How to Align the Headlights on a 2002 Mazda 626

Written by suzette barnard
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How to Align the Headlights on a 2002 Mazda 626
(headlight image by Carbonbrain from

Driving with your Mazda 626's headlights off-kilter can be dangerous--both for yourself and oncoming drivers. It only takes some time and a few common, household tools to realign the headlights on your car and ensure they are working properly. You'll need to wait until dusk to begin the repair. This will allow you to accurately see where your headlights are shining but still have enough light to work under the hood of your car.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Screwdriver
  • Masking tape

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  1. 1

    Open the hood of your 626 and locate the headlight assembly and its large adjusting screws. There are two spring-loaded screws, one inserted horizontally and the other vertically. Close the hood.

  2. 2

    Park your 626 on a level surface near a wall or a garage door so that the headlights are facing the wall, a few feet away.

  3. 3

    Use masking tape to mark the centre of both headlights on the wall. Mark both the horizontal and vertical centre with the tape, creating two large plus sign where the headlights should aim.

  4. 4

    Back your car up about 25 feet and turn on the headlights.

  5. 5

    Check to see how far from the centre of the masking tape marks the headlights are pointing.

  6. 6

    Turn off the headlights and open the hood. Use a screwdriver to turn the adjusting screws, moving each headlight towards its target.

  7. 7

    Repeat the process of turning on the headlights to check their alignment, turning them back off and making small adjustments. Once both headlights are aimed at the centre of the tape marks, you are finished.

Tips and warnings

  • Be patient and make small adjustments to the screws to get the headlights lined up properly.
  • Running the headlights will cause the assembly and the adjusting screws to heat up. Be careful not to burn yourself.

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