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Which Open Trailer to Haul a 4-Door Jeep Wrangler Unlimited?

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  • Moses Ludel changed the title to Which Open Trailer to Haul a 4-Door Jeep Wrangler Unlimited?
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Hi, Jeff...Good questions...If you can pick any new or used trailer, I recommend an aluminum open deck car hauler like a Featherlite or equivalent.  Here are the 3110 and 3182 series:



Your Wrangler Unlimited, if lightly accessorized, likely weighs 5,000-5,500 pounds?  (Get a curb weight slip from a local truck scale before selecting a trailer.)  When selecting a deck length, I suggest contacting Featherlite and others for a recommendation.  This is based on your Wrangler's overall length (not just the wheelbase).  You want adequate space for your tie-down straps to get a good pull at the front and rear.  Be certain the deck has safe D-rings rated for the vehicle weight.  Get quality tie-down straps from Summit Racing or a trailer supplier.  Make sure the straps are rated far in excess of your Wrangler's weight. 

As a safety note, we just had a traffic incident in our town.  A full-size pickup truck was pulling a midsize pickup on a car hauler open trailer.  The tow vehicle approached a round-about and apparently made a panic stop.  The midsize pickup broke loose from the trailer deck (likely not supported properly rearward) and sailed off the front of the trailer deck.  The midsize pickup crashed into the tailgate of the tow vehicle and straddled itself over the trailer yoke.  It took over an hour to extricate the wedged truck and get traffic moving.  By then, traffic had backed up more than a mile...The cause was a bad tie-down method.

I am an advocate for towing a vehicle on a car hauling trailer.  A safe, properly rated car hauler with operational brakes and good strapping works for me.  I avoid exaggerated "dovetail" or "beavertail" trailers; they seem practical at face value but often drag on driveway approaches.  From my experience, a straight/flat deck with longer, well engineered ramps works best.  When loading 4x4s, I use low range and first gear for control.

There are less expensive trailers like my Parker Performance wooden deck car hauler.  I have had this trailer since the mid-nineties.  Serviced regularly, this trailer has never let us down.  Original cost was under $2000 with four-wheel electric brakes and a 7,500-pound rating.  Your Unlimited is heavier than some imagine (let us know the actual curb weight), and that's why I suggest an aluminum trailer.  These trailers can be found new or used.

I am in the process of restoring/replacing the wood decking on our trailer and will be sharing that how-to project using Blackwood Lumber decking and a fresh paint job after 15-years of exposure to UV.  The project will run at the magazine.  Here is our trailer in tow mode years ago with the CJ Jeep onboard:


When towing with a motorhome, be certain to use a rear camera for safety and security.  You can keep an eye on the cargo and trailer tires that way.


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