How to Tow a 4×4 Jeep on a Dolly? Easiest Way

There are many different towing options to choose from. For a 4×4 Jeep, there are some special considerations when you choose to use a tow dolly. 

Any time you think of towing your vehicle, the first thing that should come to mind is the owner’s manual—they always bear important information on how to safely tow and what to use. A manual transmission 4×4 vehicle with a locking hub and transfer case can be safely towed using a tow dolly. If your Jeep has these, you need not worry about any damage. 

This article explains how to tow your Jeep using a tow dolly and the precautions you need to take. Read on. 

How to Tow a 4×4 Jeep on a Dolly? Easiest Way

how to tow a 4x4 jeep on a dolly

Drivers and non-drivers alike may have come across many different towing methods used on highways and local streets. These options include a trailer, tow bars, and tow dollies. They differ in convenience and the mode in which they tow your vehicle.

Perhaps those who have never been faced with a situation that required their vehicle to be towed may be wondering why there are many methods of towing.

For a 4×4 Jeep, the most recommended method is using a flatbed that is capable of lifting all the wheels. Four-wheel drivers in particular need special care and attention since you can risk severe transmission damage. It is possible to use a tow dolly, but you will need to take some precautions, including disconnecting the drive shaft to protect the transmission. 

The first step is to consult your owner’s manual—there should be a dedicated section that covers how to properly tow your vehicle. Often, failure to adhere to the manufacturer’s guidelines may cost you a lot of time and money. It always informs you of the appropriate features to unlock and disengage without causing any damage. 

For 4WD manual vehicles, it is recommended to leave the transmission neutral. This is to protect the transmission if you do not have a transfer case or locking hub. 

Can You Put a 4×4 on a Tow Dolly?

Yes, it is possible to put a 4×4 on a tow dolly. However, this should only be done with special care. When using tow dollies, only two wheels are lifted off the ground. Given that 4×4 vehicles engage all the wheels as drive wheels, you risk damaging the transmission. This underscores the importance of referring to the owner’s manual before making a mistake. 

Thankfully, for manual transmission vehicles, it is much easier with a manual transfer case or lockout hubs. These ensure that no component is damaged during the towing process. For the vehicles without these two, you may be forced to install a drive shaft coupling device.  

Do I Need a Tow Dolly for My Jeep?

A tow dolly is a good towing option for your Jeep. It works by only lifting two wheels off the ground. However, operating the tow dolly to successfully tow your Jeep requires some special effort and know-how. 

A tow dolly basically consists of two adjustable bars, a breaker bar, and two pairs of wheels. The vehicle’s wheels (either rear or front wheels) should be placed between the two adjustable connector bars. The two pairs of dollies link securely link the 2 axles and this lifts the vehicle above the ground. 

Can a 4×4 Jeep Be Towed With Two Rear Wheels?

Yes, it is possible to tow a Jeep with two rear wheels. This is done by towing the front wheels of the Jeep. The steering should remain locked and the rear wheels are then lifted off the ground. Using a tow dolly will require some know-hour and special skills to assemble. 

Which Is Better for Towing; 2-Wheel Drive or 4-Wheel Drive 

4WDs usually have a slightly lower towing capacity than 2-wheel drives. This is because the 4WDs have an additional weight from their components. Moreover, the 4WDs are less fuel efficient than 2-wheel drive trucks. However, 4WDs are very handy, especially if you want to tow a trailer. 


All-wheel drives should not be towed using a tow dolly. Doing so causes severe damage to the drivetrain since all its wheels are drive wheels. This means that all four should be lifted off the ground. Therefore, the only towing option for an AWD is a trailer or flatbed. 

While it is possible to tow a park in park mode, you should not do so with all four wheels on the ground. In the case of automatic cars, they come with a mechanical lock in P-mode which can easily break if the wheels are forced to move. During towing, it is advisable to put the car in neutral to avoid any damage. 

For a rear-wheel drive car, you will need to disconnect the driveshaft before you can tow it. This helps to avoid any damage to the transmission. 

The handbrakes are there to prevent rear-wheel movement. Therefore, if you put in on during towing, you need to tow such that the car is lifted from the back to ensure only the front wheels run. 


The best piece of advice for anyone thinking of towing is to refer to the owner’s manual for any towing precautions and instructions specific to their vehicle. With adequate knowledge, it is possible to successfully tow your Jeep using a tow dolly.