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Pelican Technical Article:

Third Brake Light Replacement

Jared Fenton

Time:

1 hour1 hr

Tab:

$80

Talent:

***

Tools:

Small screwdriver

Applicable Models:

VW Jetta GL (1999-01)
VW Jetta GL Sedan (2002-05)
VW Jetta GLS (1999-00)
VW Jetta GLS Sedan (2001-05)
VW Jetta Wolfsburg (1999)

Parts Required:

Third brake light

Hot Tip:

Use a small screwdriver to remove the trim piece

Performance Gain:

Improved collision avoidance from behind

Complementary Modification:

Replace main brake light bulbs

Sooner or later, the third brake light assembly will burn out. It's just a fact of life.

The third brake light on the VW Jetta differs from your typical light bulb replacement, as it consists of light emitting diodes also known as LEDs. When one or more of the LEDs goes bad, you have to replace the entire light bar assembly.

Replacement is super easy and should only take about an hour. In this article, I'll go over the steps involved with changing out the assembly. You will need to remove the rear parcel shelf in order to access the third brake light. See our article on Rear Parcel Shelf Removal for more information.

Once the parcel shelf is removed, Use a small screwdriver to pop open the two clips (green arrows) securing the third brake light to the parcel shelf.
Figure 1

Once the parcel shelf is removed, Use a small screwdriver to pop open the two clips (green arrows) securing the third brake light to the parcel shelf. Pull the third brake light up and off the retaining pegs (yellow arrows).

Use a small screwdriver to gently pry up the two retaining clips (green arrows) holding the trim piece to the third brake light.
Figure 2

Use a small screwdriver to gently pry up the two retaining clips (green arrows) holding the trim piece to the third brake light.

Pull the trim piece out of the third brake light and transfer it to the new third brake light assembly.
Figure 3

Pull the trim piece out of the third brake light and transfer it to the new third brake light assembly.

Here's the finished result with the third brake light removed.
Figure 4

Here's the finished result with the third brake light removed. Installing the new one is the reverse order of assembly.

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Page last updated: Thu 11/23/2017 03:08:22 AM