Tail lights are crucial for vehicle safety, ensuring that other drivers can see your vehicle in low-light conditions. In this guide, we will cover the costs involved in fixing a tail light, the problems that may arise, ways to test and avoid issues, and provide a comparison of fixing and replacement costs. We will also offer tips for saving money and a DIY guide for tail light repair.
Common Tail Light Problems
- Burned-out bulbs: Over time, tail light bulbs can burn out, making them non-functional.
- Cracked or damaged lenses: Impact or wear can cause the tail light lens to crack or break, exposing the bulb and internal components.
- Wiring issues: Damaged wiring, loose connections, or corrosion can lead to a non-functioning tail light.
- Malfunctioning brake light switch: A faulty brake light switch can cause tail lights to stay on constantly or not illuminate at all.
Ways To Test Tail Lights
- Visual inspection: Check for visible damage to the lens, bulb, or wiring.
- Brake pedal test: With the help of a friend, press the brake pedal and observe whether the tail lights illuminate.
- Multimeter test: Use a multimeter to test the voltage at the tail light socket, ensuring that it receives the appropriate voltage when the brake pedal is pressed.
How To Avoid Tail Light Problems
- Regular inspections: Periodically inspect tail lights for visible damage, burned-out bulbs, or loose connections.
- Use high-quality bulbs: Invest in high-quality, long-lasting tail light bulbs to minimize the frequency of replacements.
- Keep lenses clean: Regularly clean tail light lenses to maximize visibility and ensure the lights function correctly.
- Address issues promptly: Fix any tail light issues as soon as they arise to maintain safety and prevent further damage.
Tail Light Fixing and Replacement Costs
The costs for fixing a tail light will vary depending on the issue and whether you choose to repair it yourself or have it done by a professional. Below is a table with examples of costs for fixing tail lights at leading auto service centers:
|Auto Service Center||Tail Light Repair Cost|
|Jiffy Lube||$20 – $50|
|Midas||$25 – $55|
|Meineke||$20 – $50|
|Pep Boys||$30 – $60|
|Firestone||$25 – $55|
|Goodyear||$30 – $60|
|NTB (National Tire & Battery)||$20 – $50|
|Valvoline Instant Oil Change||$25 – $55|
|Walmart Auto Care Center||$15 – $45|
|Les Schwab Tire Centers||$20 – $50|
Tips to Save Money on Tail Light Repair
- DIY repair: Fixing a tail light yourself can save on labor costs, but be prepared to invest time and effort.
- Shop around: Obtain quotes from multiple auto service centers to compare prices and find the best deal.
- Use coupons or promotions: Many auto service centers offer discounts or special promotions for repairs. Check their websites or local advertisements for deals.
- Purchase parts separately: You can often save money by buying tail light components separately and bringing them to the auto service center.
DIY Guide: Step-by-Step Tail Light Repair
- Gather tools and materials: You will need a screwdriver, replacement tail light bulb, and possibly a new tail light lens or assembly if damaged.
- Turn off the vehicle: Ensure the vehicle is turned off and parked on a level surface before starting the repair.
- Remove the tail light assembly: Consult your vehicle’s service manual for instructions on how to remove the tail light assembly.
- Inspect the tail light: Identify the issue, such as a burned-out bulb, cracked lens, or damaged wiring.
- Replace the bulb: If the bulb is burned out, remove it from the socket and replace it with a new, compatible bulb.
- Repair or replace the lens: If the lens is cracked or damaged, use a lens repair kit or replace the entire tail light assembly as needed.
- Test the tail light: Turn on the vehicle and test the tail light to ensure it is functioning correctly.
- Reassemble the tail light: Once the repair is complete, reassemble the tail light assembly and secure it in place.
FAQs about Tail Light
Q: How long does a tail light bulb last?
A: The lifespan of a tail light bulb depends on its type and usage. Traditional incandescent bulbs can last between 750-2,000 hours, while LED bulbs can last up to 25,000 hours or more.
Q: Can I get a ticket for a broken tail light?
A: Yes, you can receive a ticket for a broken or non-functioning tail light. It is essential to maintain properly functioning tail lights for safety and to comply with traffic laws.
Q: Can I use regular clear tape to fix a cracked tail light lens?
A: While clear tape may provide a temporary solution, it is not a permanent fix and may not be sufficient to prevent moisture or debris from entering the tail light assembly. Using a tail light lens repair kit or replacing the lens is recommended.
Q: Is it difficult to replace a tail light assembly?
A: Replacing a tail light assembly is generally a straightforward task, but the difficulty may vary depending on the make and model of your vehicle. Consult your vehicle’s service manual for specific instructions.
- Common Tail Light Problems
- Ways To Test Tail Lights
- How To Avoid Tail Light Problems
- Tail Light Fixing and Replacement Costs
- Tips to Save Money on Tail Light Repair
- DIY Guide: Step-by-Step Tail Light Repair
- FAQs about Tail Light