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How To Change Headlight Assembly 96-99 Subaru Legacy

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How To Change Headlight Assembly 96-99 Subaru Legacy

Created on: 2011-09-06

Learn how to replace both the headlight bulbs and assembly on your 96-99 Subaru Legacy.

  1. step 1 :Handling the Bulbs
    • Note: DO NOT TOUCH the bulbs- the oil from your fingers will burn into the light and foul your bulb.
    • Clean with rubbing alcohol and a soft cloth if the bulbs do get touched.
  2. step 2 :To change just the headlight bulbs
    • Open the hood.
    • Unclip the retaining wire.
    • Remove the bulb.
    • Replace bulb and clip in retaining wire.
  3. step 3 :Remove the parking light assembly
    • Remove the Phillip's screw securing the parking light assembly
    • Use a flat head screwdriver and a rag to pry out the parking light assembly
  4. step 4 :Remove the grille
    • Use pliers to remove the clips and the grille.
    • Set aside.
  5. step 5 :Remove the head light assembly
    • Unbolt the four bolts using your 10 mm socket and ratchet
  6. step 6 :Install the new head light assembly
    • Bolt the four 10 mm bolts back in using your socket and ratchet.
  7. step 7 :Replace front grille
    • Clip the grille back in.
  8. step 8 :Re-install the parking light assembly
    • Clip the parking light assembly back in
    • Screw in the screw using your Phillip's screwdriver

Tools needed for replacement

  • Pliers, Cutters & misc Wrenches

    Needle nose pliers

  • Ratchets & Related


  • Screwdrivers & Related

    Phillips Head Screwdriver

  • Wrenches - Metric

    10mm Wrench

Installation Video
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Hi, I'm Mike Green. I'm one of the owners from 1A Auto. I want to help you save time and money, repairing and maintaining your vehicle. I'm going to use my 20 plus years' experience restoring and repairing cars and trucks like this, to show you the correct way to install parts from The right parts installed correctly that's going to save you time and money. Thank you and enjoy the video.

In this video, we're going to show you how to replace a headlight, both just to change the bulb and replace the headlight assembly itself. If you're just replacing a bulb, you don't need any tools to replace the entire assembly. You'll need a Phillips screwdriver, a pair of pliers, and a ten millimeter socket and ratchet or a wrench. If you're just looking to change your headlight bulb, open your hood, and the behind your headlight is the back of your bulb. What you want to do is press down right here and pull that off and then there's a little wire retainer you push up. You kind of push forward and up on that retainer, and then it comes down. Then, your light, shake it up and down a little bit, your bulb comes out. Put the bulb in. Make sure this tab here is facing up. Push it in nice and firm. Pull your retainer up and push it until it clicks. Then reconnect your harness. That's replacing the headlight bulb.

If you're looking to replace the entire assembly because it's faded, yellow, or cloudy, or just out right broken, you're going to remove the parking light and the grill, which we're going to go over. On your parking light there's a Phillips screw right here to remove. Then your light needs to come forward. What you want to do is take a regular screwdriver, wrap it in a towel or some kind of old cloth. Put it right in here, and pry forward. You need to push the top in. Slide the parking light out.

If you're looking to replace the bulb, twist it counter clockwise and pull it out. The bulb twists counter clockwise as well, and it comes out. To remove your grill, there are four clips holding it at the top, and then two down lower. The top ones take a pair of needle nose pliers and squeeze the clip as you pull the grill out. It looks like the bottoms you'd want to, it looks they've already been broken on this car.

With the bottom ones, what you want to try to do is reach your pliers down in and squeeze right down in here to release them. We'd remove the headlight assembly. First make sure it's unplugged. Now there's four ten millimeter bolts, two right at the top here, one back in behind where the grill was, and then another one right here behind the parking light. Ten millimeter socket with a ratchet and extension and let's fast forward through removing those four bolts. Once the parking light and grill are out, it is that simple. It's just a few bolts, take it out, then put it back in, and then tighten up those bolts nice and firm, not too tight. The grill, you install the light.

It mounts in two places. You got a pin here. It goes back into a grout there and also this little pin goes into a bracket here. You put it up in there diagonally. You can see this pin go back into there. Make sure it works in the right spot. Make sure it's against the headlight and doesn't come out.

We hope this helps you out, brought to you by, your source for quality replacement parts and the best service on the internet. Please feel free to call us toll free, 888-844-3393. We're the company that's here for you on the internet and in person.

Tools needed for replacement:

    Pliers, Cutters & misc Wrenches

  • Needle nose pliers

  • Ratchets & Related

  • Ratchet

  • Screwdrivers & Related

  • Phillips Head Screwdriver

  • Wrenches - Metric

  • 10mm Wrench

1997 - 1997  Subaru  Legacy
1998 - 1999  Subaru  Legacy
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