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Thursday, August 04, 2016

Replacing Vanity and Cargo Lights – Toyota RAV4 2011

It seems to be easy to replace the internal lights of your car if you would like to do it your self. Recently I did change my Halogen lights to LED. Following steps are for a 2011 Toyota RAV4, but some of the steps may be applicable to other vehicle models as well.

Vanity Lights

You can remove the vanity light by inserting a flat head screw driver or a panel remover tool from the left side of the light. If you are using a screw driver, you can use a cloth to minimise the damage caused. Be careful not to try from the right side, since the wire connections are there on the right side. So if you try forcing it out from the right side, it will break. You will get the idea from the below images.

Vanity 1Vanity 2

Cargo Area Light

Cargo light is the light on the back door of the RAV4, this can be easily removed by inserting a tool from the side where the switch is located. Do not try from the other side since it will break.

Once the light assembly is removed you need to remove the plastic cover to access the light. If you are replacing the globe with a LED, remember to turn the LED to the other side, so the light will emit to the cargo area. You will be able to get a better understanding by the following pictures.

Cargo (1)Cargo (7)Cargo (8)Cargo (9)

Cargo (10)Cargo (11)

Replacing Dome Lights – Toyota RAV4 2011

Recently I did upgrade the interior lights of my car, since there are not much articles with the steps,  thought this will be helpful to the other readers.

1. Use a car trim remover tool or a flat head screwdriver to gently remove the light cover. If using a screwdriver, it is better use a cloth to reduce the damage to the plastic components.

You just need to insert the tool in the below marked areas to get it undone. Note that we re only removing the lens cover, not the entire dome light assembly. So insert the tool between the lens cover and the plastic.

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2. You will be able to pull the existing bulb without much effort.

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After replacing the globe, remember to check before fitting the cover.

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Replacing Map Lights – Toyota RAV4 2011

Recently I was interested in replacing the Halogen map light bulbs with LEDs, I thought this might be useful for other readers as well if I let you know the steps to do it. Even though I did it on a Toyota RAV4 2011 model, some of the steps may be helpful to do the same on other vehicles. But be careful since if you do it wrong things might break.

It is always better to use a trim panel remover tool to reduce the damage caused by just using a flat head screw driver. If you have to use a screwdriver, use a cloth to minimise the damage.

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1. Using a panel remover, flip the top and bottom of the lens covers to remove the lens covers.

Dome 1

Below images will show you the mechanism holding the lens cover, so you just need to insert the tool at the right location and gently tilt the tool to get it removed. For example if you insert the tool from the right or left sides and use force, then the small plastic piece will break, needing you to buy a new one.

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2. Once the covers are removed you will see the light globes, here you need to be careful. To remove the globes you just need to pull the globe out from the holder. If you turn the globes then the holder will get detached. If you are not too careful the released holder will fall in.

In case you rotate the holder, very carefully rotate it back to the place, before it falls inside.

3. After taking the globe out you can put the new globe in and fit the lens cover back. remember to check the light before fixing the lens cover.

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In case your holder fell inside, then you can try few ways to get the holder back.

a. Use a magnet to try to get it out.

b. Carefully use a cable to get it.

c. Remove the entire map light assembly.

Since both a. and b. will have less percentage of success, I will explain how to remove the entire assembly. Since most Toyota’s do not use screws many components are held in place by clips. Mostly they will be plastic. So you need to know where to pull / push so you are not going to break any.

To remove the map light assembly you just need to pull hard to detach the 4 plastic clips see below. It may be really hard so some tools might help.

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There is a small black connector which connects the lights to the vehicle’s electricity system. This can be removed by pressing the lock and pulling.

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Hope this helps you to stay out of trouble or save some hours while replacing your globes.