Car maintenance can be expensive, but there are ways to save money. Replacing a burned out turn signal bulb will cost you at least an hour’s worth of a mechanic’s time, but it is a relatively simple repair you can make yourself. In fact, it really is no harder than replacing a burned out bulb in your own home.
Before getting started, read your owner’s manual and find out what type of bulb your car uses in the turn signal lamps. Your local auto parts store should carry it in stock. Once you buy it, also gather together an old rag, a Phillips head screwdriver, and a wire brush or sandpaper. Wait until the engine has completely cooled before starting this repair.
Start by figuring out how to access the bulb. Most owner’s manuals will show a diagram of how to do this. Typically, a turn signal bulb can be accessed by either removing the front plastic light cover or from going in from the trunk. The way the bulb is accessed will determine your next step.
Bulbs that are accessed from inside the trunk are usually covered by a plastic protective cover. These covers usually have a knob or tab that can be twisted or pulled to take the cover off. Bulbs that are accessed from an outside light cover are usually held in place with screws. Use your Phillips-head screwdriver to remove the cover. Be careful while doing this, since these plastic pieces can become brittle in older cars.
English: A 12V PY27/7W automotive lamp. This particular lamp has been in use for several years as a front turn signal lamp and the amber color coating has started to worn out. Suomi: 12 voltin PY27/7W autopolttimo. Tämä yksilö on ollut käytössä etuvilkkuna useita vuosia. Keltainen väripinnoite on alkanut tippua pois. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Once you gain access to the bulb, remove it. Typically you will need to push the bulb in and turn counter-clockwise to get it to loosen. Again, be careful as sometimes older bulbs can shatter or break off in the socket. After removing the bulb, clean the bulb socket with your wire brush or sandpaper. Do not use water to clean the socket, as this can cause the metal parts to corrode if you do not dry it properly.
After the socket has been cleaned, screw in the new bulb by pushing it into the socket and turning clockwise. Before replacing the cover, turn on your car and test the bulb. If it does not come on, make sure you have screwed the bulb in all the way and thoroughly cleaned the socket.
Finally, replace the covers once you have checked that the bulb is working. Remember to be careful, since the plastic might be brittle. Once replaced, you may want to clean the lenses with a lens cleaning compound found at many auto parts stores.
Published in: Gardening