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  • Painless wiring harness is NOT painless----run from it

    Doing a complete frame off restoration on a 81 CJ-7 paid $500 for a complete Painless wiring harness and $500 for the Ididit steering column. Both advertise to be replacements for the old and worn out factory equipment. I am by no means an ASE certified mechanic, but do understand the overall mechanical workings of jeeps. I have had it with these two products and therefore want to vent and help the next guy out from making the same mistake. The wiring harness comes with a confusing instruction booklet with over 4 different ignitions systems, you call their tech line and will get that many different answers on your problem. My 81 DOES NOT HAVE OR NEED A BALLAST RESISTOR. One tech expert says to me forget the instruction book its wrong I will email you pictures with hand written notes on what to do, well all he did was email the same things that was in the book (all this for $500 now). When it came time to hook up to the new steering column their plugs (2 of them) that would normally hook up to the ignition switch plug on the side of the column has more wires and different colors from the original harness, then the pain increases when the Ididit steering column eliminates the ignition plug lead for the wiring harness to plug into and you have to cut off the leads and use their pigtails to connect. well the steering column manual walks you thru the process of connect the red wire to the brown wire Etc Etc but the colors from the harness are different than what the Ididit is showing. Why in the h***l would Ididit eliminate a simple plug and force you to cut and glue together, this in my opinion is not a direct replacement when you have to do this. So now you call Painless and their answer is hea we dont go beyond our wires and plugs and then when you call Ididit they say hea we dont know anything about Painless and therefore who is up the creek with out a paddle, Me Over $1000 and I am forced to figure this out myself, I am ripping all this out sending back for a full refund and going other places that I did not find out till after wards. WORDS to the wise I dont care what anyone says dont buy Painless or Ididt and I am sure I can not be the only one out there with this problem.. Godluck. Did i say NEVER buy a Painless or Ididit well I am saying it now

  • #2
    I did the wiring on my 2A, I realize it's not as complicated as a 7, but after going thru pages of instructions, I dicided I had to sit down and really study. I think 75% of the work is putting pieces of masking tape on each end and studing the directions while labeling EACH end of each wire.

    Good luck

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    • #3
      I'm glad to hear this about the Ididit column. I've looked at them on several occasions.

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      • #4
        Sounds like you're the type of person that is better off either paying someone else to do it or sticking to a game of Go Fish. I have installed the 10010 painless set up and it was incredibly easy. But I probably know what I'm doing more so than you. I had one problem with the fuse block and Painless was extremely helpful and diagnosed my problem quickly and easily. But again, I knew what information to give them.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by scwebad View Post
          I dont care what anyone says
          I guess that about covers it.

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          • #6
            I installed a painless system 6 years or so ago. Piece of cake. Couldn't have been easier. No problems. I highly recommend. And I usually hate dealing with electrical stuff.

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            • #7
              We installed a painless kit in my comp jeep and had no problems with it either. The guys at Painless are super easy to deal with and super knowledgeable.

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              • #8
                I went a totally different route, making my own harness, and man I tell you maybe the painless was the way to go. I still have a bunch of wires not hooked up and the weather is starting to get nice.

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                • #9
                  web sight for wiring harness

                  Originally posted by blackwater View Post
                  I'm glad to hear this about the Ididit column. I've looked at them on several occasions.
                  Try this web sight the tech guy at Ididit gave me this concerning a better wiring harness and they also have steering columns

                  http://www.centechwire.com/index.html

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                  • #10
                    I dont doubt that some guys probably had no trouble with using the painless harness but I also cant belive that I am the ONLY one with issues

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                    • #11
                      Well, I have no personal experience with Painless. However, this is not the first time I have heard of the experience being far from painless and the customer service lacking. 2 of the guys I have heard this from are intelligent gearheads so I would trust them. Maybe some applications are better than others.

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                      • #12
                        I just put a Painless kit in my YJ. The first day I got it I studied the directions for a little bit and then the kit pretty much installed itself. A piece of cake.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by xjjeep98 View Post
                          I just put a Painless kit in my YJ. The first day I got it I studied the directions for a little bit and then the kit pretty much installed itself. A piece of cake.
                          which painless kit did you use? The 1 kit I've seen is a tad over 800 bucks for a YJ. I'm not going to order this one day and install it the next.. We are actually going to pile everything up that we want to do to our Jeep and then just tare it down and come back with the new... this is one of the jobs that just needs to be done. I do not know which of the previous owners hacked the wiring... but I have a few light issues, dash lights and gauges, blink, come on and off at will and when you step on the brakes the park lights lite up LOL, next, I'm waiting to be going down the road at night and the headlights go out! It's going to be a frame up build anyway so why not do it then. I was also thinking that since the painless is a factory type replacement wiring harness, why not install a seperate 7 circuit AUX for all the other electrical toys we are going to add.. so the Jeep is on one system and the toys on the next. Sounds good to me.

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                          • #14
                            Since this thread has been ongoing for a while, let me make an observation... since things are sometimes relative.
                            Compared to buying spools of wire and building your own harness, the kit is painless. You're always welcome to go buy some spools and get going. Good luck with that!
                            Compared to going into the local auto electrical build shop and talking to Goober, the support from Painless is excellent.
                            In this day and age of attorney-driven everything, you'll never get a company to provide guidance on someone else's products, just their own, and their advice ends at the limit of their product. Otherwise they're going to end up getting sued.
                            12 volt wiring is never a piece of cake. Just be glad you're managing a single battery, instead of multiple batteries in multiple banks of batteries (typical cruising boat circumstance is 2 banks with 2 or more batteries each).

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                            • #15
                              Thanks for sharing. I almost fell for it.

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