Common Problems Encountered in Your Volkswagen Jetta Tail Light Assembly
To understand what tail lights do, you need to take a look at accidents. People get into accidents partly because of faulty tail lights--they don't know if the vehicle in front of them is coming to a stop or not. This is why it is important to keep your tail lights working. Here are a few problems that your tail light might experience as you drive along the road.
Bulbs have burned out
Tail lights have bulbs, and these have a tendency to burn out over time. There are many reasons why they constantly burn out. Some burn out because of a faulty wiring that delivers voltage improperly; others burn out because the bulb socket shorts-out and the voltage overloads. You should regularly check your bulbs for signs that they are about to burn out and you should fix your wiring before replacing them.
Burned out sockets
Sometimes the problem with tail light assemblies is with the bulb socket itself. Bulb sockets burn out because the voltage that reaches it is either over or under the regulated current or the assembly has bad wiring. Check your vehicle's wiring if you suspect that your bulb socket is burning out. You should replace the grounded wiring quickly to avoid any more problems.
A fuse acts as a voltage regulator for electrical parts. As fuses get older, problems like short circuits and overloading get more and more common. If your tail light doesn't light up as usual, you should check your fuse out for any problems. Usually, when a fuse burns out, your lights may not work. If this happens, you should replace your fuse with a new one to avoid further damage.
Other useful tips
You could take the bulb socket and the bulb off and check their connectors if there is nothing wrong with your tail light. Sometimes corrosion and rust can play a big part in making your electrical connections fail.
Volkswagen Jetta Tail Light Buyer's Guide
- Among the most sought-after parts in a car are exterior panels and electric assemblies, particularly the tail lights.
- Vehicle lights like the tail lights are assemblies that house various subcomponents like the bulbs, covers, lens, housing, electrical harness, and more.
- It’s good to analyze the cause of the problem to know if the part could be fixed by replacing a subcomponent instead of the whole assembly.
- A tail light assembly that’s loose and a broken lens or housing will need an immediate replacement.
- Volkswagen Jetta tail light replacements on CarParts.com cost around $28 to $380.
The Volkswagen Jetta is one of the German brand’s most celebrated models of all time. It’s the expanded version of the Golf model, which was a huge success in the ‘70s. Originally built on a subcompact chassis that later became compact, the Jetta is considered to be one of the best-selling Volkswagen passenger cars in the US. Its name is a German word that directly translates to “jet stream”.
The small number of Jettas on US soil greatly contributes to the demand for Volkswagen replacement parts. Among the most sought-after parts are exterior panels and electric assemblies, particularly the tail lights. If you’re having trouble with your Volkswagen Jetta tail light, you’re in the right place. CarParts.com offers greatly affordable replacement parts to suit all your needs. Here are some of the things you should know about Volkswagen Jetta tail light replacements.
When to replace your tail light?
When it comes to vehicle lighting, it’s often a concern of whether repairing or replacing the part. Vehicle lights, like the tail lights, are assemblies that house various subcomponents like the bulbs, covers, lens, housing, electrical harness, and more. It’s always good to analyze the cause of the problem first before jumping to any conclusion/s. This way, you could avoid unnecessary purchases. For example, a tail light that won’t light properly could be due to a failing tail light bulb that you could easily replace without having to install an entirely new light assembly.
In order to find out easier how to replace such components, here are some of the signs that tell you that your Volkswagen Jetta tail light might need to be replaced:
A loose tail light assembly following a recent accident
It is important that the tail light assembly is tightly secured on its provisions to avoid damaging other parts such as the harnesses connecting the bulb and electrical wires in your car. A tail light assembly could get loose if the holes where the bolts fit in cracks, or snaps due to an accident. You also need to inspect for any additional damage in the housing that may result from the impact. If damaged bolt holes are what’s causing the looseness, your tail light assembly badly needs a replacement.
Broken tail light lens
Tail light lenses, especially in modern cars, are made of combined materials, mostly plastic. This is in order to make the lens hard, but flexible enough to absorb certain types of impact. If it gets cracked or shattered, the bulbs will be exposed to imminent damage. To avoid damaging the set of bulbs in the assembly, get a replacement as soon as possible. There are tail light assemblies that don’t come with bulbs, but, for good measures, you should opt to replace the headlights if they have been running for quite some time.
Finding the right fit
Instead of typing in Volkswagen tail light, you can narrow your search down to more specific and compatible components by indicating specific details about your vehicle. Input the year, make, and model in the filter tab under the search menu. Volkswagen Jetta tail light replacements on CarParts.com cost around $28 to $380. You can purchase it as a single component, in sets, or as part of a kit. Be sure to double-check the location of the tail light you need if you’re only replacing one side.
Tips on Keeping Your Volkswagen Jetta Tail Light Assembly Working
You avoid accidents everyday while traveling thanks to your tail lights. These tail lights provide safety for you and other drivers if they are working properly. Your tail lights warn the other driver behind you if you are stopping or have stopped. Broken tail lights do not only endanger you, but also the vehicle after you. To avoid this, here are some tips on how to keep your tail lights working:
Clean your light bulb/socket contacts
When you notice that your tail lights are not working, you usually blame the bulbs. Bulbs burn out because they become shorted or the wiring that is connecting them burned out. Still, you should check your socket contacts, to see if there is anything wrong. Contacts are often steel and they can corrode or rust. The rust prevents your bulb from making contact with the socket, and this makes your tail lights fail.
Check your bulb
Another thing that you can check out is your bulb. Bulbs do have a tendency not to work because they are burned-out, or they have already shorted out. A sign that your bulb is burnt out is when you see dark spots around the area near the bulb socket contact. If you notice anything like this, you should simply change out the bulb with an OE replacement.
Pay attention to the wiring
You should also check the wiring of your tail lights. These wiring could get tangled up, or they could get in contact with the metal body of your car. This produces a short-circuit that causes your tail lights to light up constantly, or to not work at all. If you notice that your tail light is doing one of these, take a look at your wiring. Replace any of the damaged wiring as soon as you can to stop the problem from growing further.
Plug any leaks in your tail light assembly
Tail light assemblies have a glass or plastic covering that could become cracked or damaged. If this happens to your tail light assembly, you should plug that crack up as soon as possible. Not only will it bring in dirt but also moisture, which could corrode your contacts.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are all Volkswagen Jetta tail lights street legal?
Not all tail light brands are legal for use in all US states. Basically, a tail light is legal for use if it adheres to the given specifications set forth by the United States Department of Transportation (DOT). However, there are some states that have their own local laws with regards to tail light usage. It's important to consult a certain tail lamp brand with the DOT's list of accredited labels to ensure that it's authorized for use in a specific state.
How can moisture and fog be prevented from penetrating the tail lights on a Volkswagen Jetta?
It's normal for moisture to appear upon the first few days of using the VW Jetta tail lamp. This is due to the plastic and coating's moisture that evaporates when the tail lights are warmed up during first use. There's no need to panic and return the tail light to the dealer, since this moisture will disappear within a few days. To keep moisture and fog from entering the tail light, one option is to apply a silicone seal on the tail lamp's edges. Transparent silicone seals are available at most hardware stores and auto parts stores. The clear sealant must be applied to the seam along the Jetta tail lights where the clear lens meets the rear housing. This ensures that no more moisture or fog goes inside the tail lights of the Volkswagen Jetta.
How long do LED tail lights last on a Volkswagen Jetta?
Compared to the standard halogen lights, LED lights offer a longer service life. On a daily usage, LED tail lights usually last for more than a year or two. But for heavy-duty activities that require long periods of continuous tail light usage, a shorter lifespan of 6 months to 1 year can be expected. If the newly-installed LED tail lights on a Volkswagen Jetta burns out in less than 6 months, then ask for a replacement from the manufacturer if the product is covered with warranty.