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Old 01-19-2013, 10:13 PM   #1
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Installed my windshield mounted KC Hilite Driving Lights today

I had some time today so I decided to install my windshield mounted KC Hilite Driving lights onto my 2013 JKUR. Not really a hard install, just a bit time consuming. Took me 5 hours start to finish. I also bought a rugged ridge driver side pillar switch that I installed.

For those interested in doing the install, I took some pics and will provide a brief description of how I did it. Now I am no pro, so feel free to chime in if you have a better idea or tips or useful suggestions. Hope this helps.

1.) Mount the mounts to the windshield. Pretty straight forward. Just unscrew the 2 screws in the corner of the windshield, put mount in place and screw back in.

2.) Install actual fixtures to mount. Leave loose for aiming.

3.) I removed windshield wiper blades. They pretty much just pop off, after removing cover and nut.

4.) I then removed metal section between hood and windshield. To do so, remove screws holding down. Then there are like 4 plastic pressure screw in the middle that just pop out when you pull on them. I used a large screwdriver covered in electrical tape to help coach it along.


5.) I removed door stop that keep drivers side door from swinging open too far. Once this is done, its a piece of cake to pry out side panel of dash.


6.) At this point, I laid out all my wires. I basically ran the wires to the lights under the piece of hood that is in the top right and left hand corners of the hood. It conceals the wires pretty nicely and they dont seem to pinch at all. I also poked a hole in my firewall starting inside the car under the side section of the dash that i removed earlier. I then snaked through the white and green wires for the switch. These wires run pretty much the same path that the wire to the lights run, utilizing the drivers side hood corner. You can see the pieces I am referring to in the pic under #5.

7.) At this point, I mounted my relay. There are a group of relays on the passenger side top corner under the hood. In this spot, there is just enugh room to fit the relay for the KC's. I then used a self tapping screw to mount the ground that goes with the relay. My relay is the one on the left held in place with a stainless self tapper, with the gound wire next to it.



8.) Now I connected my Rugged Ridge Pillar switch. Note you have to cut out the spots for the switchs. I heated my utility knife blade with my plumbing torch a little. This made it a whole lot easier to cut out the spaces for the switchs. I then popped all 4 switches in as I plan on using them soon. You have to remove the driver side visor and the 2 screws in the top pillar section. I left this hanging in place as I began popping out bottom part of pillar.


Once this is done, the bottom pillar pops out. You need to pull the metal clip off the bottom pillar and reinstall on the Rugged Ridge pillar. I then connected the white and green wires to the RR switch using the directions on connecting the KC switch as RR did not mention how to connect switch. Now, the kit comes with a brown wire for grounding. I hooked it up to the switch and then removed one of the nuts located in the side panel dash area that is connected to metal and connected it to that.

9.) At this point, I took the wire that is supposed to be tapped into my hi beams and tapped it into the battery just to make sure all was working. I then tied in the yellow wire into my battery terminal to supply it with power as well. Thank goodness all was working.

10.) Now I had to tie in the white wire to my hi beam. To do this, i removed front grill. Its held in place with plastic pop in screws. Just pop out and pull it forward. No need to disconnect. Then I removed passenger side headlight. To do so, just unscrew bezel, then twist off light. I then ran tie in hi beam wire along passenger side towards passenger headlight. I then found the hi beam wire. It is White / Gray. I stripped a small section, soldered together the wires then covered in liquid electrical tape I bought off amazon. Before putting grill back together, I checked again that my KC's only work when the hi beams are on. They did, thank goodness. I then closed up front grill and headlight.

11.) Now time to tidy up all the wires. There is a 1" piece of wire loom that runs the length of the fire wall. I neatened up all the slack and neatly zip tied all to this piece of loom.



12.) I then reinstalled the piece of hood that I removed in step 4 and put windshield wipers back on. A little tough to pop this in, but once again used large screw driver to help get it back in to plastic tabs.

13.) I finished installing RR pillar switch. I bunched the excess switch wire up with a zip tie and strapped it onto a piece of loom in the side dash panel are. I then finished RR Switch and popped back in side panel. The RR Switch is a decent fit. Looks sort of factoryish.



14.) I then aimed and tightened down nuts.

15.) Now this step will actually come tomorrow. I am going to disconnect my KC's at the fixture, pop on a piece of heat sink, reconnect, apply some liquid electrical tape allow it to dry then finish heat sink. Right now, the actual wires are exposed. They are hidden pretty good, but I don't want them getting wet the way they currently are.

Here is a few pics of the final mounted version:






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Old 01-19-2013, 10:54 PM   #2
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Thinking about installing these on mine. I was wondering how they did on a tunnel car wash. That is what our company has and the only place my wife washes the Jeep.

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Old 01-20-2013, 09:06 AM   #3
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very nice. thanks for the writeup.
i want the same setup but i was wondering why you tied in to the high beams? was that necessity or personal preference?
also, you stike me as a perfectionist.... are you happy with the look of the RR switch panel? I've been looking at Daystar switches but I haven't found anything that I really like.
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Old 01-20-2013, 09:24 AM   #4
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Ha...I did mine yesterday too. Pretty much exact same except you do not need to remove the wipers to get the wires under the cowel. It pops up enough on the sides to get them in. I also did not tie into the headlights. My white wire went directly to the battery. All is working. I love the Rugged Ridge Pillar.
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Old 01-20-2013, 09:28 AM   #5
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I think they would do fine in a car wash. Seem sturdy.

The fit of the pillar switch is pretty nice. I'm glad I purchased it. Drilling into the dash on a brand new vehicle to mount the kc provided switch did not appeal to me.

I tied into hi beams bc I believe that is NYS law. May be wrong but I'm pretty sure it is.
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Old 01-20-2013, 09:53 AM   #6
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I am in need of some extra lights as I play in the dark most of the time. I thing I was wondering .... How mush glare comes off the hood, and is it distracting??
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Old 01-20-2013, 10:10 AM   #7
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Excellent write up, I personally plan on doing this mod ASAP because one of my X-Mas gifts from my bride was the KC brackets, I just need to order the remaining parts. Couple of things, if you wouldn't mind?

1. Why did you decide "Driving" over ""Long Range"? Also, how is the glare on the hood? (already asked, I know)
2. Are you happy with the switches? To me, they don't look as sturdy as the Daystar, so my plan was the same switch panel, but ordering all Daystar switches. Then, I could also get them all the same color (red) because I'm weird like that and things need to match. I don't have OCD, I have CDO because that's in proper alphabetical order, as it should be!

Looks great though, might have to get to ordering this evening, and thanks again for the detailed write up!
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:28 AM   #8
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Glare don't seem to be a problem. I went with driving bc I really just wanted something to supplement the hi beams. I chose 5" instead of 6 bc i did not want the lights to stick out too much and block my field of vision. I'm also going to add extra fogs to bumper.

The pillar mount is definitely sturdy. As for the switches, you can order without any and buy your own if you want all one color. As I stated earlier, I wanted something to mount my switches in that looked factoryish. I'm not really aware of the other solutions, except for the one that goes in the middle of the dash which just seemed like it would be harder to access.
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:48 AM   #9
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Looks great! Thanks for the write up.
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:55 AM   #10
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Nice looking install job. Thank you for doing the write up to help the rest of us.
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Old 01-20-2013, 12:09 PM   #11
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Ha! I installed mine yesterday too! I got the 6's. The only thing I did different is I got the lower dash panel. I used some of that plastic wire cover to keep it nice and neat. I'll try to post some pictures later. Yours look great!
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Old 01-20-2013, 01:21 PM   #12
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I see you have snow where you are... I installed these exact same mount on my Jeep few years ago and they rusted so fast, they marked the paint under them in the middle of their first winter. Keep an eye on them. I'll never buy that product again.

With time i learned that a lot of aftermarket products are just show and no go. They rust or get tired so fast when you use them for their real purpose. It seems that they are often made just to look good. I hope yours will last longer than mine.
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Old 01-20-2013, 01:51 PM   #13
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Maybe I can put a thin piece of rubber under the mount so there is no direct contact with the vehicle. May not be a bad idea.
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Old 01-20-2013, 01:54 PM   #14
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Mine didn't come with rubber so the best thing I found was some bicycle innertube cut to size. Hope that will keep from rusting.
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Old 01-20-2013, 01:56 PM   #15
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Old 01-20-2013, 02:07 PM   #16
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I used a piece of the styrofoam that the brackets were wrapped in as a buffer between the frame and the bracket.
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Old 01-20-2013, 03:48 PM   #17
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Maybe I can put a thin piece of rubber under the mount so there is no direct contact with the vehicle. May not be a bad idea.
That seems to be a good idea.
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Old 01-20-2013, 03:55 PM   #18
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Awesome write up, looks like I need to add this to my list of Mods!
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Old 01-27-2013, 06:59 PM   #19
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I agree, awesome write up. I got a set of 6" KC Slimlites w/ windshield mounts for christmas but haven't attempted the install. Checked with my local shop and they want $225 for install!! You make it look doable for a novice like me. Thanks!!
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:26 PM   #20
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I would definitely do it yourself over the shop. That's an insane amount. Its pretty easy for beginners.
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Old 01-27-2013, 09:12 PM   #21
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Will most likely attempt myself. Price seems kinda steep for wiring up a set of lights especially since i would be supplying lights, brackets and the wiring harness.
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Old 02-23-2013, 03:31 PM   #22
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Ok, so I took all your advice and did the install on the KC's myself. Used a RR pillar switch mount and Daystar switch. Just finished up the wiring now. Saved the $225 and used it to purchase a Tuffy underseat conceal carry box, did the install on that today as well. Neither was too difficult but just want to thank you guys for your encouragement and knowledge.

Thanks!!!
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Old 02-23-2013, 07:36 PM   #23
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Awesome! And you got to spend the savings on other Jeep parts nice!
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Old 02-23-2013, 11:00 PM   #24
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Old 02-25-2013, 09:09 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stardalo View Post
I had some time today so I decided to install my windshield mounted KC Hilite Driving lights onto my 2013 JKUR. Not really a hard install, just a bit time consuming. Took me 5 hours start to finish. I also bought a rugged ridge driver side pillar switch that I installed.

For those interested in doing the install, I took some pics and will provide a brief description of how I did it. Now I am no pro, so feel free to chime in if you have a better idea or tips or useful suggestions. Hope this helps.

1.) Mount the mounts to the windshield. Pretty straight forward. Just unscrew the 2 screws in the corner of the windshield, put mount in place and screw back in.

2.) Install actual fixtures to mount. Leave loose for aiming.

3.) I removed windshield wiper blades. They pretty much just pop off, after removing cover and nut.

4.) I then removed metal section between hood and windshield. To do so, remove screws holding down. Then there are like 4 plastic pressure screw in the middle that just pop out when you pull on them. I used a large screwdriver covered in electrical tape to help coach it along.


5.) I removed door stop that keep drivers side door from swinging open too far. Once this is done, its a piece of cake to pry out side panel of dash.


6.) At this point, I laid out all my wires. I basically ran the wires to the lights under the piece of hood that is in the top right and left hand corners of the hood. It conceals the wires pretty nicely and they dont seem to pinch at all. I also poked a hole in my firewall starting inside the car under the side section of the dash that i removed earlier. I then snaked through the white and green wires for the switch. These wires run pretty much the same path that the wire to the lights run, utilizing the drivers side hood corner. You can see the pieces I am referring to in the pic under #5.

7.) At this point, I mounted my relay. There are a group of relays on the passenger side top corner under the hood. In this spot, there is just enugh room to fit the relay for the KC's. I then used a self tapping screw to mount the ground that goes with the relay. My relay is the one on the left held in place with a stainless self tapper, with the gound wire next to it.



8.) Now I connected my Rugged Ridge Pillar switch. Note you have to cut out the spots for the switchs. I heated my utility knife blade with my plumbing torch a little. This made it a whole lot easier to cut out the spaces for the switchs. I then popped all 4 switches in as I plan on using them soon. You have to remove the driver side visor and the 2 screws in the top pillar section. I left this hanging in place as I began popping out bottom part of pillar.


Once this is done, the bottom pillar pops out. You need to pull the metal clip off the bottom pillar and reinstall on the Rugged Ridge pillar. I then connected the white and green wires to the RR switch using the directions on connecting the KC switch as RR did not mention how to connect switch. Now, the kit comes with a brown wire for grounding. I hooked it up to the switch and then removed one of the nuts located in the side panel dash area that is connected to metal and connected it to that.

9.) At this point, I took the wire that is supposed to be tapped into my hi beams and tapped it into the battery just to make sure all was working. I then tied in the yellow wire into my battery terminal to supply it with power as well. Thank goodness all was working.

10.) Now I had to tie in the white wire to my hi beam. To do this, i removed front grill. Its held in place with plastic pop in screws. Just pop out and pull it forward. No need to disconnect. Then I removed passenger side headlight. To do so, just unscrew bezel, then twist off light. I then ran tie in hi beam wire along passenger side towards passenger headlight. I then found the hi beam wire. It is White / Gray. I stripped a small section, soldered together the wires then covered in liquid electrical tape I bought off amazon. Before putting grill back together, I checked again that my KC's only work when the hi beams are on. They did, thank goodness. I then closed up front grill and headlight.

11.) Now time to tidy up all the wires. There is a 1" piece of wire loom that runs the length of the fire wall. I neatened up all the slack and neatly zip tied all to this piece of loom.



12.) I then reinstalled the piece of hood that I removed in step 4 and put windshield wipers back on. A little tough to pop this in, but once again used large screw driver to help get it back in to plastic tabs.

13.) I finished installing RR pillar switch. I bunched the excess switch wire up with a zip tie and strapped it onto a piece of loom in the side dash panel are. I then finished RR Switch and popped back in side panel. The RR Switch is a decent fit. Looks sort of factoryish.



14.) I then aimed and tightened down nuts.

15.) Now this step will actually come tomorrow. I am going to disconnect my KC's at the fixture, pop on a piece of heat sink, reconnect, apply some liquid electrical tape allow it to dry then finish heat sink. Right now, the actual wires are exposed. They are hidden pretty good, but I don't want them getting wet the way they currently are.

Here is a few pics of the final mounted version:






Is the fit and finish of the pillar mount install nice and snug in a manner that it does look factoryish?
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Old 02-26-2013, 09:25 AM   #26
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I think the pillar mount is very much "factoryish" looking. takes some massaging to get it to sit perfectly but definitely can be done.
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Old 03-19-2013, 07:50 PM   #27
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I just mounted my KC 6" Slimlites on my windshield mounts tonight and will wire them up tomorrow night when I get the switch in. One question though, my antenna is hitting the rock guard on the light. Anyone else run into this issue? If so, what, if anything, did you do about it?
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Old 03-19-2013, 07:54 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BaldwinJeep View Post
I just mounted my KC 6" Slimlites on my windshield mounts tonight and will wire them up tomorrow night when I get the switch in. One question though, my antenna is hitting the rock guard on the light. Anyone else run into this issue? If so, what, if anything, did you do about it?
Antenna X stubby.
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Old 05-08-2013, 08:13 AM   #29
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I just installed the same using the same "Rugged Ridge" A Pillar switch pod. I'm not happy with the Pod install on my '10 Wrangler. First, not sure if this pod is really intended for newer models, because the big cut out on the pod that is meant for where it should fit into the crevice of the upper portion is NOT lined up at all!
As well, I had to cut out a "notch" on the side panel, because the bottom edge of the pod gets in the way of the side panel cover.
Overall, not very impressed! I think they made these to be somewhat "universal" for a broad section of JK's and enough minor changes have been made between '08-'13 that warrants really more of a custom made product. Too bad they sell this stuff as "fits" my '10, when it really doesn't... I have made mine work, but I definitely wouldn't say mine looks at all "factoryish"... The only thing factory looking is the finish of the plastic itself, it tends to match the color and texture of my current interior, that's about it.

Secondly, why did they feel they had to mount the switches so close together? They put them so close together that when you cut out the switch holes, you're lucky if there is 1/8" of material left between each switch! I know that one day, cracks will develop on that thin sliver of material left on the pod! They could have at least put 1/2" between each switch and it would have even looked better too!

Glad to see yours worked out so well!
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Old 10-15-2013, 08:07 PM   #30
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Thanks for this excellent writeup. I'm doing same thing on my '13 JKUR, except I'll probably just use the KC switch that comes w/ slim lites. I intend to have the KCs on whenever my hi beams are.

Here's the Q. As I understand from hours of reading another thread*, Wave Pulse Modulation (WPM) used in newer Wrangler headlight wiring is a problem. Apparently it'll fry the KC relay (quickly or eventually). Could you possibly listen to and touch your KC relay while the lights are on -- to see if you hear or feel buzzing/vibrating? If so, that's the WPM fluctuating the voltage.

The solution is pretty easy, you're supposed to solder in a 4700uf capacitor in parallel with the wire you attached to the hi beam power. But I'd rather not mod the KC wiring if it's not necessary. On the other hand, nor do I want to blow relays weekly!

Thanks if you can possibly check or advise.

*
The Official JK Aftermarket Lighting Thread (HID, HALO, Fog, Etc..)

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