How To Fix License Plate Light Wiring?

Your car’s license plate light is one of the exterior lights that could get you in trouble with U.S. traffic officers. Any faulty exterior light can attract strict penalties; that’s why you must keep them functioning correctly.

One of the reasons your car’s license plate lights may fail to turn on or work well is when you have a loose connection or defective wiring. Therefore, understanding how to fix license plate light wiring is essential to fix this issue.

Sufficient information has been provided for you in this article to guide you through the entire process of fixing a defective wiring problem in your car’s license plate connection. Kindly spare a moment and check it out.

How do I know if my license plate light is out?

There are some signs that let you know when your car’s license plate light is out. Endeavor to pay attention to see if you will identify any of these signs.

Lights are flickering on and off.

Your car’s license plate lights are designed and connected in such a way that whenever you turn on your car’s headlights, they come on immediately. If you discover that when you turn on your car’s headlights, the license plate lights flicker on and off consistently, it is a sign that there is an issue with the connection. Check for any loose connections and fix them.

The lights do not turn on.

If you discover that your car’s license plate lights refuse to come on when you activate your car’s headlights, there may be a problem with the relay switch, or the light bulbs are burnt. Endeavor to turn on your vehicle, switch on the headlights, and inspect all the lights around the exterior to ascertain any faulty ones that need to be replaced.

Lights seem foggy

The license plate lights are covered to ensure that water or any other liquid does not gain access. If the covering breaks, it will create an opening for water to gain access from your car’s trunk lid.

If you have water condensation trapped inside your car’s license plate light lens cap, the light will become foggy when you turn them on. If this occurs, ensure to replace the light bulb and the light lens.

Read Also: How to Remove Rusted License Plate Screws?

How To Fix License Plate Light Wiring Step-By-Step

Your car’s license plate lights may refuse to turn on for several reasons: burnt bulbs, loose connections, etc. Whenever you find your car’s license plate lights not working, do not panic; kindly inspect all the components to ensure they are intact.

However, if you discover that you have defective wiring, engage the following step-by-step procedures to fix the issue.

Step 1: Identify the shorted wire

To locate the shorted wire, trace it via your car’s repair manual. The tracing can be done accurately via the wiring schematic available in the manual, and it guides you through the license plate light wiring harness.

Step 2: Cut off the faulty part of the wire

Once you have traced the shorted wire, endeavor to identify the defective wire area and cut it out.

Step 3: Cut a replacement wire

After cutting out the faulty wire section, measure the replacement wire and cut the same length for replacement.

Step 4: Strip off the wire’s end

Strip off 1/4” from the wire’s end on both sides and twist them together. Then, use soldering material to solidify the connection and wrap it up with electrical tape.

Step 5: Test the voltage.

After the connection, retest the voltage coming through the license plate light wire at the socket to ensure adequate voltage. This is necessary for both single-wire license plate lights and 2 wire license plate light connections.

If this is okay, fix all the items you had to remove to enable you to access the wiring of the light. Then, turn on your car and the headlights to check whether the lights are working well.

If they are working well, you are good to go. If not, you may have to replace any defective bulbs and recheck by turning your car on and activating the headlights. The steps above could also be helpful if you were wondering how to wire the led license plate light.

Read Also: License Plate Screw Size: Choose the Right Size

How To Fix License Plate Light Wiring


Why won’t my license plate lights work?

Your car’s license plate light bulbs function well when the relay switch is okay and there are no loose connections. So, if you discover that your car’s license plate lights refuse to work, it could be that you have a defective relay switch or there are one or more wires that are not properly connected.

In some cases, it could be that the license plate light bulbs are burnt. Try to find out if you are facing any of the challenges outlined here to enable you to figure out why your car’s license plate lights won’t work. In any case, you may need to seek the service of an expert auto technician to help you fix the issue.

Is there a fuse for the license plate light?

Yes, there is a fuse for the license plate light. If you are asking, “Which fuse is for the license plate lights?” Your car’s license plate lights are powered by a circuit fuse of the 10amp left-side parking light, and it is located in the fuse panel in the underhood.

You must ensure that the fuse that powers the parking light on the left side of your car is in good shape. Otherwise, any fault with the light can affect your car’s license plate lights.

Is it illegal to drive without number plate lights?

Of course, it is illegal to drive without number plate lights in the State. You are required by law to ensure that all the equipment in your car is functioning correctly. All the exterior lights in your vehicle, like the headlight, stop lamp, rear license number plate lights, etc., are expected to be in good shape as you drive.

You could get stopped by the state officers for a thorough vehicle check if any of these lights are not working. Any default can result in some serious legal penalties against you. So, to avoid any unexpected encumbrances, if you find one number plate light not working in your car, do well to rectify it as soon as possible. Also, ensure that all your car’s exterior lights are working well.

Q: How much does it cost to fix tail light wiring?

Fixing your car’s tail light wiring is not very expensive, and it is estimated to cost around $65 to$115. If you have a challenge with your car’s tail lights, endeavor to consult a professional auto technician to fix it. You can check out anyone around your neighborhood to fix any defective tail lights in your car.

Final Words

As you have seen from this article, knowing how to fix license plate light wiring is not rocket science. If you are a DIY enthusiast, it would be pretty easy for you to do. Therefore, if you have any defective license plate lights in your car, endeavor to find out what could be wrong.

Once you can find out the problem with your car’s license plate lights, go ahead and fix it by following the step-by-step guide provided in this article. If you are skeptical about doing it yourself, kindly consult an expert auto technician to do the job.

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Osuagwu Solomon

Osuagwu Solomon is a certified mechanic with over a decade of experience in the mechanic garage, and he has over five years of experience in the writing industry. He started writing automotive articles to share his garage experience with car enthusiasts and armature mechanics. If he is not in the garage fixing challenging mechanical problems, he is writing automotive repair guides, buyer’s guides, and car and tools comparisons.

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