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What Tire Size Fits My Jeep?

I get questions all the time like, "What's the largest tire I can fit on my Jeep?" In reality, you can fit almost any size tire on your Jeep. It's just a matter of how much you want to lift it and how large you make the wheel openings. I've created the table below to give you a rough idea of what can be accomplished.

Many combinations of suspension lifts, body lifts, fender cutouts and spring over axle conversions (SOA) are possible that can offer the same results. Each combination offers its own positives and negatives. For example, a 2" suspension lift, body lift or shackle lift would all offer the same clearance for larger tires; however, they offer distinct advantages and disadvantages off road. I do not claim that this information is the difinitive answer; however, you will find it useful in determining the best strategy for your vehicle given the tire size you would like to run. Your own mileage will vary. Any given combinations may work fine on one Jeep and not on another.

Please keep in mind that the following table is only a guideline based on current trends. As such, I am not making a recommendation for your situation; I am making this information available to aid you in your own research. Installing a lift, or modifying your suspension in any way, may make your vehicle unsafe and will likely void your warranty. If you are unsure of your ability to properly preform these modifications, please seek professional assistance from a competant 4x4/Offroad shop near you.

If you are running a lift and tire size combination that is not account for in the chart below, please let me know and I'll update it accordingly.

Additional Considerations:

  CJ
1976-1986
TJ
1997-Current
XJ
 
YJ
1987-1996
ZJ
 
30" A lift is not required; however, a small amount of lift will help with axle articulation. A lift is not required. Typically, a TJ can run tires 1" larger than a YJ on the street. A lift is not required; however, a small amount of lift will help with axle articulation and clearance issues. A P235 will provide the best fit. A lift is not required; however, a small amount of lift will help with axle articulation. A lift is not required; however, a small amount of lift will help with axle articulation and clearance issues. A P235 will provide the best fit.
31" A lift is not required for street use; however, 1-2" of lift is recommended for trail use to allow full axle articulation. A lift is not required. Slight rubbing may occur at full axle articulation depending on actual tire selected. 3-4" of lift is recommended for trail use. Fender trimming may be required for tires wider than stock. A lift is not required for street use; however, 2-3" of lift is highly recommended for trail use to allow full axle articulation and minimize fender rubbing. 3-4" of lift is recommended for trail use. Fender trimming may be required for tires wider than stock.
32" 3" of total lift is recommended, but 4" of lift would provide the best axle articulation with no tire rubbing. 2-3" of total lift is recommended. Alternate wheel offset or fender flares may be needed if wide tires are selected. 5" of lift or 3-4" with fender trimming is required. 2-3" of total lift is recommended, but 4" of lift would provide the best axle articulation with no tire rubbing. 5" of lift or 3-4" with fender trimming is required.
33" 3-4" of suspension lift, or a spring over conversion (SOA) is recommended. A small amount of body lift may be used to increase tire clearance but isn't required. 3" of total lift is recommended. Alternate wheel offset or fender flares may be needed if wide tires are selected. 5" of lift and fender trimming is required. 6" of lift is recommended. 3-4" of suspension lift, or a spring over conversion (SOA) is recommended. A small amount of body lift may be used to increase tire clearance. 5" of lift and fender trimming is required. 6" of lift is recommended.
34" A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) is highly recommended. Some rubbing will occur. Some fender trimming or a body lift may be necessary to increase clearance. 4" of lift is highly recommended. Some rubbing may occur. A small body lift may be necessary to increase clearance. 6" of lift and major fender trimming is required. A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) is highly recommended. Some rubbing may occur. Some fender trimming or a body lift may be necessary to increase clearance. 6" of lift and major fender trimming is required.
35" A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) is required. Fender trimming or a body lift may be necessary to increase clearance. 4" of lift is required. 6" of lift is recommended. Some rubbing may occur. A small body lift or wider fender flares may be necessary to increase clearance and prevent rubbing. 6" suspension of lift and major fender trimming is required. A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) is required in addition to a 2-3" body lift. 1-2" of fender trimming may also be required in areas to prevent rubbing. 6" of suspension lift and major fender trimming is required.
36" A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) combined with a 2-3" body lift is necessary. Fender trimming may be required as well depending on wheel offset and tire width. 6" of suspension lift is recommended. Some rubbing may occur. A small body lift or wider fender flares may be necessary to increase clearance and prevent rubbing. Information is not available A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) is required in addition to a 2-3" body lift. 1-2" of fender trimming may also be required in areas to prevent rubbing. Information is not available
37" A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) combined with a 2-3" body lift is necessary. Major fender trimming is required as well depending on wheel offset and tire width. 6" of suspension lift is recommended combined with a 2-3" body lift. Wider flares may be necessary to increase clearance and prevent rubbing. Information is not available A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) is required in addition to a 2-3" body lift. 1-2" of fender trimming may also be required in areas to prevent rubbing. custom arched springs may be the best option. Information is not available
38" A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) combined with a 2-3" body lift is necessary. Major fender trimming is required as well depending on wheel offset and tire width. 8" of suspension lift is recommended. Wider flares and fender trimming may be necessary to prevent rubbing. Information is not available A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) is required in addition to a 2-3" body lift. 1-2" of fender trimming may also be required in areas to prevent rubbing. custom arched springs may be the best option. Information is not available
39" A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) combined with a 2-3" body lift is absolutely necessary. Major fender trimming is required as well depending on wheel offset and tire width. Custom arched springs are likely the best option to gain the necessary clearance. 8" of suspension lift is recommended combined with a 1-2" body lift. Wider flares and fender trimming is necessary to prevent rubbing. Information is not available A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) is required in addition to a 2-3" body lift. 1-2" of fender trimming may also be required in areas to prevent rubbing. custom arched springs may be the best option. Information is not available
40" A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) combined with a 2-3" body lift is absolutely necessary. Major fender trimming is required as well depending on wheel offset and tire width. Custom arched springs are likely the best option to gain the necessary clearance. 8" of suspension lift is recommended combined with a 1-2" body lift. Wider flares and fender trimming is necessary to prevent rubbing. Information is not available A 4" suspension lift (or SOA) combined with a 2-3" body lift is necessary. Major fender trimming is required as well depending on wheel offset and tire width. Custom arched springs are likely the best option. Information is not available

Tire Diameter Considerations

There is no doubt that larger tires size will greatly increase your Jeep's off road capabilities. They will inherently increase your minimum ground clearance, aid in traction, increase the ground contact patch, and improve climbing capabilities. However, all of this comes at a price.

Not only do larger tires cost more than smaller versions, increasing the diameter as little as an inch or two may require you change the differential ring and pinion gears (front and rear) to keep the engine running in its proper power range.

In addition, larger tires are heavier than smaller tires. This increases the rotating mass and thereby increases the leverage placed on the rest of the drivetrain.These tires will ultimately increase the torque loads placed directly on axles, u-joints & drive shafts. This becomes increasingly important if you are running a traction aide device (e.g. locker, limited slip differential, etc). These devices compound the forces in play and may demand replacement with beefier versions for off road performance.

Don't forget, larger tires are also more difficult to stop. Depending on how large an increase you pursue, you may have to increase your braking power. Sometimes simply switching brake pad/shoe materials may solve the problem; however, you will more likely have to swap in a larger master cylinder, larger disks, drums or calipers, a disc brake conversion or a combination of the above to get the performance back to what is was at stock. Don't underestimate the importance of proper stopping capabilities!

Increases weight caused by the larger tire and any axle or brake upgrades also increases unsprung weight. This does not matter much on the trail, but can make the ride a higher speeds much more harsh. When mounting the tire you will find that it is often much more difficult to balance the tire correctly. This is due to the extra weight of the tire, the increased rotating inertia of the tire and manufacturers tolerances on larger tires. It can take quite a bit of weight to balance a large tire and many shops that do not routinely handle tires of this size may not do a good job.

Putting all of this into perspective, larger tires will require more modifications to properly set up your Jeep.

Tire Width Considerations

Don't forget about the role that tire width plays. Just like a larger tire increases the rotating mass, a wider tire provides a larger contact patch with the ground. A larger contact patch provides more friction requiring more power to rotate putting even more stress on the driveline.

In addition, wider tires may require different a wheel offset and/or width for a proper fit. As a result, you will have to pay special attention to your turning radius; the increased width may now rub on the suspensions components when turning lock to lock. You may have to install wheel spacers or install wider axles to maintain tight turning radius that Jeeps as so well known for. The plus side is that the altered offset with wider tires will push increase the Jeep's tracking width providing more lateral stability off and on road. The down side is that you may no longer fit between those narrow trees on your favorite fire trail.

Finally, depending on your location, wider tires may require extended fenders to provide the proper coverage; requirements vary state by state.