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GMC Terrain Tail Light Bulbs Replacement Guide
How to change a burnt out brake, rear turn signal or reverse light bulb in a 1st generation 2010-2016 GMC Terrain.

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Paul B. Michaels
Author & Photographer
Auto Mechanic Since 1989

2016 Terrain Tail Lights
Open Tailgate Door
Two Plastic Screw Covers
This automotive maintenance tutorial was specifically written to assist owners of the first generation (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 & 2016) GMC Terrain in changing a burnt out combination brake / rear turn signal, reverse bulb and parking (inner tail light) in the tail light housings.

Owners of other General Motors vehicles such as the Buick Verano, Regal, LaCrosse, Cascada, Encore, Enclave, Envision, GMC Canyon, Sierra 1500, Acadia, Yukon, Denali, Savana, Spark, Sonic, Cruze, Malibu, Impala, Volt, Camaro, Corvette, SS, Trax, Equinox, Traverse, Tahoe, Suburban, Colorado, Silverado and Express may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

The replacement light bulb part numbers are as follows: Brake # 3057, Reverse Light # 921 and Parking Light (Auxiliary Inner Lamp) # 161.

The tools needed to access and replace the bulbs include a small flathead screwdriver, a 10mm socket with a 1/4" drive ratcheting wrench (or a Philips head screwdriver) and a plastic automotive panel pry bar tool.

Pry Out Screw Cover
Plastic Cap Removed
Two Covers Removed
The first two steps are to open the tailgate door and then move to the side of the SUV with the burnt out tail light bulb.

Pry out the round black plastic screw covers on the inner edge of the tail light housing with a small flathead screwdriver.

Set the two screw caps aside in a safe place.

Two Screws Exposed
Loosen Counterclockwise
Remove 10mm Screws
Loosen the two screws along the inner edge of the tail light housing with a 10mm socket and a 1/4" drive ratcheting wrench.

You can also use a Philips head screwdriver.

Two 10mm Screws Removed
Pry At Edge of Housing
Pull Off Tail Light Assembly
Set the two 10mm screws aside with the plastic covers.

Pull the tail light housing straight off the rear corner of the SUV.

If you have trouble removing the tail light assembly, pry along the outer edge with a plastic panel removal tool.

Turn over the tail light housing to access the single bulb socket for the combination brake and rear turn signal light.

1/4 Turn Counterclockwise
Pull Out Old Light Bulb
Push In New 3057K Bulb
Rotate the base of the bulb socket 1/4 turn counterclockwise and pull it straight out of the housing.

Pull the old brake / rear turn signal bulb straight out of the socket and push in a new number 3057 or 3057K bulb.

1/4 Turn Clockwise - Lock
Line Up Pegs & Grommets
Push On Tail Light Housing
Re-insert the bulb socket in to the housing and rotate it 1/4 turn clockwise to secure it in place.

Line up the two metal pegs or "spikes" on the back side of the tail light housing with their corresponding plastic grommets on the rear corner of the SUV.

Push the tail light housing back in to place.

Re-Insert 10mm Screws
Tighten Clockwise
Push In Plastic Caps
Re-insert the two screws and tighten them in the clockwise direction with a 10mm socket and a 1/4" drive ratcheting wrench.

You can also use a Phillips head screwdriver.

Pop the two round black plastic covers back in to place over the screws.


Reverse & Parking Lights
Plastic Access Cover
Pry At Bottom Edge
The two parking lights or "auxiliary lamps" and reverse light bulb are located in a separate housing attached to the tailgate door.

Locate the black plastic access cover on the underside of the tailgate door.

Insert a flathead screwdriver or a plastic automotive panel removal pry bar tool in between the bottom edge of the access cover and the tailgate door interior panel.

Gently pry out the access cover and set it aside in a safe place.

Access Panel Removed
Reverse Bulb Socket
1/4 Turn Counterclockwise
The reverse bulb socket is easily accessed once the plastic cover is removed.

Rotate the base of the bulb socket 1/4 turn counterclockwise and pull it straight out of the housing.

Bulb Socket Removed
Pull Out Old Light Bulb
Old # 921 Light Bulb
Pull the old bulb straight out of the socket and push in a new # 921 bulb.

If you would like to have brighter reverse lights, choose a 921 LED bulb.

Push In New 921 Bulb
Re-Insert Bulb Socket
1/4 Turn Clockwise - Lock
Re-insert the bulb socket in to the housing and rotate it 1/4 turn clockwise to secure it in place.
8mm Nut - Outer Edge
8mm Nuts - 2 Parking Lights
Re-Insert Plastic Tabs
If you need to replace the two inner parking lights (also known as the "auxiliary lamps" in the owner's manual), you will need to detach the housing from the tailgate door.

It is held in place by five 8mm nuts. One nut is located on the outer edge of the tailgate door. The other four nuts can be accessed near the reverse bulb socket.

You will need an extension bar and possibly also a deep well 8mm socket to remove the nuts.

Pop In Plastic Access Panel
Access Cover Replaced
Test New Tail Light Bulbs
Re-insert the plastic tabs on the top edge of the access panel and gently pop in the bottom edge.

Test the new tail light bulbs by having someone step on the brake pedal, activate the hazard signals and place the transmission in reverse.

For more, check out my other 2010-2016 GMC Terrain DIY Repair & Maintenance Guides.

If you found this guide to be helpful, please consider making a small donation by clicking on the "Donate" button located to the right of this paragraph. Thank you!
(Note: I am not a registered charity. Donations are not tax deductible.)

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