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How to Replace Headlight 98-05 Volkswagen Beetle

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How to Replace Headlight 98-05 Volkswagen Beetle

Created on: 2011-12-29

Watch this video to learn how to replace a cloudy or cracked headlight or change a burnt out bulb. The experts at 1A Auto teach you how to replace the headlights on your 98-05 Volkswagen Beetle.

  1. step 1 :Removing the Light
    • Flip the metal latch mechanism up to loosen the fixture
    • Push in the checkered square button and lift the latch
    • Lift the latch and pull on the light, slowly working the fixture from the car
  2. step 2 :Servicing the Bulbs
    • Disconnect the headlight wiring harness
    • Twist the bulb socket counterclockwise out of the light
    • Pull the bulb off of the socket
    • Push on the new bulb
    • Twist the bulb clockwise into the light
    • Disconnect the upper bulb
    • Making sure the retainer is out of the way, plug in the new bulb
    • Reaching in and pull the wire retainer up
    • Pull slightly on the green wire, and the bulb comes out
    • Disconnect the bulb and replace
    • Once the new bulb is replaced, push down on the retainer and lock it into place
    • Press back cover down, and it should snap into place
  3. step 3 :Replacing the Headlight
    • Reach into hood and make sure your latch is sliding freely. If it's not, put some grease in there
    • Connect the headlight wiring harness
    • Line up the bolt holes on the headlight bracket to the bolt holes on the vehicle
    • Push the headlight in with the latch down
    • The metal latch should be hooked onto the back of the headlight, and then pushed down as well. This will secure the light

Tools needed for replacement

  • General Tools


Installation Video
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This video is brought to you by, your source for quality replacement parts and the best service on the internet.
Hi, I'm Mike Green. I'm one of the owners of 1A Auto. I want to help you save time and money repairing and maintaining your vehicle. I'm going to use my twenty 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 headlight replacement on this 1998 VW Beetle. You can see both how to just change the bulbs or change the whole assembly if you need to because one is broken or you want to put a nice new set on there. The only tool you'll need is probably a flashlight.

You may be watching this video because you just want to learn how to change a bulb in one of these Beetles, or maybe you want to put a new set of headlights on the front, maybe because one is broken. Or you just want to freshen up the front end of your vehicle. You can see here that a new set of headlights does make the front of the vehicle look a little clearer, a little crisper, a little bit newer.

Again, here's the before, and the after. A new set of headlights from 1A Auto and just 10 to 20 minutes of your own time and you can make the front of your VW look nice again.

First, open your hood.

Right inside, you're going to see a couple things. Right here there's a little latch mechanism. Flip that up that loosens things. Right here, you see this little checkered square. You want to push that; that's a lock so you push that in and while you're pushing that in, you lift up right here.
As you can see, as I lift that up, my light starts to come out. Again, push in the little checkered square and then lift up on that lever, and then this is ideally how it should come out. You may have to do a little bit of working the lever a little bit as well as pulling on the light some until it comes out. This is probably easy, sometimes you'll have to really work at that for a while. Really work that lever and kind of shake your light in and out until it comes apart, and then there's a little connection here, you just push on the tab, disconnect it. If you're just looking to change your bulb, you'll just want to press on this tab here. Take that off, there's a little lock wire here. You press it down and that retainer comes out. There's one bulb, that's your upper bulb. It just disconnects here and then you plug a new one in. Make sure your retainer is out of the way.

The other bulb is the same procedure. You just have to reach way in and pull the wire retainer up. Then kind of pull on the green wire. The bulb comes out, disconnect it, reconnect it. If you hold the light like this, the wire retainer will stay out of your way. Put the bulb in, get it lined up and tilt the bulb down, that flips the wire retainer down. Then press on the retainer, lock it in place.

Put this back on, two teeth go down there back in place. New headlight bulb from 1A Auto. You can see much more clear than the old one. This car only has about 50,000 miles on it. It's going to install just like the original. You want to make sure that you reach in here and grab your tab and everything moves pretty freely. If it doesn't move freely, maybe use a little grease in there and get things to work well. Plug in your headlight, and there's two lineup tabs on the headlight. There's one long one here, and one shorter one over here. Start putting your headlight in. On this side you want to make sure that that tab goes into the slot right there. Over here, you want to watch your smaller tab and make sure it goes into the slot correctly as well.

What I'm actually going to do is use a flashlight so I can see over here. I can see this over here, not too high. Probably the most difficult part is just making sure this gets lined up correctly. Once you got it, push it in, then move your locking tab down. That pulls the headlight right in. This is down. Make sure you bring this strap right down. It goes on there and then make sure you pull it up like that. Then repeat for the driver side, and it's maybe a little more difficult because there's a battery in the way, but it's still the same procedure.

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:

    General Tools

  • Flashlight

1998 - 2001  Volkswagen  Beetle
2002 - 2005  Volkswagen  Beetle
2005 - 2005  Volkswagen  Beetle
2002 - 2004  Volkswagen  Beetle
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