Jeep Commander Forum banner

1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I finally got around to installing my custom HID projectors, got them all aligned and working as they should and I wanted to share the info with you guys. As you know, Jeep made a limited number of Commanders with OEM HID projectors but it seems that they no longer manufacture the replacement parts for them so it's hard to add them to non-projector equipped Commanders. The only other option is to retrofit projectors into the OEM headlight assemblies. This is DIY project or you can have someone build them for you.

There are a few companies out there that retrofit projectors and I decided to try www.HIDProjectors.com since I saw another member of this forum using their headlights. This company offers quite a few options for customized projector headlights. They can retrofit projectors for both low and high beams, add halos, color coat the inside of the housing, and add demon eyes to the projectors. I decided to go for more of an OEM chrome look with a projector for the low beams only and 6000k HID bulbs. HID bulbs take time to ignite and reach their full brightness so this is not ideal for high beams, I wouldn't recommend it. It'll be fine if you drive with high beams often and would like the look and performance of HID bulbs for highs but you won't be able to use the "flash to pass" feature.

If you're not familiar with the retrofit process it basically requires heating the headlight assembly in an oven to a temperature where the seal is malleable but does not melt the housing, then the lens can be removed. Once the lens is removed you insert the projector, possibly making cuts to the housing to make the projector sit well against the back of the reflector, then sealing it up again. Here's a video of how it's done: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PRP5Uxe-BkU. It's not too difficult but it's easy to screw it up, which is why I decided to have someone with experience build them for me instead.

The headlights are plug and play. They will arrive with the bulbs already installed, ballasts, and a relay harness. They are shipped very well so that they will not get damaged during shipping. When I first received my custom headlights one of them was either in the oven too long or the heat was too high which melted a lot of the tabs that hold the headlight to the frame, including a cutout where the front bumper is supposed to be inserted into, you'll see it on the pictures below. Once I contacted Tom at HIDProjectors.com he was quick to replace it and felt that it shouldn't have left their workshop like that and apologized. Major kudos for owning up to it, it shows their excellent customer service level. Two weeks later I received a replacement headlight that was in great shape.

When I finally got around to installing them the HID bulbs burnt bright and looked great but I realized that something wasn't right. When my headlights would turn on either manually or via the auto headlights option they would not turn off until the engine was off. Even if I switched the headlights to the off position or if my Commander was sitting in the daylight the lights would not turn off. I contacted Tom again and he wasn't sure what was causing that either. Eventually I narrowed it down to the relay harness. The one that was supplied with the headlights was configured for a bi-xenon setup and since are Commanders have independent high and low beam bulbs the relay wouldn't receive the "off" signal as it should. I eventually purchased a Morimoto HD relay harness and it looked and felt of much better quality than the one that was supplied. It's also specifically design to work on Chrysler vehicles to prevent flickering and other issues. Here's the link for the harness: https://www.theretrofitsource.com/components/harnesses/morimoto-mopar-xenon-relay-wire-harness.html?carDisplay=2008+Jeep+Commander&preselect=4.1.3-HARN-RELAY-9006#.VpBtjE7SlPY. Again, Tom provided excellent customer service and offered a refund for the relay harness he supplied. His company specializes mostly in making custom headlights for Jeep Wranglers, which do use bi-xenon headlights, so that would explain why this harness was supplied by default.

Also, another issue I ran into was that the driver side cutoff was misaligned. If you're not familiar with projector beams just imagine that the cutoff is super sharp and you should see a straight horizontal line where the light cuts off, you'll see the pictures down below. I was able to fix this by removing the bulb, inserting a pair of pliers in a couple of notches directly behind the projector, and turned it until I felt it was enough to have the cutoff straight. You can also do this by applying pressure against the bulb adapter but my projectors were pretty tight that they wouldn't budge this way.

Now that everything is working as it should I'm very happy with how the projectors look. They are really bright, the cutoff is super sharp so it doesn't blind oncoming traffic, and color of the HID bulbs is a nice bright white with a hint of blue. Again, I cannot stress enough the awesome customer service. I would definitely recommend www.HIDProjectors.com for your custom headlights.

I hope this was helpful for those considering retrofitting HID projectors. Pics will follow in the next posts. Feel free to ask questions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Here is a picture of the headlights when they were shipped:


Here's a shot of what the first driver's side headlight looked like when the tabs were a bit too melted. Again, it was quickly replaced though:

And the slot where the bumper inserts into:

Another shot of the front:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Here's a picture of where the ballast is installed on the passenger side:

Here's a picture of the driver's side ballast and relay harness. The relay is mounted on the battery tray. This was the original harness that was provided. I don't have a picture of the replacement harness.

Here's a picture of the cutoff prior to proper alignment:

Here's a picture of the sharp cutoff after they were aligned:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Here's a picture of what the front end looks like with the projectors installed:

Here's a picture with just the projectors on:

Here's a picture with the projectors on and an LED conversion kit in the fog lights:

And here's a picture with all six lights on- headlights, fogs, and Rigid Industries Dually D2 LED lights mounted on the lower bumper:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
And finally a before shot with just the Rigid Industries D2 LED driving lights:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
This is a picture of what the supplied relay harness looks like. It works well with bi-xenon configurations but didn't work well on our Commanders:

Here's a picture of the HD Mopar Spec Morimoto harness with capacitor link that I decided to try and worked well:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
212 Posts
The light beam looks way too narrow to be used offroad - looks like it has limited illumination low and front of the car.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
The light beam looks way too narrow to be used offroad - looks like it has limited illumination low and front of the car.
I see what you mean but it's the location where the picture was taken from, my Commander is actually a bit elevated since it's sitting inside my garage and pointing towards the alley. Also the ground is wet so it reflects the light more instead of absorbing it. When I'm driving on the streets or highway the road is actually illuminated very well directly in front of me to the point that it's hard to see when the other lights come on. This picture doesn't do justice. I'll see if I can get a better picture.

Here's a better shot with the same projectors from the other member that has them:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Finally got a shot of me driving with just the HID projectors on:

Here's a picture of the projectors with the LED fog lights on:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
953 Posts
I like!!! I've been itching for something like this for quite some time. Would you mind sharing the price for these goodies? Laziness makes me want to buy a ready made set. Adventure makes me want to retrofit my own. LOL.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
These cost $600 plus shipping and it includes new headlights, ballasts, HID bulbs, relay harness, and the labor. You also have the option of sending in your headlights and the price will be lower by about $150 if I'm not mistaken. So $450 if you send yours in plus the cost of shipping them back to you. I think it's a great deal.

I opted to go with new headlight housings so that I can keep my originals as a backup.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
953 Posts
Very cool. Thanks for sharing!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
It's been almost a year later and these projector headlights are still holding up nicely. I never seize to be impressed, even until this day.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
953 Posts
That's great news.

I went back to read your post again. I was wondering if you know which projectors were used. In one of the pictures it looks like you have an H1 bulb in there? Are those D2S projectors? Are all the connections weatherproofed somehow?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
That's great news.

I went back to read your post again. I was wondering if you know which projectors were used. In one of the pictures it looks like you have an H1 bulb in there? Are those D2S projectors? Are all the connections weatherproofed somehow?
I don't know the brand of the projectors used but they do look very similar to the D2S. They use H1 bulbs and the projectors themselves have a very clean line and seem to be high quality. The connections on the Morimoto wiring harness that I chose to use instead of the one that was provided are weatherproof. I also eventually decided to purchase 100mm round housing caps (https://www.theretrofitsource.com/accessories/build-materials/rubber-housing-caps.html) for additional peace of mind and they fit perfectly snug so they'll never come loose. This completely weatherproofs the back of the projectors too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
953 Posts
I don't know the brand of the projectors used but they do look very similar to the D2S. They use H1 bulbs and the projectors themselves have a very clean line and seem to be high quality. The connections on the Morimoto wiring harness that I chose to use instead of the one that was provided are weatherproof. I also eventually decided to purchase 100mm round housing caps (https://www.theretrofitsource.com/accessories/build-materials/rubber-housing-caps.html) for additional peace of mind and they fit perfectly snug so they'll never come loose. This completely weatherproofs the back of the projectors too.
Wow! I didn't know those caps were available. Would it be possible to post a picture of what that looks like?

Also, I assume you are not using the retrofit high beams and are keeping the stick highs, yes?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Wow! I didn't know those caps were available. Would it be possible to post a picture of what that looks like?

Also, I assume you are not using the retrofit high beams and are keeping the stick highs, yes?
I know! I was glad to find caps that fit perfectly. I was expecting them to fit a little large and was planning on using a zip tie but they were snug and not tight, snug enough to prevent them from falling. I'll post the pics once I'm able to take them.


That's correct, I elected to just retrofit the low beams. The high beams are still the stock bulbs. They can retrofit your high beams too for an additional cost.


I'm highly considering retrofitting my fog lights too just for look. I have LED bulbs in there now but I'm not happy with their performance. They are really bright but the light is scattered everywhere and blind oncoming traffic. I only use my fogs in severe weather or on dark empty roads, they're perfect for that. Otherwise, the lighting from my projector low beams are perfect, definitely better than stock so I really don't need the fogs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
309 Posts
I cannot wait until I get home to install the set I got from them.

I need to figure out where to install the switch I need to add for the angel eye stuff I added.

He upgraded his harness now, he let me know when I bought the set about the change in wiring.

I am also going to get a set of his fog lights and make it a clean set all around.

Dave
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
954 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
I cannot wait until I get home to install the set I got from them.

I need to figure out where to install the switch I need to add for the angel eye stuff I added.

He upgraded his harness now, he let me know when I bought the set about the change in wiring.

I am also going to get a set of his fog lights and make it a clean set all around.

Dave
Awesome! I'm glad he found the correct wiring harness for our Commanders. I was the one who brought it to his attention. I like your headlights too, that's pretty awesome. Share some pics when you have your fogs retrofitted too. Morimoto has new mini projectors that should fit in our fog light assemblies. I'll definitely reach out to Tom if I decide to do my fogs. It would be nice to retrofit my fog lights and add 3000k bulbs for that yellow look.
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top