When it comes to a brake light replacement, there is a right way and a wrong way to do it. Taillights are a vital element of a car’s light system. Not only can other drivers see you as a fellow motorist, but brake lights also help to decrease the chance for an accident. Unfortunately, the lights on vehicles can wear out and cease to work. So, as the car owner, it’s your job to replace the lights, or risk a catastrophe or a citation.
What Are The Most Common Brake Light Issues & How Can I Solve Them?
As you very well know, your brake lights are essential when it comes to safe driving. You can be the most harmless driver on the road, but if you are driving without brake lights, that harmless title has jut turned into a dangerous driver. Check out some the most common brake light issues, and how you can solve them.
You Have a Burnt-Out Bulb
While newer model vehicles have switched to LED lights that are longer lasting than conventional brake light bulbs, older vehicles still have brake light bulbs that need to be popped out and then replaced. This is a cheap and easy DIY project, as long as you have a basic set of tools and a little patience.
There is a Faulty Brake Light Switch
As a brake pedal is pushed, a switch is triggered that sends a signal to the back lights, that it’s time to work. While analog switches wear out over time, they can also accumulate lots of dirt. This interferes with their ability to positively connect and then transmit the correct signal. While replacing the switch isn’t a huge task, it is an intricate one that requires patience. So, you may choose to take your car to a mechanic, so that he or she can replace your faulty brake light switch.
You Have A Blown Fuse
To replace your blown fuse, simply find your car’s fuse box, which is commonly found right under the vehicle’s hood. The fuse box may also be found on the vehicle’s kick panel that is just inside the passenger compartment. With the diagram on the box’s cover, you can locate the fuse for the brake circuit and check to see if it has indeed been blown. If it has, you want to carefully replace it with a fuse that has the same resistance.
You Have A Bad Socket
Many brake light problems can include a socket that has corroded or dirty connections. The socket may also be so worn that the connection is a loose or ill one So, replacing the socket is the solution. To do this, you just need to snip the old wires and splice in a new unit. The parts are generally inexpensive.
How Can I Successfully Replace my Brake Light?
Whether you’re turning left or right, running errands in your car during evening hours or you simply have to brake for any reason- you need working brake lights. Check out the step-by-step instructions below, that will assist in your DIY brake light replace job that you have to accomplish!
Here are the following steps on how to carefully and successfully replace your brake light.
Step One: Know How To Gain Access to Your Brake Light Bulb
Now that you know that your vehicle’s brake light has burned out, you have to gain access to the taillight bulb. You may know how to get to the bulb, or you may need to read your vehicle owner’s manual. Generally, the manual has steps on how to change your bulb. These days, you can also find a video online on how to gain access to your car’s taillights.
After you have access to the bulb, you want to carefully remove it and save it so you can find the perfect replacement at your local auto store. Be sure that you carefully unscrew the mounting bolts, one at a time. Wouldn’t it be a headache to drop one inside of the vehicle? So, take your time and carefully as well as slowly unscrew all that is holding the taillight in place. Another aspect to consider is the size of the bolts. Since they are small, you may choose to keep them together in a bowl so that you don’t lose all that you just unscrewed.
Step Two: Carefully Remove the Light Housing
After all of the screws are out, gently pull your vehicle’s taillight’s colored lenses or assembly lenses that protect and encase the light bulb. With the wires inside the light housing, you are not going to be able to pull it out completely. So, please do not yank or pull anything. You want the housing removed just enough to access the bulb so that you can change it.
Step Three: Locate & Access the Brake Light Bulb Socket
Now you can reach the plug that holds the blown or burnt out blub. You should be able to find the holder, with the help of the wires. Next, carefully unscrew the bight bulb socket. Then, gently pull the burnt-out bulb. Depending on the design of your car, that old bulb may come out with just a straight and gentle tug. Or you may have to turn the bulb to remove it.
Step Four: Replace Your Old And Burnt Out Bulb with the New One
Once you complete the task above, you will need to take the time to clean the socket. You want a debris-free socket for your new bulb. You can now place your new brake light bulb into the socket. Either turn the socket and bulb or carefully snap in place-just as you did before, for the removal of the old bulb.
Step Five: Test Your Brake Lights
Now that you have installed the new brake lights or light, you can now test them to see if they work. If you are by yourself, you can either ask a neighbor or a friend, to see if they see the new brake lights working. If you cannot find a friend, you may have to drive your car to a place where you can see your brake lights in a reflected area. For example, you may need to drive to a building with a window. Back up in a parking area, and see if you can see the brake lights working in the window.
How Long Does It Take To Change A Brake Light?
Since replacing a brake light is not a “rush job” and you don’t want to hurry through the process, count on spending about an hour to an hour and 30 minutes for a successful brake light replace DIY job. The moment you become agitated, frustrated or angry about finding the bulb, or any other aspect of replacing your brake light, it’s then time to step away from the job, take a breath and try again. If you cannot finish the job, don’t worry. Ask for assistance.
Can My Local Auto Store Help With the Brake Light Replace Job I Need?
Not only can you get the correct brake light at your local auto store, but you may find a wonderful and considerate agent or tech there, that will help you replace it. Many times, they charge nothing to help you, or have some garage bay areas at the back of the store. There, they can install the brake light for you for little to nothing in cost. Sometimes you can find fellow mechanics in the store, stocking up on supplies, who are willing to replace your brake light or lights for you for little to nothing. These days, folks are all about a hustle- and if you are willing to pay a small fee, then you just may leave your auto store with new brake lights installed as well as a solid auto connection for future auto jobs!
How Much Does It Cost To Replace A Brake Light?
The cost of changing out one or both brake lights can vary, depending on your vehicle. The cost to replace your brake lights can cost as little as $20 to as much as $150. These days, there are mobile mechanics who will come to your home, office or location and replace your brake lights for a set fee. Once the mechanic arrives, you can ask him or her, to look at you front lights too. You might as well get all exterior lights replaced, to ensure that you have safe driving.
Typically, What is the Penalty for Driving Without Working Brake Lights?
We’ve all seen folks driving on our roads and highways with cracked, broken and even missing brake/ tail lights. Those folks are usually followed by drivers who are slamming on their own brakes to avoid an accident. Brake lights perform the job of warning other drivers that you are coming to a stop and they need to stop behind you. So, when you have brake lights that aren’t working or you see a driver with non-working tail lights, then you have some pretty dangerous driving conditions for that particular driver and the drivers around them. Broken or malfunctioning brake lights often lead to rear end accidents. You also run the risk of other drivers getting injured upon a collision. That small light has a huge impact on the welfare of drivers.
So, if you are going to chance driving without brake lights, then you run the risk of causing an accident and even getting sued by another driver. Just about all police departments in the country, ticket drivers who drive with broken or malfunctioning brake or taillights. Depending on where you live, that citation can cost you as little as $75, to hundreds of dollars. Do you have money to give to your local municipality, for driving without working brake lights?
One of the most hazardous scenarios involving broken brake lights is driving on major streets and highways. You couple this with driving at night, and you have the makings for accident that can happen at any second.
Without working brake lights, other drivers can see your car, but those other drivers have no idea when you are going to stop. Lots of times, you can be at fault for an accident, with proof of you having no brake lights. Is that something you want to risk? While you may consult and hire a traffic accident lawyer for a sound defense, you cannot count on a judge to take pity on you for having broken brake lights. So, the moral of story here? Get those brake lights fixed and replaced! Your life and the lives of others are dependent on it!
Does Jiffy Lube Change Brake Lights?
Jiffy Lube does indeed take the time to inspect as well as test any exterior lights you have a question about. Furthermore, Jiffy Lube will replace any brake lights and bulbs as needed, should you request such.
Will AutoZone Replace A Brake Light?
An AutoZone store agent may take the time to help you replace you brake light. While there is no formal brake light replacement service, you may find a great agent who is able to remove your old brake light and replace it with a new one.
Is There Any Related Content To A Break Light Replace Job I Can Read?
There sure is and we have it! Just click each title below and read related content regarding a break light replace DIY job.