Learning About Car Parts

Learning About Car Parts

Fix Your Own Car Lights And Stay Out Of The Dark

Mílton Da Cruz

A headlight or taillight goes out on your car, but you don't have time to take it into the shop. You can fix most car lighting problems yourself quickly when you know how to identify the problem. Here is how to troubleshoot most automotive lighting issues and fix them so you can get back on the road safely.

Fuse or Bulb Problem?

Every light on your car is connected to a fuse that protects the car in case of a short in the wiring. A light problem can be due to a burned-out fuse or a burned-out light bulb. The first step is to determine what the problem really is. Use the following rules to troubleshoot the problem.

  • If both lights are not working in a pair of lights (e.g. headlights, brake lights), the fuse is bad.
  • If only one light is not working in a pair of lights, the bulb is bad.

Replacing a Bad Fuse

Your car may have spare fuses, saving you a trip to the auto parts store. You will need the car's owner's manual to replace the right fuse.

  1. Turn to the section in the manual listing all of the fuses and which lights they are connected to.
  2. Find the number of the fuse that you suspect is the problem.
  3. Locate the fuse panel in the car. It is usually in the glove compartment or on the side of the dash on the driver's side.
  4. Remove the cover on the fuse panel.
  5. Spare fuses are often found in the fuse panel or attached to the cover. If you don't find a replacement fuse, go to the automotive parts store and have the clerk find the right fuse for you.
  6. When you have the replacement fuse, pull the old fuse straight out of the panel and push the new fuse in its place.
  7. Replace the fuse panel cover.

Replacing a Bad Bulb

You will have to go to an auto parts store like 195 Auto Parts  to get a replacement bulb. Tell the clerk which bulb you need and have them find it for you. There are so many bulb styles that it's easy to get the wrong one for your car.

Replacing the bulb requires finding it within the cluster of lights in your car. It helps to turn on your car and the lights to identify the burned out bulb. If it is a brake light, have a friend push on the brake pedal so you can see which one needs to be replaced. Once you've identified the location of the bulb, follow these steps to replace it.

  1. Push the connector in slightly as you turn it counterclockwise to release it from the light cluster.
  2. Remove the connector and bulb from the cluster.
    • If the bulb has a round base, push it in slightly and turn it counterclockwise to remove it from the connector.
    • If the bulb has a flat base, pull the bulb straight out of the connector.
  3. To replace the bulb, push it into the connector and turn it clockwise if it has a round base.
  4. Push it straight into the connector if the bulb has a flat base.
  5. Place the connector into the light cluster and push slightly while turning it clockwise until you feel lock into place. 

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About Me
Learning About Car Parts

Hi there, my name is Minnie. Welcome to my website. I am here to talk to you about auto parts. The parts you use for your car build directly influence the way it will operate throughout the years. Using cheap car parts can result in excess wear or damage that impacts the functionality of adjacent components. I hope to help you figure out the best parts available for the engine, transmission, suspension and brake system in your vehicle. I will also share information about interior and exterior components. Thanks for visiting my site. I invite you to come back anytime.