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Honda Civic License Plate Light Bulbs Replacement Guide
How to change a burnt out license plate light bulb in the trunk lid of a 9th generation 2012-2015 Honda Civic with photos.

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2013 Civic License Plate Lights
Light Bulb Housing
Open Trunk Lid - Carpet Liner
This automotive maintenance tutorial was specifically written to assist owners of the ninth generation (2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and maybe also the 2016) Honda Civic in changing a burnt out license plate light bulb in the underside of the trunk lid.

Owners of other Honda or Acura vehicles such as the Accord, Crosstour, CR-V, CR-Z, Fit, Insight, Odyssey, Pilot, Ridgeline, ILX, TSX, TLX, TL, RLX, RDX and MDX may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

A replacement bulb is part number 168 which is available from various manufacturers such as Sylvania, GE, Eiko, PIAA and Wagner.

You may also be able to use any other miniature wedge base bulbs such as the # 158, W5W, 2825, 194 or a compatible LED unit.

The tools needed to access the bulbs include a flathead screwdriver and a small Phillips head screwdriver.

Pry Out Center of Fastener
Pull Out Entire Fastener
Small Plastic Screw
The first steps are to open the trunk and then move to the side of the vehicle with the burnt out license plate light bulb.

Then pry up the small round center piece of each pop rivet fastener holding the trunk's carpet liner in place.

Once the small center part of each fastener has been raised, you can pry out the entire fastener.

At the center of the trunk lid near the emergency release handle, there is another fastener held in place by a black plastic screw.

Remove Phillips Head Screw
Pull Out Fastener
Three Fasteners Removed
Remove the small black plastic screw by rotating it counterclockwise (lefty loosy) with the small Phillips head screwdriver.

Then pull out the larger outer piece of the fastener.

Set the three fasteners (six individual plastic pieces) aside in a safe place.

Pull Back Carpet Liner
Squeeze Base of Housing
Push Out Bulb Housing
Pull back the trunk carpet liner to reveal the base of the license plate light bulb housing.

I disconnected the power plug after pushing out the housing from the trunk lid.

It might be easier to press the release tab on the electrical connector and slide it out of the socket before releasing the housing.

Gently squeeze together the two sides of the housing to release it from the trunk lid.

Press Release Button
Disconnect Power Plug
Bulb Housing Removed
If you didn't already disconnect the power plug, press the release tab and slide it out of its socket.
Two Retaining Clips
Squeeze Together Sides
Pull Off Lens Cover
Press together the two grey plastic retaining clips on the sides of the housing to release the lens cover.

Set the lens cover aside in a safe place.


Pull Out Old Bulb
Old # 168 Bulb Removed
Push In New # 168 Bulb
Pull the old bulb straight out of the socket and push in a new # 168 bulb.

You may also use any other miniature wedge base bulbs such as the # 158 (dimmer), W5W, 2825, 194 (brighter but hotter) or a compatible LED unit.

Squeeze Together Sides
Push On Lens Cover
Re-Insert Bulb Housing
Gently squeeze together the two sides of the grey plastic housing and push the lens cover back in to place.

Re-insert the bulb housing assembly in to the underside of the trunk lid.

Pop Housing In Trunk Lid
Push In Power Plug
Electrical Connector Replaced
Continue pushing the housing until it clicks securely in to the trunk lid.

Push in the grey plastic power plug in to the socket on the underside of the housing.

Push In Outer Fastener
Push In Small Plastic Screw
Replace Pop Rivet Fastener
Replace the trunk carpet liner and push in the larger outer part of the center fastener.

Then push in the small black plastic screw to secure it in place.

Pop In Center Piece
Trunk Liner Replaced
Test New Light Bulb
Push in the larger outer parts of each pop rivet fastener and then pop in the center piece to secure them in place.

Test the new license plate light bulb(s) by turning on the headlights.

For more, check out my other 2012-2015 Honda Civic DIY Repair & Maintenance Guides.

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