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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here's a Do-It-Yourself (DIY) guide on how to install E-Code headlights for MK3 Jetta/Golf that I made for you. For more DIY information here

I have purchased a brand new Helix Smoked E-code Single Chamber Headlights for my MK3 Jetta VR6. These Helix Smoked E-code Single Chamber Headlights can be purchased from either several merchants for $200, brackets and harness are sold separately. It can be purchased from, direct link or, direct link .

I have bought E-code headlights because not only that they look a lot cool and better, the visibility gain performance over the (North American) headlights are enormous in difference between the two. As the illustration I have provided, the E-code covers more light on the road which is marker in red over the NA which is blue.

There is 2 different types of E-codes out there for MK3 Jetta/Golf. One is Single Chamber headlights and one is Dual Chamber Headlights. The Single Chamber Headlight is usually for MK3 Jetta front end and the Dual Chamber Headlight is usually for MK3 Golf front end. in some cases the MK3 Jetta would be modded to have a MK3 Golf front end and vise versa for the MK3 Golf. So I will provide illustrations on the correct harness connector for specific E-code headlights.

Single Chamber E-code headlights uses Single Chamber Headlight Connectors

Dual Chamber E-code headlights uses Dual Chamber Headlight Connectors

Both E-code Headlights uses same E-code Headlight Brackets

Here are some pictures I took to provide a guide for anyone that is planning to upgrade their mk3 Jetta/golf on how to remove the front stock headlights and install e-code headlights.

To complete the E-code headlights installation itemized requirement, the following items below much be purchased from a few different local stores.

Store 1: Home Depot

  • #12 Speed washers (x4)
  • -#10-24x2" Machine screws (x2)
  • -1/4" 6.4 Solid flat washers (x4)
  • -2 1/2" 6.4 hose
Store 2: Auto parts store (kragen, Napa, Pep Boys, etc)

  • -Primer spray can
  • -Color spray can (color of your radiator support)
  • -Clear spray can (optional)
Then, prepare the following required tools at the pictures below to perform the proper removal/installation.

Tools 1

  • -Cross head screw driver
  • -Flat head screw driver
  • -Ratchet
  • -Ratchet extension
  • -8mm socket
  • -10mm socket
  • -13mm socket
Tools 2

* -

  • Die grinder (air or electric)
  • Adjustable open end wrench
  • Metal filer
  • Hose cutter
  • Blade
Tools 3

  • Air Compressor (125 PSI or more required and more gallon the better) if using air tool die grinder.
Step 1: Front radiator grill removal
Open the hood. Then locate the lower end clips first of the front grill near the fenders and un-clip the grill from the bumper with a flat head screw driver. The grill should have a total of lower 4 clips, 2 outer near the fender and 2 inner near the radiator. Then there should be 4 cross head screws to be unbolted from the upper radiator support.Then the front grill assembly should be out.

Step 2
Disconnect the headlight "D" harness connector from the NA headlights on both sides.

Step 3: Freeing the radiator support frame
Unbolt and remove the 2 10mm bolts and 1 8mm bolt per side of the radiator support attached to the fenders, perform on both sides. total of 4 10mm and 2 8mm bolts from both sides. Then unbolt and remove the 13mm bolt closer to the radiator supporting the radiator mount to the radiator frame, total of 2 13mm bolts from both sides.

Step 4: Removing the NA headlights.
Unbolt and remove the 4 8mm bolts supporting the headlights to the radiator support frame, total of 8 8mm bolts from both sides of headlights. Then remove the clip from the bumper support frame per side, total of 2 clips from both sides. The headlights should be out. Perform on both sides. Save a least 6 out of the 8 8mm bolts because those will be used later for installation.

Notice the difference between NA headlights (front) and E-code headlights (rear).

Step 5: Bend upper fender corner headlight support
Locate the upper corner headlight support frame of the radiator support frame closest to the fender and bend it with the adjustable wrench to a 45 degrees upwards, perform on both sides.

Step 6: Right Side ONLY, Cut out radiator support frame.
Grab the die grinder tool and cut out the radiator support frame on the passenger side where its marked to cut out. I decided to cut out more than suggested because where its marked in red is the proper clearance for E-code headlights.

Step 7: Right Side ONLY, paint coat the the metal cut.
Apply papers to prevent over spray if you wish, then spray paint the exposed fresh cut metal to prevent rusting corrosion. Spray primer first for paint adhesion for base paint, then spray the base color paint. Clear coat is optional but I did it anyways ;D. apply 2 coats at least for minimal protection of each application. Wait at least 45 minutes for the paint to dry hard.

Step 7
Remove the E-code headlight plastic rear cover to maximize installation clearance.

Step 8: Right Side E-code headlight ONLY, trim tab
Grab the right side E-code headlight and have it facing downwards. locate the upper left support tab closest to the radiator, trim with the die grinder slanted to clear the radiator for installation.

Step 9: E-code headlight bracket installation
Notice the U bracket shape, the longer side mounts outward towards the bumper and the shorter side mounts to the E-code headlights on the lower part closest going towards the fenders. The Z bracket mounts to the lower part of the of the E-code headlights closest toward the radiator.

Step 10 E-code headlight components preparation
Grab the 6 8mm bolts that were saved from the NA headlights removal from step 4 along with the #12 speed washers (X4), #10-24x2" Machine screws (x2), 1/4" 6.4 Solid flat washers (X4), 2 1/2" 6.4 hose. Then cut the hose into 2 equal pieces with the hose cutter.

984 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Step 11-A: E-code headlights installation
Secure the upper inner headlight tabs closest to the radiator, place the washer to the head of the 2" machine screw bolt and place the cut hose between the headlight tab and the radiator frame.

Secure the upper headlight tab closest on to the fender by using the 8mm bolt over the headlight tab, secure the bolt end with the #12 speed washer. The headlight tab has to be secured to the largest hole on the and over the metal radiator support tab.

Secure the U clip on to the bumper support closest to the fender by using the 8mm bolt and a #12 speed washer at the end of the bolt.

Secure the Z clip on to the radiator support of the e-code headlight closest to the radiator with only the 8mm bolt.

Step 11-B
Perform 11-A to install the other side

Step 12: Remove the bumper side marker lights
Un-clip the inner plastic fender well by removing the 2 plastic clips securing it to the bumper, then un-clip the metal side marker clip inside the bumper to remove the side marker light. Do on both sides

Step 13: Connect the harness connector
Connect the "D" to E-code harness connector to the headlights and to the "D" connector receiver. Then located the grey/white positive wire for the city lights on the headlights and tap it into the lighter wire color of the side marker harness which is the positive. Do not connect the brown ground wire, the headlights ground is already connected by connecting the entire harness connector.

Step 14: Trim the SRI oil breather if you vehicle is equipped with one, otherwise skip this step.
Trim the oil breather as needed to clear the E-code headlight rear housing with the hose cutter.

Step 15: Trim the SRI box if you vehicle is equipped with one, otherwise skip this step.
Trim the SRI box as needed if there's clearance issue to the E-code headlight rear housing with a die grinder.

Step 16
E-code headlights installation is complete. refer back to step 7 to place back the E-code headlight rear housing cover and step 1 in reverse to place back the front radiator grill. Head light alignment is required.

Before pic

After pic
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