American Expedition Vehicles (AEV) Heat Reduction Hood

Upgrading to the American Expedition Vehicles (AEV) Heat Reduction Hood was equal parts simple decision to equal parts difficult decision.  I’m very analytical, which is also an equal parts positive personal quality to equal parts negative personal quality.

50% Difficult: First, the JKU Recon edition comes with the non-vented, vented looking hood.  Also the “Rubicon” stickers are unique for the Recon as it’s a different style and has the parts of the Jeep build on it, i.e. Dana 44 axles, 4:10 gear ratio, and many more.  The AEV Hood and the length between the cowl and the hood vents would not allow the Recon “Rubicon” decal to fit.  Even the 10th Anniversary Rubicon edition sticker would not fit.  You can only use the standard “Rubicon” sticker from MOPAR.  I did talk with a local final shop and they would not be able to recreate or shrink the “Recon Rubicon” sticker.  This little detail really bothered me.  

Second, was the consideration of cost, and what to do with the old hood.  This hood is expensive and I needed to get it painted.  I was posting on social media about the “Rubicon” stickers and a viewer reached out to me with interest in buying my hood.  That solidified the decision that I was going to move forward with this modification. Shipping it turned out to be extremely stressful and the sale almost fell through. But, alas, after some doubtful moments, the deal happened!

50% Simple:  It looks cool!

I knew that I was going to get the AEV Snorkel in the future and cutting the hood was something that I would need to do with the stock hood.  The AEV hood already has vents the same size for the snorkel.  

Buying the hood – easy – just go to OK4WD website, put the hood in the shopping cart, put in your friend’s credit card info and BOOM in 5 days you have a hood at the door.  Not my door… I had it shipped to VanDevere Body Shop, here in Akron.  Dee and the guys at VanDevere Body Shop did all the work from there. New hood out of the box, sand, prime, paint, clear coat, remove old hood, new hood on the Jeep, old hood back in the box, and Aloha! I shipped it to its new owner in Hawaii.

Dee did an outstanding job on making the new hood align with the Jeep.  

Overall, I am quite pleased with the hood.  It was expensive, but I do notice that the radiator fan doesn’t run as often as the heat is venting out.  When the Jeep is idling, you do see a lot of heat escaping the center vent, so you know its doing its job!  Coolant temperatures are the same as the stock hood, and I have not noticed any change in MPG (better or worse). I was expecting a drop in MPG because the engine might be working more efficiently, but I haven’t noticed that.

Published by Expedition Team. Overland

As a Boy Scout Eagle Scout, camping, camp fires and maps have always been a passion. After getting my professional carrier established as a Boeing 737 Captain for a Major US Airline, I was able to get back to my routes of playing in the woods, mud and building things. I got my first Jeep in 2012. It was a 2002 Jeep Wrangler TJ, I did not modify it, and it had many mechanical problems, as I was a novice, and not mechanical, I sold it for a new 2013 Jeep Wrangler Sport Unlimited. In 2014 I installed an American Expedition Vehicles (AEV) 2.5" lift with Kelly Safari 35" tires. In 2015 I continued my build with AEV front and rear bumpers, snorkel, skid plates, and off road lights. Up until now, I did off-roading at the local Southington Off Road Park, Rausch Creek in Pennsylvania, and Badlands Park in Indiana. was an outstanding resource and I was able to make life-long friendship. In 2015 I did my first big trip with the jeep, first we stopped in Ouray, Colorado. We had two days of trails and did Imogene & Engineer Passes. I left part of myself in the San Juan Mountains and my want to return has been strong since. After Ouray, we went to Moab, Utah for Jeep Jamboree. Moab is "Jeepers Paradise". Endless miles of trails, from dirt roads to the most extreme, Moab offers endless possibilities for the Jeeper, hiker, mountain biker, everyone. Since 2015 I have returned to Moab in 2017 & 2019. In 2018, I traded in my 2013 JKU Sport for a 2018 JKU Rubicon Recon. I did this drastic move, because I was at the point in my build where I needed to upgrade my axels. I made the very difficult decision and striped as much as I could from my 2013 Jeep to move to the new jeep, as they were both the same style of jeeps; JKU's. I spent the spring and summer of 2018 to build my jeep. I once again installed an AEV 3.5" lift, 35" BFGoodrich KO2's and AEV front and rear bumpers. With this build I wanted to move from the "Rock Crawler" to an Overland build. I can still do all the difficult trail of Moab, Rubicon Trail, but also the fire roads and cover many miles full of camping and off road gear. With Overlanding in mind, I have build a cargo platform for my ARB 50q Fridge, and specific loading of the camping gear. Where is the Future? Buying an Earth Roamer and exploring as much of the country as possible? Thats a goal, but I hope in the coming years to get a roof rack, roof top tent, and then doing more Expeditions though Appalachian, Rocky Mountains, desert of New Mexico and Arizona, and the National Parks west of the Rocky Mountains.

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