Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Eaton Rapids, Michigan
Ditto on what Gary2 said about them rusting from the inside out. They may look fine on the top, but they more than likely will eventually rust on through. This seems to be especially true for the left (drivers side) fender.
I replaced mine with some new ones from Quadratec. Did them back in Nov 2008. Fenders were $234 each at the time plus $22.50 shipping on each one. My local Chevy dealer where I do a lot of business painted them for $325. I tore the old ones off and put the new ones on after they were painted. The body shop manager told me to test fit the new fenders before he painted them so it any holes needed to be drilled, it could be done before painting and not after. They did a terrific job and it really cleaned the Jeep up (the left one was rusted on the top and the right one had a ding in it that had been poorly bumped out by a previous owner).
The tear down and reinstall wasn't terrible, but it was time consuming. There is a lot of stuff on those fenders. The worst part is there is like 15 or 16 bolts that hold the fender to the Jeep. Soak the heck out of them with PB Blaster. I did, but still ended up breaking 4 bolts between the two fenders that needed to be drilled and tapped.
1997 Red Wrangler 4.0L - 5 speed - soft top w/full frame doors - 2 inch spring spacers and 1 inch body lift - 31 x 10.50 BFG on 15 x 8 Pro Comp 8069 rims