If you need to replace your tail light bulb, first remove the cover
(it's round) from the inside of your trunk. There will be a black knob
that needs to be unscrewed totally to release the back light casing.
The screw is spring loaded so it is not going to fall. Be sure to hold
on to the black knob. If you drop it you can retrieve it, but it's best
to not drop it. Next pry the light casing from the fender with a knife
or some other sturdy object. It is best to pry the light out from the
line that runs from the light to the hatchback door. Don't be afraid,
it takes a little force to pull out. After you pull out casing, you'll
find two light switches. The one with one filament is for the turn
signals and the one with two filaments is for the break light. Turn the
light switch counter clockwise and remove. Switch out light bulb with
new one (AutoZone has them for about $5.00 - package of 2). Replace
every thing back as you uninstalled it. It is recommended that you
replace all bulbs, that way it you don't have to do it again later when
they go out. It'll save you the time and hassle of doing this again.
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1) Open trunk
2) Remove small round plastic access panel with a flat tip screw driver by prying open
3) Remove flat tip screw holding tail light assembly
4) Remove tail light assembly by pulling outward, careful not to break plastic guide/nub
5) Disconnect wiring connectors
6) Remove plastic housing access plate on back of tail light assembly by twisting/turning tabs until they click and then lift access plate from tail light assembly
7) When viewing the the bulbs, the turn signal bulb is the bottom left bulb
8) Install in reverse order, ensuring tail light seal seats properly during installation
Access to the tail light cluster should be through panels in the rear corners of the vehicle. Remove the panel and you can remove the tail light cluster to replace the bulbs. This is the position on most sedans, unless, like on pick-ups, the tail light lenses have screws which allow the lenses to be removed to change the bulbs.
The procedure for removing and installing turn signal light bulbs is the same as that for brake light and taillight bulbs. Only the procedure for brake light and taillight bulbs is described here.
Before servicing the vehicle, refer to the Precautions Section.
Disconnect the battery.
Switch off all electrical connectors.
Turn off ignition.
Remove the rear light, as follows:
Remove the rear striker mount cover.
Reach behind the respective quarter panel trim and unscrew the knurled nut. Make sure the washer and spacer do not fall down.
Remove the rear light and disconnect the electrical connector.
Turn the bulb holder in the direction shown and remove from the housing
Turn the bulb holder in the direction shown
Remove the bulb from holder.
Install the bulb in the reverse order of removal. When installing, make sure bulb holder engages in housing by turning in opposite direction.
Install the rear light, as follows:
Connect the electrical connector.
Insert the rear light housing into the body opening.
Insert the retaining bolt into the body opening.
Insert the rear light into the cutout.
Insert the rear light into the cutout in the direction of arrow
Slide the spacer and washer onto the retaining bolt, attach the knurled nut and tighten by hand.
Turn the bulb holder in the direction shown and remove from housing.
I would start by trying another bulb. Even though the brake and tail light share the same bulb they actually are powering different filaments inside of the bulb so you can have a tail light filament that is working fine and illuminating properly but have a burned out brake light element that won't work at all...all inside the same bulb. Not uncommon at all to see this problem and these bulbs are pretty inexpensive.
IT'S A BIT MORE COMPLICATED THAN ABOVE.
TO REMOVE BRAKE LIGHT HOUSING YOU HAVE TO GO INTO THE TRUNK AND REMOVE AN OVAL PLASTIC COVER NEAR WHERE THE TAIL LIGHT IS. REACH IN AND FEEL FOR A KNOB (FEELS LIKE AN OUTDOOR SPIGOT KNOB). TURN IT UNTIL IT COMES OFF. REMOVE ENTIRE TAIL LIGHT CASING. YOU'LL BE ABLE TO COMPLETELY REMOVE THE HOUSING BY PUSHING FROM INSIDE OUT. DISCONNECT THE WIRE. CHANGE BULB, REVERSE PROCEDURE.
tail light bulbs are replaced by removing the tail light housings. The housings are accessed by removing the nuts, the nuts are secured behind the inner trunk liner inside the trunk. Remove fasteners holding liner in place, remove 3 nuts for each housing(i believe it's 3 nuts if my memory serves me right), remove housing and replace bulbs
In the trunk, in the rear corners, you'll see some plastic "caps" with tabs on them, similar to wing nuts. Remove those, and the taillight comes right off the back of the car. That will allow you to replace the bulbs.