Rage Against the Dying of the Light: Tips for Getting New Dome Lights
Although the poet Dylan Thomas likely had something else in mind when he wrote that famous poem, the dying of your vehicle's dome light really is something to rage about. Your dome light makes it much easier for you to read, fasten your seatbelt, find anything you may have dropped, and check the back seat for sneaky intruders. It also tells you whenever any of your doors aren't closed properly. Fortunately, replacing a dome light is a simple matter, and feeling good about your purchase can be just as easy—if you have the right information.
LED takes the lead
If your original dome light was not an LED bulb, then it is high time that you made the switch to using LED bulbs. They consume less energy, require minimal maintenance, are much less fragile, and shine much brighter than any of the alternatives. Also, with a useful life expectancy of up to 50,000 hours (that's almost six years), you won't have to worry about replacing them any time soon.
Here are other points to consider when buying dome lights:
- Measure your dome light casing so that your replacement bulb will be an exact fit.
- Since you're already out buying dome lights, we recommend getting more than just one. See if you can fit dome lights in other parts of your vehicle such as at the bottom edge of your dashboard, your door pillars and panels, and underneath the front seats. That way, your vehicle's interior is well lit, especially the floor. However, avoid going overboard. Too much glare on your windshield can limit your visibility. A soft lighting effect would be ideal.
- A common problem with dome lights is when they stay on undetected throughout the day, draining your vehicle's battery in the process. Look into getting dome lights that have timers on their circuits. These timers switch off your dome lights if they've been on for too long.
- You can also look into creating the desired lighting effect with colored dome lights.
With your new dome lights, you can relax and go gently into that good night. Happy shopping!
Don't Be Left in the Dark - Replacing Your Dome Light
Your dome light illuminates the inside of your vehicle, making it easier to read, fasten your seatbelt, and find anything you may have dropped. Your dome light also lights up whenever any of your doors are opened, thus notifying you whenever any of your doors aren't closed properly. This is surely something you'd miss if it burns out. Now, how many people does it take to replace a dome light? Just one—YOU.
Difficulty Level: Easy
Here's what you'll need:
- Flat-head screwdriver
- Phillips screwdriver
- Replacement dome light
- Vehicle owner manual
And here are the steps:
- Make sure the dome light switch is at the OFF position. This is usually the middle position on the switch.
- Check if your dome light lens cover is secured into place by screws. If so, use the appropriate screwdriver to remove them so you can pull out the lens cover. If not, look for a slotted area along the edge where you can insert your flat-head screwdriver (if you can't find one, just insert your screwdriver on the opposite side of the switch) and carefully pry off the lens cover.
- Remove the dome light bulb by turning it counterclockwise. In some cases, you can simply pull off the bulb.
- Install your replacement dome light bulb by either screwing it in or, in some cases, just pushing it in until it snaps into place. When screwing it into place, make sure it is tight, but don't overdo it, as this may damage the bulb or the socket.
- Put the lens cover back into place (either by simply snapping it back into place or by securing it with screws).
- Test your new dome light by flicking your switch to the ON position.
Refer to your vehicle's owner manual for specifications that may require you to deviate from these general instructions.