Volkswagen Passat Forum banner
1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
977 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I think I'm generally pretty good about changing parts on my car, but for the life of me I haven't found a simple way to change the tail light bulbs in my 5.5 wagon. The turn signal seems to be the most difficult thing to get reinstalled. Is there a trick of any sort to it? I finally got it reinstalled today after playing with it for a while but still am dreading the next time I'll need to pull it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,470 Posts
Have you seen this video:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=696ixWDyOVU

And this comment for the drivers side:

"I just replaced the driver's side unit today. It is easier if you first remove the left-hand side trim panel (unscrew the two flip-out, chrome tie-down rings, pop out two plastic clips at the floor and a few along the window edge) and then remove the black, plastic mount that holds part of the audio system (amp?) and the jack/tool kit. There are six, fairly easy to reach Phillips-head screws and the whole thing lifts right out. Once it's removed it's a piece of cake to get at all four light housing mounting bolts. Sounds like a lot of work but it's pretty easy, really."
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
977 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So I was driving around this morning and got the fast blink from my drivers side turn signal again. Bulb is about 2 months old. Walked to trunk just turned the bulb holder slightly, went back to the front and like magic it's back to normal. Are there any tricks to getting that bulb to seat fully? This is the 2nd time this has happened since I changed bulbs with the same fix.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,819 Posts
On bulb quality and dimensions...

If you'll buy all turn signal, brake light and running light bulbs from a dealership -vs- what the local auto parts store sells, you'll have fewer if any problems. Bulbs in the '99 AEB Passat are the originals...all of them. :O

I recall on the A2 Jettas, the auto parts store "1156" tail light bulbs fit the socket fine, but were so tall they melted the tail light lens.

Just because the bulb fits, doesn't mean it's the correct bulb. YMMV
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,652 Posts
^+1 to that. Working from memory I think some of the VW bulbs also have the metal 'studs' on the bulbs slightly offset from each other and not directly opposed (like 7/5 on a clock and not 9/3). If the other bulb is original, I'd compare the two to see if you actually have the correct bulbs in there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
977 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the tip. I had bought the turn signal online from my normal parts place and that was supposed to be oem. Swapped it out and was fine for about a month. Then one of my park lights went out so I pulled the bulb holder assembly and swapped it out and put the turn signal back in after (should be bulb assembly in first and then you put in turn signal and twist correct). Fought with it a while to get the rapid flash to stop. But since that day it's happened twice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
459 Posts
To stop that pesky "fast flash" that's likely resulting from a bad connection in your bulb housing, use bulb grease. Should be able to pick it up at any auto parts store. Had the same problem in our Passat wagon and that solved the issue, been months now with no issues.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
977 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks, will give that a try. Why VW put the bulb like that is beyond me. I don't think I have terribly big hands, but for the life of me don't see q great way to get a good enough grip to really turn it until it clicks/stops like you'd want.
 

·
Registered
2004 GLS 1.8T
Joined
·
12,177 Posts
I grabbed bunch of bulbs from junk yard due to high prices at dealership and stores.
With all due respect, that's one of the dumbest things I've heard in a while. An expendable, low-cost item, currently being discussed for difficulty of replacement, and you got used ones out of a junk yard? A new tail light bulb is under $2.00!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
926 Posts
Another thought about bulbs: if the bulb on one side goes out, go ahead and also replace its mate on the other side. The still-working one is just as old as the now-failed one, and may well soon follow its partner to the old bulb graveyard.
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top