Connect with us


Changing Your License Plate Light: A Step-by-Step Guide




License plate lights are essential components of any vehicle, and they play a crucial role in ensuring that your license plate is visible at all times. These lights are usually located above or around the license plate, and they illuminate the area to make it easier for other drivers to read your license plate.

Over time, these lights may burn out or become damaged due to various reasons such as wear and tear or accidental damage. If this happens, you need to change them immediately as driving without proper lighting can result in a fine from law enforcement officers.

Fortunately, changing license plate lights is relatively easy and can be done by anyone with basic knowledge of cars. In this article, we will guide you through the process of changing your license plate light step-by-step so that you can do it yourself without having to visit a mechanic.

Tools and Materials Needed

To change the license plate light, you will need a few tools and materials. Here is a list of items that you should have before starting the process:


  • Screwdriver (Phillips or flathead)
  • Pliers (optional)


  • New License Plate Light Bulb(s) – Make sure to check your vehicle’s manual for the correct bulb size.

It’s important to note that some vehicles may require additional tools or materials, especially if removing the license plate frame is necessary. Be sure to consult your vehicle’s manual or do additional research beforehand.

Additionally, it’s always a good idea to wear gloves while handling bulbs as oils from your skin can damage them. If you don’t have gloves, use a clean cloth or tissue when handling bulbs.

With these tools and materials in hand, you’ll be ready to tackle changing your license plate light with ease!

Preparing the Vehicle

Before changing the license plate light, it is important to prepare the vehicle properly. Here are some steps you should take:

1. Turn off the ignition: Before starting any work on your vehicle, always make sure that it is turned off and the keys are removed from the ignition.

2. Locate the license plate light: The location of your license plate light may vary depending on your car model; however, it can usually be found above or below your rear license plate.

3. Check for damage: Inspect both the license plate light and its surrounding area for any signs of damage such as cracks or dents. If there is any visible damage, replace it before proceeding with changing out the bulb.

4. Gather tools: To change a license plate light bulb, you will need a screwdriver (either flathead or Phillips) to remove screws holding in place.

5. Have replacement bulbs ready: Ensure that you have a replacement bulb ready before attempting to change out an old one. Purchase a new bulb from an auto parts store or online retailer based on your specific vehicle’s make and model.

6. Wear gloves: When handling new bulbs, avoid touching them with bare hands as oils from skin can cause them to burn out prematurely – use gloves instead!

By following these simple steps, you’ll be well-prepared to successfully change out your license plate light bulb!

Removing the Old License Plate Light

The first step in changing your license plate light is to remove the old one. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Locate the license plate light on your vehicle. It’s usually located above or below the license plate.
  2. Use a flathead screwdriver or a trim removal tool to gently pry off the cover of the license plate light. Be careful not to scratch your vehicle’s paint.
  3. Once you’ve removed the cover, you should see two screws holding in place the license plate light assembly. Use a Phillips head screwdriver to unscrew these screws and carefully remove them from their holes.
  4. Gently pull out and remove the old license plate light assembly from its position. You may need to wiggle it slightly back and forth until it comes loose from any clips that may be holding it in place.
  5. If there are any wires connected to your old license plate light, unplug them carefully by pulling them out of their sockets or removing any wire connectors that might be present.

Congratulations! You have successfully removed your old license plate light! Now let’s move on to installing your new one!

Installing the New License Plate Light

Once you have removed the old license plate light, it’s time to install the new one. Here are the steps to follow:

1. Take out the new license plate light from its packaging and check if it matches your vehicle’s make and model.

2. Connect the wires of the new license plate light to those of your car. The wires should be color-coded for easy identification.

3. Securely attach the new license plate light in place using screws or clips, depending on your vehicle’s design.

4. Test if your newly installed license plate light is working properly by turning on your headlights and checking if there is enough illumination on your rear number plate.

5. Once you’re satisfied that everything is working as expected, replace any covers or trims that you removed earlier during disassembly.

Note: If you encounter any difficulties during installation, refer to your vehicle owner’s manual or seek assistance from a professional mechanic or electrician.


– Before installing a replacement license plate light, check if there are any damage or corrosion in its wiring connection points.
– Make sure that all connections are secure before testing out the new license plate light.
– Use gloves when handling electrical components such as wires and bulbs to avoid injury or electrocution.
– Always use genuine parts recommended by your vehicle manufacturer for best results and safety assurance.
– Regularly clean both sides of your number plates along with their lights for better visibility while driving at night.


Replacing a faulty or broken license plate light may seem like a small task but can make a significant difference in ensuring road safety compliance while driving at night-time conditions. With these simple steps outlined above, anyone can change their own car’s registration lighting without much hassle!

Testing the New License Plate Light

After installing a new license plate light, it is important to test the light to ensure that it is working properly. Here are the steps on how to test a new license plate light:

1. Turn on your vehicle’s headlights.
2. Walk around to the rear of your vehicle and inspect the license plate area for illumination.
3. If you see that the area is illuminated, then your new license plate light is working perfectly fine.
4. However, if there is no illumination in this area or only one side of it appears lit up, then you may need to check whether you have installed the bulb correctly or not.

In order to check whether you have installed the bulb correctly or not, follow these additional steps:

1. Remove any screws holding down the lens cover over your license plate light assembly.
2. Carefully remove this cover and set it aside somewhere safe so as not to scratch or damage it in any way.
3. Inspect both sides of your bulb carefully for signs of damage like cracks or burns; replace as necessary with a fresh one from an auto parts store nearby
4. Reinstall everything back together again – including screws- making sure that all connections are secure before testing once more.

By following these simple steps, you can quickly and easily test whether your new license plate light works properly or not after installation!

Troubleshooting Common Problems

If you’ve followed the steps outlined in the previous section but are still having trouble with your license plate light, there may be a few common issues that could be causing the problem. Here are some troubleshooting tips to help you identify and fix any potential problems:

1. Blown Fuse

One of the most common reasons why your license plate light might not be working is because of a blown fuse. Check your vehicle’s owner manual to locate where the fuse box is located and then check if any fuses have blown out or need replacing.

2. Faulty Wiring

Another reason for a malfunctioning license plate light could be due to faulty wiring. Over time, wiring can become corroded or damaged which can cause electrical connections to fail. Inspect all wires leading to and from the license plate light carefully and replace any that appear frayed or broken.

3. Loose Connections

Sometimes, loose connections between wires or other components can cause issues with your vehicle’s lighting system, including its license plate lights. Make sure all connections are tight and secure.

4. Incorrect Bulbs

Using incorrect bulbs in your license plate light fixture can also lead to malfunctions in this part of your car’s lighting system. Be sure to use bulbs recommended by the manufacturer for optimal performance.

By following these troubleshooting tips, you should be able to identify what is causing any problems with your license plate lights and take appropriate measures accordingly.


In conclusion, changing your license plate light is a simple task that can be done in just a few minutes. It is important to ensure that your license plate light is functioning properly as it helps to keep you safe on the road and avoid getting pulled over by law enforcement.

Before starting the process of changing your license plate light, make sure you have the necessary tools and replacement bulbs or LED lights. You should also take note of any specific instructions provided in your vehicle’s manual.

To change the license plate light, start by locating the housing unit for the bulb at the back of your vehicle. Remove any screws or clips holding it in place before gently pulling out the old bulb or LED unit.

Inserting a new bulb or LED unit requires careful handling so as not to damage it during installation. Ensure that you insert it correctly into its socket before securing everything back into place with screws or clips.

After installing a new bulb, test whether it works by turning on your headlights and checking if there is illumination around your rear license plate area. If everything checks out okay, then congratulations! You have successfully changed your license plate light!

Remember to always check on this part regularly for signs of malfunction or wear and tear so that you can replace them promptly when necessary. Taking care of this small but important detail will go a long way towards keeping yourself and others safe while driving on public roads.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent comments

About us is an online resource with guides & diagrams for all kinds of vehicles. If you look for a fuse box diagram, timing belt diagram, or maybe wiring diagram – this is a place for you. We also have over 350 guides & DIY articles about cars.


Copyright © 2015-2023