1999-2004 WJ Driver Door Boot Wiring Fix (DIY) - JeepForum.com
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Unread 10-21-2014, 10:29 AM   #1
wxmanWJ
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1999-2004 WJ Driver Door Boot Wiring Fix (DIY)

Over the past 3 months or so I've seen countless threads of people with symptoms that can be caused by broken wires in the driver door boot. This is the rubber boot that goes between the driver door and the cab. The wires are under a lot of stress and aren't long enough to handle the constant bending created from opening/closing the door over many years. Some symptoms I've seen:
  • Problems with other power windows besides the driver window
  • Dome lights remaining on while driving
  • Driver window inop
  • Door ajar warning on EVIC
My particular symptoms were dome lights on and no power to driver door module (no mirror/any window/lock control), and the remote keyfob would not work to lock/unlock the doors which relies on power to the driver door module. I have a 2000 WJ Limited 4.7L, and I thought I would share the fix I made. Maybe it will help someone.

FIGURE 1


My three problem areas are shown as "A"/"B"/"C" in Figure 1. "A" was a new weak area in the blue wire, "B" was a previously repaired ground wire that was beginning to fail again and "C" was a previously repaired power wire that had completely failed again causing the symptoms I observed. My problem was that the previous repairs were so close to the Molex-type connector (plug on door side in Figure 1). I decided that the only sure-fire way to prevent this from happening again was to replace all the wiring from the cab through the boot and into the door.

FIGURE 2


From left to right in Figure 2 is a list of supplies:
  • Side cutters
  • Wire strippers
  • 3M velcro for holding connector to inside of door
  • 1 pack 22-18 soldergrip connectors Amazon Link
  • 1 pack 12-10 soldergrip connectors Amazon Link
  • 1 pack 16-14 soldergrip connectors Amazon Link
  • Electrical tape
  • Trim popper tool to help with boot removal
  • Heat gun
  • Donor wire harness from junkyard (I got three and picked the best one)
  • Split loom (can't remember size but I think 3/4")

BEFORE PROCEEDING, DISCONNECT THE BATTERY

First, strip off all the tape and connectors from both sides of the donor harnesses:

FIGURE 3


FIGURE 4


Next, carefully inspect the donor wires for similar problems. It's possible some wires might be broken INSIDE the insulation, so run your fingers over the insulation and feel for bumps or look for obvious kinks. Here's an example:

FIGURE 5


Disconnect the Molex-type connector from the door using the two tabs:

FIGURE 6


Slide the red safety tab out and then disconnect the connector:

FIGURE 7


Remove the white surround from the cab side of the connector. There is a little locking clip on the back side of the connector you need to release (not shown):

FIGURE 8


Now the most unnerving step of the job (NO TURNING BACK!). Cut the cab side of the connector off so you can pull the wiring back into the cab:

FIGURE 9


Next, I pulled the wiring back into the cab through the boot and then removed the boot entirely from the cab side of the Jeep. This can be a little bit of a pain but the boot is rubber so just manhandle and mush it up until it pops out:

FIGURE 10


At this point, I would also remove your driver door panel, remove the speaker, and pull back the black shield inside the door to gain access to the lower hole in the door. Also remove the lower kick panel trim inside the cab. Now you can see a roadmap to how all the connections are going to work. In Figure 11, connect A --> B using donor wiring from one of the junkyard harnesses, and then just plug C --> D inside the door once you're done. Essentially this moves the connector inside the door so the wiring has plenty of slack in the boot for opening/closing:

FIGURE 11


Start stripping the wiring inside the cab and one end of the wiring from the donor harness. Then use the heat gun and the soldergrip connectors to connect the wiring:

FIGURE 12


Once the soldergrip connectors cooled, I wrapped them in electrical tape for extra peace of mind and then electrical taped the bundle of wires together and fed it into the split loom:

FIGURE 13


The split loom I used was probably too big (diameter), as it barely fit inside the boot. Feed the split loom through the boot and then reconnect the boot at this point. Also remember to put the white shroud (see Figure 7/8) that was originally on the connector on the connection to the door so the boot has something to attach to. Then feed the wiring through the split loom inside the boot and out through the inside of the door to attach the other end:

FIGURE 14


Using the soldergrip connectors, splice in the other end of the connector that will live inside the door. Be smart with your length of wiring here. I was more than generous and in hindsight I should have been a little cleaner with the job:

FIGURE 15


Again, wrap the soldergrip connections with electrical tape when finished for extra peace of mind and then tape the bundle of wires together with electrical tape. I also added split loom to this side too for the bundle of wires that lives inside the door (not shown):

FIGURE 16


Connect the connector and connect the battery for testing- TEST ALL FUNCTIONALITY BEFORE CONTINUING!!! My connections were good but I'd hate to button up the door and then find out something doesn't work and have to tear it open again. Using the velcro, mount the connection inside the door:

FIGURE 17


Reinstall the door panel and the kick panel trim inside the cab and you should be good to go.

WHAT WOULD I DO DIFFERENTLY?

- This was my first time using the soldergrip heat shrink connectors. For the smaller wires the heat gun I bought worked fine, but the biggest gauge wires (power/ground) presented a challenge for the heat gun to really get the solder hot enough. It took a pretty long blast with the heat gun. A more powerful gun would help here.

- I would probably buy the size smaller split loom. I think 5/8" would be ideal, but 1/2" would probably work.

- I would measure better for the wiring inside the door so there isn't so much excess. It won't hurt anything but it could be a little cleaner. I guess I have plenty of wiring now for repairs if I need to make any

APPENDIX

Wiring connector diagram from MY2000 FSM


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Unread 10-21-2014, 10:30 AM   #2
wxmanWJ
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Unread 10-21-2014, 10:41 AM   #3
ChrisHager
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Excellent write-up! Thanks for taking the time to do this. This is by far the best way to remedy the issue. Being that this issue comes up often, I'm sure many will find this useful. I'll add it to the FAQ.

Side note: Before Figure 12, you may want to mention that the white surround clip dealy and the rubber boot need reinstalled before crimping/soldering.

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Unread 10-21-2014, 10:46 AM   #4
wxmanWJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisHager View Post
Excellent write-up! Thanks for taking the time to do this. This is by far the best way to remedy the issue. Being that this issue comes up often, I'm sure many will find this useful. I'll add it to the FAQ.

Side note: Before Figure 12, you may want to mention that the white surround clip dealy and the rubber boot need reinstalled before crimping/soldering.

Thanks!

In Figure 12, I'm just putting extra wire in there nothing with a connector on the end yet. In figure 11, between A --> B I just added wire only (to extend the wiring essentially to be able to reach inside the door). Then slid on the boot/clip after figure 12, fed the wire through the door then added the connector. I might not be describing it well...let me know if you're still not getting it haha.
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Unread 10-21-2014, 10:48 AM   #5
ChrisHager
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I see what you're saying. I must have overlooked your description directly before Figure 14!
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Unread 11-12-2014, 09:38 PM   #6
johnobub
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awesome

Good job
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Unread 12-02-2014, 04:45 AM   #7
JeepingSwan
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Thanks. Less than 1500 on my new WJ (to me) and I wanted to kill someone last night when I went in to order a pizza, walked out 2mins later... and stuck on dome, no driver switches... you know what I mean! I guess I need to go put the orange/white wire back together ... I have another project going or I'd be more responsible than doing a quick fix. Thankfully, you narrowed down the problem for me... REALLY appreciate that!
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Unread 12-02-2014, 08:49 AM   #8
wxmanWJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnobub View Post
Good job
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeepingSwan View Post
Thanks. Less than 1500 on my new WJ (to me) and I wanted to kill someone last night when I went in to order a pizza, walked out 2mins later... and stuck on dome, no driver switches... you know what I mean! I guess I need to go put the orange/white wire back together ... I have another project going or I'd be more responsible than doing a quick fix. Thankfully, you narrowed down the problem for me... REALLY appreciate that!
Thanks! Glad I am helping some people, and I'm sure there will be more along the way. I was ticked when my dome lights wouldn't turn off!

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Unread 02-09-2015, 02:01 PM   #9
fayceoff
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I'm gonna have to do this on both doors. I fixed one wire in the driver's side, but I need to do it this way and they have a few WJ's at the Pick and Pull near me right now... How much wire did you add? I'm thinking about 4-6 inches should be good....
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