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Rear Exterior Lights Replacing
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Rear Exterior Lights Replacing

Nick Czerula

Time:

1 hour1 hr

Tab:

$100

Talent:

**

Tools:

Flathead screwdriver, trim panel tool

Applicable Models:

BMW Z4 Convertible (2003-08)
BMW Z4 Coupe (2006-08)

Parts Required:

Bulbs, lens, rear lights

Hot Tip:

Tape body to protect from scratches

Performance Gain:

Working lights

Complementary Modification:

Replace bulbs in pairs

The rear lights on your BMW Z4 are comprised of the tail lights, high mount stop light (third brake light), rear side marker and the license plate lights. All of which are serviced separately, bulb or lens. It is important to keep these lights functioning to avoid traffic violations and possible crashes due to improperly lit vehicle.

In this tech article I will show you how to replace the rear side marker and license plate lights on your BMW Z4. The license plate lights are tungsten bulbs, while the rear side market lights are integrated bulbs in the lenses, (replaced as a unit).

When dealing with bulb failures or bulb out messages, always inspect the electrical connector and taillight bulb holder. The connectors can wear over time causing heat and melting. Once the electrical connector on the harness side or the bulb socket has melted, you will have a poor connection and rear bulb faults or failures. If you find the connector is melted, you can repair it by installing a new plug pigtail and / or replacing the bulb socket assembly.

Do not touch bulbs with your bare hands. The oil from your skin can damage the glass, causing it to overheat and fail prematurely.

Remember your car may have been serviced before and parts replaced with different size fasteners used in the replacement. The sizes of the nuts and bolts we give may be different from what you have so be prepared with different size sockets and wrenches.

Protect your eyes, hands and body from fluids, dust and debris while working on your vehicle. If working with the electrical system, disconnect the battery before beginning. Always catch fluids in appropriate containers and properly dispose of any fluid waste. Recycle parts, packaging and fluids when possible. Never work on your vehicle if you feel the task is beyond your ability.

Our vehicle may vary slightly from yours as models do change and evolve as they grow older. If something seems different, let us know and share your info to help other users. Questions or want to add to the article? Leave a comment below. When leaving a comment, please leave your vehicle information.

License Plate Bulbs and Lens: There are two separate license plate bulb lenses (red arrows).
Figure 1

License Plate Bulbs and Lens: There are two separate license plate bulb lenses (red arrows). If you are having trouble with water intrusion or corrosion on one, replace both as a set.

License Plate Bulbs and Lens: There are two small slots (red arrows) on the right side of the lens.
Figure 2

License Plate Bulbs and Lens: There are two small slots (red arrows) on the right side of the lens. This is where a flathead screwdriver is inserted to remove the lens.

License Plate Bulbs and Lens: Using a flathead screwdriver, press the license plate lens at the small slot opening toward the left.
Figure 3

License Plate Bulbs and Lens: Using a flathead screwdriver, press the license plate lens at the small slot opening toward the left.

License Plate Bulbs and Lens: Pull the right side of the lens down (red arrow), then unhook the left side from the bumper cover and remove.
Figure 4

License Plate Bulbs and Lens: Pull the right side of the lens down (red arrow), then unhook the left side from the bumper cover and remove.

License Plate Bulbs and Lens: Disconnect the electrical connector by pressing the release tab (red arrow) and pulling it straight off.
Figure 5

License Plate Bulbs and Lens: Disconnect the electrical connector by pressing the release tab (red arrow) and pulling it straight off.

License Plate Bulbs and Lens: To remove the bulb, rotate the bulb holder (red arrow) 90° counterclockwise and pull out.
Figure 6

License Plate Bulbs and Lens: To remove the bulb, rotate the bulb holder (red arrow) 90 degrees counterclockwise and pull out. Then pull the bulb straight out of the holder and replace. Reverse steps to install.

Rear Side Marker: To replace a bulb in your rear side marker (red arrow), the entire lens will have to be removed from the bumper cover and replaced as a unit.
Figure 7

Rear Side Marker: To replace a bulb in your rear side marker (red arrow), the entire lens will have to be removed from the bumper cover and replaced as a unit. Either remove the bumper cover or the wheel well liner. I prefer to remove the wheel well liner to get to it. When installing, be sure to align the ridge on the bumper and lens (blue arrow).

Rear Side Marker: Working inside the fender at the corner of the bumper cover, locate the light (red arrow).
Figure 8

Rear Side Marker: Working inside the fender at the corner of the bumper cover, locate the light (red arrow).

Rear Side Marker: Rotate the lens assemble clockwise until the slot aligns with the tab on the bumper cover (blue arrows).
Figure 9

Rear Side Marker: Rotate the lens assemble clockwise until the slot aligns with the tab on the bumper cover (blue arrows).

Rear Side Marker: Push the lens into the bumper (red arrow).
Figure 10

Rear Side Marker: Push the lens into the bumper (red arrow). Disconnect the electrical connector by pressing the release tab (blue arrow) and pulling it straight off. Replace the lens and reverse steps to install it.

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Page last updated: Sat 12/3/2016 03:07:33 AM