2.0, 2.5 or 3.0 Shocks for Jeep Wrangler?
September 21, 2020
When upgrading the shocks on your Jeep, the question often arises about what size shocks are necessary. Should you get the very popular 2.0″ diameter shocks? Can you benefit from larger 2.5″ shocks? Or what about massive 3.0″ shocks? We’re going to help answer these questions and help you decide which is right for you.
*Please note. The info below is referring to Fox and King shocks. Other shocks on the market may or may not follow the same guidelines due to different construction or valving.
2.0″ Diameter Shocks
2.0” shocks are by far the most popular size for Jeeps. The 2.0″ size is very tuneable and we can make them ride excellent on the street, cruising fire roads, and tackling hard 4×4 trails. The 2.0″ IFP shock is appealing due to the price point, however they won’t have the performance a remote reservoir version has.
-Large variety of lengths and lift heights available
-Affordable price point
-Remote Reservoir versions can be rebuilt & tuned
-Daily Driver with smooth ride quality
-Limited use on washboard roads
-IFP shocks are not tuneable or rebuildable by AccuTune Off-road. For more info about 2.0 IFP shocks, please take a look at this article.
2.5″ Diameter Shocks
2.5” shocks are also very popular and offer a lot more off-road performance and durability than 2.0’s. The 2.5” shocks from Fox and King do ride stiffer on the street than 2.0’s
-Big bore shock body can handle more off-road abuse
-Adjusters are more effective (TECH: Fox DSC Adjusters / King Adjusters)
-Last longer with hard use (washboard, whoops etc)
-Hard off-road use, rough trails, fast off-road
-Jeeps that see lots of off-road miles per/year
3.0″ Diameter Shocks
3.0” shocks are very large for a Jeep and are only recommended in external or internal bypass models. The giant size gives you incredible off-road performance.
–Big bore and bypass design prevents bottoming out
-Great ability to withstand a lot of off-road miles
–Easy to adjust stiffness (external bypass only)
-High speed off-road use, whoops and washboard road
External and internal bypass shocks are height sensitive, setting proper ride height is required. Internal bypass shocks are difficult to tune and only recommended for race cars who can spend the time in the desert removing shocks.
Frequently Asked Questions:
-Does the weight of my Jeep matter when choosing shocks? Does heavy Jeep = big shocks?
~It depends. For street and trail use 2.0 Shocks can be tuned for a heavy Jeep, but if that Jeep plans to do a lot of desert driving, whoops etc, they would be better off with 2.5 shocks.
-Which shocks should I get if I want the best street ride, but also go off-road?
~For most people the 2.0 shocks are the best solution.
-If I want to daily drive my Jeep and also be able to drive very aggressively off-road, which shocks should I get?
~3.0 External Bypass shocks offer a no-compromise solution.
-Are there any disadvantages to running too large of a shock?
~Large shocks are naturally stiffer than smaller shocks, so if a shock is too big it may ride poorly. This is why we only recommend bypass shocks for 3” diameter.
-Is it worth getting the more expensive Remote Reservoir Shocks vs an IFP?
~Most IFP shocks are not serviceable (tuning or rebuilding) so they are considered throw away shocks. Remote Reservoir shocks can be tuned and rebuilt, and are considered lifetime shocks (they can last the life of the Jeep with proper care). Read here for more information.
-Is it ok to upgrade the front shocks (tuned) before the rear?
~Upgrading one end before the other is common, just be aware they vehicle may be out of balance, and behave oddly until both ends are done with shocks from the same tuner.
-What about running an external bypass shock? Internal bypass shock?
~External bypass shocks are excellent for Jeeps when tuned properly, otherwise they can be soft and bouncy. The external adjustments are nice for fine tuning. Internal bypass shocks can work similarly to external bypass, but they are much more difficult to tune, and tend to be more height sensitive. Due to the sensitivity and difficulty of tuning it can be hard for Jeeps to get your bang for the buck out of internal bypass.