There are many parts of a car that tend to fly under the radar, so to speak. While other parts, like the tyres or engine, are a constant concern for some drivers, these low-key components simply get on with their job and aren’t really thought about… until they go wrong. Bulbs could be included in this; your headlights and brakelights, maybe not (although it’s always a surprise when one does give out on you). But many motorists don’t even consider the vast number of bulbs that are actually used in a modern day car. Allow us to explain which ones will fit your Skoda so that you’re equipped with the right information whenever you might need it.
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What Types Of Bulbs Does A Skoda Use?
There are many different bulbs that a Skoda requires to be fully-functional as the designers intended. Some of these are mandatory to have your car on the road, whereas others simply make life a little bit easier:
- Front headlights
- Rear brake lights
- Reverse lights
- Indicator lights, front and rear
- Side lights, including indicators
- Fog lights
- Daytime running lights
- Interior dome light
- Interior dashboard lights
- Glove box light
- Ashtray light
- Number plate light
- Boot light
While the smaller lights, mostly used for interior functions, are typically 12v bulbs with a maximum wattage of 5w, those lights intended for use on the vehicle’s exterior including headlights and indicators are likely to go up to a maximum of 21w. However, it makes sense to check your vehicle handbook before installing anything.
Do Different Models Of Skoda Need Different Bulbs?
Most Skoda models, at least those that are most common on the UK’s roads, can take the same kind of bulbs. For example, one kind of orange indicator bulb can fit the Citigo, Fabia, Fabia 2, Fabia 3, Felicia, Octavia, Octavia 2, Octavia 3, Rapid, Roomster, Superb, Superb 2, Superb 3, and Yeti! If you’re the owner of a more uncommon Skoda model, check your vehicle handbook or use a part retailer’s website to identify precisely the component that you need.
Are There Laws Around Car Lights?
It is a legal requirement to have certain working lights on your vehicle, and to use them at the correct times. The Highway Code covers this in sections 113 to 116:
113 covers what you must do and states that you should ensure all sidelights, plus your number plate light, are lit between sunset and sunrise. The ruling also states that you must use headlights at night, although it specifies that this isn’t necessary on a street with adequate lighting. You should, however, always use your headlights when visibility is reduced, regardless of the time of day.
114 discusses what you must not do, including using lights in any way that could dazzle or cause discomfort to other road users or pedestrians. This means no full beams unless necessary! It goes into further detail with this point, telling that you must never use your fog lights unless visibility is severely reduced and then, once it improves, you should turn them off again.
115 covers other advice which is simply good practice when using a public road. This includes using dipped lights to ensure you are visible without blinding passers-by, and slowing down or stopping if you are yourself dazzled by an inconsiderate driver coming in the opposite direction.
Finally, section 116 of the Highway Code focuses on the use of hazard warning lights. It mentions that they should never be used as an excuse of sorts for parking inappropriately (on double yellow lines outside a takeaway, for example) and you shouldn’t use them while the car is moving, unless you are being towed or on a motorway and warning drivers behind you of obstruction.
What Happens If You Put The Wrong Bulb In Your Skoda?
As with any vehicle, or even any electrical lighting device, using the wrong bulb can have some nasty consequences. First of all, you might find that purchasing the wrong bulb and attempting to install it anyway simply won’t work; the shape and fit may not match to what you need.
However, if you end up installing a bulb that’s the wrong voltage or wattage, you could do more than just waste your money – you might even damage your vehicle. Use a bulb that’s not powerful enough and you could find that your lights aren’t hitting the levels of brightness that you’re used to, or even that what’s legally required to maintain visibility on the road.
Use a bulb with a voltage or wattage that’s too high and you run the risk of frying your electrical components and melting wiring, or even blowing a fuse entirely. For the sake of a few quid and few minutes of research, it’s best to ensure you’re buying the right bulbs and installing them (or getting them installed) correctly.
Can I Replace My Skoda’s Bulbs Myself?
It is entirely possible to do so, and in fact just relatively easy – at least when you consider how difficult some car-related maintenance jobs can be. That being said, the level of challenge you’ll face does depend on which bulb you’re trying to change. A headlight? Fairly simple. Dashboard warning light LEDs? Those will be a little bit more complex and will require your dashboard to be deconstructed in part.
How To Find The Right Bulb For Your Skoda
Finding the correct bulb for your Skoda doesn’t need to be complicated. Back in the ‘olden days’ the best way of finding out what you need was to flick through your vehicle’s handbook, in which all of these details will be listed.
You could also find an OEM number, if you’re switching out the original part, so that you’re able to identify the part exactly in order to make a like-for-like replacement.
These days though, the simplest way of finding out which bulb you need is to check directly with a retailer. That’s because almost all major car part retailers now use a database that allows you to find out which parts fit your car, regardless of make, model or which component you’re after, by providing them with little more than your car or van’s registration number.
How To Replace Your Skoda’s Bulbs
As we’ve discussed throughout this post, there are a lot of different bulbs within a car so there’s no one method that applies to all of them.
Therefore, some of them are more difficult to change than others and should probably be handled by a professional vehicle technician who knows what they’re doing.
But, the average motorist could quite comfortably have a crack at changing their headlights, so we’ve explained the process below:
- Pop the bonnet and take a look inside toward the light that needs replacing.
- Remove the cover and disconnect the wires from within.
- Release the locking mechanism that holds the bulb in place, then remove it from the vehicle.
- Reverse the process – put the new bulb in, lock it in place, connect the wires and cover it up again.
And that’s that. You’ve just changed a headlight.
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