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Replacing Lenses and Blubs / Adding Clear Corners
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Replacing Lenses and Blubs / Adding Clear Corners

Time:

30 minutes30 mins

Tab:

$15 to $250

Talent:

*

Applicable Models:

Porsche 981 Boxster (2013-15)
Porsche 981 Boxster GTS (2015)
Porsche 981 Boxster S (2013-15)
Porsche 986 Boxster (1997-04)
Porsche 986 Boxster S (2000-04)
Porsche 987 Boxster (2005-12)
Porsche 987 Boxster S (2005-12)

Parts Required:

New lenses, bulbs

Hot Tip:

Don't tug heavily on the lenses when removing them " they may break

Performance Gain:

Better looking exterior, clearer lamps

Complementary Modification:

Upgrade to clear corners and clear/smoked rear lenses
101 Performance Projects for Your Porsche Boxster

This article is one in a series that have been released in conjunction with Wayne's new book, 101 Performance Projects for Your Porsche Boxster. The book contains 312 pages of full color projects detailing everything from performance mods to changing your brake pads. With more than 950+ full-color glossy photos accompanying extensive step-by-step procedures, this book is required reading in any Boxster owner's collection. The book is currently available and in stock now. See The Official Book Website for more details.

There are few projects that are as easy as lens replacement, yet improve the look of your car so significantly. Replacing old faded lenses not only improves your Boxster's overall appearance, it also increases its safety as well. Faded lenses tend to be harder to see and block much more light than brand new ones. On the front of the Boxster, the side marker lenses are removed by simply pulling on them. A snap-tab holds them in place.

The rear lenses are very easy too: they are simply held on with screws that you can access in the rear trunk. Pull back the trunk lining and you should have easy access to the screws and the bulbs. The third brake light is easily accessible from the rear trunk when the roof is lowered into the service position (see Photo 6 and Pelican Technical Article: Air Filter / Pollen Filter Replacement).

If you are replacing bulbs, make sure that you replace your old bulbs with the same exact style and wattage as the originals. Swapping in higher wattage bulbs could damage your wiring and possibly melt your lens and bulb holder.

The photos show the replacement process on the 1997-04 Boxster: the 2005-08 is very similar.

The Boxster headlamp is a somewhat complicated piece of equipment.
Figure 1

The Boxster headlamp is a somewhat complicated piece of equipment. A- To replace bulbs inside the assembly, first detach the end cover by squeezing the tabs on both sides (one side shown with green arrow). B- These are the adjustment wheels, and can be turned by inserting a 5mm hex head tool through access holes located in the chassis. Red: fog lamp adjustment, Yellow: left/right adjustment, Blue: up/down adjustment. C- The turn signal / parking lamp bulb is accessed through the bottom of the assembly. D- The two halogen bulbs are clipped into the rear of the lamp and are easily accessible once you remove the end cover. Don't touch the bulb with your fingers, as the oils in your hand will damage it. The purple arrow points to the access hole you use to replace the fog lamp bulb.

Installing the headlamp back into the car can be a bit tricky.
Figure 2

Installing the headlamp back into the car can be a bit tricky. A- The headlamp mates with the carrier plate (green arrow) and harness connector. A bar integrated within the carrier plate locks the headlamp assembly into place. B/C/D: Three circular tabs on the headlamp assembly fit into three channels located on the carrier plate. It's important to look carefully as you install the headlamp to make sure that these tabs are properly aligned in the channels.

With the assembly pushed back into the fender, use the headlamp tool from your Boxster tool kit to lock it into place.
Figure 3

With the assembly pushed back into the fender, use the headlamp tool from your Boxster tool kit to lock it into place. If you don't have this tool, you can also use a 5mm socket. With the tool facing upwards, rotate it towards the rear of the car to lock it into place, or rotate it towards the front of the car to unlock.

New side marker lenses take about 1 minute to install.
Figure 4

New side marker lenses take about 1 minute to install. I prefer the clear ones with orange bulbs. Simple reach in and pull on them to remove the lenses, then unclip the harness by pressing on the thin metal clip (2005 an later cars have an additional screw located in the wheel well that needs to be removed). For some reason, the amber USA lenses that are stock equipment just don't cut it. In order to maintain legal standards, you must run orange bulbs inside the lenses. This can cause the lens to take on an orange hue. There's a product out there that I recommend called Stealth Bulbs (inset) that is available online at PelicanParts.com. These bulbs are silver coated on the outside, but glow bright orange when electricity is applied. They look clear when installed in the clear lenses, but retain the orange illumination required for US roads.

Removal of the rear tail lamp is easy.
Figure 5

Removal of the rear tail lamp is easy. Simply remove the four nuts that hold on the rear assembly (purple arrow). Then push out the assembly and pull from the opposite side (lower left). If all you need to do is change bulbs, then press the lock tab and remove the bulb carrier from the back of the tail lamp assembly (lower right).

To change the bulbs in the third brake lamp, put the roof into the service position (see <a style=color:000080 href=http://www.
Figure 6

To change the bulbs in the third brake lamp, put the roof into the service position (see Pelican Technical Article: Air Filter / Pollen Filter Replacement) and release the two screws on either side of the lamp. Unplug the harness connector, and then you should be able to unsnap the bulb carrier from the rear of the lamp. Be careful not to break any of the delicate plastic tabs on the bulb carrier. Also, when reinstalling the lamp, pay close attention to the two screws: they have a unique system for securing the lamp to the chassis. Push the screws and their rubber washers into the holes in the chassis, and then tighten them only slightly to make the screws expand the rubber and become snug in their holes.

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Comments and Suggestions:
Hrbnatr Comments: The lenses on my 2000 Boxster are bubbled and burnt. Is there any way to replace just the lens without buying a whole headlight assembly??
October 12, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don't believe so.

Give The Pelican Parts parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Paul Comments: Dumb dumb question but here goes anyway. Which one is the low beam bulb and which is the high beam? I know, I know dumb but I've changed it and I think I did it in reverse. Can you advise? Thanks
September 16, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Inside bulb is usually high beam. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Mikey Comments: On removing the head light for dip beam replacement the tool is just spinning the bar around with out forcing the unit out to enable removal any help advice greatly received
October 22, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I am not following you. Are you replacing the headlight lever or a bulb? Can you share a photo of what you are having trouble with? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
GTOger Comments: I could really use a set of the seals/gaskets for the headlights, but I haven't found them on your website. Can you help out with that?

Also, I'm pretty sure there is a typo on this article. I think you mean to say "Replacing Lenses and Bulbs" instead of "Blubs".
July 29, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I’m not the best with part numbers.

Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Red Comments: Are any LED bulbs suitable for replacing the halogen lamps? LEDs are attractive because they last much longer if properly driven and heatsynced.
March 16, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: None that I am aware of. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Coneman Comments: Thank you for all the helpful tech-articles that you make available, You guys have saved me loads of money!! And again thank you. Conan Jackson- 2003 Porsche Boxster S
October 17, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the feedback. Glad we could help.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Rick Comments: How do you replace the headlight corner trim and get rid of the wipers on a 1999 Boxster?
September 23, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: We don't currently have that tech article. I opened a post in our forums. A Pelican community member may be able to answer your question.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Joel Comments: Thanks for your truly impressive and helpful stream of DIY articles; you have saved me many hours or trial and error, and I've done more than a few projects on the strength of your instructions alone Even tho I own the Bentley. However, this article says "there are few projects that are as easy as lens replacement" - but the article doesn't give any info on replacing lenses. That's what I'd like to do with my headlights. I know that I can buy replacements, and that is expensive. All that is wrong with my headlights is the yellow, bubbled lenses on the INSIDE. Polishing kits do nothing for that, since most of the haze and blockage is on the inside of the lens. Have you or anyone actually removed and replaced/or cleaned the inside of a headlight LENS?
May 13, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: No, but that doesn't mean it isn't possible. Personally, I would replace the lens at that point. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
jcole Comments: I'm waiting on a new head lamp assembly but in the meanwhile I noticed the actual electrical connection point is not staying in place so it just gets pushed backwards and out, where can I buy replacement and how expensive is it?
March 17, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You can buy one from pelican parts. Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can help you find the right part.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Andy Comments: Very useful article and site, thanks. I found that on my 2004 996 Boxster the previous owners must have changed the driver side i.e. the right hand side here in the UK bulbs so many times that the special tool no longer had any grip on the locking lever - fortunately a 5mm socket wrench fixed that!
February 28, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the tip. If your car is using light bulbs at such a high rate I would suggest checking your charging system for high voltage.

- Denny at Pelican Parts
 
Super 90 Comments: Great pictures, great explanations... but they're applicable AFTER the headlight assembly is removed from the car. I'm looking for step #1... pulling the assembly out of the fender, to begin with. I can figure it out, but I'd think you'd want to start with that - or am I missing something obvious? highly possible!
February 11, 2012
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don't think we have a tech article on removing the headlight assembly. Thanks for catching that. If we get the chance to perform the repair again, we'll be sure to document it. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
John99Boxster Comments: Perfect Instructions! Did my Low Beams today....took about 20 mins!

Thanks Wayne
December 9, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Great, glad to have helped! - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Pete Comments: Are you able to advise me about fitting Xenon Platinum white Headlight globes to my 2001 Boxster. I am looking at "Euroline" brand in 55Watt which I'm told equals 100Watts at 7500K output? I've read threads where some globes have caused the headlightlens to discolour and even melt. The regulations here in Australia aren't as strict as USA for headlights etc. If I can use the above globes or similar should I change the high beam as well as low beam?
Many thanks
Pete
August 29, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I'm not sure where those stories about melting the lenses with Xenon lamps comes from. They are similar in nature to flourescent bulbs, and they run very, very cool. The 7500K figure refers to the light output and color - not the actual temperature of the bulb. With most Xenon bulbs, you can touch them with your hand while their on (not recommended), and you shouldn't be burned as they should run very cool.

That said, I think what you want to do is documented in this article here: http://www.pelicanparts.com/techarticles/Boxster_Tech/84-ELEC-HID/84-ELEC-HID.htm - Wayne at Pelican Parts
 

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