How To Choose Tires For Your Jeep Wrangler – 33 vs 35 vs 37 inch

How To Choose Tires For Your Jeep Wrangler – 33 vs 35 vs 37 inch

I’m Ryan from, and today
we’re gonna talk about how you choose the best tire for your Jeep. We’re gonna be doing a lot of videos like
this so make sure you subscribe to our YouTube channel to see the latest. Today we’re gonna be talking about the pros
and cons of different tire sizes. We’re gonna take you out on the road and finally
hit the trail to really illustrate the differences. Today to show the three different tire sizes
that we’re talking about, we have three different Jeeps. Starting on my right, we have a four-door
Sahara that has a 2.5-inch TeraFlex lift kit with shocks. It is running a 17×9 inch mammoth black type
88 wheel with a 33-inch Nitto Terra Grappler tire. Directly behind me, there’s a Dune, four-door
JK that has a 3.5-inch Rock Krawler XFactor lift kit that is running Mammoth Boulder Beadlock
Style black wheels in the 17×9 and those are wrapped in a Mickey Thompson Baja MTZ that
is a 35×1250. Finally, we have a black four-door Rubicon
that also has the same 3.5-inch XFactor Rock Krawler lift kit, but it also has an inch
and a quarter rough country body lift which is why looks a little bit taller as well as
the flat fenders. That Jeep is running the Mammoth DWindow black
steel wheels in a 17×9, and those are wrapped in a Nitto Trail Grappler that is a 37×1250
inch tire. There are a few different reasons to wanna
put a larger tire on your Jeep. One is for the looks, but another is so that
you can roll over obstacles off-road a little bit easier and have a larger footprint off-road,
so you have more traction. But when you go up to a larger tire there
are certainly going to be pros and cons, and that’s what we’re gonna talk about today. So, the first tire we have over here is a
stock 31-inch tire off of a JK. This is a Bridgestone Dualer AT, and this
is a 255/7018. Now, tire sizes are in both metric and in
standard, we’re gonna be using standard inch measurements. So this is roughly equivalent to about a 31,
32-inch tire that is about 10, 10.5 inches wide on an 18-inch wheel. Now, this is going to be a factory wheel,
so it’s gonna have a little bit more backspacing than these aftermarket wheels. When you go with a wider tire, you need a
little bit less backspacing to clear because you do have that wider tire. But with a narrow 10.5-inch tire like this,
you can get away with a little bit more backspacing and tuck the wheel a little bit closer into
the Jeep. This is going to be as it says in the name,
an all terrain tire. So you’re gonna get very little tire noise
when you’re driving down the road. You’re also gonna get really good tire wear. With a big knobby mud terrain tire on the
street, you are gonna wear those tires out a little bit quicker than you would an all
terrain tire like this. This is also going to have a smaller sidewall
because it is a smaller tire and you’re running an 18-inch wheel. There’s less sidewall, so you have a little
bit better handling, a little bit less of that squishy feeling that you can get when
you have a larger sidewall. The next tire we’re talking about is a 33-inch
Nitto Terra Grappler, which is still an all terrain tire and it is going to be a little
bit more aggressive than that Bridgestone Dualer that we just talked about. Again, this is roughly equivalent to a 33-inch
tall tire that is 12.5 inches wide, and this is going to be on a 17-inch wheel. Now, because this is gonna be a taller tire
and a slightly smaller wheel, you are going to have a little bit more sidewall, so if
you’re taking turns at speed, you might have a little bit more of a squishy feel it may
not be as firm. Although let’s face it, Jeeps aren’t race
cars. You’re not driving a Jeep for its cornering
ability. What you’re going to get from a tire and wheel
combination like this because you do have a wider 12.5-inch tire on a 9-inch wheel,
is some additional sidewall pressure, and the ability to air down the tire a little
bit further off-road without the risk of losing that bead. As you air down a nice wide tire like this,
you’re getting a bigger and bigger footprint giving you even more traction to get over
obstacles. The 35-inch tire we’re talking about today
is a 35×1250 inch Nitto Trail Grappler MT that is a mud touring tire. So, this is going to have the big knobby treads
that aren’t going to wear quite as well on the road and give you a little bit more road
noise, but the pro is that this is going to give you some really good traction off-road. Now, when you go up to a 35-inch tire, you
have a couple of things going against you. One is just the height of the tire, and the
other is the weight. When you go up to a larger tire like this,
it changes your final drive gear ratio which can make your Jeep feel sluggish if you don’t
regear, and regearing is expensive. So, if you’re looking to save on parts and
keep your build a little bit on the lower end of the budget, I would recommend sticking
with a 33-inch tire. However, you are definitely going to notice
a difference. The other thing that you have going against
you with a big tire like this is the additional weight. That additional weight no matter what you’re
gearing is, will make the Jeep feel a little bit more sluggish. The pros to a bigger tire like this is that
you are gonna be able to roll over obstacles off-road a little bit easier, and when you
air this down, you’re gonna have an even larger footprint than you would with the 33. Finally, we have a 37-inch by 1250 Nitto Trail
Grappler MT which is the same tire as the 35, but of course, a couple inches bigger. A 37 is pretty much the largest tire you’re
gonna go with on your JK without starting to get into the realm where you have to cut
the body to clear these larger tires. A 37, while it looks mean, you have much less
resistance when you’re rolling over large obstacles off-road, and you can get a huge
footprint when you wear this tire down. You do end up with even more issues if you
don’t regear your Jeep. This is going to be a really big heavy wheel
tire combination, so you’re definitely gonna get a sluggish feel when rolling down the
road, so regearing is a must with a big tire like this one. Now that we’ve introduced the four different
tires let’s take a couple of them out on the road and then out on the trail to really illustrate
the pros and cons. So now that we introduced those tires, it’s
time to actually take a set out on the road and really compare and contrast and talk about
the pros and the cons of each one. Now, in general, I think everyone can agree
that they want a bigger tire. Bigger is always better, especially when you’re
talking about tires. However, again, there are some negatives to
having a big tire. The Jeep we’re driving in today has a set
of 33×1250 all terrain tires on it. And by having a smaller tire, that allowed
us to get away with a couple of things. This Jeep is still going to have a good amount
of pep and pick up because we do have a smaller 33-inch tire on it, all without the need to
regear. Now, any time you’re putting a larger tire
on your Jeep, it’s always a good idea, especially if you have an automatic transmission to use
a recalibrator. That will let the computer in the Jeep know
that you have a larger tire and allow it to adjust for the shift points, but you’re still
not going to get that full peppy feel back that you would if you had a factory tire on
the Jeep. So again, a 33-inch tire’s gonna give you
something that is larger. It’s going to give you a little bit more of
that off-road look. It’s also going to give you a little bit more
performance off-road by giving you the ability to roll over obstacles a little bit easier
and also giving you a bigger footprint. But, you don’t have the major drawback to
a 35-inch tire or a 37-inch tire of needing to regear to get that peppy feeling back. And these are all things that you have to
consider. If your Jeep is just going off-road, then
yeah, 37 is gonna be the better tire for your off-road situation giving you more clearance
and giving you the ability to roll over obstacles easier. And you don’t have to worry about the drawbacks
to driving a 37 on the road. But, if you do have a mixed purpose rig or
if you’re building a specifically on-road build, then a 33-inch tire is going to probably
be the better choice for you. If you are looking at a larger tire for off-road
ability, it’s important to remember that a bigger tire is going to give you more clearance
to the bottom of your axle. However, a lift is going to give you more
clearance to the bottom of your Jeep, to the belly pan, to the frame. And those two clearances are very different. In a minute here, we’re gonna hit the trail,
and we’re gonna be able to illustrate that as well as the difference between how easy
it is to roll over an obstacle with a 37-inch tire versus a 33-inch tire. So, here we are on the trail. I’m still in the Jeep with the 33-inch tires
on it, but we also have a Jeep right behind me with 37-inch tires on it. So, we can really show you guys the difference
between how these tires work off-road when you come up to an obstacle. The first thing we’re gonna do is find an
obstacle that we can clear easily with the 37s and really show you where you’re gonna
gain clearance with those tires versus the 33. And then we’ll show you how easily a 37-inch
tire rolls over an obstacle versus the 33-inch. So, you can really have an idea of where the
benefit comes in with having a larger tire off-road. So, with this obstacle that we found on the
trail, we’re really gonna illustrate the difference between the clearance you get from having
a larger tire, versus the clearance you get from having a larger lift. The larger tire will give you more clearance
between the ground and the axle, where the bigger lift is gonna give you more clearance
to your skid plates and your frame. So, let’s roll over this obstacle with the
Jeep with 33s and then with 37s to really show you the difference. Here comes the Sahara with the 33s, let’s
see how it does over the obstacle. So, as you can see with the 33-inch tires,
we did hit the log with the pumpkin. This is just a log, it’s not gonna cause a
lot of damage, and it’s gonna move out of the way. But if we were on a trail with rocks or if
that was a stump, and we hit it with speed, we may have peeled back the differential cover. We could have caused some damage. Or in the best case scenario, we just got
hung up, and we would have had to back up and try going around a different way. Now, we’ll see how the obstacle gets cleared
with the 37s to really illustrate why having larger tires is beneficial when you’re off-road. As you can see, now we have plenty of clearance
between the bottom of the pumpkin and the obstacle, even with this larger and differential
on the Rubicon than we had on the Sahara. And that’s all thanks to the 37-inch tires
versus the 33s. So, clearance to the bottom of the axle is
one thing, but you also get the ability to roll over obstacles easier when you have a
larger tire, so let’s find some other obstacles and check that out. Another benefit to having a big tire off-road
is that it rolls over obstacles a lot easier than a smaller one. So, the Rubicon on 37s will have much less
trouble getting over this log than the Sahara on the 33s. And even though this is just one log in the
middle of a fairly open trail, what that translates to when you’re off-road, and there’s lots
of obstacles, stumps or even rocks, is the day when you’re dragging the axle over obstacles
all day long, or you’re cruising along to the next trail. So, today we went over the pros and cons of
running a 33, a 35 and a 37-inch tire both on the road and on the trail. Make sure you comment below to let us know
what setup you’re running on your rig or if you have any questions about what we went
over. But for now, I’m Ryan from Thanks for watching.

About the Author: Michael Flood


  1. currently running 37's on a 5-inch lift. Stock gears and axels. Fox reservoir shocks. Have no problem at all off-road.

  2. Ryan question for you I put 35 on my jeep Wrangler Rubicon 17 inch wheels and I noticed when I’m doing 60 or higher I find it the steering is very tricky to drive and you must pay attention big time well I have my 34s on I never noticed it roll any help in this matter what it could be why the steering is very tricky now I drive thanks Joe from North Carolina

  3. The log was turned on its side when you drove over it with the 37s…. The 33 would have cleared it as well if it was laying the same way

  4. Do you need to re-gear with a Rubicon with the 35''s. I have a 2012 JK Rubicon, 3'' Tera flex suspension, and 35'' trail grapplers. The tires give a terrible ride and the weight is very noticeable. Completely pigs out the truck on Utah's mountain passes. Truck heats up to 245 degrees on superchips trail dash.

  5. Hey i have been told that if i get mickey thompson tires i would get my death wobble back on my jeep wrangler? Is that true?

  6. Hey man i have a question, i have a 2018 sahara i am planing to put a 325/65R18 size of tire im wondering if that will fit without puting a lift on the jeep, will thwy fit?

  7. Excellent work as always. We went with 38" x 14.5" MT/R with Kevlar. – Avengers.

  8. I just bought a brand new JL Sport S with the 3.45 gears. My custom performance Jeep dealer says I don't have to regear because of the 8-speed automatic. I want 35" but videos like this and other forum posts are giving me anxiety about the decision. He's been customizing Jeeps for 30 years so I want to trust him but fear uncertainty and doubt is clouding my judgement. For the record, he's giving me a Mopar 2" lift, 35" Nitto Ridge Grappler, and 20" Fuel wheels.

  9. Bummed got a 2 inch lift with 35 in tires pulled up to a stock and realized I was at the same height maybe even lower … how is this possible

  10. Why aren’t you telling these people the first thing that needs to happen is gearing the problems that are going to result from a set of 33s on 307 to 373 gears is Hugh. And so on.

    Gearing had to happen. First.

  11. What do you recommend for a Hummer H3 2008 that goes off-roading in mud once every few months but spends the rest of the time on highways and school runs?

  12. Any help appreciated…i just got 2005 jeep wrangler rocky mountain edition and I am looking to put the biggest that will fit without a had 31's when I got it and I want 33×12.50 on a 15 or 16 inch rim…will I be ok??? Also it is a 6 speed stock 3.73 gears

  13. Requested advice:

    Jeep: ordered 2019 JL Unlimited Rubicon.

    Usage: mostly highway commute and weekend light dirt trail and possible advancement to light obstacle trails; not major rock hound as yet. (First Jeep)

    A) Mopar 2” lift (factory warranty) or…

    B) 37” x 20”

    C) 37” x 18”

    D) 35” x 18

    E) 35” x 18

    Appreciate suggestions. (Live in metropolitan area with traffic and always an escape to the hills.

  14. Can you do a similar video for the TJ? Looking for recommended lift sizes in comparison to the desired tire size. Thanks!

  15. Video year and half old. Looking at new JL Rubicon, comes with 33" tires, but saying can put on 35" tires (get credit for 33" against 35" and no adjustments required. Is that true?

  16. What is the ideal backspacing I should have on a Tj 2.5 " lift with 33" tires ? Please get back to me I would appreciate it

  17. The euros who run that show need to sac up and put a V8 in that sumbitch to push the massive tires everyone wants to run.

  18. I want the look and the ability to trail it once or twice a year – the easy stuff, lol. I will do lift and 2" lift and 33s.

  19. I have 33's on my suburban with no lift, and it looks like it has more clearance than those Jeeps. not knocking them, my first car was a cj7.

  20. can you do a comparison video between the Morimoto Super7’s, Morimoto Sealed7’s and the KC Highlight Gravity Pro’s?

  21. If you want to know the gear ratio you need to be at, multiply the tire size you want by the current gear ratio and divide your old tire size, or stock set up. Then round up to the nearest gear ratio. I want 35×3.73÷31= 4.21, so I'd probably go with 4.56. But I see a lot of people go with 4.88. JMO

  22. I'm really intrigued by this video. I'm needing to come off of stock tires from a 15 Rubicon and hesitant about 33's thinking I'll want 35s after getting them. It's my daily driver and I'll do more offroading this year on the weekends. Can you help me work through my decision on 33 vs 35 and lift for no lift? Thanks.

  23. Larger diameter tires merely kill gas mileage and performance.
    And larger rim sizes are merely a way to fleece the gullible.
    The FACT is no vehicle made needs more than a 15 wheel size.

  24. Does anybody know where I can find a video or insight on what I need to do to my Wrangler if I wanna go 37’s for style, not for off-roading? I don’t go off-roading but I do want big tires & a high stance..

  25. Thank you for the great information. As someone who is new to jeeps, I’ve wondered what the pros and cons were to bigger tires. You answered a lot of my questions.

  26. Seeing slot of YJ, CJ, and TJ hate on the JK and JL, I thought Jeep was once a Jeep always a Jeep, clearly I was wrong, either way for those of you who seem to be intolerant of the new entries to the Jeep community just remember that they are part of your community now as well, and there is no reason to hate on them, at the end of the day y’all all have a Jeep for the same reasons.

  27. Doing any testing on the 2007-2011 is mute…that engine is/was known to be crap. It's a low duty cycle minivan engine. You will notice MUCH less "sluggishness" with the 2012 up powerplants.

  28. I have a 2016 JKU SPORT, 3.5" Rubicon Sport Kit lift with D44's frt. and rear, 5.38 gears and E-lockers, they are both sleeved and gusseted with chromoly shafts, HD ball joints, Reid racing knuckles, racing discs and pads. I'm running 35" Deagan 38 tires on Deagan 38 17×9 simulated beadlock wheels. I really want to move up to 37" or 38" tires. Do you think this is possible with out doing anything else to my rig. Maybe a body lift for extra clearance? Please advise. Thanks

  29. ! AWESOME !

    Well Done Class !

    Very Important Tips and Technical Information For a Beginner (Like Myself and Many … Thousands …More) .

    Nice Cars & Gears !

    Thanks a Lot !

    Best Regards !

  30. So my 2019 JL Sport has factory 32" tires. They are still new and wont be changed till they are worn out. That being said, planning on a gear change regardless, so the 35s are kind of what I am thinking. Mostly for looks. Want a 2" lift as well. Daily driver, plus pulling a travel trailer that loaded will be about 90-95% of max rating. Should be interesting.

  31. so a 37.0 in. tyres is a simple bolt on fit to the Jeep WRANGLER without any modifications inside the inner body of the wheel wells!!! Am I correct???

  32. Put the log in the same exact position???
    You rolled the log sideways for the 37s
    And had the knot up with the 33s 👎👎👎

  33. I am getting a 3.0 in Terraflex Lift installed and currently have 33s. The tires have less than 5000 miles on them. Really want 35s but will be trying to wait patiently.
    Thought, Comments or Concerns?
    Please share and let me know what to lookout for!

  34. I’m running a rough Country 4.5 inch lift on 33r15,s and it’s way more lifted than any of those wranglers and doesn’t require any re gearing thankfully , going up to 35s on stock axles will ruin your transfer case and axles unless you upgrade those

  35. I had 35 14.50 Mickey thompsons on my cj7 back in the day. I hydro planed at 70mph and went off the highway backwards and almost died. Felt like I was on ice. Still miss my jeep though. 🙁

  36. Good video!

    Here's the thing…people don't care about required mods to wheel with bigger tires. The factory axles, yes even the Rubi 44 which isn't really a 44, can't handle 37s. They can barely handle 35s. On top of that, you start pushing the 5.xx gear ratios on a D30 (teeny tiny ring and pinion) and you end up with very little gear meshing and that is yet another way you can and will break your axle. How many mall crawlers are out there with 35s smashing around town? Yeah, tons. How many actual wheelers run 35s and run them hard? Not many and those that do are breaking shafts, knuckles, folding their tie rod in half and spinning u joints all the time. Lessons learned: Big tires require big parts.

    Remember, kids. Just because you can afford big tires doesn't mean you're ready for them. Keep hitting them curbs and stay off the trail because if your broke ass snaps a shaft in front of me, you won't get any sympathy from me.

  37. I need some suggestions from the experts here, I have a Jeep JK Sahara, 6 spped manual, with a 3.5" JKS lift kit and running 35's. I am in need to regearing bad as 6th gear is useless 5th gear i rarely get into. when out on the trail the jeep struggles alot in 4-high trying to start on a hill. What Gearing would you recommend for my current set up? I may go to 37" tires later down the road. so i am thining 5.13's?

  38. For a daily driver, commuting in rain/snow, i won't go bigger than 10.5" width. I had 32×11.5 on my tj for a while and it sucked too much in the snow, and the stock rims wouldnt hold a balance for long enough. I dont off-road enough to justify that. 31×10.50s do plenty offroad for me and still drive good on the road.

  39. Someone explain to me the metric conversion, how is a 305x70x17 a 33" tire, when a 305x75x17 is equal to a 35" tire…

  40. First try it stock..I ran my 2018 JK stock last year at Buttler PA and did okay until the rain came. (30” 17’s on a Golden Eagle) My new setup is 33” with a mid-range priced 2.5” lift kit. MUCH better! Oh and of course I’ve “up armored” thre underside of the Jeep so I don’t bang up the diff.

  41. I have 33s and and regeared to 411 diffs,I have to say that my jeep has good acceleration is better off road and good at highway speeds.33 and up regear is a very good thing to consider.With stock gearing my TJ struggled with fourth gear on the highway!

  42. I just bought a 2011 JK that already had a 4in lift and 35s. How do I know if it's been regeared, or if it needs to be, or if it's good? It does feel slightly sluggish, especially when the econo mode kicks in. And I'm getting about 220 to the tank.

  43. The 305/70r17 is a 34 inch tire, not a 33 inch tire. A 305/65r17 is a 33 inch tire. This was a little misleading to see how the 33 would look under a 2.5 inch lift.

  44. So right now I'm running 33X10.50 on a tj with a 3 inch lift, I'm looking to upgrade to 35X12.50 with the same lift. Would that fit ok or cause any problems?

  45. OK, I get my new-to-me 2015 Sahara 2 door jeep tomorrow. I have stock tires. So first ones. :). Happy to learn from your video. I think I will stop at 35in. LOL. So are these tires also used in winter? Or do I need a separate set of winters? Also if I change tires….do I need to increase my lift kit. Do I have to also have big winters?

  46. i have a 2015 wrangler w/32" tires on it, looks great, but i hate the front suspension when you hit a road suface that is like 4 inches higher than the road your on, and it just bottom it out and jars the whole front dash when it hits the bump stops, is this normal, or do i need a better front suspension or lift on it, please let me know.

  47. I’m sure you get questions like this all the time, but with a stock gearing of 3.72 or 4.10, what would be the largest size you could comfortably go without regearing at those two options?

  48. This is super informative and helpful for me being a complete newbie to this type of thing! Thanks for such an awesome video!

  49. I get you're just trying to make a point that the 37" has better ground clearance but the log's high point was turned to the side for the 37" tire jeep and sticking up for the 33" tire jeep. Had it been turned to the side for the 33" tire jeep, it probably would have cleared too. I know i am splitting hairs here and you make a valid point about more ground clearance is better but you could have done it without the attempt at trickery. Still a very informative vid though. Take care

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *