How to Align Headlights on a Cherokee

by Carl Pruit

Improper headlight alignment can be a potentially dangerous problem since you depend on your headlights to see what is on the roadway. Headlights that are showing off to one side or, even worse, up in the air can keep you from viewing obstacles laying in the road or other traffic hazards. Aligning the headlights on your Cherokee is a very simple process that will only take a few minutes and could save you from a major accident.

Step 1

Make sure your Cherokee is parked on a level surface that you can use to view the headlight beams. Verify that the tires have even air pressure all the way around. Make sure the vehicle is parked 32 feet away from a flat surface to use for adjusting your headlights.

Step 2

Clean the headlights with a clean damp cloth to make sure you get a clear image of the headlight beams. Measure 4 feet up the flat surface and use masking tape to mark a line on the surface horizontal with the ground. Measure on the vehicle from center of headlights to the ground and transfer that distance to your flat surface by using the masking tape to place a horizontal line on the surface the height you just measured. You will be using this line to adjust your headlights up or down.

Step 3

Measure from the center of your Cherokee to the centerpoints of your headlights and transfer those points to your flat surface by marking vertical lines across your lower horizontal line. Mark the center point of your vehicle on the flat surface and then each distance left and right for the headlights. You will be using these points to adjust your headlights left or right.

Step 4

Turn headlights on and make sure switch is turned to the low-beam position. Adjust low-beam headlights so that the beams are centered on the cross marks on your flat surface.

Step 5

Make any necessary adjustments to the low-beam by using a screwdriver and turning the adjustment screws found on the outside and below the headlights on the Cherokee. Once you have centered your headlights, turn the lower adjustment screw so that the beams are centered. The top of the beam should be touching the bottom of your lower horizontal line on the flat surface.

Step 6

Verify the position of your high beams by turning on the high-beam switch and looking at the pattern on your flat surface. High beams will automatically adjust when low beams are set correctly. Turn your headlight switch off and remove the tape from your flat surface.

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