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How to Replace a Headlight Bulb in a VW Passat

by Contributor

If any of the headlight bulbs on your Volkswagen Passat breaks or burns out, replace it as soon as possible to stay safe on the road. Though the process may seem challenging, it's actually pretty simple--even people with no mechanical expertise should be able to finish the repair in a matter of minutes. Please note, these instructions don't apply to models made before 1996.

Shut off your Passat's engine and turn the headlamp switch to "OFF." Open the hood using the primary and auxiliary hood release latches.

Remove the air intake duct retaining screws and place them in your pocket. Carefully pull the duct out of the engine compartment and gently rest it on the ground (passenger side bulb removal only.)

Pull the rubber weather seal off of the low beam bulb socket. To access the high beam bulb socket, press down on the tab at the top of its plastic weather cover.

Turn the bulb socket counterclockwise and pull it out of the headlight assembly.

Take the old bulb out of the socket and dispose of it immediately.

Grip the new bulb by its plastic base and carefully insert it into the socket.

Replace the weather seal, reinstall the air intake duct (if necessary) and turn on the headlights to make sure the new bulb works.

Tip

  • If you touch the new bulb's glass with your bare hands, wipe it clean using a rag or towel moistened with rubbing alcohol.

Warning

  • Don't try to repair your Passat's headlights if they use High Intensity Discharge (HID) xenon bulbs. These may carry a dangerous electric charge even when the car's turned off and should only be handled by a professional mechanic.

Items you will need

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