How to Install a Headlight Switch

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If the headlights on your vehicle are not working, you may need to replace the headlight switch. Fortunately, replacing a headlight switch is a rather simple and straightforward process. The headlight switch is located either on the dashboard below the instrument panel or on the left side of the steering column, depending on the make and model of your vehicle. In either case, the installation process does not require that you remove many extraneous parts, other than some trim. Expect the entire process to take about thirty minutes.

Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver

Headlight Switch on the Steering Column

  • Turn off your vehicle and prop open the hood with the hood-support rod.

  • Disconnect the negative battery cable from the negative terminal by loosening the nut securing the two together.

  • Sit in the driver's side seat and remove the screws mounting the steering column bezel to the steering column. Pull off the steering column bezel.

  • Disconnect the wiring block from the rear of the headlight switch.

  • Remove the mounting screws mounting the headlight switch to the steering column and pull the headlight switch from of the steering column. Install the replacement headlight switch by following the previous steps in reverse.

Headlight Switch on the Dashboard

  • Turn off your vehicle and prop open the hood.

  • Loosen the negative battery cable nut to disconnect the negative cable from the negative terminal.

  • Open the driver's side door and look for the headlight switch mounting screw below the dashboard. Remove the lower dashboard if your vehicle has an upper and lower dashboard to find this mounting screw. Remove the lower dashboard by prying up on its edges with your screwdriver. Place some tape around the edges of the trim if you are concerned about scratching it as you work.

  • Turn the headlight switch knob to the Off position, press it in, and pull it out of the headlight switch housing.

  • Pull the headlight switch out of the headlight switch trim on the dashboard, but do not jerk the switch away as it is still plugged in. Unplug the two wiring harnesses on the rear of the headlight switch and plug them into the replacement switch. Follow the previous steps in reverse to finish installing the replacement switch.

References

  • "Auto Upkeep: Basic Car Care, Maintenance, and Repair"; Michael E. Gray and Linda E. Gray ;2007
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