Wheel weight ramifications

Hurlow8

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hi all- first post - new 2018 JL (sport) owner.
I would like to upgrade the stock wheels, which apparently weigh around 25lbs if other forum posts are to be trusted, to a set of wheels that weigh 35-37 pounds, which seems pretty standard for Fuel, Black Rhino, etc. wheels. My concern is sluggishness and MPG. I’ve read (I think) all existing threads on wheel weight and MPG, but most dealt with tire tread or type changes as well.
My question is: for those of you who have upgraded to similar aftermarket wheels from stock, should I expect noticeable performance or mpg changes (or vehicle wear increases) with the same tires (for now), but 10-12lb heavier wheels?
Any thoughts or experiences are appreciated, as this is my daily driver.
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Carlton

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If you are worried about MPG and sluggishness you probably bought the wrong vehicle. They are staples of a wrangler.

Adding weight will impact MPG, acceleration, and stopping distance. How much really depends on the difference in weight. It will also wear parts quicker.

The tires that come on a sport most likely won't be able to be mounted to the aftermarket wheel as the wheel will be too wide and out of spec.
 

WranglerMan

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As stated if mpg is an issue you are better suited to leave the Jeep stock, I swapped wheels and tires and also had a lift done and lost several mpg but I knew it was coming and accepted it.
 

kirbyx

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Adding heavier and/or greater diameter tires will decrease acceleration and braking power more than heavier rims will. The further mass is from an axle, the less acceleration you get for the same torque.
Once you get up to a steady speed, your mpg will decrease if you have greater contact area with the ground, an inefficient tread design, or softer rubber. Greater air resistance from larger tires and/or big treads will decrease the mpg a little.
I am concerned at those who think that because one buys a Jeep, one should not be worried about mpg, but then I'm in the minority :)
 

Namib

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This can get very technical if you want and if you like math, look here.

Bottom line, you have to add the mass of the wheel multiplied by about 2 to get an equivalent weight gain. So if you add 10lbs per wheel, you are basically adding 20lbs per wheel so 80lbs total plus 10lbs for the spare. Bottom line is the wheels is like carrying half a passenger permanently. I do not think you will notice much in in acceleration and breaking, and a very minor MPG hit.

Now this adds up quickly if you start going to bigger tires. In addition to the weight of the tires, the gearbox changes are not optimized (unless you re-gear), so you MPG will take a larger hit, and you will start to notice acceleration and breaking differences.
 

WXman

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The stock Sport wheels are actually less than 20 lbs. each. The stock Sport alloy wheel + tire + TPMS sensor + weights weighs 55 lbs. They are very very light, for fuel economy and safety purposes.

As you mentioned, some of the aftermarket wheels are well over 30 lbs., especially if you go with a 9" width. Larger tires are also much heavier due to more rugged construction. The factory picks tires specifically for flimsy, lightweight requirements. So yes, you're going to lose MPGs, braking distance, and acceleration. How much depends on what you go with, but typically I see 2-3 MPGs loss overall in mixed city/highway driving.

I strongly disagree that the Wrangler is sluggish and drinks fuel in stock form. These are actually very economical compared to all the other midsize 4x4s on the market and they are sporty and quick, all things considered. I also disagree that people who own 4x4s shouldn't be concerned about saving fuel and money. That's a stupid statement. In fact, the lower your fuel economy is, the more $$$ you stand to save by saving every 1 MPG you can. Go ask a trucking company how important fuel economy is. Doesn't matter if you drive a Prius or a Hummer, everyone should be looking to save fuel.
 
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Hurlow8

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The stock Sport wheels are actually less than 20 lbs. each. The stock Sport alloy wheel + tire + TPMS sensor + weights weighs 55 lbs. They are very very light, for fuel economy and safety purposes.

As you mentioned, some of the aftermarket wheels are well over 30 lbs., especially if you go with a 9" width. Larger tires are also much heavier due to more rugged construction. The factory picks tires specifically for flimsy, lightweight requirements. So yes, you're going to lose MPGs, braking distance, and acceleration. How much depends on what you go with, but typically I see 2-3 MPGs loss overall in mixed city/highway driving.

I strongly disagree that the Wrangler is sluggish and drinks fuel in stock form. These are actually very economical compared to all the other midsize 4x4s on the market and they are sporty and quick, all things considered. I also disagree that people who own 4x4s shouldn't be concerned about saving fuel and money. That's a stupid statement. In fact, the lower your fuel economy is, the more $$$ you stand to save by saving every 1 MPG you can. Go ask a trucking company how important fuel economy is. Doesn't matter if you drive a Prius or a Hummer, everyone should be looking to save fuel.
Very much agree with your point on mileage.

My window sticker notes that the stock 2018 Sport wheels are steel, not alloy (“black steel wheels”), is this different than the alloy wheels you note as being less than 20lb? I had heard 25 previously.
 

WXman

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Very much agree with your point on mileage.

My window sticker notes that the stock 2018 Sport wheels are steel, not alloy (“black steel wheels”), is this different than the alloy wheels you note as being less than 20lb? I had heard 25 previously.
OH ok...that's the caveat. On the JK, the steel wheels were 16x7. What size are they on JL? 17x7.5? If so, they are certainly heavier than the alloy wheels. I bet a 17x7.5" steel wheel would be closer to 30 lbs. I think the 16x8 steel wheels on my 2011 JKU were around 25 lbs.
 
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Hurlow8

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Yes, they are the 7x7.5 steel wheels. I would certainly be interested in finding out their weight (guess I’ll find out when I take them off).
Fortunately I found a set of wheels I really like at 27lb (with a fairly standard load rating of 2500), so the weight change wont likely be an issue after all.
 
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Hurlow8

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For anyone interested- the 17x7.5 stock steel black wheels weigh 27 lbs (I’ll have some for sale cheap soon)
 
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