Jeep is an American made, rough and tough brand, but it still presents a fair amount of problems. When compared to other brands Jeep may not seem like the reliable manufacturer you believe it is.

Jeep ranks 19 out of 26 makes for reliability on Consumer Reports. They are built to be durable vehicles, but they still have some common problems. Issues such as TIPM failure, transmission failure, rust, and electrical shifting are frequently reported problems among Jeeps.

While it’s easy to say that Jeep is below average in reliability, not all of the models have the same issues. Learn about the common problems below and what years have the most complaints.

Reliability Ratings

Although Jeep is reported to have a substantial amount of issues, it has features that give other vehicle brands a run for their money. Jeep is an American made brand with a classic look and appeal. 

They are rugged vehicles with abilities unmatched by other makes. The Wrangler, specifically, is known for its rock climbing abilities. It can be taken up steep rocks and mountains that other vehicles can’t handle.

Jeep received a 19 out of 26 makes for reliability from J.D. Power.  The J.D. Power Rating is a reliable rating used by consumers to help determine the trustworthiness and durability of the vehicles they consider purchasing. This reliability rating is derived from consumer reviews.

For this ranking, they took 26 vehicle manufacturers and compared their overall reliability. Jeep didn’t rank very high on this list, but when it comes to specific models, Jeep does place ahead on some accounts. For example, J.D. Power awarded Jeep the quality award for 2022 models. This award is given to those brands who have less than 100 reported problems during the first 90 days of ownership.

Another list of reliable vehicles ranked Jeep 15th out of 32 makes. The makers of that list, Repair Pal, gives Jeep a reliability rating of 3.5 out of 5 stars. This is considered an above average rating.

Common Repairs

Jeeps are known for being tough and rugged vehicles, able to take on difficult roads with ease. Jeeps are an adventure vehicle that can withstand some tight situations. Because Jeeps have this status, it’s easy to think that they will last forever. In reality, Jeep doesn’t rank very high in the consumer report ratings. Below are listed some common issues that arise with owning a Jeep. 

TIPM

The totally integrated power module (TIPM) is a system involving a computer and fuses. All of the electrical components in your car rely on the TIPM to function properly. The Grand Cherokee, especially the year 2011, is the model with the most reported TIPM issues.

If you have a failing TIPM, it might seem like your vehicle is haunted. Wipers may turn on or off at random, doors may lock themselves, and headlights will seem to have a mind of their own. In addition to the hauntings, you will experience difficulty getting the car to turn over, stalling, and a quickly draining battery. 

Replacing a TIPM can cost anywhere from $700 to $1,500 at a shop. If you are skilled with vehicle maintenance, doing it yourself could save you money, but prices on TIPMs vary greatly and electrical maintenance is fairly intricate.

Transmission failure

The transmission takes the power from the engine and channels it to the wheels. Cherokees are most likely to have transmission problems, specifically the 2014 Cherokee.

Sings of a failing transmission include the following:

  • Slipping gears
  • Slow response time
  • Difficulty accelerating
  • Stalling
  • Overheating
  • Loss of power
  • Shaking or shuddering

When your transmission goes bad, you can either get a transmission rebuild and only replace problem parts or you can replace the whole thing. Because you have some options with repair, costs range from $1,800 to $3,400. 

Electrical shifting Issues 

The two problems covered above contribute to this third one, electrical shifting problems. Because there are issues with the electrical components and common issues with the transmission, it follows that both of those will have an effect on the shifting. 

The problems reported with the shifting are jerky or rough shifting and slow responsiveness when shifting. The 2014 and 2015 Grand Cherokee are reported to have the most issues with the electronic shifting. To remedy this, consumers have replaced the transmission or the gear shifter. Replacing the shifter could cost anywhere from $200 to $250.

Rust

When purchasing an older Jeep, you should be cautious of rust. Wranglers seem to have the most problems with rust. While rust shouldn’t deter you from purchasing a Jeep, it should be considered carefully, as too much rust can be dangerous and impact your vehicle’s strength in crashes. Check the underbody for rust when looking at any used Jeep. Avoid any vehicles that have excessive rust.

If you have a Jeep, but the rust isn’t bad yet, you can slow the spread of rust and prevent new rust spots by taking care of your vehicle. Be sure to wash the undercarriage, especially in winter months. You can coat parts with rustoleum or other rust preventatives. Another option is to have the Jeep rust-proofed at the mechanic. 

Tailgate stiffness

One issue reported commonly among Jeeps is stiffness in the tailgate. People have complained of the tailgate coming open while driving or not closing at all. Some report that it’s much too stiff and takes a lot to close it. This is typically a Wrangler problem. While there are situations where you may need to replace the latch or handle, often, it’s just an inconvenience.

Models with the most problems

Grand Cherokee 

The Grand Cherokee has 3,191 complaints on Car Problems. It has the most problems out of any Jeep models. Its most common issues are TIPM failure and trouble shifting

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Liberty 

The Liberty comes in second with 2,217 complaints. The liberty most commonly has issues with engine failure and broken window regulators which means the power windows stop working.

Cherokee 

The Cherokee comes in third with 1,988 complaints. Its common problems are common for most Jeeps, regardless of their models. These issues include transmission failure and trouble with the shifter.

Wrangler

The Wrangler, considered to be the toughest of the bunch, has 1,987 reported complaints. This could be largely due to the fact that Wranglers are commonly used on rugged roads, so parts naturally wear and tear.

Regardless it’s important to consider the potential damage a Wrangler could sustain before buying new or used. The Wrangler’s most reported repairs were head replacement and TIPM replacement.

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