I am at my wit’s end. I cannot find anybody who knows how to replace the tag lights in my little car. I was stopped by the police last night because the officer could not read my license plate. This subject is not covered in the owner’s manual. Please help.
Most bulbs are replaced from the inside the vehicle, such as inside the trunk lid or hatchback door. Few bulbs are replaced from outside these days. If the bulb is behind a cover or lens, it’s probably accessed from inside the car.
Many auto parts stores will install bulbs for you at no charge.
It’s a shame if the owner’s manual does not cover such a simple thing.
This information would be in the factory service manual but the owners manual should have the bulb number so you can get the bulbs ahead of time. If you don’t want to go to a shop or dealer, then take a look at the outside lens of the lights. See if there is a screw on the outside. If not, then you access from the inside, either in the trunk or behind the bumper depending on where the plate is. If its under the bumper you’ll just have to crawl under with a light and follow the wire to the lens. There should be a bulb socket that twists off.
I have a 02 Ford Focus with a hatchback, and I was recently pulled over by a Highway Patrol and warned for the same thing. There is nothing in the manual that tells you how to replace the bulbs, so I’ll help ya out. I had to learn the hard way by breaking out the screwdrivers and all! LOL!
Above your license plate, you should see the plastic lens cases for the license plate lights. Take a flathead screwdriver, and pry them off of the body of the car. They should pop right out, and expose the whole license plate lamp assembly for you. The replacement bulbs look more like the bulbs that you would use to replace the interior dome light, but rest assured, they are the right ones. Pop the old bulbs out, and replace with the new. Press the light assembly back into the body of the car, and VOILA! You’re done!