Tuesday, September 2nd — Headlights Redux

September 3, 2008

Today I Learned…

…how to replace a set of headlights.  Loyal readers will remember from a few days previous that my passenger-side high beam was not working.  Well, I went to your local auto parts superstore today and purchased a brand new pair of lamps, along with some fuel system cleaner, and proceeded to install them when I got home.  After some fooling around with trying to pull some things off which didn’t need to get removed, I finally managed to figure out where they should go.

It seems that the lamps themselves are attached to an assemblage which enters the headlight enclosure from behind, under the hood.  At least on my car (a 1993 Toyota Tercel), there’s a small black plastic ring which locks them on — once this is removed, the assemblage pulls out and you can remove the bulb.  I did so — and voila!

…My high beams still didn’t work.

Turns out that one of the wires that fed into the lamp harness had split.  I was able to reattach it using a wire nut: a small plastic cone with a metal interior into which you feed both pieces of the broken and stripped wire and twist to reconnect them.

…My high beams still don’t work.

There must still be some sort of break in the wire somewhere.  It can’t be a fuse or a relay because the other high beam is working.  Unfortunately, I’ve done all I can without paying someone else to fix it.  It wasn’t a total loss, as now my headlights work better than the ones that were there before, but it’s still frustrating that I wasn’t able to fix it myself.

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