wrangler steering problems

2020 Jeep Wrangler steering problems

Several automakers have a rich history dating back to the early 20th century, but only a few of them can claim to have expertise in manufacturing rugged and stylish off-road SUVs.

Jeep is one such brand, it has a strong legacy of purpose building SUVs for off-roading. The roots of the brand can be dated back to the turbulent days of world war 2 when the army hired it to make reliable off-road vehicles that could crawl through rough terrains.

After the war, the company decided to test its fate in the consumer market and soon became a leading manufacturer of 4×4 SUVs. One of the most famous 4×4 SUV made by Jeep is the Wrangler.

The Wrangler made its debut in 1986 and quickly became popular thanks to its classic looks and awesome off-roading capabilities, the vehicle is currently being sold in several markets because of its healthy demand.

However, Jeep has seen several owners since it started making mainstream 4×4 SUVs, mainly due to its financial woes, also the company’s quality standards have taken a major hit ever since the brand was bought by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) in 2014.

There is a whole array of manufacturing faults that can be seen in newer Jeep vehicles, these vehicles traditionally have not been reliable, but the built quality especially has been falling ever since Fiat Chrysler has taken over the brand. FCA is notorious for manufacturing unreliable cars because of excessive cost-cutting measures.

The steering issues in the new Wrangler has caused new recalls by FCA, further elongating the long list of recalls by the brand.

Steering problems in 4th generation Wranglers:

One of the dominant problems currently facing Wrangler owners is related to the steering wheel. The issue is persistent in nearly every 4th generation Wrangler, people have been complaining about overinflated tires and loose steering column bolts in their Wranglers since 2018.

More than 3500 owners have complained to the National highway safety administration (NHTSA) in the US and the agency is currently investigating this problem. Worthy to mention here is the fact that the Wrangler has already been recalled for misaligned welds that can probably cause steering problems.

  • The most received complaints are related to the frequent veering off to either the left or right side. The problem exacerbates when the speed is above 35mph and even decreasing the tire pressure does not help. Jeep dealerships usually turn away the customers saying it’s a typical “Jeep characteristic”, meaning they are not meant to be driven faster and are made to be mainly driven on rough terrains at low speeds. However, their excuse is unacceptable as no off-roading SUV to this date has faced this issue, even older Jeep vehicles didn’t have this problem. The problem can be especially exhausting on long tours as the steering requires constant monitoring.
  • The second issue currently plaguing most of the latest generation Wranglers is the intense vibration through the steering wheel that can be felt after passing over a road bump at an above-normal speed. The vibration is prominent and usually subsides after a moment.

Possible Solutions to Wrangler Steering Problems:

The company had last year announced that it will fix the issue free of cost. A barrage of customer complaints forced the manufacturer to cooperate and it was announced last that the Jeep dealers will install a hydraulic device to “mitigate” the vibration.

Important to notice here is the use of the word “mitigate”, meaning even the fix would not completely dampen the vibrations.

Fortunately, there have been no casualties due to this malfunction. If you are facing the same issue in your Wrangler then take it to a Jeep dealership and ask them to install the hydraulic device or replace the steering gear and if the problem persists then get your electric hydraulic power steering (EHPS) software updated by the dealership.

Your warranty should cover this fix, but you may need to pay for the repair at first, and only then you may be reimbursed.