How to Change Headlight Bulbs

By Max. D Gray. Updated: January 16, 2017
How to Change Headlight Bulbs

Headlight bulbs burning out are a common problem in cars. If you find out your car's headlight bulbs need to be replaced you can take your vehicle to a professional that will do the job for you. However, changing headlight bulbs in modern cars is a quite simple procedure that can be done following some simple steps. If you take into consideration some things such as the model of your car and the type of bulb it uses, replacing burn out bulbs can be easy. Read this OneHowTo article if you want to know how to change headlight bulbs at home.

You'll need:
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Steps to follow:

Before getting started, make sure that the problem with your headlight is that the bulb needs to be replaced. Sometimes we notice poor lighting when we're driving at night but this can be a problem of dirty headlights. It is important to keep your headlights polished and clean, to avoid them from casting poor lighting due to a corroded headlight glass.

How to Change Headlight Bulbs - Step 1

If your headlight is in perfect condition, then the problem with lighting comes from a burnt out bulb. You must check what type of bulb you need before doing anything else. It should be written on the car's manual, but if you can't find this information just go to a auto parts store and tell the model of your car and year to the clerk. They will know which kind of bulb is the most appropriate for your car in particular.

How to Change Headlight Bulbs - Step 2

Open the engine compartment of your car and locate the back side of the headlight.


At the base of the headlight you'll find a plug with power wires. You need to remove those power wires in order to change the bulb. You'll find the wires held by different things, depending on how it is held you'll need to remove them one way or another:

  • If your wires are held by a plastic catch, push down on a small lever at the top while you put the plug out.
  • If your wires are held by a metal clip, pull it up and away.
  • If your wires are held by a screw cap, unscrew it using a screwdriver.

When the power wires are disconnected, remove the old bulb.


Handle the new bulb with gloves or a tissue, so no oils from your skin are in contact with it, which could damage the bulb. Clean it with a tissue and stick it into the base of the plug. After, connect the wires again.


Check if the headlight bulb is correctly functioning by turning the lights of your car on.

How to Change Headlight Bulbs - Step 7

This procedure works only for newer car models. If your car is quite old this might not work for you, as the lamp will probably need to be completely removed. Older cars require a longer method to change headlight bulbs, so it is advisable to bring them to a mechanic.

If you want to read similar articles to How to Change Headlight Bulbs, we recommend you visit our Car Maintenance and Repair category.

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