2002 – 2006 Dodge Ram 9007 LED Headlight Kit Install Writeup – DIY How To

For a long time it was known that the only way to do a plug and play lighting upgrade on the 2002 – 2006 Dodge Ram was to either use higher power halogen bulbs, or an HID conversion kit with a bunch of extra parts like resistors, a relay harness and capacitors. Because of this every time I heard about someone working on one I would get scared and not even want to help with it – it is an AWFUL install! Now with the invention of LED conversion kit bulbs and CANBUS modules for them, we decided to give this difficult vehicle a shot to see if we could install LED conversion kit bulbs easier in a 2003 Dodge Ram with 9007 headlight bulbs. Doing this install (once wired properly) proved to be a truly plug and play experience with no flickering and no “LAMP OUT” warning on the dash!

Using a GTR Lighting LED Conversion Kit and the matching CANBUS module we were able to get LED headlights installed pretty easily!

Using a GTR Lighting LED Conversion Kit and the matching CANBUS module we were able to get LED headlights installed pretty easily!

This particular truck was dated September of 2003 and used 9007 bulbs.

The first step was to get the new LED bulbs to actually fit inside the housing! Because the base of the bulb that holds the fan and heat sink is so much larger than the original bulb we had to use a bench grinder and shave about .25 inches off of the gray plastic retaining ring to allow everything to seat correctly. This took a few minutes and just took a little off at a time, tested it and kept doing that until it all fit together nicely.

The LED bulb comes apart. There's the bulb adapter that comes off and is secured to the housing by the gray plastic retaining ring, and the entire bulb assembly. We had to modify the plastic retainer before the new LED bulb would fit in place like the original.

The LED bulb comes apart. There’s the bulb adapter that comes off and is secured to the housing by the gray plastic retaining ring, and the entire bulb assembly. We had to modify the plastic retainer before the new LED bulb would fit in place like the original.

The 9007 LED Headlight Conversion kit bulbs are much larger on the back side than the original 9007 halogen bulbs.

The 9007 LED Headlight Conversion kit bulbs are much larger on the back side than the original 9007 halogen bulbs.

After getting the bulbs to seat properly in the housing we took the GTR Lighting CANBUS module for 9007 out of the packaging and hooked it up straight away and the capacitor inside the module popped! The module actually exploded!! I’m not kidding – a little pop, some wet stuff came out and the little thing stunk to high heaven and smoked for a second. This wasn’t all too surprising though since when you hook a capacitor up backwards it will explode. That’s exactly what happened – the capacitor inside was wired wrong for this truck and exploded. So, after that excitement we took a new set of 9007 CANBUS modules and re-wired them so that everything looked like this:

 

This is how the bulb was installed: The CANBUS module is between the bulb and the vehicle harness.

This is how the bulb was installed: The CANBUS module is between the bulb and the vehicle harness.

This is the connector going from the 9007 LED Headlight into the 9007 CANBUS module. We had to change these wires around to make them work.

This is the connector going from the 9007 LED Headlight into the 9007 CANBUS module. These wires were correct from GTR Lighting.

This is the connector back side of the 9007 LED CANBUS module input. We had to change these wires around to make them work.

This is the connector back side of the 9007 LED CANBUS module input. We had to change these wires around to make them work.

This is the connector back side of the 9007 LED CANBUS module output that plugs into the factory wiring. We had to change these wires around to make them work.

This is the connector back side of the 9007 LED CANBUS module output that plugs into the factory wiring. We had to change these wires around to make them work.

Just for reference sake, here's what the back side of the original factory connector looked like.

Just for reference sake, here’s what the back side of the original factory connector looked like.

 

So, all in all we got it to work after thinking about it and how to re-wire the CANBUS modules, and they’re definitely brighter than the stock headlights. Because they are LED they should be more reliable also.

Here you can see the new GTR Lighting LED bulb in the headlight housing.

Here you can see the new GTR Lighting LED bulb in the headlight housing.

Here's a final install shot showing the new 9007 LED Headlights from GTR Lighting in high beam mode.

Here’s a final install shot showing the new 9007 LED Headlights from GTR Lighting in high beam mode.

How to Remove Radio Interference Using Ferrite Coils for HID and LED Headlights

Many people nowadays are installing aftermarket HID and/or LED conversion kits in their headlights and fog lights. These new conversion kits use an external power booster, called a Ballast for HID setups and a Driver for LED setups. Both of these external power supplies do similar functions, but technically they are quite different. Also, both of these products create RFI (Radio Frequency Interference); in fact every electronic device ever made creates RFI, but there are different types of this electrical interference. Sometimes when installing an LED conversion kit or an HID conversion kit in your vehicle the result can be better, brighter light, but also a side effect of AM or FM radio interference. This is characterized by where you once were able to pick up a radio station, with the new lights installed and turned on, now that same radio station is just white noise.

Here is an example of a DIY ferrite coil that can be used in lighting installs.

Here is an example of a DIY ferrite coil that can be used in lighting installs.

The solution for your problem might be what is called a ferrite coil, also known as a ferrite bead, a ferrite choke, or an RFI choke. All of these names mean the same thing. Ferrite beads prevent interference in two directions: from a device or to a device. A conductive cable such as the input power for the HID or LED headlight bulbs acts as an antenna – if the device produces radio frequency energy, this can be transmitted through the cable, which acts as an unintentional radiator. In this case the bead may be required to reduce RFI. Conversely, if there are other sources of RFI, such as an ignition module or battery charging alternator, the bead prevents the cable from acting as an antenna and receiving interference from these other devices.

Ferrite coils are already used in everyday household uses. You can find them on USB cables, power cords for your television or home stereo, and even on input power cables on your automotive satellite radio:

Ferrite coils are commonly used in household electronics to reduce interference signals.

Ferrite coils are commonly used in household electronics to reduce interference signals.

LED Conversion Kits Small Ferrite Coil:

For an LED Headlight conversion kit you can use a large ferrite coil and wind the input power wires around it, or you can use a small ferrite coil, and just clamp it over the power cable:

LED Conversion Kits Large Ferrite Coil:

 

HID Conversion Kits Small Ferrite Coil:

For the HID conversion kits you can put a smaller ferrite choke around the power input cable of the ballast like this:

HID Conversion Kits Large Ferrite Coil:

For the HID conversion kits you can put a larger ferrite choke around the power input cable where the small wires are exposed. This allows you to wrap the wiring around the choke for a better result. This is how to install the larger ferrite coil:

Sources for Ferrite coils:
Large style designed for looping wires around coil: RND-6 ( Wurtz number 7427151 ) snap on chokes
The inside hole size is 0.57″ (over 1/2″, 14.5 mm)

Small style designed snap onto power input cable: RCT2 RFI Radio Frequency Interference Ferrite Chokes – Black
measures approximately 1.25 x .75 x 75 inches

Custom Hot Rod – 1971 Montgomery Ward T555 Trail Master Trike Build

Montgomery Ward T555 Trail Master Three Wheeler Trike

Montgomery Ward T555 Trail Master Three Wheeler Trike

Everybody has probably seen a Montgomery Ward 3 wheeler, but had no idea it was called a T555 (pronounced Tee Five Fifty Five) and also nicknamed the Trail Master. These things can be found at any antique show, your grandpa’s shed buried under old blankets and sawdust, or on your parent’s home videos from the 70’s. These were produced by Montgomery Ward in Omaha, Nebraska in the early 1970’s and were all built by hand. Only a few are left in operation today and from time to time you can find one that was restored and able to be ridden today.

This is what most of these 3 wheeled death traps look like nowadays.

This is what most of these 3 wheeled death traps look like nowadays.

I got a hold of one of these things, found in an older gentleman’s garage – hadn’t been touched in decades, and I fell in love with it! There was just something about the American nostalgia about it, and the cool shape and design, knowing it was hand-built 40 years ago by Montgomery Ward, I just had to have it – and I had to fix it up! Like most vehicles that I own I can’t just leave them stock, I had to customize it and make it mine.

We started with the frame: Moved the seat back 5 inches, and removed the flange in the middle of the frame in front of the seat. We had the whole thing powdercoated a metallic black, and the front fender and foot-wells were coated in Line-x bed coating for durability. The wheels were also taken apart and powdercoated silver to match some other components on the engine.

Next we had a new seat made out of waterproof vinyl by a local upholstery shop, took the engine apart, powdercoated the cover panels and ordered a bunch of new drivetrain parts. We got all new bearings, new brakes (custom made lines), new twist-throttle handlebar grips, a new brake handle, built a custom battery box for a Vision X battery and built a wildly custom intake an exhaust using a K&N filter, and a custom mini-bike style exhaust muffler. Everything got the presidential treatment! No expense was spared, and the whole project probably cost me about $5K with buying the trike, new parts, powdercoating, custom fabricating, and other labor.

We actually found an updated engine from a 1980’s snowblower to use instead of the original one, but it was still the Tecumseh HM80 used to power this American Made beast! The reason for going with the newer engine was not that the original was worn out, but the new one had less antiquated electronics controlling the ignition and came with a built in electric-start for use with a 110v extension cord! We thought about upgrading to a 10hp engine, but thought we should at least keep the engine original-ish.

On the front of the T555 trike we did all kinds of stuff there too. We found some motorcycle handlebar grips that had a really cool Harley/hot rod look to them, pointed on the ends, and an integrated twist-style throttle. Also, we tossed the original two-handle brake levers and installed a brand new single lever brake handle, with all new brake pads, and all new cables which had to be custom made. Also mounted on the handle bar is a Vision X LED Light bar and a dirt-bike style ignition kill switch.

The original headlight on this thing was a 4.5″ round halogen incandescent lamp that was actually routed through the wiring as part of the ignition circuit. We pulled it off and installed a direct replacement (same brand as the original also) JW Speaker brand 6045 LED headlight. JW Speaker still even had the rubber retaining rings in stock to hold it in place so we were even able to use the stock headlight bucket.

 

The finishing touches on this trike was a set of red LED driving lights mounted to the rear of the truck, activated on the same circuit as the headlight. We used a pair of GTR Lighting 7″ long LED Lightning strips because they are super low profile (don’t really even notice them when off), and they are waterproof, and insanely bright!

GMC Canyon Roof Mounted LED Light Bar

If you have a GMC Canyon or Chevy Colorado, and you want to put a roof-mounted light bar on it you’ve probably found that nobody makes a vehicle specific kit. A friend of mine wanted to add this type of Light Bar setup to his 2007 Canyon and I found a product that actually works really good!

Canyon LED Roof Mount Light Bar

You’ll need these items to make it work (Click the links to see each part):

For this installation we actually installed Nut-Certs into the roof, drilled a hole through the roof for the wiring to go through, and used stainless steel cap bolts from the hardware store. All I wanted to help with was to show pictures that it can be done, show you what size light bar to use, and some pictures to give you an idea of how it all goes together.

We used the Vision X brand XIL-801 Flood Beam LED Light bar, it’s 42″ long and fit perfectly on the roof of this Canyon. We got all of the parts to do this install from Headlight Revolution, so if you want to replicate this install contact Headlight Revolution at this link: HERE.

Flexible White Tube with White and Amber LEDs for Custom Headlights

I spent the week in Las Vegas for the 2014 SEMA show recently and a new product caught my eye… probably because it was used in a TON of vehicles, and I’ve never seen it before.

At first glance it looked like just an accent piece or something, like a white trim piece… then at night they turned them on!!

White silicone or rubber strips used for custom headlight accents.

White silicone or rubber strips used for custom headlight accents.

Here are the accent strips lit up. They shine bright white, and blink amber.

Here are the accent strips lit up. They shine bright white, and blink amber.

 

The cool thing about these strips is that they stay on with the parking light signal and illuminate white, then because they also connect to the blinker trigger, they blink amber when using your turn signals.

White for "parking" lights, and amber for blinkers.

White for “parking” lights, and amber for blinkers.

The harness has 3 wires: ground, + parking and + blinker. Also, the strip is trimmable to fit any application.

The harness has 3 wires: ground, + parking and + blinker. Also, the strip is trimmable to fit any application.

When turned off, they are just subtle white strips, much better looking than the common yellow LED strips that most people are using.

Here are some of the vehicles at the car show sporting the GTR Lighting flexible rubber LED tubes :

 

Headlight Upgrades for new style 2015 Ford F150

The new U-Shaped headlight housings coming on the 2015 Ford F-150 are definitely a unique new style, they even have an aftermarket style flair to them that many enthusiasts are already falling in love with. Gone are the days of having to replace your headlight housings with aftermarket units in order to have an aggressive look!

This new U-Shaped F150 headlight will come in an LED version, designed by OSRAM, with built in high power LEDs, or you can get the less expensive option that comes with halogen bulbs. If your truck has the halogen bulb option, you’ve still got options! You can upgrade to LED or HID headlight bulbs by using the products outlined in this article. Aftermarket LED conversion kits are still not brighter than HID, but they do turn on instantly, they last longer than HID and they are significantly easier to install.

Here are the products that you can use to upgrade these new headlights, fog lights, and tail lights:

2015 F-150 U-Shaped Headlight Bulb Upgrades:
Low Beam: H11
H11 LED Conversion Kit Upgrade
H11 HID Conversion Kit Upgrade

High Beam: HB3/9005
HB3/9005 LED Conversion Kit Upgrade
HB3/9005 HID Conversion Kit Upgrade

Fog Lights: H11
H11 LED Conversion Kit Upgrade
H11 HID Conversion Kit Upgrade

Rear Parking Light / Brake Light / Turn Signal Bulb: Red 3157
3157 LED Bulb Upgrade

Reverse Light Bulb: White 3157
3157 LED Bulb Upgrade

Here are some close-up shots of the stock headlights so you can double check, if your headlights look like these, then the products listed above will work for your truck:

Will the JW Speaker 8700 be the new Jeep LED Headlight Option

Most Jeep enthusiasts know what types of LED headlights are available for their vehicle, and arguably the most popular option in recent years has been the JW Speaker model 8700 LED Headlight. This model of the available Jeep headlight options has the most futuristic and unique look, and the best light output of any other 7″ round LED Headlight on the market, so it’s no wonder that they are the most popular.

Because it has become such a popular product in the Jeep community, it’s no wonder it has caught the eye of Jeep corporate. At last year’s SEMA show (2013) the Mopar booth had Truck-Lite LED headlights branded with the Jeep logo.

Now in 2014 at the Jeep booth they have JW Speaker 8700 LED headlights, factory equipped with H13 connectors, and the Jeep logo branded on the inner bezel. Why does Jeep keep debuting different LED headlights at their booth with the Jeep logo? My guess is they are just feeling the water for the market, throwing options at the wall to see what sticks and to see what people like.

Here are the pictures from the Jeep booth, showing the JW Speaker LED headlights marketed in the Jeep booth at SEMA 2014:

If you like the sound of a Jeep with LED Headlights, you can get your own at Headlight Revolution here. All you need is the JW Speaker 8700 and the adapter harnesses.