August 25th, 2021 by Fix Auto USA
If you have a tail light out, you need to repair or replace it right away. Because, if your tail light is not working, other motorists may have trouble seeing your car. This can increase your risk of an accident.
What Should You Do If A Tail Light Is Broken?
If you discover a tail light does not work as expected, you’ll need to fix or replace it before you return to the road. Failure to do so creates a hazard for you and other motorists.
Is A Cracked Tail Light Cover Illegal?
It is against the law to drive with a broken tail light. All cars are required to have two working tail lights. In addition, all tail light lenses must be clear. And, they should be from the original car manufacturer and appear in good condition.
Also, it is illegal to install dark lenses or bulbs that hamper the effectiveness of tail lights. You should only use tail lights that have bulbs approved by the U.S. Department of Transportation, too.
What Causes A Tail Light To Stop Working?
Common reasons why tail lights stop working include:
1. Defective Fuse
Your car has a fuse box likely located on the front passenger side of the cabin or under the hood. Fuses control electrical components across your vehicle.
If your tail light no longer works, you can check the fuse box to see if that is causing the problem. Your car’s owner’s manual includes details about your fuse box’s location and the location of your tail light fuse.
A fuse tester can be used to determine if your tail light fuse is good. If the fuse does not illuminate, purchase and install a new one with the same amperage.
2. Bulb Burns Out
A tail light bulb can burn out due to prolonged use. To determine if this is the case, remove the tail light cover and check out the bulb.
You can view the tail light bulb’s filament to determine if the bulb is defective. If the filament is broken, you’ll need to replace the bulb.
3. Socket No Longer Works
There may be times when a tail light bulb sockets malfunctions. This can occur due to moisture entering the socket and causing corrosion. Or, it can happen as a result of a poor connection of wires from the socket to the bulb.
To assess a socket, look for any discoloration or damage. If the socket is blue, brown, or white or has bent or broken pins, it should be replaced.
You can also use a multimeter to evaluate a socket’s electrical current. A multimeter can show you if electricity is reaching the socket’s pins.
It can be challenging and frustrating to track down the source of a defective tail light. If you are unsure about the cause of a faulty tail light, it pays to bring your car to a certified auto mechanic. That way, you can receive an inspection, determine what’s causing the problem, get your defective tail light fixed or replaced.
The Bottom Line On Why You Need To Fix A Broken Tail Light Immediately
A broken tail light won’t get repaired or replaced on its own. The longer you wait to address this issue, the more likely it becomes that it could lead to an accident.
Be proactive when it comes to car maintenance and repairs. Test your tail lights regularly; if you find any defects along the way, address them immediately.
This blog was contributed by Fix Auto Indio, a leading industry expert and collision repair shop servicing Indio, Coachella, Bermuda Dunes, Vista Santa Rosa, and other nearby cities and towns.