Jeep CJ Under Dash Smoke and Burning Smell - JeepForum.com
Search  
Sign Up   Today's Posts
User: Pass: Remember?
Advertise Here
Jeep Home Jeep Forum Jeep Classifieds Jeep Registry JeepSpace Jeep Reviews Jeep Gallery Jeep Clubs Jeep Groups Jeep Videos Jeep Events Jeep Articles
Go Back JeepForum.com > Models > Jeep CJ Forum > Jeep CJ Under Dash Smoke and Burning Smell

Happy Thursday! From Morris 4X4 CenterHalloween Savings to die for!THE NEW! VANCO DUAL MODE 15/16″ Big Brake Kit w/Bla

Reply
Unread 02-03-2012, 08:43 PM   #1
ball0616
Registered User
2013 JK Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Monroe, NC
Posts: 54
Jeep CJ Under Dash Smoke and Burning Smell

Hello,

My 81 CJ has a burning smell and smoke coming from under the dash with the headlights on. I have read a few posts on here but need some clarification or assistance (or just some more beer). I understand that the jeeps came with faulty wiring but I have checked all the wiring and it seems to be okay. Could this short be coming from the headlight switch? If so, is there a way to check. Dont really want to spend the money on a painless system if its just the switch. Also, dont want to do is see this thing burn to the ground when I just got it a couple of weeks ago.

Thanks,

ball0616 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-03-2012, 08:49 PM   #2
jksull
Registered User
1985 CJ7 
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Hot Springs, Arkansas
Posts: 416
Mine smoked the head light switch.
It was the dimmer part that went to china
jksull is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-03-2012, 09:06 PM   #3
only in a jeep cj
Registered User
1986 CJ7 
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Mobile, Alabama
Posts: 4,177
No, they didn't come with faulty wiring, its that with age, the wires and the contacts get a thin layer of corrosion on them. The contact point at a connection is decreased and the amperage going through the smaller connection builds resistance which turns into heat.
Pull the plug on the light switch and view both side of the larger red wire going into it. Check the black plastic around that wire to see if its melted or burnt. If not, pull the switch and inspect the dimmer ring and contacts. If nothing else, take some sandpaper and scuff the contacts of the switch and use some grease to protect them from moisture.



Oh, and carry a fire extinguisher if you don't have one.
__________________
Ed

1975 CJ-6 304 T15 Dana20 30/44 3.73
1983 CJ-8 258 T5 300 30/44 3.31 Looking for full or half hardtop buy or trade
1986 CJ-7 Laredo 4.6 stroker T5 300 30/44 3.31
1986 TJ-7 Trail Jeep project in the works
2003 Inca Gold TJ Rubicon
only in a jeep cj is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-04-2012, 02:38 AM   #4
John Strenk
Moderator
 
John Strenk's Avatar
1976 CJ5 
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Shalersville Ohio
Posts: 13,034
Probably the switch,
I've pulled a couple apart were the power lead into the switch has overheated so bad and melted the plug. Like only-in-a-Jeep says, old age and corrosion leads to poor contacts and over heating.

This would be a good time to convert to relays for the headlights and take the load off the switch.
John Strenk is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-04-2012, 04:15 AM   #5
keith460
Jeep. There's Only One
 
keith460's Avatar
1984 CJ7 
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Doylestown, PA
Posts: 4,932
Quote:
Originally Posted by John Strenk
Probably the switch,
This would be a good time to convert to relays for the headlights and take the load off the switch.
That's the best advice anyone can give you.
With the relays in place, your are only energizing the coils for the relays and taking the load off the switch. The relays will allow you to upgrade your headlights to Halogen type or H4's because now the voltage will come directly from the battery and not through the headlight switch.
__________________
.
1984 CJ-7 Renegade
__________________

Restoration Thread:http://www.jeepsunlimited.com/forums...d.php?t=434226
keith460 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-04-2012, 08:29 AM   #6
ball0616
Registered User
2013 JK Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Monroe, NC
Posts: 54
Thanks for the responses. I pulled and inspected the switch today and that seems to be the problem. There were some burnt spots on the dimmer ring (white rotary part) of the switch and it had the smell. Based on your advice, I am going to convert to relays as well. Is there a good link on here to show me how to do this?
img_0185.jpg  

Last edited by ball0616; 02-04-2012 at 09:06 AM.. Reason: Add photo
ball0616 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-04-2012, 08:44 AM   #7
WindKnot
Web Wheeler
 
WindKnot's Avatar
1977 CJ7 
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Kaibab Plateau, Northern Arizona
Posts: 2,964
I can't speak for an '84, but in 1977 the headlight switdh had a 25 amp circuit breaker in it. That's still a lot of amps tp ull through a switch IMO, but it's not as delicate as some would think. the relays are still a good idea though.
__________________
I'd rather be lost on the trails than found at home!

Phoenix Rising- A Flame Off Restoration? http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f8/ph...ation-1807257/
WindKnot is online now   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-04-2012, 10:34 AM   #8
keith460
Jeep. There's Only One
 
keith460's Avatar
1984 CJ7 
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Doylestown, PA
Posts: 4,932
Quote:
Originally Posted by ball0616 View Post
Based on your advice, I am going to convert to relays as well. Is there a good link on here to show me how to do this?
Here's a good start for reading about the relays: http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f8/he...9/#post6502039



__________________
.
1984 CJ-7 Renegade
__________________

Restoration Thread:http://www.jeepsunlimited.com/forums...d.php?t=434226
keith460 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the JeepForum.com forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid e-mail address for yourself.
Note: All free e-mails have been banned due to mis-use. (Yahoo, Gmail, Hotmail, etc.)
Don't have a non-free e-mail address? Click here for a solution: Manual Account Creation
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.


Thread Tools


Suggested Threads





Jeep, Wrangler, Cherokee, Grand Cherokee, and other models are copyrighted and trademarked to Jeep/Chrysler Corporation. JeepForum.com is not in any way associated with Jeep or the Chrysler Corp.