Jeep XJ Headrest mod

Making the headrest in my 91 Cherokee more functional.

I like the stock seats in my 91 XJ. Actually, they were taken from a 90 donor but are still similar in shape and function.

I added some foam to the lumbar section to make it support my back a bit better.  But the thing that most bugged me was the headrests. They strike me about the shoulder and are pretty much useless.  Even in the all the way up position I could not rest my head against them while driving. 

So, I decided to extend the range and tilt the pad forward.  I began by removing the headrest from the seatback. It just pulls out once the adjuster si twisted to the unlock position.

I then removed the bars from the pad by removing the two Phillips head screws. I also removed the plastic from the metal portion by removing the clips. 

I placed the metal rods in the vise and used a pipe over the ends to carefully bend the rods forward a bit. I could not go as far as I wanted to since I had to be able to slide the plastic part back over the curve.

I then cut some 1” sections of 1⁄2” steel rod and welded onto the ends of the rod to extend them.  I ground the welds smooth so they would still fit in the sleeves that hold the headrest in the seatback.  (Note: I tried this mod earlier without extending the rods and the plastic pieces broke inside the seatback.)

Next, I reassembled the bars into the headrest pad.  I placed a small hose clamp on the bar without the notches.  Once I had the headrest set in the highest notch position, I tightened the hose clamp on the other side for added support.

Now I can lean back and have my head on the headrest and still see out the windshield.  It feels safer and is more relaxing on long drives.