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Unread 10-28-2009, 11:47 AM   #1
spoonkilr
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1986 CJ7 
 
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Headlight upgrade

Gentleman I have a question...What has everyone found to be the best headlight upgrade? I read that there are now straight plug in replacements for our old dim CJ lights. I am curious what everyone is finding out and upgrading to? Thanks for your imput! Bob

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Unread 10-28-2009, 11:57 AM   #2
Cutlass327
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I have seen everything from the adapters that you can install to allow the use of those Halogen 'capsule' bulbs like modern cars use to DOT approved LED headlight bulbs. Have you removed the old bulbs and installed newer ones? The newer ones are usually Halogen, and mine are nice and bright.

Other things to think of besides dim bulbs - Are the grounds to the bulbs good? Try running dedicated grounds. Also do what many have done and put a relay in to give the bulbs power directly from the battery, using the headlight switch to turn the relay on/off. These 2 things will greatly improve any headlight system. Any other issue may be your charging system getting weak. Low output from your alternator would also cause dim headlights.
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1978 CJ5 258/T177/D300, '86 D30/D44 WT axles, 'glass tub windshield frame, and fenders, 31x10.5 BFG A/T, TDK galv'd frame - DD and weekend toy

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Unread 10-28-2009, 11:58 AM   #3
JeffreyCharles
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Beyond just replacing bulbs you'll find that installing relays will make a big difference in terms of the amount of power getting to the bulbs (and it's wise to use heavier wiring as well). Here's an account of my experience doing this (to great effect).

Lighting Upgrade - Approach and Auxiliary Fuse Block (Small Craft Net)

Hope this helps.
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Unread 10-28-2009, 12:00 PM   #4
Mike Romain
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Well, the 'plug in' ones will plug in, but they will fry the breaker in the headlight switch very quickly. You will need to add relays to the circuit so the lights get direct fused power and the switch just triggers it. This will give you sweet white lights.

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f8/tr...failed-723399/ Is a good link to the schematics.
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86/00 CJ7 Laredo, 33x9.5 BFG AT's, 'glass nose to tail in '00, 'New' frame,wires and plumbing in '09. Carter BBD Carbed 4.0 HO in '10.
89 YJ Renegade. BBD Carbed 4.0 HO. Locked front and rear with 33x9.5 BFG AT's
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Unread 10-28-2009, 12:14 PM   #5
kickingprop
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http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f8/he...t-mods-686559/

Thats's a pretty thorough write-up on various wiring and headlight upgrades. I did this upgrade and have been VERY pleased with the results.
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Phase One : 5.3L Vortec/4L60E, Moser axles for AMC20, Twin Stick'd Dana300 - Completed
Phase Two: Bedliner, Rollcage, Seats, BESRK Rear Bumper w/ tire swing, Soft Top, and a few other goodies - Mostly Complete
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Quote:
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Unread 10-28-2009, 12:19 PM   #6
spoonkilr
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headlights

Thanks for the quick replays...Let me say that the old lights are still in the jeep and working.I guess what I am looking for is a easy and brighter headlight. Will the new halogen bulbs plug in and not fry any of the old circuits. Do i have put relays in to change to new halogen bulbs?? So for the newby questions? thanks in advance. Bob
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Unread 10-28-2009, 12:52 PM   #7
Mike Romain
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Yes, you must use relays for halogen lights or you will fry the switch, usually sooner than later.

Even putting the relays on your existing lights will make an amazing difference, they will turn white.
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86/00 CJ7 Laredo, 33x9.5 BFG AT's, 'glass nose to tail in '00, 'New' frame,wires and plumbing in '09. Carter BBD Carbed 4.0 HO in '10.
89 YJ Renegade. BBD Carbed 4.0 HO. Locked front and rear with 33x9.5 BFG AT's
Some Canadian Bush Jeep Runs and Build Photos: http://mikeromainjeeptrips.shutterfly.com (10 new albums added Sept 16/10)
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Unread 10-28-2009, 12:58 PM   #8
kickingprop
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x2

Relays wired in made the single greatest difference in getting good power to the headlights.

Also, clean up and make sure you have a good ground for the headlights. This will also be a quick headlight quality killer
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1985 CJ7 Project
Phase One : 5.3L Vortec/4L60E, Moser axles for AMC20, Twin Stick'd Dana300 - Completed
Phase Two: Bedliner, Rollcage, Seats, BESRK Rear Bumper w/ tire swing, Soft Top, and a few other goodies - Mostly Complete
Phase Three: Waggy 44 front, Scout D44 Rear, 4.56's, ARB's (F/R) SOA with YJ Springs, 35x12.50x15 BFG MT - Not Even Close to beginning

Also a mostly rust-free 1970 Scout 800A That I'll get to start working on someday...

Quote:
Chrome won't get you home...BUT Rattle Can Black may just get you back"
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Unread 10-28-2009, 09:44 PM   #9
mcjeeper74
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I just did the relay upgrade this week and I run Sylvanya XTRAvision lights and this was a big improvement took about 2 hours to make the harness and install. I recommend the relays first it will make the biggest difference in output.
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