Things to Know About Changing a Headlight - Service Information at Capitol Chevrolet

When you're starting out on DIY tasks, changing headlights is one of the better places to begin. Even if you may never even change your vehicle's oil, you may want to take headlight replacement into your own hands. At Capitol Chevrolet, we want to make sure that your Chevy gets the service it needs. If you've decided to change a headlight on your own, there are some important things you should take into account.

Close-up of Chevy headlights

5. Learn More About Your Headlights Before Diving In

Changing a headlight may seem as simple as opening up the hood, removing the old bulb, replacing it, and closing the hood. And in some cases, this is exactly how easy it is. However, it's not true of all vehicles. Some may have obstacles that block easy access, while others require removing the entire headlight assembly rather than just the bulb. The owner's manual is a great place to look, and you can find informative videos online, as well.

Two halogen bulbs

4. Choose OEM Headlight Bulbs

When buying a new bulb, many people head for the aftermarket. It's true that there are a number of headlight bulb options, including some that may be less expensive than the GM OEM varieties. But when it comes to finding a bulb that's durable and reliable, OEM is the way to go. When you look for aftermarket parts, you're taking a gamble on quality, and you may find yourself needing to replace the bulbs in a short amount of time.

3. Don't Touch Halogen Bulbs with Bare Hands

There are few things more frustrating than having something you just fixed break again. If you're not careful when replacing halogen bulbs, you just might find this happening to you. If your fingertips touch the bulb, the oil from your fingers may cause the bulb to heat unevenly. Before long, it will likely burn out. Our recommendation? Use disposable latex or nitrile gloves for headlight changes. Just be sure that you don't touch the fingers of the gloves with your bare hands, as this could cause the same problem.

Chevrolet headlights

2. Have the Headlights Inspected

While having working headlight bulbs is important (and required by law), there are other ways that your headlights may need attention. Headlight alignment is important. If the bulbs are functional but aren't pointed in the right direction, you may not be getting the visibility you need. In addition, your headlight lenses might need to be polished in order to get maximum visibility.

1. What If the Replacement Bulb Doesn't Work?

If just one bulb burns out, it's likely that replacing it will do the trick. But if the new bulb doesn't turn on, either, then it's probably not a problem with the light bulb itself. Instead, it may be that there's a wiring issue within your vehicle. In cases like this, taking your Chevy to an authorized service center is the best thing to do.