8 Best Jeep Wrangler TJ Aftermarket Shock Absorbers- Buyer’s Guide

Jeep Wrangler

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If you purchased a used Jeep Wrangler, and it’s manufactured between 1997 and 2006, it is a TJ model. Regardless of whatever TJ you own, you appreciate it and love it. Some of the aftermarket automotive components which a TJ needs are quality shock absorbers.

As we already know and discuss here at DIY Auto Service, a vehicle can’t operate successfully without a properly installed and routinely maintained suspension.

Without any further ado, let’s dive into our list of best shocks for Jeep Wrangler TJ!

In a hurry? Check out our top 3 picks that we highly recommend!

Image PreviewProduct NameLinks
Detroit Axle - Front and Rear Shocks Absorbers + Sway Bar LinksCheck Price On Amazon
Rough Country 3.5-4.5" n3 front shock absorbers Check Price On Amazon
Rough Country 3.75" Dual Lift KitCheck Price On Amazon

Jeep Wrangler TJ Aftermarket Shocks 

1. Rough Country 3.5-4.5″ n3 front shock absorbers 

They are custom-fit aftermarket shocks designed for 1997 to 2006 Jeep Wrangler TJ vehicles. These components are high-pressure nitrogen charged with a chrome-hardened 18 mm piston rod. 

36kN tensile strength, 35 mm piston, a spring-loaded piston rod seal, and a 10 stage variable valving are just some of these Rough Country shocks which make your Jeep Wrangler TJ a joy to ride. 

All these features and more makes no difference for your Jeep Wrangler, whether for off-road action or smooth highway rides. You still get a comfortable ride that dampens well, whatever the road conditions. 

Pros:

  • It has a 54 mm shock body that dissipates heat fast 
  • Natural rubber bushings 
  • Military spec fluid rated to – 40 C
  • Mechanics say they give your TJ a moderate amount of lift, flex, and articulation on offroad terrains 
  • Perfect compatibility with 33-inch tires 
  • A significant upgrade compared to factory components 
  • 3-year manufacturer’s warranty 

Cons:

  • Just front shocks 

2. Detroit Axle front and rear shock absorbers + sway bar links 

They’re a complete set of everything you need for your shock absorber needs – all four sides. Plus more – Sway Bar End Links for all four sides too! What a convenient kit when your shocks need to be replaced. You don’t have to go anywhere else and waste time to find separately front and rear shocks like other brands. 

This Detroit Axle premium 8 piece kit is the prototype designed for the 1997 to 2006 Jeep Wranglers. They may even equal or exceed in quality the original factory shocks when they need to be replaced. 

Detroit Axle has over 30 years of experience providing millions of satisfied customers with top-quality automotive parts, emphasizing shocks components. The headquarters is at the heart of 8 Mile Road in Detroit itself, with over 180,000 square feet of warehouse inventory which serves as the global distribution center. 

You’ll be sure that this Detroit Axle 8 piece kit will meet the rigorous suspension and dampening demands of your Jeep Wrangler. Customers are saying that stopping is so much better after installation, and they can take sharper turns. They also experience less jarring when hitting bumps on rough roads. 

Pros: 

  • The shocks and the sway bar links have undergone impact, wear, and fatigue testing to ensure durability and quality
  • You could reuse the old nuts and bolts from the old shocks 
  • You can install the front shocks separately and at different times from the rear shocks or the sway bar links 
  • The sway bars are metal compared to the OEM Jeep parts, which are plastic 
  • 10-year warranty

Cons:

  • You only need bowtie mount bolts and the bolts that go through your links as additional hardware. 

3. Rancho RS5000X gas shocks for front and rear 

Jeep Wrangler TJs from 1997 to 2006 with 2 to 3 inches lifts would love to be fitted with these Rancho shocks for all sides. 

The central emphasis of these innovative shocks from Rancho is 2 features: the patented rebound valving system and the advanced compression phase of the shocks. They are proprietary processes developed by the design engineers at Rancho, which significantly improved the handling and performance of your Jeep Wrangler TJ, whether offroad or on highways. 

At low speeds, a disc in the valve shim stacks engages the valving at lower frequencies, helping control the energy of motion. When hitting potholes offroad, the Progressive Engagement Valving permits the early flow of fluid, reducing cruel initial impacts, and enables the progressive and gradual flow of fluid through the valving. As one satisfied customer commented, Rancho sucks up potholes. 

Rancho’s large shock body combined with all-weather fluid permits the shocks to resist internal temperatures between -40 and 248 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Pros:

  • The twin-tube shocks are gas pressurized to 150 PSI which minimizes air to oil mixture, which causes foaming and shock fade. 
  • Gas pressurization gives a mild spring rate boost to your Jeep Wrangler TJ
  • The relatively larger 2 ¼ inch diameter shock body permits increased fluid capacity, which makes it cooler when operating 
  • The large shock body allows increased vehicle control and performance at different terrains and speeds. 
  • Complete front and rear shock absorbers for your purchase 
  • 90 Day free ride guarantee 

Cons:

  • The paint job is not so good 

4. Monroe quick mount kit of 4 shocks front and rear 

They are technically called Monro-Matic Plus Shocks and Struts and are custom fits for the Jeep Wrangler TJ models from 1997 to 2006.

For your purchase, you get shocks for all 4 sides (the front and the rear). 5 words come to mind when Monroe Shocks is the topic of discussion: (Worthy) Replacement, (Quality) Performance, (Balanced), Leveling, (Safe) Touring, and (Unhampered Comfort) Offroad. 

Pros: 

  • They are nitrogen gas-charged shocks with velocity proportional valving assisted by all-weather fluid. 
  • The twin-tube design makes possible affordable price with improved comfort 
  • Provides proportional damping based on the speed of the vehicle to road impact to result in a smooth ride 
  • Lifetime warranty and best customer support 

Cons: 

  • Purchase doesn’t include boots and rear mounting hardware. 

5. Fox 2.0 performance shocks rear pair 

They are FOX brand’s answer for the need for premium aftermarket shocks for Jeep Wrangler TJ. As we all should be aware by now, TJs were made available as brand new, during the decade, from 1997 to 2006. A TJ model was also launched in 1996 as a teaser precursor to the 1997 launch. 

TJs with a lift from 2.5 to 3.5 inches will benefit significantly from these Fox Performance Rear Shocks. They make use of racing proven damping control which predictably provides comfortable paved road and offroad handling. The most challenging conditions are never too difficult for these Fox premium shocks. 

The Internal Floating Piston subdues oil aeration, which permits maximum performance from precision valving. 

Pros:

  • The precision metal impact aluminum body ups the cooling capacity and never rusts 
  • Valving technology Internal Floating Piston (IFP) Monotube design separates the shock oil from the high-pressure nitrogen-charged gas chamber. 
  • It fits perfectly 4WD Jeep Wrangler TJs.
  • Mechanics say the approx installation time is a short and easy 30 minutes only for every high-grade aluminum finish Fox shock done DIY 
  • Mechanics say the valving inside every Fox shock is high quality, making you enjoy a comfortable ride all the time. 
  • Fox 1 year warranty 

Cons:

  • Rear shocks only 

6. Bilstein (33-186887) 5100 series shock absorber 

Suppose you have a 2007 Jeep Wrangler TJ, and you need new aftermarket shocks. In that case, you’re in luck because Bilstein 5100 shock absorbers fit in perfectly underneath like gloves. 

In the description, it’s pretty vague whether it’s for the front or the rear or all sides. But after analysis, it’s quite obvious that’s it is for any side that needs replacement. The purchase consists of only one shock unit because it’s marketed as a shock absorber, without an s at the end. 

Pros:

  • Monotube design with consistent fade-free performance 
  • It has a well-defined velocity sensitive, digressive piston which reacts flexibly to changing road conditions 
  • Made in the USA 

Cons: 

  • Your purchase is for only 1 unit. 

7. Rough Country 3.75 inches dual lift kit

Getting this kit will give you all the convenience that you didn’t expect from an aftermarket auto component purchase. Usually, when your old shocks on your Jeep Wrangler TJ give way to wear and tear, it’s not only the shocks which need to be replaced. You also get 4 coil springs, 1 Body Lift, aside from the 4 N3 Shocks. It’s a great deal! 

After installation, you get the best in dampening performance for on and off-road use. 

Pros: 

  • Unequaled ground clearance 
  • Levels the front side with the rear side. 
  • Body lift pucks made from fiberglass-reinforced nylon which have superior strength and durability 
  • Lifetime replacement warranty with the shocks having a 3-year warranty 
  • No drilling is required for installation due to the easy bolt-on design for your Jeep Wrangler TJ 

Cons: 

  • Automatic transmission TJs will require a SYE and CV driveshaft to fix driveline vibrations. 

8. Teraflex 1545370 3 to 4 inches front and rear all 4 sides kit 

These shocks came into production mainly as worthy and premium aftermarket replacement shocks for lifted Jeep Wrangler TJs. 

TeraFlex shocks are engineered, valved, and tuned specifically for your unique Jeep Wrangler TJ. That’s why you only get the best off-road performance and great highway rides when you’re traveling on your TJ. 

Pros:

  • Features a proprietary inhouse designed velocity valving tuned to react harmoniously with TeraFlex suspension components
  • Triple Chromed rod ensures trouble-free journeys. 
  • The oil block and seal wipe the shock rod during compression to keep all internal fluids sealed. 
  • Internal travel stop limiter minimizes the impact of over-compression 
  • Durable black e-dipped finish resists salt and other corrosive elements 
  • Mechanics say they are designed for 35-inch tires for maximum clearance and performance, and they are worth the cost 

Cons:

  • Made in Mexico 

Things You Should Consider Before Choosing Shocks for Your Jeep Wrangler TJ – Buyer’s Guide

The Propensity for Off-Road Excellence

Jeep Wrangler owners are known to purchase them for their excellent performance in offroad terrains. Make sure that the aftermarket shocks you purchase sustain this tradition. 

Custom Fit Shocks for the Jeep Wrangler TJ Variant

Be aware that the shocks you are purchasing are specially designed prototypes for the Jeep Wrangler TJ Variant, manufactured from 1997 to 2006. It’s quite an aged model if it’s still with you, so this means you should be very careful with the shocks you purchase for it. 

Country of Manufacture

Most Jeep Wrangler enthusiasts are loyal to automotive components which are made in the USA. Usually, they raise their eyebrows when they hear that certain shocks are fabricated in China or Mexico, even if they are American brands. 

Coated Against Corrosion Protection

Many shocks nowadays are chrome coated or are hardened or mixed with sturdy materials to protect against the roads’ corrosive elements. 

Number of Shock Absorber Units in One Purchase

It is so annoying to buy front and rear shocks separately. It is most preferred that all 4 shocks (front and rear) are included in your purchase in one click. Some shock brands even include coil springs and a body lift in one kit. 

Ease of Installation

It would be best if your purchased shocks are easy fit-ins into your TJ without the need for complicated tools or even a professional mechanic. If you could do the installation DIY, these shocks are specially designed for Jeep Wrangler TJs. 

Brand Reputation

If you are already comfortable with a shock absorber brand and never disappoints you, why change brands? 

Warranty

Some shocks have a lifetime warranty, 3-year warranty, or 1-year warranty. Still, as an addendum to the warranty, others provide a satisfying 90 Day free ride guarantee that connotes complete confidence in their product. 

What is the vehicle category of a Jeep Wrangler? 

Before SUVs or Sports Utility Vehicles came into being, the Jeep Wrangler was the 4WD vehicle of choice for offroad terrain motoring enthusiasts. 

But a Jeep Wrangler is neither a truck nor an SUV. It is its own species. Technically, it’s a compact SUV, if it’s a 2 door model or a midsized SUV, for 4 door models. But whatever happens, never call it a car. 

What shocks I recommend for your Jeep Wrangler TJ

A couple of my friends own Jeep Wrangler TJs, and they ask me from time to time for automotive parts recommendations. Shock absorbers are some of the most mentioned components. 

What’s essential for me is that my friends and you don’t experience any inconvenience or annoyance in the selection process for aftermarket shocks. When one buys a Jeep Wrangler TJ, you’re not using it primarily for urban driving. You will be thinking about pleasant weekends where you’ll go off-road and experience the ruggedness of nature where your TJ can take you. 

All the shocks brands mentioned here are designed more for rugged road conditions rather than paved roads. So they’re almost equal on this note. 

Second, they should be custom-fit prototypes for the TJ. All of them are, and most can be installed in a few hours or so DIY by amateur motoring enthusiasts. So this means the ease of installation is a significant point of consideration. 

Third, I’m a loyalist to anything made on the USA mainland as for the country of manufacture. 

Fourth, all the shock items here are chrome coated and well protected against the elements encountered on the roads, which lead to corrosion. 

Fifth, nowhere is where I go crazy. Why in the hell would you sell shocks for the TJ that’s only for the front or rear side? And what’s worse, there’s one brand on the list (although a reputable brand) that has the gall to sell only 1 piece of shock absorber per sale! 

I genuinely admire those brands on the list Detroit Axle, Rancho, Monroe, Rough Country, and Teraflex, which all sell 4 shocks in one kit. But added accessories are what sets each of them apart.

Detroit Axle adds 4 sway bar links to their kit. Rough Country adds 4 coil springs and 1 Body Lift. The 3 other brands mentioned are only 4 shocks, with Teraflex being noted as made in Mexico. 

This leaves me with Detroit Axle and Rough Country as my top two choices. 

The Rough Country Dual Lift Kit, aside from the additional 4 coil springs and 1 Body Lift, has a 3-year warranty. 

But Detroit Axle has something special going for TJ owners aside from the additional 4 sway bar links to their kit. The surprise is that you can install the front shocks separately and at different times from the rear shocks or the sway bar links, even though they are purchased from the same kit. And the sway bars are made of metal, unlike the OEM Jeep Wrangler TJ parts, which are made of plastic. And it comes with a whopping 10-year warranty. 

Hands down, it’s the Detroit Axle kit that’s the winner!