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VW Passat Tail Light Bulbs Replacement Guide
How to change a burnt out brake, rear turn signal, reverse or parking light bulb in a 2012-2015 Volkswagen Passat.

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2015 Passat Tail Light
Open Trunk Lid
Fabric Access Cover
This automotive maintenance tutorial was specifically written to assist owners of the NMS (new midsize sedan) 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and the revised 2016 Volkswagen Passat sedan in changing a burnt out brake, rear turn signal, reverse or parking light bulb in the tail light housings.

Owners of other VW Group vehicles such as the Beetle, CC, Tiguan, Golf, Touareg, Jetta, GTI, SportWagen, Eos, Rabbit, Bora, Vento, Lavida, Coccinelle, Maggiolino, Fusca, Audi A3, A4, S4, A6, S6, A7, A8, Q5, Q7, A5, S5, and TT may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

The compatible replacement bulb part numbers are as follows: Brake & Rear Turn Signal # 7506, Reverse 921 (W16W) and Parking Lights # 2825.

No tools are required to change the combination dual filament brake and rear turn signal light bulb.

To access and replace the reverse and parking light bulbs, you'll need a 10mm socket with a 1/4" drive ratchet or a 10mm wrench or a flathead screwdriver and perhaps a plastic pry bar tool.

Pull Off Access Panel
Power Plug & Fastener
Slide Out Red Lock Tab
The first two steps are to open the trunk and then move to the side of the sedan with the burnt out tail light bulb.

Locate rectangular shaped fabric access cover on the fabric interior trunk liner.

Gently pull off the access panel and set it aside in a safe place.

Pull out the red plastic locking tab on the electrical connector.

Push In Release Tab
Pull Off Electrical Connector
Rotate Counterclockwise
Push in the release tab on the electrical connector before sliding the power plug straight off the rear of the tail light housing.

Rotate the spring loaded thumb screw fastener in the counterclockwise direction to remove it.

Spring Fastener Removed
Pull Off Tail Light Housing
Rear of Light Assembly
Set the white plastic thumb screw aside in a safe place.

Gently pull the tail light housing straight off the rear corner of the sedan.

If you have trouble removing the housing, you may need to gently pry it off at the outer edge with a plastic pry bar tool.

Gently Pry Back Clips
Plastic Pry Bar Tool
Pull Off Bracket
Turn over the tail light housing and set it down on a towel to prevent from scratching the lens on your work bench or table.

Use the plastic automotive panel pry bar tool or a small flathead screwdriver to gently push back the four red plastic retaining clips.

Try to avoid using excessive force to prevent from breaking the retaining clips.

Lift the grey plastic bulb bracket off the rear of the tail light assembly and turn it over to access the bulb.

Push Down & 1/4 Turn CC
Install New # 7506 Bulb
Re-Attach Bulb Bracket
Push the old dual filament combination brake and rear turn signal light bulb down in to the socket and rotate it 1/4 turn counterclockwise before pulling it straight out of the socket.

Push a new # 7506 light bulb in to the socket and rotate it 1/4 turn clockwise to secure it in place.

Turn over the grey plastic bulb bracket and gently snap it back in to place on the rear of the tail light housing.

Double check that all four of the red plastic retaining clips are secured to the bulb bracket.

Line Up Tail Light Housing
Button Head Mount & Slot
Push On Tail Light
Make sure that the red plastic slot near the outer edge of the housing is aligned with the button head mounting post on the vehicle.

Line up the tail light housing with the rear corner of the car and slide it back in to place.

Rotate Clockwise - Tighten
Push In Power Plug
Slide In Red Locking Tab
Re-insert the white plastic fastener and tighten it in the clockwise direction to place tension on the spring until it is compressed by about half.

Don't use a wrench or a screwdriver to tighten the tail light fastener to prevent from over tightening it and cracking the plastic housing.

Push the power plug straight in to its socket until it "clicks" in to place.

Slide in the red plastic locking to secure the power plug.

Electrical Connector Secure
Line Up Fabric Cover
Replace Access Panel
Line up the fabric access cover, re-insert the two tabs and then pop in the other edge.


Trunk Lid Light Housing
Plastic Access Cover
Gently Pry Out Panel
To access the reverse light and the two parking light bulbs, you will have to detach the trunk lid housing.

Locate the rectangular shaped access cover on the underside of the trunk lid.

Gently pry out the access panel with a flathead screwdriver or a plastic pry bar tool.

Plastic Cover Removed
Two Metal / Plastic Fasteners
10mm or Flathead
Set the access cover aside in a safe place.

To remove the two fasteners that secure the light housing to the trunk lid, you'll need either a flathead screwdriver or a 10mm socket with a 1/4" drive ratchet.

Loosen Counterclockwise
Pull Off Fastener
2nd Fastener Removed
Set the two metal nuts with black plastic guides aside in a safe place.
Slide Out Red Lock Tab
Release Tab - Disconnect Plug
Pull Off Light Housing
Slide out the red plastic locking tab on the electrical connector with your fingernail or use a flathead screwdriver.

Push in the release tab before sliding the power plug straight out of its socket.

Lift the inner edge of the light housing and slide it off towards the outer edge.

There is a curved lip on the outer edge of the light housing that is attached to the outer edge of the trunk lid.

Lip - Attached To Outer Edge
Rest Housing On Towel
Gently Pull Back Clip
Place a towel on your work bench or table to protect the plastic lens from being scratched.

Gently pull back the two red plastic retaining clips to release the grey plastic bulb bracket.

Lift Out Bulb Bracket
Pull Out Old Light Bulbs
Install New Light Bulbs
Lift off the grey plastic bracket and turn it over to access the old bulbs.

The larger bulb is the reverse (back up lamp) and the two small bulbs are the parking lights.

Pull the old bulbs straight out of their socket and push in new ones.

The reverse light bulb part number is 921 and the two parking lights are # 2825 bulbs.

(If you want brighter reverse lights, there are 921 LED options available.)

Pop Bracket In Place
Slide Lip On Outer Edge
Lower Housing In Place
Turn over the bulb bracket and push it down in to place.

Make sure that the two red plastic retaining clips "click" over the bulb bracket.

Slide the lip on the outer edge of the light housing on to the outside edge of the trunk lid.

Lower the inner part of the housing until it is flush with the trunk lid.

Line Up Fasteners
Rotate Nut Clockwise
Replace 2nd Fastener
Line up the black plastic guides on the nuts with the rear of the light housing.

Slide the fasteners in to place and spin the nuts a few turns in the clockwise direction to prevent them from becoming cross threaded.

Push In Plug - Slide In Tab
Tighten 10mm Clockwise
Tighten 2nd Nut
Tighten the two nuts in the clockwise direction with the 10mm socket and a 1/4" drive ratchet or a flathead screwdriver until they are snug.

Try to avoid over tightening the nuts to prevent from cracking the plastic light housing.

Push the power plug back in to its socket and slide in the red lock tab to secure it in place.

Re-Insert Plastic Tabs
Gently Snap In Access Cover
Test New Tail Light Bulbs
Line up the plastic access cover and gently pop it back in to place.

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 all of my Volkswagen Passat DIY Repair & Maintenance Guides.

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