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Installing a TeraFlex HD Hinged Tire Carrier - 2012 Jeep Wrangler Long-Term Road Test Posts: 9,975
edited December 2014 in Jeep
imageInstalling a TeraFlex HD Hinged Tire Carrier - 2012 Jeep Wrangler Long-Term Road Test

The oversized tire and wheel package was too heavy for my 2012 Jeep Wrangler's tailgate, so I installed the TeraFlex HD Hinged Carrier.

Read the full story here


  • ebeaudoinebeaudoin NE IllinoisPosts: 509
    Very cool write-up, Dan. Thanks for going through the whole process!
  • grijongrijon Posts: 147
    Yes, great job!
  • fordson1fordson1 Posts: 1,512
    edited December 2014
    So the entire tailgate assembly now weighs 40 lbs. more than it did - wheel and tire are 20 lb. over factory, and the Teraflex item itself is 20 lbs. How do you feel about the body structure itself where the hinges bolt on - ? And maybe hardened T50 bolts should have been included rather than the factory ones, for that load-bearing side.

    How about paint integrity where the old hinges came off and the new ones go on? Am I seeing nothing but primer under those hinges? Good for you that you're in the wonder Wranglers up here in the NE are such rustbuckets.
  • fordson1fordson1 Posts: 1,512
    So I use the abbreviation for "assembly" and it's non-permissible content?
  • actualsizeactualsize Santa Ana, CaliforniaPosts: 451
    edited December 2014
    Everyone I've talked to about it says the body side is not a problem. As an engineer myself the 6 bolts are more than up to it from a shear and pull-out standpoint. Same goes for the stiff body structure behind them. And don't forget there's a latch and pin on the left that shoulders a little over a quarter of the extra load. The tailgate, on the other hand, is thinish folded sheet metal that is spot-welded together, and the tire carrier spaces the spare's weight our 8 inches from it.

    Larger tires like mine aren't just heavier, they also have a center of mass that's even farther away from the tailgate because the wheels and tires are wider and have a different backspacing. It's the wrenching torque of that bouncing mass that does it, so the tailgate's troubles are compounded because that extra weight is sitting farther out at the end of a longer lever arm. The bolts on the body side don't care so much about this, though.

    Twitter: @Edmunds_Test

  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    edited December 2014
    @fordson1, we have an automated filter now and it catches stuff like that. I edited your original comment so it makes sense again.

    One thing about having a CJ-5 as your first car, like I had back in '74, is that I avoided shopping the old style CR-Vs and 4Runners in later years. Those gates are a pain in the assembly, if you get my drift.
  • bankerdannybankerdanny Posts: 1,021
    Tire carrier issues are a long standing problem with Wranglers. I assume this is somewhat intentional because Chrysler would lose all the money it makes on accessory tire carriers if it were to design and install a properly strong one to begin with.
  • actualsizeactualsize Santa Ana, CaliforniaPosts: 451
    edited December 2014
    FCA/Chrysler/Jeep didn't make any money on this tire carrier. And as a carmaker it'd be hard to hit fuel economy and cost/profitability targets if you over-designed every piece and part to allow for weight owners may or may not add after they buy it. They have to draw the line somewhere and allow the aftermarket to cater to the enthusiasts.

    That said, big (and heavy) tires and wheels are a popular non off-road and extra-profit DEALER upgrade. The factory tailgate and spare tire carrier design should probably better-account for this reality. But they'd still have to draw the line somewhere even if they did beef it up. Where would they stop? 33" tires? 35"? 37"? The weight and wheel width can get silly in a big hurry.

    Twitter: @Edmunds_Test

  • fordson1fordson1 Posts: 1,512
    @actualsize: That's body-on-frame, so it's unclear to me how stiff or strong that body structure is there. If nobody else is having trouble with it, I guess I'd let it go, too. I would probably torque it carefully, although not knowing what the bolts are threading into, I would not try to increase the factory figure. Probably put thread locker on there, too (red, since I doubt it's ever coming off).

    @stever: Thanks.
  • Would threadlocker be helpful in this install? I would have used blue or even red on the body bolts.
  • actualsizeactualsize Santa Ana, CaliforniaPosts: 451
    Threadlocker is part of it. Good question. I didn't mention it because I forgot to take that picture, frankly. But it's part of the included instructions.

    Twitter: @Edmunds_Test

  • misterfusionmisterfusion Posts: 471
    edited December 2014
    Great post as usual, Dan. Very informative. Recently I saw the Jeep in the background of another blog post, and I thought, "Isn't that the old...? Oh yeah, Dan Edmunds bought it after the test!"
  • Hey Dan, Did you ever upgrade your t-case, gearing, lockers?
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