Changing Headlight Bulb



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Thread: Changing Headlight Bulb

  1. #1
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    Changing Headlight Bulb

    There have been some postings on how to change the headlight bulbs. Complain as you wish about certain things on the mini van, but maintenance is pretty straightforward. How would you like to own a certain Nissan vehicle? This is how it is done on it:

    ASK THE MECHANIC


    One expensive bulb

    Q--Since when is changing a headlight bulb a major job? The dealer claims the front bumper has to be taken off of

    my Nissan Maxima to replace the headlight (bulb) at a cost of $250. I have checked with local repair shops and they

    have no experience to date so they couldn't confirm that the bumper has to be taken off to replace the bulb. I

    can't believe a manufacturer would engineer a car in such a manner. Can you confirm that the bumper has to be

    removed to replace the bulb?

    A--I couldn't believe it either, so I contacted Nissan. The bad news is that the price you were quoted is probably

    about right, depending on local labor rates. As you probably know, carmakers must strike a balance between

    manufacturing, service, recyclability, cost, and so on. Obviously, serviceability got the short end of the stick

    this time. All I can say is that smart automobile manufacturers listen to their customers.

    More from TCC's On-Site Mechanic, Bob Weber

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    Man, I would be really frickin' ticked off if I owned one of those cars. That's just stupid.
    Kevin Peterson
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    It may or may not be. The fact that shops in that person's area had no experience with it tells me it's a fairly new Maxima. And if I'm not mistaken HID headlights have been standard on the Maxima for a few generations now...and HIDs last a LOT longer than standard halogen bulbs, which still last pretty long themselves. Perhaps the poor headlight access was a trade-off to facilitate something else, like maybe an increased capacity air intake system, or something else. Automotive engineers don't just put headlights under bumpers for the fun of it. There's got to be a reason for it -- it's just not apparent to us. I know I've asked myself a few times, man, why'd they do THAT about every vehicle I've owned. I'm just not privvy to all the engineering details to know, but there's always a reason.
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    This thread prompted me to call my brother-in-law of the X-X variety who is a parts manager at West Hills Nissan here by me....

    And yes, you do have to take the bumper off.

    NICE DESIGN!

    Chas
    Chas Stokes

    2000 Saturn SL1 "ZUUL"
    2002 Hyundai Elantra (Stolen ) "ZUUL24"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason
    It may or may not be. The fact that shops in that person's area had no experience with it tells me it's a fairly new Maxima. And if I'm not mistaken HID headlights have been standard on the Maxima for a few generations now...and HIDs last a LOT longer than standard halogen bulbs, which still last pretty long themselves. Perhaps the poor headlight access was a trade-off to facilitate something else, like maybe an increased capacity air intake system, or something else. Automotive engineers don't just put headlights under bumpers for the fun of it. There's got to be a reason for it -- it's just not apparent to us. I know I've asked myself a few times, man, why'd they do THAT about every vehicle I've owned. I'm just not privvy to all the engineering details to know, but there's always a reason.
    I talked to a friend of mine tonight who has a '98 Maxima and is kind of a Maxima buff... he wasn't aware of this bumper thing, but he did tell me that they switched to HID in 2002 toward the end of the last generation. I looked at a few Maximas on ebay and he looks to be right to me.
    Kevin Peterson
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    Post Headlight thefts.

    Im a proud owner of a 2006 nissan maxima, and yes you have to remove the bumper to relace the headlamps. Nissan designed it this way because when they first began making HID lights standard on maxima's in 2000 the headlights were being stolen. When i say stolen, i mean u could go inside the grocery store for 5 minutes, come out and your headlamps were gone. Because of that, nissan recalled some models and placed locks on the headlights. To avoid the same thing happening to the 04 and later maxima's they designed it so the bumper had to be removed in order to remove the headlight assembly.

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    Still a stupid design....Are we sure they didnt hire a Ford engineer to design the Maxima?????? I have seen some weird stuff and hard to get at parts but removing the bumper to replace the HEADLIGHT would seriously P#*)^ me off!!!!
    GASMAN :
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    It doesn't matter if you had to pull the engine to change the lights someone would still figure out a way to steal them . Where I used to live in Cleveland , a neighborhood known as Slavic Village, the junk collectors/ scrappers whatever you want to call them , would cut catalytic converters off cars, steal aluminum siding /gutters and copper piping out of houses and I even saw one pushing a brand new hot water tank in a shopping cart! I guess my point is we keep having to pay (higher insurance premiums/repair costs)for the hoods roaming the streets stealing everything not nailed down. It really stinks if the headlight design is an anti - theft feature because it takes what should be a simple job & turns it into a nightmare! All because some punk wants to get a "quick hit" from his local dealer!

  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gasman1979 View Post
    Still a stupid design....Are we sure they didnt hire a Ford engineer to design the Maxima?????? I have seen some weird stuff and hard to get at parts but removing the bumper to replace the HEADLIGHT would seriously P#*)^ me off!!!!
    I finally have to agree with you FORDS STINK ! I spent all day doing front end work to my truck , take it out to test drive it , and the @#$%ing exhaust breaks off behind the converter ! I thought you might get a laugh out of that

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    Thanks maximakid05. I've also heard about the rampant headlight thefts from previous generation Maximas. Making them harder to steal keeps the honest people honest. Personally, I'd rather have to remove a front fascia clip to change a bulb that might need changing every 5 years than come out to see my headlights lifted from the car.
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