Head lamp replacement

I recently had a head lamp burn out on my 2005 Buick Lacrosse. I went to my local auto supply and they ordered a replacement for me. I thought, I’ll just have them help me pop it in. No such luck. The manager was the only one there and said it took him 1 1/2 hrs to replace a similar one. I’d like to do it myself even though it looks like a big job just to get to the passenger side dim lamp. Any suggestions? Should I just bite the bullet and take it to the shop and have them do it?

Open the hood. Look above the headlight and you’ll find two plastic tabs pointing up, one with a retainer screw. Remove the retainer screw, and then pull the two tabs striaght up. The headlight pod can now be removed to swap the bulb.


I removed the retainer screw and understand (I think) what you are saying, but I am unable to move the unit in any direction. I seems to be restricted by a diagonal brace and locked in.

Don’t you just love those headlights the stylist tell us we have to have. In the old days a Philips screwdriver and five minutes would change any headlamp. Now … Don’t get me going looks before function seems to be the norm.

Rookie, Have You Checked Your Car’s Owner’s Manual?

Each car in our family has headlight bulb replacement detailed ( including photos) in the owner’s manual.


That may have shed more light (no pun intended). Now all I have to do is find a nutsetter to fit. Thanks!

Rookie, You’re Welcome. Please Let Us Know What Happens.

I’m curious to know how long this takes compared with the 1 1/2 hours that you were told. I just can’t imagine it.

Thanks, CSA

You do know not to install the bulb with finger prints on it, right?
Seriously, it’s best to avoid touching the “glass” part of the bulb or leaving finger prints on it. It can cause early failure of the bulb. The instructions should advise this.

i just had to put in a new bulb on 02 montecarlo.the only thing that holds the light in is the 2 plastic clips.on this car.

RRHoff, How’s The Monte Carlo?

Dominic, last I remember, you fixed the steering shaft problem and then had a coolant problem or somthing. What happened? Is everything good now?


‘att’ common sense anwser’ csa.great to hear from you.had the upper and lower intake manifold and gaskets/valve cover done and also the iss was lubed.the car is running great.i got to put in a new blower motor resitor this week.evey time i get on this site i make sure i read your blogs.the first time i posted a question you were the one that gave me the great advice.that was 3+ years ago.all these posts are keeping you buzy.winter was pretty boring.except for the steelers games.glade spring is here.have a great weekend

Took me 1/2 hr and it works! YES!

Rookie, Thanks For Getting Back To Us. Glad To Hear It Works! Half An Hour’s Time Is Not Bad.