Jeep Wrangler Headlights Won’t Turn On – What To Do?

So you're driving your classy Jeep Wrangler down the street. You need to turn on the headlights, but they won't light up. You're feeling upset and wondering what could be wrong. Worry no more! We've researched what you should do when your Jeep Wrangler's headlights won't turn on.

Stop driving and park in a safe spot. Turn off the engine; look for obvious problems and then smaller issues. Check the light bulbs, wires, and battery to assess if there are any issues. You might need to start the engine intermittently after bulb or wire tweaks to see if the lights come aglow.

Follow these steps for troubleshooting:

  1. Using a screwdriver, remove the grill and open the light shield.
  2. Twist and tighten the bulb. Headlights may not work if the bulbs are loose.
  3. If there's a broken wire, patch it up with electrical tape.
  4. Trace the wire up to the battery source. Make sure the negative and positive terminals are in the proper places. This should give the headlights temporary power until you get home safely.
  5. When you get home, make further assessments to identify the main problem causing the headlights not to turn on.

Headlights are components you need to stay safe on the road. There are several factors that affect the headlights, like power supply and engine issues. We have a lot more to tell you about headlights and how you can handle issues with them that may occur while you drive. Keep reading!

Jeep Wrangler JK Unlimited Rubicon Recon in desert with led bar on roof, Jeep Wrangler Headlights Won't Turn On - What To Do?

Why Headlights Won't Turn On?

Hand is cleaning car headlight with a using red microfiber cloth,Automotive maintenance concept.

Here are a few possible reasons why your headlights won't work:

Low Battery Power

Close up Charging car battery with electricity through jumper cables.

If your headlights emit light but at a very low level, the battery might be running out of power. The car's battery is responsible for transmitting electricity to the car's components such as headlights, radios, wipers, and digital displays. The car's battery should work even if the engine is off.

To check the battery, make sure the negative and positive terminals are in their correct positions. Take note of when you last checked the battery. You might need a professional for replacement.

Faulty Alternator


The alternator changes the power source from electrical to chemical and vice-versa once the engine is turned on. Activating the alternator can cause other components to shut down like small lights and speakers.

The alternator switches from using a battery to using gasoline and vice-versa. A faulty alternator can cause the engine to not transmit power, resulting in headlights not turning on.

Ask a professional for an alternator replacement if needed. Also, you need to check both the battery and the amount of gasoline in your car. 

Faulty Wires

Electrician works with electric block in car. Close-up of automobile inside under raised hood. Service man hands working with cables of auto

Wires are the connecting networks of electricity that power the headlights. If your headlights won't turn on, you'll have to check if the wires are torn. You can cover faulty wires with electrical tape for temporary relief.

Substandard Quality

Be mindful of your car's parts. If you have a secondhand vehicle, you might want to ask the previous owner about the headlight manufacturer and what repairs have been made.

For instance, headlights might have been previously replaced with a substandard brand. You have to ensure that your headlights are not fake and bought only from an authorized store. Using substandard headlights can harm the car's engine.

Types of Headlights for Jeep Wrangler

Headlights differ in bulb and brightness. The intensity of light can be changed depending on the pattern, color, and transparency of the shield. See the different types of headlights below:


Halogen bulbs are common in most cars and simply mean a halogen gas is trapped inside, making the filament spark a brighter light. These do not consume much energy, yet are long-lasting.

See this halogen headlight on Amazon.

HID (High-Intensity Discharge)

HID bulbs contain tungsten and xenon particles, which are mixed with gases such as mercury and sodium vapor. The filament sparks these components, resulting in an intense luminosity. HID bulbs emit a high amount of heat and are usually cylindrical in shape.

See this HID headlight on Amazon.

LED (Light-Emitting Diode)

LED bulbs have a semiconductor responsible for releasing electric current. Due to high compatibility, LED bulbs can be used almost with any electrical outlet.

See this LED headlight on Amazon.

How to Replace Headlights?

Maintenance technician is removing the car headlights

Choose the type of headlight you want to install based on the list above. Then follow these steps for replacement:

  1. Using a screwdriver, unscrew the grill, starting from the top.
  2. On both sides, find the connectors and remove them by pressing the red pin.
  3. Unscrew the housing or the bulb's plate.
  4. Remove the bulb and attach the new one. Make sure you follow the product description as bulbs differ in capacitors, cables, and adapters.
  5. Screw the bulb's plate and put back the grills.

How Long Do Jeep Wrangler's Headlights Last?

The Jeep Wrangler's headlights can last from eight months to two years, depending on how often you use them. The quality of headlights depends on the manufacturer. However, proper use can prolong the headlights' lifespan.

How Bright Should Headlights Be?

driving a car at night on the way

Luminosity is the intensity of light reflecting from a power source to other objects. A lumen is the standard measurement of light's brightness. This indicates the amount of light a bulb can reflect.

However, light's brightness depends on the wattage and supply of electricity. Lumens also show how much brightness our eyes can tolerate. You should keep in mind that we use headlights for road safety and not for light exposure.

To give you an idea of how bright the headlights should be, see the list of factors to consider below:

  • The advisable brightness of headlights ranges from 700 to 3,500 lumens. Anything higher than 3,500 lumens may damage your eyes, while anything lower than 700 lumens may not be safe on the road.
  • Make sure the power source, like batteries or fuel, is enough to support the transmission of energy.
  • The higher the watts, the brighter the light can be.
  • Always refer to your city's regulations about headlights. Some places can sue you for lighting up the road too brightly.

Do Headlight Shields Affect Light?

Yes, shields or lens can affect headlights. Some manufacturers provide patterns to make the light appear dimmer, colorful, or stylish. Just remember to follow the traffic guidelines when you use an unusual headlight shield.

Can You Use Different Headlights?

You can use different headlights, but that might result in different luminosity. Other car drivers around you can easily tell if your headlights are different due to the emission of light.

Also, keep in mind that some headlights may not be compatible in terms of size and voltage. Refer to the user's manual for additional information.

When to Turn On Headlights?

hands of car driver on steering wheel, road trip, driving on highway road

It's important to conserve energy by turning off headlights in the daytime. You should turn on headlights after sunset and before sunrise, from approximately 6:00 PM and 5:00 AM respectively.

The time frame can change based on the weather, as it can be a factor in dimming the surroundings. For instance, rain can block the sunlight during the daytime. In some areas, 5:00 AM is still dark. Keep your headlights on to avoid accidents until you see the road clearly with natural light.

However, you should follow the authorities' rules and regulations on using headlights based on where you are driving.

What if Headlights Lose Power While Driving at Night?

Crazy ride on the night by car

There is a dimmer switch near the control panel of your Jeep Wrangler. The dimmer switch can transmit lower electricity, which is best for conserving energy before the headlights totally lose power.

You can use this when your headlights suddenly turn off during the night to let you control the brightness of the headlights.

Since the dimmer switch is designed to control the lights in your car, it's possible that other lights will also dim. A dimmer simply divides the consumption of light for driving longer distances.

However, you can use other lights if the dimmer switch does not work. For instance, you can turn on the parking lights, hazard lights, or turn signals when the headlights lose power.

This might be risky, but at least the other car drivers can see you on the road. This trick is also a silent code between drivers to tell each other that their headlights are not working.

If you're still far away from your destination, it's better to pull off your car and park in a safe spot. You may call a friend or consult the manufacturer of the headlights to help you out.

Can You Use Car's Components While Using Headlights?


It's perfectly acceptable to use the car's components when the headlights are on. Most components are powered by a battery or alternator. Check to see you have enough power to run the components without interfering with the headlights.


Check the headlights before you drive. If they won't turn on, you will need to trace where the issue starts and how you could fix it with the information we've provided throughout this article. Ask a professional if you're still unsure about what's causing the issue.

Want to learn more? Visit these related articles:

Jeep Wrangler Won’t Start (And No Click) – What Could Be Wrong?

Jeep Wrangler Water Leak When It Rains – What To Do?



Share this article

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *