What is a reverse lightbulb replacement?

A reverse lightbulb replacement can be as simple as it sounds—the blown bulb needs to be replaced with a new one. This is usually the case if only one of your reverse lightbulbs has stopped working.
In some cases, a broken reverse light can mean any of the following need to be replaced:
  • Blown fuse. If both of your reverse lights stopped working at the same time, you might have a blown fuse. A mechanic will replace the fuse with the correct amperage to fix this.
  • Faulty wiring. If an electrical current isn’t flowing to your reverse lightbulb, it won’t work. To determine this, your mechanic would probe the wire along its length and replace any damaged or faulty wiring.
  • Broken reverse light switch. If all else fails, then the reverse light switch may be the culprit. It would need to be replaced or adjusted to get your reverse lights functioning again.

How much does it cost to replace a reverse lightbulb?

Replacing your reverse lightbulbs should cost you between $70-$120 on average, depending on the cause of the malfunction, vehicle make, and model. These costs typically include labor fees.
If your issue is only a blown bulb, you can save money by just paying for parts, which cost between $15 to $55. However, if your issue involves blown fuses or faulty wiring, save yourself the headache, and visit your local mechanic.

Do I need to replace my reverse lightbulbs?

If you’ve discovered that your reverse lights aren’t working properly, replace them immediately to avoid a fender bender.
Reverse lights are an important safety feature for you and the pedestrians, cyclists, and other drivers around you—the lights help others to safely maneuver around you. Your reverse lights also keep you safe when you’re reversing in the dark. Keep in mind that it’s illegal to drive without functional reverse lights in most states.
Additionally, if you replace your reverse lightbulbs with LED lights, they should last for the next 12 years or longer.

How to replace a reverse light

If you’re mechanically inclined and ready for the challenge, here are the steps you can take to replace your reverse lightbulb (note that these steps vary per manufacturer):
  • Locate the failed bulb and remove the lens and any mountain screws. Keep in mind that the screws may be hidden inside your trunk.
  • After the lens has been removed, locate the reverse light socket and twist it gently to expose the bulb.
  • Remove the bulb by either twisting it or pulling it out (try twisting first so you don’t mess up the socket).
  • Replace the bulb with the same model. If you want a higher quality bulb, ask for a recommendation at your local auto shop.
  • Check the bulb by turning your key to the “On” position—without starting the engine—and putting your car into reverse.
Once you’ve replaced the bulb, make sure you reverse-engineer these steps so that everything is back where it’s supposed to be.

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