How To Replace Tail Light

Want to learn how to replace a tail light on your vehicle? Burned out tail lights can create dangerous situations, especially in the dark. Motorists behind you may not see your vehicle, increasing your chances of a collision. Driving with a burned out tail light can also cost you money as well if you are pulled over and ticketed. Learning to change your own tail bulb can save you money by avoiding trips to your auto mechanic.

If you wish to change your own bulb, you will need the following supplies:

  • Replacement bulbs (see your manual for the exact bulb code)
  • Screwdriver set
  1. Obtain access to the area. In you order to change your tail light, you will need to first get to the proper area. The interior trim pieces of your trunk most likely are covering the rear of the tail lamp. Locate the screws or clips to remove the trim. Depending on your specific vehicle, you may or may not need to remove the actual outer housing.
  2. Replace the old bulb. Once you have access to the burned out bulb, remove it from the socket. You may need to slightly turn the bulb to extract it. Be sure your hands are clean when you are handling the new bulb. Contamination such as dirt or oil may harm the new build. You can also use a cloth or glove to handle the new bulb.
  3. Reinstall the unit. If you need to replace the housing, you may do this after you change out the bulb. Be careful when you put this back in to avoid damaging any clips which hold the tail light assembly.
  4. Reinstall the trim pieces. Replace the trim pieces behind the tail light. Use the same clips or screws from step one to reattach the trim.
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