Replacing OEM Matching Grille/Grille Insert - Jeep Commander Forums: Jeep Commander Forum
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-02-2009, 04:20 PM Thread Starter
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Grill insert

Hi all! Must say I'm impressed by all the rockin pics of everyone's custom accessories. Has inspired me to do my own. I'm thinking of purchasing a grill insert and I see that cutting is probable in order to fit behind the grill. Can anyone shed any light on this and what tools may be needed? Thx!
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-02-2009, 04:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VACommander View Post
Hi all! Must say I'm impressed by all the rockin pics of everyone's custom accessories. Has inspired me to do my own. I'm thinking of purchasing a grill insert and I see that cutting is probable in order to fit behind the grill. Can anyone shed any light on this and what tools may be needed? Thx!
The one I used replaced the black insert with a billet insert, you just needed a good knife or drimel to cut out the factory part and then screw down the clips holding the insert. Took about ten minutes.





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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-02-2009, 04:49 PM Thread Starter
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Ok thanks, sounds reassuring. I haven't yet opened up the grill, are the clips already installed or do they come with the grill insert?
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-02-2009, 05:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VACommander View Post
Ok thanks, sounds reassuring. I haven't yet opened up the grill, are the clips already installed or do they come with the grill insert?
The grille come off fast and easy, you then have to cut out and toss the current inserts. The install is real easy, all you need is a drill & screw driver to install the new one.



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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-11-2009, 03:26 PM Thread Starter
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Replacing OEM Matching Grille/Grille Insert

Ok, just received my chrome grille yesterday from Auto Truck Toys to replace my current grille. Probably the easiest mod so far, even easier than putting on my side air deflectors; took me literally 10 minutes. I have also ordered a vertical billet grill insert that will probably arrive early next week. I just have to find time to install that one because it will take some careful work to cut out the black plastic stock grill inserts and replace them with the 7 chrome inserts.

One note about replacing the grille: take your time when pulling out the 6 plastic plugs that hold the grill in place (located on the top plastic lip on the grille under the hood). I think I was so excited to replace the grill that I did not take the time and ended up breaking several of the plastic plugs even though I used an automotive plug removal tool. The plugs are actually TWO pieces. So loosen up the plug with the plug removal tool (you can purchase at an automotive store, I bought mine for $7 at Advance Auto), then once you LOOSEN the plugs pull up the cap, then pull out the entire plug. I didn't find out the plugs were two parts until I replaced them. Still no big deal, they were replaced just fine but a couple are a little loose.

See pics attached, I'll have more pics once I install the vertical billet grille.

Stock matching paint grille and chrome grille replacement (Mopar product):
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-23-2009, 10:02 PM Thread Starter
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Chrome Vertical Billet Inserts

Ok, finally, pictures below of the chrome billet inserts. Very easy application, thanks to those who gave encouraging info on the installation. Took about 2 hrs and would've taken less time but I took care in cutting out the black OEM grille insert from each of the 7 openings and then sanding down any frayed ends. The instructions say to detach the black insert from the grille but that is not necessary if you are really careful.

The dremmel is really the tool to have for this install and made cutting and sanding/smoothing much easier than a pair of snips. One word of note: was mostly pleased with the chrome billet inserts but not the best craftsmanship. Looked like a quick slap mig or tig welding job and some of the horizontal bars that you screw the long screws into to affix with the C brackets and nuts were not completely 180 degrees and somewhat at an angle. Also the die cut for the threads in each insert seemed to be done very quickly because the screws would screw in crooked and one hole was not completely die cut so I actually had to leave that one empty (but it's secure with the three other nuts/screws). Overall you can't notice unless you get up to the grille and look in the slots and know what you're looking for. Still really like the vertical look and it brings on a totally different aesthetic! Let me know if you have any questions on this mod.
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Last edited by VACommander; 04-23-2009 at 10:27 PM.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-23-2009, 10:06 PM Thread Starter
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more pics:
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Last edited by VACommander; 04-23-2009 at 10:26 PM.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-23-2009, 04:28 PM
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Grill Inserts

I'm concerned about how much the grill inserts might affect the airflow to the radiator. With 9 vertical bars in place of the stock 3, it seems it might restrict a considerable amount of flow. I live in the desert and airflow during the heat of summer is vitally important. Love the look of this grill mod. Any thoughts?
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-23-2009, 04:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsamusic View Post
I'm concerned about how much the grill inserts might affect the airflow to the radiator. With 9 vertical bars in place of the stock 3, it seems it might restrict a considerable amount of flow. I live in the desert and airflow during the heat of summer is vitally important. Love the look of this grill mod. Any thoughts?
I too live in the desert, I put a winch in front of my grille and have noticed no increase in engine temperature.





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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-23-2009, 04:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsamusic View Post
I'm concerned about how much the grill inserts might affect the airflow to the radiator. With 9 vertical bars in place of the stock 3, it seems it might restrict a considerable amount of flow. I live in the desert and airflow during the heat of summer is vitally important. Love the look of this grill mod. Any thoughts?
I don't think that is anything to worry about.

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