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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 11-09-2006, 06:21 PM
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Default Rear Brake Bulb Replacement

Anyone know how to get to the tail light bulbs so I can replace the brake or indicator light bulbs?

Looks like VW have gone out of their way to make it impossible to get to the things without special tools.

Thanks.
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Old 11-10-2006, 12:18 PM
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No tools needed.

NBs: Round plug inside trunk pops out.
NBCs: Grille-looking rectangular panel pops out.

Reach in and you'll feel a large finger-grippable nut, back it off (DON'T DROP IT) and place it somewhere retrievable. Take a small-flat-bladed screwdriver and wrap it in cloth so you don't scratch the paint. Poke said protected blade between the inside body joint and the tail light, gently pry tail light out. Remove offending bulb, replace with new. Installation is, as they say, the reverse of removal.

So easy, (sorry, Geico), even a caveman can do it.
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Old 11-11-2006, 07:38 AM
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Instead of the towel-wrapped screwdriver I used a sturdy plastic knife and fork to pry the taillight out. They worked great! I was worried about scratches, since the tail light needed quite a bit of leverage to get unstuck. Once the whole taillight is out, you have to pull off 2 plastic parts where the wires go, to disconnect taillight from bug. Then to take the bulbs out, it's just a half-twist of the female plastic part you unplugged the wires from. I hope that makes sense.
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Old 11-11-2006, 11:22 AM
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Lightbulb Tip

Don't completely remove the holding nut inside the car. Leave it about two turns on. When the tail light assembly releases, it won't fall out and damage the car or the assembly. Also, use a plumbers helper to pull out the assembly.
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Old 11-12-2006, 01:08 PM
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Talking Brake light Lamp replacement a breeze!

Ok, I'm going to give this brake lamp replacement a try today!

Just got done and it was an easy job. Thanks for the help in this regard. Reading the posts on this topic made all the difference.

I used some dielectric grease on the bulbs and put a tad on the retaining clips so that the lenses went in easily and hopefully out easier next time. I replaced both tail lamps today so hopefully they will last.

Thanks again!

Last edited by sjbug; 11-12-2006 at 06:51 PM.. Reason: Job completed
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Old 01-30-2009, 04:27 AM
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what type of bulb does it take?
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Old 02-26-2009, 04:16 PM
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u can also use a plunger to get the light out. stick it to the light and pull it out, no screw driver or anything else to worry about scratching paint.
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Old 03-08-2009, 01:03 AM
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are they 2057 bulbs?
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Old 05-01-2009, 12:11 AM
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Nice tip on the plunger, worked great.

I just replaced mine and it's a standard bulb 1157. Two filaments, one for lights and one for brake light. Bayonet style.
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Old 05-20-2009, 03:49 AM
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do all new Beetles use the same brake light bulb. Will the 2057 or the 1157 work ok with my 2003?
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Old 05-23-2009, 04:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by riverratmike View Post
do all new Beetles use the same brake light bulb. Will the 2057 or the 1157 work ok with my 2003?
You need the dual filament 1157 as Casperturbo suggested
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Old 05-25-2009, 02:55 PM
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i've gotten the tail light out, but can't seem to get it back in!!! help lol.
Also there is some spring/black plastic rod like thing poking out from the inside, anyone know where that is supposed to go?
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Old 05-25-2009, 04:41 PM
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never mind. just got back from auto zone. Tail lights working properly
only thing... the mechanics who last worked on my tail lights broke the teeth on the bulb housing piece so they aren't sitting as secure in the tail light as they should be. Have to go to the audi/vw part dealer for that though
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Old 09-13-2009, 01:43 AM
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Default Replacing tail light assembly

Put the retainer spring's flat tail into the slot near the bulbs first. Skinny wrists will help get your hand behind the tail light assembly to do this. (Be careful of the paint with the assembly as you do this.) After you get the retainer spring in place and your hand out, the tail light assembly goes back in on outboard side first. Then push the edge in a little bit on the inboard side to snap in place. Doesn't take much pressure to seat the assembly. Put the interior knob back on to secure the assembly and press in the plastic access panel. My access plate doesn't snap in. I had to turn it a little once the tabs were in place. Then it was secure.
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Old 04-13-2010, 12:26 AM
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Red face '05 NB Convert tail light bulb replacement

2005 Convertible--Dark Flint Edition.

Left rear tailight / signal bulb replacement.

1. Found rubber plug, removed it.
2. Found a small T-shaped metal ( not star-shaped plastic which shows in manual) wing nut, lossened it. Not knowing how to remove assembly, I decided to quit while I was ahead. Now I know how to get the assembly out and change the bulb, and I'll give it a shot.

3. On the passenger-side, however, there is no round plug/hole.
How would you get this side out? Anyone experienced this?

4. Does the whole plastic inside liner, with "vent grilles" on the inside of luggage compartment at rear of vehicle need to come out?

any help appreciated. sure is complicated just to change a bulb! In contrast--I own a 1959 Beetle, and there is one small screw on top of the tail light housing that comes out! times have changed--in the VW Dealer's favor!!!

cheers.......
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Old 04-13-2010, 11:56 AM
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Quote:
3. On the passenger-side, however, there is no round plug/hole.
Yes, there is. Get a flashlight and look again. Nothing else, not the liner, not the vent grille, nothing, needs to be removed.

When I wrote the original instructions 3-1/2 years ago, I was referring to the passenger side.
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Old 04-13-2010, 12:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cbcarch View Post
2005 Convertible--Dark Flint Edition.

4. Does the whole plastic inside liner, with "vent grilles" on the inside of luggage compartment at rear of vehicle need to come out?


cheers.......
Yes, that is what you remove. The grilles pop out from either the bottom or top. Just don't break the retaining tabs.
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Old 12-07-2010, 04:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AbuNigel View Post
never mind. just got back from auto zone. Tail lights working properly
only thing... the mechanics who last worked on my tail lights broke the teeth on the bulb housing piece so they aren't sitting as secure in the tail light as they should be. Have to go to the audi/vw part dealer for that though
Just attempted this myself over the weekend and discovered the 'teeth' were almost all gone on my '07 NBC, and the lens was separating from the housing....
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Old 02-07-2013, 04:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by squeebug View Post
u can also use a plunger to get the light out. stick it to the light and pull it out, no screw driver or anything else to worry about scratching paint.
Plunger for the win!

Thanks for a great tip!
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  #20 (permalink)  
Old 03-08-2013, 01:45 PM
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That is a terrific idea using a plunger. My hands and wrist are to big to get in there and so i usually have to have my wife do it..lol
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