Headlight bulb replacement

Headlight bulb replacement

Does anyone know a way to replace the headlight bulb without having to access it through the wheel well?

dborn | November 6, 2017

Yes. Remove the front fascia and then the headlights. Full,instructions in Tesla Motors club web site. Bit of a fiddle, not too hard, needs two people at times, but quite doable. Just need a bit of manual skill. Through the wheel well is a real pain in the proverbial. You need about an extra 6inches of arm length and about 2 additional joints in your arm that way!

diegoPasadena | November 6, 2017

Thanks for the hint, dborn. I looked but couldn't find the article to which you referred. Can you give me an additional hint?

dborn | November 6, 2017

The bolts holding the headlights in have blue thread locker on them. Quite tight to remove, but they do come out!

kerryglittle | November 8, 2017

Holy crap. Looking at the instructions I will gladly pay Tesla to do this if needed. I wrecked my wife's shredder today by overloading it so will not attempt anything this complicated. Did I mention I am mechanically challenged ? :-)

EESROCK | November 8, 2017

Did you order the headlight through Tesla SC? How much did the headlight cost?

dborn | November 9, 2017

Kerryglittle. It really is not too hard. I have now done 3 cars. Pretty easy really. Getting the headlight housing out is a bit of a fiddle as is getting it back in, but really just take your time, about 3hours, and you will be fine. Photos all the wY though to remember what went where!

kerryglittle | November 9, 2017

Thanks for the confidence dborn, but you don't know me as well as I do. My wife will vouch for me. LOL. When someone says its not that difficult I get immediate anxiety, ha ha. Had to many bad experiences that ended up me paying more for a mechanic to fix what I screwed up. :-)

TMcC | November 9, 2017

dborn, I'm curious why you have replaced any headlight bulbs, much less 3 (I am assuming on 3 differentMS's)? I have had my current car, which has DRL's, for 16 years and have never had to replace the headlights. Just curious and would like to know the circumstances. BTW, still excitedly, but not very patiently, awaiting delivery of my MS100D ordered on 10/04/17.

dborn | November 10, 2017

Australian cars were delivered with 25watt bulbs. USA cars have 35watt. Much too dim. Reason has to do with our stupid design rules. To have the brighter bulbs the headlights must have washers fitted as well as be self levelling. Tesla has neither of these. Accordingly, I modified my own and a friends car. Subsequently, the same friend wanted a light bar fitted. Yep, he IS a bit crazy. So, we redid his car. I DID successfully find a place to install the light bar behind the grille of his pre facelift car. There really is nowhere in a facelift car to do the same, thank god!
So, the ballast needed changing and the bulb needed modifying to fit into the socket. | November 10, 2017

I added a light bar to my refresh S - but a bit of different take:

Here's the entire project:

DLebryk | November 10, 2017

Cool project TeslaTap. I think Dborn meant a light bar, like those massive things you find on off road vehicles that will light up the entire county.

A picture of the crazy light bar would be fun to see.

TMcC | November 10, 2017

dborn thanks for the explanation. I was worried there for a minute.

sansajohn2 | July 18, 2019

Hey everyone,

I was also looking to replace headlight bulb in my Tesla Model S 2016 that lead me to this post but unfortunately I didn't find what I was looking for. Can anyone here suggest me how to replace this part

dborn | July 19, 2019

Sansajohn2, you will find a complete explanation and step by step over on I did this over 2 years ago, but i am sure the thread is still there. While the job can theoretically be done via the wheel well, you need to be a contortionist with extra joints in your arms and extra long arms to do it!! An absolutely stupid, stupid design for a consumable part. It is much easier to remove the front bumper and headlights and then change the bulbs where you can clearly see what you are doing!!!! It is a 2 person job though. It is not heavy, just awkward.

dborn | July 19, 2019

Search for headlight removal.