Are you ready to invest in a new set of wheels and tires for your Jeep? Combined with a fresh set of wheels, some
bulky, meaty tires will turn any Wrangler into a rugged, trail-conquering beast. Maybe you’ve been browsing
the CJ’s website and found a set of rims that caught your eye, like these aggressive Fuel Wheels. You’ve decided on
what style you want, but how do you know what Jeep Wrangler bolt pattern you have? While wheel size can be
determined easily by what size tires you
have, the lug pattern is a bit trickier.
What Are Jeep Wrangler Bolt Patterns?
The first step to finding out the bolt pattern for your Jeep is to count how many mounting holes or studs there are
in the wheel. Similar to the majority of modern vehicles, most Jeeps will have five lugs. Seems simple enough,
right? Well, we’re not done quite yet.
While most Jeeps have five lugs, that doesn’t mean that the
spacing between each stud will always be identical. So the bolt pattern will not only tell you how many studs or
holes there are, but it will also tell you the spacing between them. If you imagine the lug nuts form an invisible
circle, it’s a bit easier to conceptualize.
Both the JK and JL Wrangler have 5-lug wheels with 5-inch spacing,
meaning the bolt pattern would be 5 x 5 inches. Older Jeeps often used a 5 x 4.5" spacing.
Wheels that don’t have the same bolt pattern as your stock
rims will not fit, which is why it is vital to make sure you have the correct information before dropping a bunch of
cash on new wheels. Using the proper lug nuts is also important to prevent any damage to the wheel or potential
Jeep Wrangler Bolt Patterns: How to Measure
Measuring the bolt pattern on your rig doesn’t have to be overly difficult. Remember that imaginary circle? Now you just need to find out the diameter. How you measure the bolt pattern will be based on how many lug nuts the wheel has. As we already established, most Jeeps have five lug nuts.
Starting from the outer edge of one stud, measure from the back of the hole to the center of the opposite stud, which means there should be one lug nut between the two lug nuts you are measuring. If you happen to have a four-lug, six-lug, or eight-lug pattern, you just measure from the center of one stud to the center of the stud directly across.
Jeep Wrangler Bolt Pattern Chart
For detailed information on Jeep Wrangler bolt patterns and other wheel specifications, be sure to check out this
Jeep Wrangler Bolt Patterns
||5 x 4.5 in.
||5 x 4.5 in.
||5 x 5 in.
||5 x 5 in.
|Lug Nut Size
||1/2 x 20
||1/2 x 20
||1/2 x 20
||14mm x 1.5 in.
|Factory Wheel Size
|Hub Center Bore
Along with taking your Wrangler’s bolt pattern into consideration, backspace and offset are two other important
factors to account for when shopping around for new wheels and tires. If you’re planning
on doing any off-roading and thinking about putting larger tires on your rig, then you’re going to want to
make sure you have the proper fitment.
Without measuring properly, you could run into some issues with tire rub,
which will be prevalent especially when traveling over obstacles on the trail. Nobody wants tire rub, as it can
negatively affect handling.
Wheel Offset & Backspacing
Wheel offset can be described as the distance from the centerline of the wheel to the hub mounting surface. The
offset basically tells you how much the wheel will cave in or extend outward. There are three main types of offset:
zero, positive, and negative.
Zero offset simply means that the wheel’s centerline is even with the hub
Positive offset wheels have a hub mounting surface close to the front of the wheel, which gives it
a flatter appearance. Most stock wheels have a positive offset.
While positive offset wheels extend outward, negative offset rims are going to cave in, with the hub mounting surface closer to the back of the wheel. Deep dish
wheels are a great example of negative offset. Having a negative offset typically leads to a more attractive design
as there is more room to work with.
So now that we have a better understanding of wheel offset, what is backspacing? Similar to offset, backspace is the
distance from the hub mounting surface to the back of the wheel.
Backspacing is important to account for in order to
make sure that there’s enough room to fit all the important brake and suspension components behind the wheel.
Measuring both the offset and backspacing are key to preventing tire rub and fitment problems. Offset is typically
measured in millimeters, while backspace is measured in inches.
Find the Best Wrangler Wheels
Since buying new wheels and tires is a huge investment, it is extremely important to make sure you have all your
ducks in a row before purchasing.
Replacing the factory rims and
tires will not only give your rig a killer, more aggressive look but it will also enhance off-roading performance as
well. Swapping out the stock rims for some menacing black wheels will definitely give your
Wrangler a meaner look, but nothing will improve your off-road cred like a new set of mud-terrain tires. Be sure to
check out the CJ Off-Road YouTube channel for
installation guides, product snapshots, off-roading videos and more!
Image Credit: jeep.com
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