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How To Change The Headlight Bulb On A Toyota 4Runner

The Toyota 4Runner is a versatile vehicle, but like other models, you will need to replace the headlight from time to time. So, how do you do this without hiring a mechanic? Let's take a look at the steps for this process below.

To change the headlight in a Toyota 4Runner, follow these steps:

  1. Open the hood.
  2. Remove the water cap by turning counterclockwise [if applicable].
  3. Release the headlight by turning it counterclockwise.
  4. Remove the burnt-out bulb [do not touch the bulb].
  5. Insert the new headlight bulb.
  6. Replace the headlight into the 4Runner [turn clockwise].
  7. Replace the water cover [if applicable].
  8. Close the hood.
  9. Check if the headlight is working.

That may seem like a lot of steps, but Toyota has done an excellent job at making a headlight replacement in the 4Runner easy to do. Nonetheless, in this article, we will elaborate on the steps on how to do a headlight replacement on a Toyota 4Runner. In addition, we will answer other frequently asked questions about the Toyota 4Runner headlight features, so read on!

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Toyota 4Runner SUV (2016 Trail edition) at dusk - How To Change The Headlight Bulb On A Toyota 4Runner

How to change the headlight on a Toyota 4Runner from home

If the headlight in your Toyota 4Runner burns out, it is important to get it fixed as soon as possible. Driving at night is dangerous but could also land you with a traffic ticket. Luckily, Toyota has made this replacement easy to do from your driveway or garage.

Let's take a closer look at how to make a headlight replacement on a Toyota 4Runner:

Toyota 4Runner SUV (2016 Trail model) at dusk in rock desert landscape

Open the hood

You will need to open the hood of your 4Runner to access the headlights. The hood release latch is located on the bottom of the dash on the lefthand side of the driver seat.

Remove the water cap by turning counterclockwise [if applicable]

Once the hood is open, you may need to remove the water cap to access the headlight. If you own an older generation 4Runner, there may not be one.

The water cap is a white cylinder with hand notches for the newer generations and can be removed by turning it counterclockwise. You may need to wiggle the water cap in order to get it to come out.

Release the headlight by turning it counterclockwise

Once you have access to the headlight, you will need to turn it counterclockwise for it to release. Be sure not to turn the bulb itself, or it could break. Instead, turn the headlight by holding the rubber piece.

Remove the burnt-out bulb [do not touch the bulb]

Now that the headlight bulb is accessed, you must remove it from the electrical portion. Do not turn the bulb itself but press down on the connector clip and remove the whole piece.

Headlight bulbs are not like lights in your house. You do not need to touch the bulb itself during this process.

Replace the headlight into the 4Runner [turn clockwise]

When inserting the new headlight, it is important not to touch the bulb at all. If you do, the bulb could become faulty or explode.

Once you have inserted the new headlight into the electrical component, it is time to place it back into the 4Runner. Again, be sure to turn it clockwise so that it locks in place.

Replace the water cover [if applicable]

If you have a water cover on your 4Runner, it is time to replace it. The cover will screw back on in a clockwise manner.

Close the hood

Now that the headlight replacement is complete close the hood by pushing it down. Make sure that all latches are secure.

Check if the headlight is working

Lastly, after completing the headlight replacement, it is essential to check if it is working. Turn on your car and go to the front of the vehicle to see if the headlight is working correctly.

Here is another video on how to change the headlight on a 2003-2009 Toyota 4Runner:

Does the 4Runner have led headlights?

As of 2021, all 4Runner trims come standard with led headlights. This is a change from the halogen headlights from previous models.

Led headlights are headlights that use light-emitting diodes [LEDs] as a light source. Unlike traditional headlight bulbs, led headlights do not have a filament that can burn out. This means that they typically last longer than conventional headlights.

This is good news for 4Runner owners as they will emit brighter and whiter light than traditional headlights. Not only will this help you see the road better while driving at night, but it can also help other drivers see you.

Does the 4Runner have daytime running lights?

Toyota 4Runner SUV (2016 Trail edition)

Yes, the 4runner has daytime running lights. Daytime running lights [DRL] is a type of vehicle lighting used to increase the visibility of a vehicle during the daytime.

They are usually activated when the car is driving and the headlights are off. DRLs have been shown to reduce accidents during the daytime.

Do you have to use daytime running lights?

Daytime running lights are not required by law, but they are highly recommended.

It is important to have as much visibility as possible when driving during the daytime. DRLs help make your car visible to other drivers, which can help reduce the risk of accidents.

2021 Toyota 4Runner suv

Do Toyota 4Runners have automatic headlights?

The Toyota 4Runners do come with automatic headlights in the newer models. In addition, consumers can enjoy automatic high beams.

Automatic high beams are a type of vehicle lighting used to increase a vehicle's visibility during nighttime driving. They are usually activated when the car is driving, and the vehicle senses oncoming traffic.

When the 4Runner senses oncoming traffic, the high beams automatically turn off and back on once the traffic has passed. This safety feature helps you see better when driving at night.

How do you turn the automatic headlights on a Toyota 4Runner??

To turn on the automatic headlights on a Toyota 4Runner, you will need to rotate the lever near the steering wheel. This will switch the headlights from "off" to "auto."

When you turn the vehicle off, then the headlights will turn off after a few seconds.

How do you adjust the headlights on a Toyota 4Runner?

If you want to adjust your headlights in your Toyota 4Runner up or down, you can do so from under the hood. Behind the headlight, you will find a screw with a hexagon head that can be turned to adjust the headlights.

It is a good idea to have your headlights on with the lights off in the garage for this. This way, you can see where the headlights aim as you adjust them. Once you have them adjusted to your liking, you can close the hood.

Will leaving my headlights on kill my battery?

Leaving your headlights on will not kill your battery. The only time when leaving your headlights on can kill your battery is if the car is not being driven and the lights are left on for an extended period of time. This is because the battery will eventually drain from having to power the headlights.

If you are forgetful, then take advantage of the Auto headlights on your vehicle. These will turn the headlights off after a few seconds of turning the car off.

Toyota 4Runner SUV (2016 Trail edition) at dusk

Will Toyota replace my headlight?

If you don't feel comfortable changing the headlight yourself, then you can contact a Toyota dealer. You will need to make an appointment for this, so it is best to take it into a local shop or have a friend help you if you need it done right away.

In addition, it is unsure if it will cost you anything or not. If your Toyota is under warranty, then it may be covered. If it is not, then the cost of a new headlight will depend on the model and year of your 4Runner.

Final Thoughts

The Toyota 4Runner is a great vehicle that comes with many features. Some of these features are daytime running lights, automatic headlights, and adjustable headlights.

It is important to be familiar with all of these features so that you can safely operate your 4Runner and how to replace a headlight bulb if needed. If you are unsure how something works, do not hesitate to ask someone at your local Toyota dealer.

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