Don't Drive In The Dark By Fixing Your Own Car Light Problems


Not only is driving with one taillight or brake light unsafe, you risk getting pulled over and ticketed. You can easily troubleshoot and repair most auto lighting problems yourself. Here are some simple steps to keep you from driving unsafe in the dark.

Fuses and Bulbs

Most lighting problems are due to a bad fuse or burned-out bulb, both of which you can easily replace. Start with these basic rules and you'll troubleshoot most of the common problems with the lights in your car:

  • If one light is out in a pair of lights (e.g., headlight, brake light, taillight) the problem is likely the bulb.
  • If both lights are out in a pair of lights, it's likely a bad fuse.
  • If a single light is out (e.g., glove compartment light, dome light) try the fuse before replacing the bulb.

Replacing Fuses in Your Car

  1. Find the owner's manual for your car and turn to the section that lists the fuses and what components they control.
  2. Locate the fuse box in the car. It's normally in the glove compartment or on the dashboard on the driver's side.
  3. Remove the cover on the fuse box.
  4. Using the owner's manual, determine which fuse controls the light that isn't working.
  5. With the car turned off, pull the fuse straight out of the fuse box.
  6. Replace with the appropriate spare fuse located in the fuse box.
  7. Replace the cover on the fuse box.

Replacing Light Bulbs in Your Car

Many of the light pairs use similar connectors and can be replaced the same way. The following steps can be used to change most bulbs.

  1. Locate the lighting assembly containing the burned out bulb.
  2. For bulbs at the front of the car, it will be accessible from within the engine compartment in front of the radiator.
  3. For bulbs at the back of the car, it will be found in the trunk on the back of the car or under the trunk lid.
  4. Push the connector containing the bulb in as you turn it counterclockwise. Remove the connector and bulb.
  5. If the bulb has a round base, push the bulb in as you turn it counterclockwise and remove the bulb.
  6. If the bulb has a flat base, pull the bulb straight out of the connector.
  7. Replace the burned out bulb with a new bulb.
  8. For a round base, push the bulb in and turn it clockwise until you feel it click into place.
  9. For a flat base, push the bulb straight into the connector.
  10. Push the connector and bulb into the lighting assembly and turn clockwise until you feel it click into place.

Lighting Problems That Call for Help

In some cases, you'll want to take the car to an auto repair shop to do the job, such as:

  • You can't get to the light bulb to replace it.
  • The bulb is broken and can't be removed from the connector safely.
  • The wires going to the connector are frayed or the insulation is missing.

If you've replaced fuses and bulbs and the light still doesn't work, it's time to go to an auto shop like Felix Auto Repair & Towing. There may be a problem with the wiring harness, which is a large bundle of wires that goes to various electrical components in the car.


10 February 2016

maintaining the brakes on your car

When is the last time you had your brakes checked? Are you waiting until you hear the brake pads grinding into the rotors before you do anything to replace them? Does your car pull to one side when you press on the brakes? Do you feel a shimmying in your steering wheel and brake pedal as you press the pedal to stop? If you have any of these issues, it is time for you to learn how to care for the brakes on your car effectively. Taking preventative measures and getting repair work done before serious problems arise will save you money over the years.