2002 TJ max towing question - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 7 Old 10-19-2009, 09:34 PM Thread Starter
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2002 TJ Wrangler 
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2002 TJ max towing question

Hey guys
I have a 2002 Jeep TJ, the Apex Edition, with a 4.0 L Manual Transmission. Our family just purchased a boat and I'm the only family member with a vehicle that can tow over 1000 lbs. We just recently put a 5000 lb hitch on the back of my Jeep.
My owners manual says a 2.4 L Auto can tow 1000 lbs max and a 2.4 L Manual, 4.0 L Auto, and 4.0 L Manual can only tow 2500 lbs max. I was wondering if there is any kind of leeway here for my Jeep? Our boat is around 3600 lbs (with trailer) and I'll be needing to take it to the Marina probably twice a year (we leave it in the water throughout the summer).

Think I can get away with towing it and what risk would I be taking by doing so?

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post #2 of 7 Old 10-20-2009, 01:06 AM
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The official answer is "Never exceed the vehicle's rating". That means both the trailer weight and the tongue weight. I have no doubt that your Jeep can get that trailer moving. You should be more concerned about getting that trailer STOPPED. Rolling your jeep on the trail might ruin your day; rolling it on the freeway is going to really upset you and everyone within your immediate vicinity.

For the unofficial answer...
If I had to pull the family boat, I'm 5 miles from the lake, on quiet roads; the trailer has a good coupler-brake that actuates automatically, I'm keeping the speed under 25, and I've got a couple friends escorting me, keeping their vehicles between me and the general public. I would feel comfortable in that scenario, but I'd be much more comfortable behind the wheel of the 3/4 ton suburban we use for our regular tow vehicle.

As far as the Jeep itself - I'd be worried about the rear suspension under the tongue weight, the brakes and clutch under the extra load.
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post #3 of 7 Old 10-20-2009, 09:17 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks a lot

One more question... Right now I have 225/75R15 Tires... I'm thinking of going with 31x10.50R15 Goodyear Wrangler Territories. Will the increase in tire size have any affect on my towing? And if so would it be for the better?
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post #4 of 7 Old 10-20-2009, 11:03 AM
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1997 TJ Wrangler 
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I don't think it would have a significant difference as far as towing is concerned.

The biggest help would probably come from a weight distributing hitch in that 5000lb receiver. A weight distributing hitch has two spring-bars that "hang" from the trailer frame behind the coupler. This transfers a lot of the load to the front jeep axle and rear trailer axle (if it has one), making the rig far more controllable.

Last edited by rivalarrival; 10-20-2009 at 11:15 AM.
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post #5 of 7 Old 10-20-2009, 03:14 PM
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I would borrow a vehicle twice a year that is properly equipped to handle what you are towing. If something happens on the road it's going to be your fault (pretty much no matter what) because you are over loaded.

^I wouldn't listen to what I say. I don't know what I'm talking about. Please use the search feature.
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post #6 of 7 Old 10-21-2009, 02:59 AM
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I tow regularly with my Jeeps, I only towed a boat that heavy once.... I would NEVER do it again...WAY too scary.... FWIW I tow that much with my LJ with out issues.

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post #7 of 7 Old 04-13-2012, 08:02 PM
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I would just rent a truck from homedepot, I thinks it's just $20 for the first hour or you can grab a U-hall.
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