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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The other week when I was traveling at night my headlights started to flicker for a minute until they turned off completely but only on the auto headlight function. I switched it all the way to the right position in order to keep them on manually, and now thats the only way I can use my headlights.

After parking in my garage at night, I turned the switch to auto and I heard the relay turn on and the dash lights turned on but not headlights. If I try to engage the high beams in the auto mode it wont lock or stay on.

I cleaned my light sensor and I unplugged the wiring to the switch under the dash and tried cleaning it with no solution. I also checked all of the fuses under the hood and by the passenger door and nothing is blown. I have yet to take the switch itself out yet however i think my next step might be to buy a new switch or maybe get the Kfab headlight harness upgrade to see if that would help.

I will try to post a video later of me messing with the switch.

If anyone has an idea of what I can check to see if the switch has failed or any other solution that would be great thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Is there a way to take apart the switch, i have a soldering iron and if its a bad solder point i could fix it. There’s a 1993 someone is parting out in my area however I believe the switch may be different but I’m not for sure. I think ill try to pick up that up this weekend.
 

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96 ZJ 4.0 / 42RE / NP242 / 4.56 Gears / HPD30 Truetrac / F8.8 Trac-Lok / 2x6 Sliders / Fully Skidded
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https://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f13/repairing-headlight-switch-causes-dimming-issues-picture-heavy-702703/

Solder joint cracking in the headlight switch is an extremely common issue with a known fix, reflowing the solder joints.

However, it usually has different symptoms than you are experiencing. It's still worth a shot and could help prevent future issues even if it isn't the root cause of your auto headlight issue.

You are correct, 1993 ZJs do have a year specific headlight switch that doesn't swap over to other years.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
So i took out the headlight switch which was kind of a pain. I checked out the solder joints and there were maybe two joints where there. I put more solder on all of the joints to see if that helps. Just finished soldering so I will plug it in to see if it works. Ill post an update after

I attached some pictures of the switch and some of the fatter joints that i put more solder on. The part # is 56004963
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
So quick update, put the switch back in and the exact same problem occurs. I'm going to post a video and I'm going to try and explain what I'm doing the best i can, because its hard to see since my dash is all apart.

Now in the start the switch is in the off (12 o'clock position) then i turned to the right to the 1 o'clock position for parking lights and only the dash lights came on, then i turned it all the way to the right to the 2 o'clock position where the lights finally turn on and i have normal control. I then cycle all the way to the left to automatic (11 o'clock) and you can see that only dash lights stay on. I'm toggling my brights but they wont stay on.


I also held a flashlight to the light sensor and the dash lights turn off automatically like they should so i know its not the light sensor.

I hope that makes since of what I'm doing in the video, I'm starting to lean towards the switch being bad but I'm not sure if there's a relay or something I'm missing. Any ideas?
 

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There's a module under the glovebox that controls the auto headlights based on inputs from the headlamp switch and the light sensor. It contains 2 relays soldered directly to the board. I'd bet your problem is there.

There was a writeup somewhere about how to replace those relays and it even had a part number for a drop in replacement but I can't seem to find it.
 

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There's a module under the glovebox that controls the auto headlights based on inputs from the headlamp switch and the light sensor. It contains 2 relays soldered directly to the board. I'd bet your problem is there.

There was a writeup somewhere about how to replace those relays and it even had a part number for a drop in replacement but I can't seem to find it.
Must be pretty common, all 3 of my '94-95 ZJs do or did this. Too lazy in the past to fix it, but I may try it if it's semi-easy.
 

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You are correct, 1993 ZJs do have a year specific headlight switch that doesn't swap over to other years.
I've been saying this, and now I'm not so sure. The switch Jacoby88 has is the same one from my 93. Looks the same. Same part number. Weird. The online parts catalogs and even Rockauto don't show that switch just the longer rectangle version.

I resoldered my switch here: https://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f13/headlight-switch-intermittent-failure-93-a-4417627/
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I believe from 93-95 they are all the same with the exception of fog lights depending on the model, and the switch changed between 96-98. I think the relay under the glove box could be my issue because it is acting as if i dont have automatic headlights at all. Ill loo around and see if i can find any information I’m sure its easier than getting the actual switch out.
 

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I believe from 93-95 they are all the same with the exception of fog lights depending on the model, and the switch changed between 96-98. I think the relay under the glove box could be my issue because it is acting as if i dont have automatic headlights at all. Ill loo around and see if i can find any information I'm sure its easier than getting the actual switch out.
What is the build date of your ZJ? Early 93 may be different then late 93.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
January 95 so it has the same interior of the fist generation zj’s, i dont know about early 93 models but i dont see a reason for changing.

From scavenging the internet there’s 4 different types of switches for 93-95 that i have found, I’m unaware if theyre all interchangeable however

1) is the same as mine but without the automatic headlight feature
2) exactly like mine, with automatic headlight
3) same as mine but with a fog light option on the switch
4) has the same dial as mine however the fog lights has a brightness level selector( i can only seem to find this on rock auto for 200 dollars and I’m assuming its very rare.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
The whole glovebox assembly has to be removed to get to it. It's the module that has 1103 printed on in in this pic
Thanks wouldn't have guessed it was behind there. I saw one of those on eBay along with a switch and i was trying to find a part number for it.

I see that there are two relays there as well are those the ones that tent to go bad?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Okay so its been a while. No excuses for why I haven’t messed with the headlight other than i didnt want to take apart my dash again. I recently replaced the headlight switch and during this i attacked the box Marcos mentioned.

The box itself isn’t too hard to get out and is right under the plate for the glove box. After i removed it there are 3 clips and a door like thing that once open gives you access to the circuit board. The board has 2 relays on it, and upon closer examination i noticed that the pins where the switch on the relay makes contact and sends power was lose and had a black outline around it. This stood out to me becasue it seemed like it could still make some contact however not a lot, and considering my lights flickered a bunch until it stopped working this leads me to believe that this was the problem.

I put more solder on the two contacts and sure enough first try it turns right on. I tested to see if it would turn on and off with a flashlight on the brightness sensor for the headlight and it turns on and off as it should.

I will post pictures so hopefully it helps anyone having the same problem i had, plus its practically free to fix if you have the tools which is just a soldering iron and a short Philips screwdriver.

Pneumatic tool Hand Handheld power drill Hammer drill Drill

The three square holes is what you need to press in order to open up the box and pull the circuit board out

Circuit component Hardware programmer Electronic instrument Passive circuit component Electronic component

These are the two contact points that recovered with solder. I dont have a picture of what it looked like but you will be able to tell if the point is bad. Pressing on the contact point from this side will show if it has any movement in the contact point.

Circuit component Passive circuit component Electrical wiring Hardware programmer Electronic engineering

This is the top of the board and the location of the “switch” part of the relay. If you press the two points together from this side and it doesnt have a distinct click or sounds a little weird then that will be the point to find on the other side of the board.

Hood Motor vehicle Automotive design Automotive tire Automotive exterior

Here is the box inside the car and what it will look like once you get the interior piece covering it off.


I hope this helps with anyone having the same issue again sorry for the late answer but better now than never. The second relay is in charge of dimming the radio and turning on the dash lights, so if your headlights turn on but no gauge lights then the other relay will be the point to look at.
 
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