How to Troubleshoot a BMW Tail Light

Updated July 20, 2017

There are several lights contained on the tail light assembly of your BMW vehicle: the backup lamp, the brake lamp, the parking lights, indicators, and brake force display lamps. If the lights do not work, there are two main reasons why. If all of the lights are malfunctioning, that indicates a blown tail light fuse. If only one a single light on the tail light assembly is malfunctioning, that indicates a problem with that specific light's bulb. The solution to both issues is simply replacing the faulty part.

Turn off the BMW's engine and open the boot.

Remove the fasteners in the trim of the boot lid using a Phillips screwdriver. Remove the trim from the boot to reveal the tail light assembly.

Remove the bulb socket containing the faulty bulb by pulling it out of the assembly. Push the bulb in gently while rotating it clockwise to remove it.

Pull the bulb straight out of the socket. Use a clean cloth to install the replacement bulb. Check your vehicle's owner's manual to see what type of bulb to use.

Place the socket back into the assembly and reattach the boot trim. Close the boot.

Turn off the BMW's engine and open the glove compartment. The fuse box is located at the rear of the glove compartment.

Remove the cover from the fuse box. On the underside of the fuse box you will find a pair of plastic tweezers and the location of each fuse printed on the cover. Locate the tail lamp fuse.

Use the tweezers to remove the tail lamp fuse and replace it with a new fuse of the same amperage.

Place the cover back onto the fuse box and close the glove compartment.

Things You'll Need

  • Clean cloth
  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Replacement bulbs
  • Replacement fuse
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About the Author

Daniel Valladares began his career as a medical writer in 2008. He has written patient education brochures for several pharmaceutical companies and has worked as an auto mechanic at Kim's Speedy Auto Service since 2007. Valladares holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Rice University and is currently studying to become a personal trainer.