Directions for Brake Light Bulb Replacement for Subaru Outback

by Leonardo R. Grabkowski

The Subaru Outback was originally a special trim level package of the Subaru Legacy, offered from 1995 to 1999. For the 2000 model year, Subaru took the Outback name and used it on an entirely new vehicle, called the Subaru Outback. The Outback is available as either a wagon (most popular) or a sedan.

Accessing the Brake Light Bulbs

If you are the owner of a Subaru Outback 2004 or older, you are in luck. Accessing your brake light bulbs is simple. Open your rear hatch (or trunk if your Outback is a sedan) and locate the access panels in the corner of your cargo area. Twist the knobs on the access panel to remove it and access the bulb modules.

If you are the owner of a 2005 or newer Outback, accessing the brake light bulbs is a little more involved. The process is the same whether your Outback is a wagon or a sedan. Open your hatch or trunk and pull out the clips. The clips look like screws, but will turn freely if you twist them. Use a pair of pliers to pull them out. Once the panels are removed, release the clips to find the bolts. Each brake light assembly has two 10mm bolts mounting the assembly to the vehicle. Remove the bolts and carefully pull the assembly from rear end of the vehicle. Once the assembly is out, you can easily access the bulb modules.

Replacing the Brake Light Bulbs

Grab the rear of the bulb module and turn it counterclockwise about an inch to unlock the module from the brake light assembly. Press the tab to remove the old bulb.

Hold the new bulb by the plastic connector, not by the glass part of the bulb. Touching the glass can cause premature failure (the oil from your hands can damage it). Insert the new bulb into the assembly and turn it clockwise to lock it. Insert the assembly back into the vehicle (if 2005 or newer) and replace the 10mm bolts and clips. Replace the access panel when you are finished.

2005 and newer models of the Outback use replacement bulb number 7443. Older models use bulb number 3157LL.

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