Can A Jeep Wrangler Tow A Camper (Real Facts)


Can A Jeep Wrangler Tow A Camper

Have you ever wondered if a Jeep Wrangler can tow a camper? Look no more. We´ve got you covered.

Your Jeep Wrangler is made for the great outdoors, and you may be wondering what kind of camper your trust Wrangler can tow.

Informally most Wranglers have a somewhat limited tow capacity of between 2,000lbs and 3,500 lbs. But does that mean you can’t tow a camper?

A Jeep Wrangler can safely tow several lighter travel trailers, such as pop-ups and teardrops. However, larger rigs are not in the scope of your Jeep Wrangler average tow capacity. Always ensure that you include your cargo, fluids, and passenger weight into your towing calculations. 

If you own a Jeep Wrangler and you long to explore the open road for some camping adventures, there are plenty of travel trailers to suit your towing capacity.

Here are some factors to consider when towing a camper with your Jeep and some travel trailer options to suit your Wrangler style.  

What is a Jeep Wranglers Towing Capacity?

Although the Jeep Gladiator can tow up to 7,650 pounds, you will need a Sport or Sport S trim, automatic transmission, and a Max Tow package which includes a host of features.

Jeep Wranglers, unfortunately, don’t quite match the Gladiator, even with the best tow packages.

Pre-2018, most Jeep Wrangler models had a more limited tow capacity of 2,000lbs with a few exceptions, such as the four-door JK Unlimited Wrangler series.

Typically the two-door Wrangler models offer a lower tow capacity than the four-door models. While the four-door provides an average of 35,00. The two-door comes at a standard 2,000lbs tow capacity.

This lower rating is likely due to the shorter wheelbase and higher center of gravity. However, for the intents of this article, we will take the Wrangler as a standard 3,500 lbs capacity as most of the new Wrangler four-door models have a standard 3,500 tow rating. 

Read also: What Can I Tow with 3,500 lbs. Capacity? (With 6 Examples)

Can A Jeep Wrangler Tow a Camper?

A Jeep Wrangler can not tow an average-size camper that rounds off at about 5,200lbs dry weight (Weight without fluid and cargo.)

Once you add in cargo, gear, and water, an average camper would weigh around 1,500lbs more, which is right out of the average Jeep wrangler’s range of 3,500lbs.

However, there are several lightweight travel trailers that your Jeep could safely tow, considering that most experts recommend that you never go higher than 20% of your total tow capacity for safe operation.

Maxing out your tow capacity can affect your transmission over time and make uphills a challenge when on the road. 

Read also: Can A Jeep Pull A Horse Trailer? // Best Jeep For Towing

How Much Weight In Gear Does an Average 2000lbs Travel Trailer Take?

According to the Camper Report, a general rule of thumb is the water and gear ratio to camper size usually averages out at about 250lbs (113kg) per square foot of trailer box length (not including the hitch.

So you may calculate your approximate load size when considering travel trailer makes and models.

It is essential to bear in mind that water weighs 8 pounds (3.6 kg) per gallon, so, for example, a 48-gallon tank on a larger type travel trailer would add almost 400 pounds (181kg) to the trailer weight.

Food, clothing, electronics, and camping gear all add up when it comes to determining the correct travel trailer dry weight for your Jeep Wrangler.

Read also: How to Measure Towing Capacity, GVWR, GCWR, Truck, Trailer

What Trailers Can a Jeep Wrangler Tow?

Forest River Flagstaff E-Pro Travel Trailer (From 1133lbs)

The Forest River travel trailer comes in a variety of floor plans starting from 1133 lbs dry weight.

The lightweight aluminum frame is roofed with a streamlined fiberglass cap, and the small trailer maximizes interior space with strategically placed storage areas and murphy beds made for two people. 

Read also: 55 Best Small Travel Trailers / lightweight Travel Trailers For Sale

Riverside Retro Travel Trailer (From 1,545 Dry Weight)

Jayco’s Hummingbird Travel trailer is a perfect fit for your Jeep Wrangler. The trailer boasts impressive interior woodwork and an integrates A-frame as a sturdy backbone.

A specialized pressure bonding process ensures that your trailer frame is lightweight but exceptionally strong.

The interior is modern with add ons such as refrigerators, microwaves, and a two-burner kitchen stove. 

Cricket Camper (Dry Weight: 1,753 to 1800 lbs)

TAXA’s Cricket is a NASA-inspired travel trailer with sleek lines like a small spaceship that fits neatly behind your Jeep wrangler.

The trailer houses two adults and two kids and offers integrated plumbing and electrics to make your getaway a success.

The pop-up roof gives additional space and height, and the optional 5,000 BTU aircon will keep you cool on your adventures. 

Happier Camper Traveller (1,800 Dry weight)

This cutest travel trailer offers their Adaptiv technology for you to customize and configure the interior much like a Tetris game to maximize your living spav=ce while keeping your trailer light.

The honeycomb fiberglass floor is light yet robust, and there are two modular living areas in the front and back of the trailer. The trailer is solar-ready and offers all-weather insulation and kitchen and bathroom facilities. 

Classic Timberleaf Teardrop Camper (1,500lbs)

This supremely retro camper so fits your Jeep that it has an optional Jeep style finish on its rugged off-road option.

The Classic also boasts a queen-size bed and has vintage-inspired Baltic Birch plywood on all the interior surfaces.

 This offering does not offer bath and toilet facilities but has a solar shower add-on. This camper is the perfect overnighter with its airy build and an oversized 44″ x 26″ skylight. 

Hiker Trailer Extreme Off-Road  (1350 lbs)

Besides being a rugged and tough trailer with great elevation and leaf-spring suspension with shocks, this bare-bones offering doesn’t offer many frills and features.

The Hiker offers a rear galley with a top and middle shelf to close the cabin.

They also provide a basic 110v power strip and one light fixture. However bare bones this is, it is one of the most economical and suited for those who like weekend travels on challenging terrain. 

Read also: Small RV Rentals: Class B, Travel Trailer, Pop Ups (Best Deals)

Can a Jeep Wrangler Tow an Airstream?

The Airstream Sport 16 weighs in at 2,860 with the battery, so essentially you could tow one of these on your Jeep.

You would be stretching your limits with this Airstream offering, so traveling light would be an absolute must.

Considering the water tank and fuel weight, it would leave very little to load into the trailer. Perhaps if you choose to visit a place with plenty of facilities, you could load up once you arrive and load off all but the essentials when you leave. 

What Effects a Wrangler’s Tow Capacity?

Towing capacity figures in and of themselves don’t really give an accurate picture of exactly how much your Jeep Wrangler may safely tow.

You need to factor in payload capacity, tongue weight, and your GVWR, which influence your actual tow capacity.

GVWR and Towing Capacity

The GVWR or gross vehicle weight rating refers to the maximum capacity that a vehicle may safely carry and takes into account all passengers, personal effects, and added cargo along with the curb weight (vehicle without a load) as well as the tongue weight of your trailer. 

Although GVWR is the total weight capacity of a vehicle without the trailer attached, it does substantially influence your towing capacity.

Without the GVWR value, you may inadvertently overload your truck which may cause mechanical failures such as buckled frames and drivetrain failure. 

GCVWR and Tow Capacity

The GCVWR differs from your GVWR in that it refers to the gross combined vehicle weight rating of both your Jeep and the GVWR of the accompanying trailer. Your GCVWR is essential in determining your tow capacity.

You may calculate your towing capacity by subtracting your truck’s curb weight from your GCVWR, which gives you your tidal tow capacity.

Towing capacity and trailer Tongue Weight

Jeep drivers should ensure that the trailer tongue weight is included in the combined weight of occupants and cargo (GVWR.)

Typically the two-door jeeps have a 200lbs tongue weight capacity, and four doors hold a 350lb capacity.

Tongue weight is the downward force that the trailer tongue exerts on the hitch ball. If you do not have access to your trailer tongue weight, it is typically between 10 and 15% of the total loaded trailer weight. 

Payload and Tow Capacity

Your Jeep’s maximum payload capacity refers to the total accumulated weight of everything (and everyone) on and in your Jeep. This weight includes:

  • Passengers
  • Winch
  • Fuel
  • Skid plates
  • Gear
  • Driver.

Your Jeep’s payload affects your towing capacity because the greater the load in your Jeep bed and cabin, the more strain you place on your car’s mechanical components.

The higher the payload, the less towing capacity your Jeep will have.

An excellent way to find a reasonably accurate payload capacity is to subtract your Jeep’s curb weight (weight while empty) from its maximum allowed weight. What you have left over is your payload capacity. 

Last Thoughts 

Even if you invest in a Jeep Gladiator with all the maximum tow package add ons, it is unlikely that you will be towing a 33-foot Classic XL Airstream.

You may have a limited tow capacity, but there are still many lighter travel trailers that you can safely tow with your Wrangler for your getaway adventures.

References

https://www.jeep.com/wrangler/specs.html

https://www.jeep.com/gladiator/utility.html

Mike Gilmour

Hi, I'm Mike, co-founder, and editor of RV and Playa. My passion is traveling (with my RV) and enjoying the day at the beach (Playa)! Well, I originally created this blog as a way to share what I've learned by experimenting with the RV lifestyle, and I want to help others develop in life through new skills and opportunities.

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