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Thread: One tail light not working

  1. #1

    Default One tail light not working

    So in my 03 XC - I have a single taillight not working.
    Replaced bulb then swapped the holder and bulb between left and right sides and it works, so its not the bulb or the holder.
    Every other bulb in that fixture works, just not this one.

    Not sure how thats possible given how this works but looking for suggestions on troubleshooting.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Maine USA. Cumbria UK


    Get your test light probe out and start checking for power, i had the same thing once, it turn out the contacts had power it just was not getting to the holder, some cleaning to bright metal and repositioning restored the operation

  3. #3


    I might tackle this today - rainy day here - I avoided it the other day because I cant get the lower light fixture out without removing all the plastic around it
    Not very well thought out to put ONE nut behind the plastic causing all the extra labor....

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2013


    Not sure if this is related but the last time I replaced a rear bulb (I think it was a brake light) I had a devil of a time repositioning it and twisting it back in. Like you, I went to the other tailight and swapped bulbs/holders to make sure that wasn't the issue. I just wasn't lining the bulb holder up correctly in the hole before doing the final twist-lock. I had to look at the working bulb holder and see how that was aligned and then make sure after I twisted in the other holder it was in the same position. If I remember, the paddle which you can grab with like 2 fingers as you're inserting the holder should be straight up vertical after you twist-lock it? Again, I had to look at the working bulb holder to see how it was aligned.
    2007 XC70, 206,000 miles
    2002 V70XC, 130,000 miles, parts car

  5. #5


    So as embarrassing as this may seem - my wife fixed it......

    I had all of the same issues with getting the holder back in, but ultimately had taken everything out to get the fixture out, testing and scratching my head.
    We had already checked all of the fuses and replaced a blown tail light fuse - She started poking around again and found a "left side" tail light fuse blown - dammit.......

    Took all that $h1t apart for nothing... lol

    I'll regain man card points next weekend when I do the timing belt and cam seal

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2015
    San Diego, CA


    That fuse thing got me on a headlight. I had no idea!

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