forum to this one
    • Communicate privately with other Jeep owners from around the world
    • Post your own photos in our Members Gallery
    • Access all special features of the site

Questions from a first time Jeep buyer

Discussion in 'Wrangler JK (2007-2017)' started by efarley, Nov 4, 2020.

  1. Nov 4, 2020 at 11:06 PM
    #1
    efarley

    efarley [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2020
    Member:
    #5210
    Messages:
    13
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Eric
    Oregon
    Vehicle:
    '17 Wrangler Big Bear
    Hello everyone!

    Potential first time Jeep buyer here who has some questions for all of your awesome owners! For a long time I have had my eye on a Jeep Wrangler for a future vehicle ever since being a passenger in one as a kid. However, I have been slightly turned off by certain owners essentially "fanboy"ing over certain generations or engines to the point that I feel like certain wranglers just aren't worth buying... I hope this is totally false and exaggerated and have done my best to just ignore it and just buy a damn Jeep already but, deep down inside I'm like "Don't just buy the first Jeep that looks like a good deal, learn some more about them first so you don't have buyer remorse later".

    So first off let me say that in particular I have found a 2011 Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon with the 3.8L engine and 108,000 miles for $26,000. KBB says that's a little bit high but there is a fair number of mods done to the Jeep already. My #1 concern with this is that I've read stories about the 3.8L engines burning oil progressively worse as they get into higher millage and I wonder; Did the previous owner trade this beauty in because at 100k+ miles it was just going through oil too quickly?

    How bad of an issue is this? Am I blowing it up in my head and making an issue where one likely doesn't exist? Is there any way to test a Jeep for a higher than normal oil burn in a pre purchase inspection? Are there any mods that fix the issue, I believe I recall people adding oil catches to their engines to lessen this issue or something like that.

    More generally does anyone have any recommendations about certain engines that they avoid or, seek out? Certain generations that are better or worse, are there any automatic transmissions issues to be aware of, is there something you consider a goldilocks you'd pay extra to get, something you avoid like a plague, etc.?

    I'm looking to spend around $25,000 on the Jeep, I have not yet done any off-roading and very possibly wont ever do any, but I really want to and would like the option which is why I have been looking mostly at the Rubicons, maybe this is just adding cost where I won't notice the difference...

    I'm not too particular about anything else, manual vs auto, 2 door v. 4 door, soft v. hard top, none of these matter to me all that much although I do have a preference towards an automatic 4 door hard top currently.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2020
    jeepavalanche likes this.
  2. Nov 4, 2020 at 11:32 PM
    #2
    gibbster

    gibbster Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2020
    Member:
    #5172
    Messages:
    33
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Daryl
    Carbon county, Mt
    Vehicle:
    2016 black JK Wrangler Sport Unlimited
    Rancho 2” lift? Yokohama geolander 295/70r17 MT tires.
    I would recommend the 3.6L with the 5 speed auto trans. The 3.8L same one that chrysler used in their minivan’s. And i recently picked up a 2016 4dr sport unlimited hard top and they are going for around 30k in So. Cal.
     
    jeepavalanche likes this.
  3. Nov 5, 2020 at 3:59 AM
    #3
    aggrex

    aggrex Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2016
    Member:
    #203
    Messages:
    4,157
    DE
    Vehicle:
    Backcountry '16
    Tuffy>AEV>TTO>JW>STech>EVOcage>MagnaFlow>SpiderTrax>RockHard>TF>SpringTail>67design>Bolt>GPCA>Curt>
    Move up another year for the 3.6L motor as it has more usable power out of the box.
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2020
    gibbster and jeepavalanche like this.
  4. Nov 5, 2020 at 7:12 AM
    #4
    jeepavalanche

    jeepavalanche Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2018
    Member:
    #2399
    Messages:
    128
    Gender:
    Male
    What they said. As an owner of both 3.8 and 3.6. The 3.8 was sluggish with no mods/lift. My 3.6 is quicker with 3 inch lift/37" tires, and an aftermarket steel bumpers/tire carrier. Go with 3.6.

    Also, you may THINK you want a hardtop, I sure did when I bought mine, but after a few sunny days of riding around with the top off, then sudden thunderstorms, that soft top fits the Jeep lifestyle MUCH better. Please consider that. You can go from top on to top down anywhere you are in less than a minute. Hard to have a place to store the hardtop when you are vacationing at a beach condo or resort, not to mention its not easy to take on/off all the time. Soft top it. At least heavily consider it.
     
    aggrex likes this.
  5. Nov 5, 2020 at 8:09 AM
    #5
    efarley

    efarley [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2020
    Member:
    #5210
    Messages:
    13
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Eric
    Oregon
    Vehicle:
    '17 Wrangler Big Bear
    I actually wanted a soft top originally for the reasons you listed but then was told they weren't very fun in the PNW due to the constant rain and leaking issues the soft tops tend to develop. Hard tops are much easier to find here. Though, if anyone else who has a soft top in the PNW can comment on how practical it is that'd be awesome.
     
  6. Nov 5, 2020 at 9:53 AM
    #6
    efarley

    efarley [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2020
    Member:
    #5210
    Messages:
    13
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Eric
    Oregon
    Vehicle:
    '17 Wrangler Big Bear
    Found a 2016 Willys Wheeler, manual trans with 65,000 miles that I think I'm going to look at. I just discovered the Willys today while reading the forums and they seem like a nice option that isn't quite as pricy as the Rubicons. Anything I should be aware about with these, they seem like a solid choice.
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2020
  7. Nov 5, 2020 at 10:16 AM
    #7
    aggrex

    aggrex Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2016
    Member:
    #203
    Messages:
    4,157
    DE
    Vehicle:
    Backcountry '16
    Tuffy>AEV>TTO>JW>STech>EVOcage>MagnaFlow>SpiderTrax>RockHard>TF>SpringTail>67design>Bolt>GPCA>Curt>
    Keep in mind hard tops can also develop leaks but will be superior to soft tops during the winter season during heavy snow/ice/high winds, monsoon rain storms etc. The Jeep aftermarket has one-person hard top lift devices such as cable systems to stationary stands that store the hard top off the ground assuming you have the garage space.
     
    LYFZGOOD likes this.
  8. Nov 5, 2020 at 10:42 AM
    #8
    efarley

    efarley [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2020
    Member:
    #5210
    Messages:
    13
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Eric
    Oregon
    Vehicle:
    '17 Wrangler Big Bear
    I thought most of the newer models had the 3 piece roofs that are more manageable, is that not accurate?
     
  9. Nov 5, 2020 at 10:53 AM
    #9
    aggrex

    aggrex Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2016
    Member:
    #203
    Messages:
    4,157
    DE
    Vehicle:
    Backcountry '16
    Tuffy>AEV>TTO>JW>STech>EVOcage>MagnaFlow>SpiderTrax>RockHard>TF>SpringTail>67design>Bolt>GPCA>Curt>
    I like my freedom panels but contingency plans are needed when they are removed. I keep a set of moving blankets to keep them from getting banged up. More openings means more rubber seals and more potential for a leak but I keep my rubber seals clean and conditioned to prevent issues.
     
  10. Nov 5, 2020 at 11:08 AM
    #10
    Justanotherjeeper

    Justanotherjeeper Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2020
    Member:
    #5195
    Messages:
    86
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Vehicle:
    2011 Red Wrangler 2 door
    paid cash for it.
    When buying a used vehicle, it is far more important how it has been maintained, than anecdotal comments about alleged inherent design problems. Sure maybe some burned oil, but most don’t. Chrysler ran that engine for about 20 years with good results. It’s a conservative engine and needs rpm for hp and torque, so maybe that’s why they burn oil when pushed hard and not maintained. They were used extensively in minivans, so not the sexiest heritage, lol. They also don’t get the best mileage. But will they do the job if well maintained? For sure, they will. I have a JK with a 3.8, and it’s fine. One advantage about them is that there are a lot of them out there, and every mechanic in the world knows how to fix them. Parts are everywhere.
     
    tomrr and aggrex like this.
  11. Nov 5, 2020 at 11:41 AM
    #11
    gibbster

    gibbster Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2020
    Member:
    #5172
    Messages:
    33
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Daryl
    Carbon county, Mt
    Vehicle:
    2016 black JK Wrangler Sport Unlimited
    Rancho 2” lift? Yokohama geolander 295/70r17 MT tires.
    3.6 and i worked for chrysler for 16+ years in service, many friends that still work for jeep and most all will say the 3.6l was the best thing they put into the wrangler.
     
    aggrex and Justanotherjeeper like this.
  12. Nov 5, 2020 at 5:51 PM
    #12
    efarley

    efarley [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2020
    Member:
    #5210
    Messages:
    13
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Eric
    Oregon
    Vehicle:
    '17 Wrangler Big Bear
    Meh, looks like the Willy's was in a wreck, rear end and front right were repaired, no bags deployed but idk about buying a Jeep that's been repaired, but it is being sold by a highly reputable licensed dealership
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2020
  13. Nov 5, 2020 at 6:44 PM
    #13
    aggrex

    aggrex Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2016
    Member:
    #203
    Messages:
    4,157
    DE
    Vehicle:
    Backcountry '16
    Tuffy>AEV>TTO>JW>STech>EVOcage>MagnaFlow>SpiderTrax>RockHard>TF>SpringTail>67design>Bolt>GPCA>Curt>
    The JK Willys edition is a good one but just look for one in better condition.
     
  14. Nov 5, 2020 at 8:59 PM
    #14
    efarley

    efarley [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2020
    Member:
    #5210
    Messages:
    13
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Eric
    Oregon
    Vehicle:
    '17 Wrangler Big Bear
    I am going to take a look at this Willy's. The bags didn't go off, it's a clean title and is being sold by a large licensed jeep dodge Chrysler dealership. The photos of the car look like it was never in a wreck and the alignment was okay when they got it. I'll give it a drive and look under it in person but assuming everything looks good and they will go down on the price a bit due to the damage I think it may just be a solid purchase.
     
  15. Nov 6, 2020 at 8:20 AM
    #15
    LYFZGOOD

    LYFZGOOD members

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2017
    Member:
    #1701
    Messages:
    609
    Gender:
    Male
    Wv
    Vehicle:
    1998 Jeep Wrangler Sahara
    2.5” lift 32x11.50x15,cold air intake, Smittybuilt stainless steel Bumpers, rough county pocket flares,Rugged ridge seat covers and floor mats. Conversion LED headlights 20’ LED Light bar hardtop,soft top,bikini top.
    the best after the 4.0 ?????
     
    aggrex likes this.
  16. Nov 6, 2020 at 10:14 AM
    #16
    gibbster

    gibbster Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2020
    Member:
    #5172
    Messages:
    33
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Daryl
    Carbon county, Mt
    Vehicle:
    2016 black JK Wrangler Sport Unlimited
    Rancho 2” lift? Yokohama geolander 295/70r17 MT tires.
    I loves our old yj and would love to have a 4.0L in my jeep now, the 4.0 and 2.5 were some of the best motors for reliablility. But have to say i do like the performance of the 3.6L but without Fiat.
     
  17. Nov 6, 2020 at 11:11 AM
    #17
    Justanotherjeeper

    Justanotherjeeper Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2020
    Member:
    #5195
    Messages:
    86
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Vehicle:
    2011 Red Wrangler 2 door
    paid cash for it.
    Time will tell how robust it is, but I predict that the Alfa Romeo 4 cylinder will become a classic. It’s a very snappy motor, at least in a 2 door JL.
     
  18. Nov 6, 2020 at 12:12 PM
    #18
    gibbster

    gibbster Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2020
    Member:
    #5172
    Messages:
    33
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Daryl
    Carbon county, Mt
    Vehicle:
    2016 black JK Wrangler Sport Unlimited
    Rancho 2” lift? Yokohama geolander 295/70r17 MT tires.
    Alfa romero, no thanks, i worked for them once and not my choice. And snappy is not the power band i want.
     
  19. Nov 6, 2020 at 2:39 PM
    #19
    Justanotherjeeper

    Justanotherjeeper Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2020
    Member:
    #5195
    Messages:
    86
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Vehicle:
    2011 Red Wrangler 2 door
    paid cash for it.
    Arguable, true. It’ll do tractor too that’s the benefit of a turbo. That’s why John Deere uses them. I don’t own one but I wish I did.
     
  20. Nov 6, 2020 at 8:01 PM
    #20
    efarley

    efarley [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2020
    Member:
    #5210
    Messages:
    13
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Eric
    Oregon
    Vehicle:
    '17 Wrangler Big Bear
    Okay I drove the Willy tonight. I liked it quite a bit, it's been lifted I realized so I'm curious what you guys would check for and feel for while driving on a lifted jeep.
     

Products Discussed in

To Top