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Go Back JeepForum.com > General Technical Discussions > Electrical, Audio, GPS, & 2-Way Radio > Rear door jam dome light switch

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Unread 01-22-2009, 01:44 AM   #1
default_user2
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Rear door jam dome light switch

I've seen many people ask how to do this so I'm hoping this helps

No one knows why Chrysler didn't put a door jam switch for the rear door so the dome lights will turn on like every other car in existance, but either way I wanted to have this luxury. Like many of you out there it's very annoying for me to have to open the drivers door everytime I want to get light in the back.

I spent at least 45 minutes just looking at the door jam trying to find the best place to mount a switch. After looking at every possible spot I realized that inside the bottom hinge is a perfect place for it. There's two slots cut in the hinge so the plastic trim will clear the hinge. I just cut the little piece of metal between the slots, ground it smooth, drilled a hole in the body, mounted the switch, wired it into the dome lamp circuit, and trimmed the plastic trim so it clears the switch. Works perfect!

I pulled the switch from the driver door jam to see if it's adjustable. It is so I bought another switch from the dealership. I also tried to get the plug that the switch plugs into but it only comes as part of the wiring harness, so I ended up soldering the wires to the switch and filling the hole with silicone to seal it.

IMPORTANT!
The switch connects the ground side of the circuit. Since the rear door obviously doesn't come off when I take the doors off I wanted the dome lights to still turn on when I opened the rear door. Reason being is when I'm doorless and topless at night the dome lights will come on so I can see in the back of the Jeep. Therefore only one wire is needed as the other side of the switch grounds to the body. Since this bypasses the fuse block, wire in a 10amp in-line fuse. You can't tap into the yellow wire as many have asked because the door jam switch breaks the circuit, so the only way the rear door switch would complete the circuit is when the front door is open... Totally defeating the purpose of the switch. The purple wire on the jam switch goes directly to the dome lights. (FYI, I tested it and with the rear door open, the lights still turn off after 20 minutes.) I am also considering another toggle switch by the wiring harness as a manual override to turn the rear lights off but I don't think this is needed. Going to drive it as it is for a while as see if I need one.

If you want the dome lights to deactivate just like the front doors when you remove fuse #4 (or if you wire in a switch like I did) then two wires need to be ran to the back. One end is connected to each terminal on the switch while the other end is connected to the yellow and the purple wire on the drivers side door jam switch. This method does NOT need an in-line fuse because this does not bypass the fuse block.

On to the pics...

Splice the purple wire with a wire that will go to the back of the Jeep.


Run the wire down the wiring harness, through the body plug and under the Jeep to the passenger side.


Here the wire is ran but not terminted yet.

Here's the bottom hinge for the tailgate. Keep the tailgate shut while this is off or you can really damage your tailgate. Cut the metal between the slots.



Last edited by default_user2; 04-12-2009 at 11:39 PM..
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Unread 01-22-2009, 01:44 AM   #2
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Remount the hinge and mark the center of the square hole. It's a 9/16" hole (I think) but a drill bit was $15 so i just dremeled the hole bigger. Cleaned it up with touchup paint and connected the wires to the switch. One wire is the wire ran from the front, while the other wire is tapped into the ground for my tail lights (having a 4 1/2" hole in the back makes this whole thing a lot easier . This part should DEFINATLY be soldered. I then filled the hole in the switch with silicone to weather proof it. Push the switch in the hole and put everything back together.


I took the hinge back off to drill the hole in order to use touch up paint and to keep from scratching the hinge.


The finished product. The switch is about 1/8" from fully compressed, so the switch still has room. The black trim has to be grinded down so it doesn't hit the switch. This makes it really hard to put the trim back on but a thin screwdriver to guide it worked fine.


Last edited by default_user2; 04-12-2009 at 11:49 PM..
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Unread 01-22-2009, 09:59 AM   #3
RUNIT
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nice! ! ! ! ! !
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Unread 01-22-2009, 09:14 PM   #4
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WOW what a great IDEA I will be doing this soon as well .I really love playing with electrical do dads and something trick like this is great for my wife as well See my post on the Radio delete plate I made. Post 1578 here.. http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/showt...39#post6413939

Thanks for sharing the tech..

will
dsc06446.jpg  
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Unread 01-22-2009, 09:20 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeepfreaktj View Post
WOW what a great IDEA I will be doing this soon as well .I really love playing with electrical do dads and something trick like this is great for my wife as well See my post on the Radio delete plate I made. Post 1578 here.. http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/showt...39#post6413939

Thanks for sharing the tech..

will
Nice. I personally don't like shiny things in my interior, but that's just a personal taste. Cleanly done and useful! Good job!
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Unread 01-23-2009, 10:42 AM   #6
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replying so i can find this thread in a month or so. i've asked this question before. nice job.
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Unread 01-28-2009, 01:54 AM   #7
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Anyone who does this mod please post pics. Would like to see others who benefited from my thread
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Unread 02-01-2009, 04:10 PM   #8
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I like where you put the switch, nice.
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Unread 02-01-2009, 09:38 PM   #9
Jason D
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I've been thinking about this for a while and couldn't figure out a good way to do it. THANKS!!
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Unread 04-12-2009, 11:52 PM   #10
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Don't know how but the pictures were deleted off my photobucket. I received an email almost a month ago and have just been to lazy to fix the links

Anyways, I fixed the links to the pictures. Hope you all enjoy! I've had this done for a few months now and I must say it's very simple but my fav mod so far to the Jeep There's been many times I needed the light, and the luxury of it turning on automatically is very nice

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Unread 04-14-2009, 04:29 PM   #11
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Pumpkinheep, thanks for reposting pics + pm. I think I need to go to the stealership and buy a switch, I'm
really impressed w/quality of your install, and look foward to doing this mod myself. BTW how much was the
switch?
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Unread 04-14-2009, 05:33 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeep View Post
Pumpkinheep, thanks for reposting pics + pm. I think I need to go to the stealership and buy a switch, I'm
really impressed w/quality of your install, and look foward to doing this mod myself. BTW how much was the
switch?
Thank you I don't remember how much it was but I think it was around $15, which isn't bad for an OEM switch.

I'm going to look at doing a similar switch for the pre 2003 TJ's after a Jeepin buddy told me he'd love to do the mod but has the older style hinge. It should be very similar, probably just drilling a round hole in the hinge as long as there's clearance.
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Unread 02-08-2012, 04:48 PM   #13
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Great write up, sorry to bring up an old topic but do you think one of these could be used to hook up the dome light like you did.
http://www.dakotadigital.com/index.c...103/prd103.htm

I am putting in a power lock actuator in the tailgate and want to do the dome light and the same time.

Any help would be appreciatted.
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Unread 02-08-2012, 04:55 PM   #14
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People have used those before but the general consensus is that nobody wants exposed terminals that can short out.
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Unread 02-08-2012, 07:26 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RipWranglin View Post
Great write up, sorry to bring up an old topic but do you think one of these could be used to hook up the dome light like you did.
http://www.dakotadigital.com/index.c...103/prd103.htm

I am putting in a power lock actuator in the tailgate and want to do the dome light and the same time.

Any help would be appreciatted.
I haven't had any personal experience with those, but I think they would work fine. It would be the same type of contact you already have on your tailgate for the third brake light. In fact, from reading the description, they are made for outdoor use: "... in door jambs, trunks, trailer ramps, pickup beds and tailgates."
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