A Comprehensive Guide to Replacing Your Subaru Forester Headlight: DIY Edition

As a Subaru Forester owner, you want to ensure that your vehicle is in top shape. One of the most critical components that contribute to the functionality and safety of your car is the headlight. Owning a headlight that is functional is not just important for aesthetic purposes but is also crucial for driving safety, especially during night drives.

Changing a headlight might seem like a daunting task, but it is an easy and inexpensive process that you can handle on your own. This article will provide you with a comprehensive guide on how to change your Subaru Forester headlight.

Types of Headlights Available

Before delving into the steps on how to change a headlight, it’s essential to know the types of headlights available. Your Subaru Forester may come with either halogen or LED headlights.

Halogen Headlights

Halogen headlights have been a standard feature in most cars and relatively straightforward to replace. The halogen bulbs are affordable and have a lifespan of between 400 to 1000 hours.

LED Headlights

LED headlights are relatively new in cars and offer various benefits over halogen bulbs. They have a longer lifespan, consume less power, and produce a brighter light. LED headlights are, however, pricier than halogen bulbs and may not be readily available in the market.

Tools Needed

To change your Subaru Forester’s headlight, you’ll need the following tools:

  • New headlight bulb
  • A clean cloth
  • Socket wrench
  • Screwdriver
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Steps to Change a Headlight

Follow these easy steps to change your Subaru Forester headlight:

  1. The first step is to ensure that the car is turned off and the engine is cooled down.
  2. Locate the headlight assembly in your car. You’ll find it under the hood, on the front of the car.
  3. Remove the headlight assembly by turning the socket counterclockwise using a socket wrench. Alternatively, unscrew the clips that hold the assembly in place using a screwdriver.
  4. Remove the faulty headlight bulb by gently pulling it by the base.
  5. Using a clean cloth, hold the replacement headlight bulb and insert it into the socket.
  6. Secure the new headlight bulb by turning it clockwise until it clicks into place.
  7. Replace the headlight assembly onto the car using a socket wrench or screwdriver depending on your car model.
  8. Test if your new headlamp is working correctly. If it does, close the hood and enjoy your improved visibility.

Precautions to Take

Changing your headlight might seem like an easy process. However, several precautions will ensure that you don’t damage your car or injure yourself. Here are some precautions to follow.

  • Always ensure that the engine is turned off before starting the process.
  • Do not touch the new headlight bulb with your bare hands- the oils from your skin may damage the bulb. Use a clean cloth instead.
  • Avoid twisting or forcing the socket during the installation process.
  • Ensure that the headlight assembly is sealed correctly to avoid damaging the electrical components.

Resources for Finding Replacements

If you’re looking for replacements for your Subaru Forester’s headlights, there are several options available. You can purchase original manufacturer parts from the dealership or opt for cheaper options from online stores such as Amazon and Ebay. When shopping online, it’s crucial to ensure that you’re buying from reputable sellers to avoid buying low-quality parts that could damage your car.

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The Benefits of Performing the Task Yourself

Changing your Subaru Forester headlight yourself can save you money in the long run. It’s an easy process that you can handle with minimal tools, tools that can be purchased from any hardware store. Additionally, changing your headlight yourself will give you a sense of accomplishment and self-sufficiency, knowing that you can take care of your car without necessarily having to go to a mechanic for every little issue.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How long does it take to change a headlight in a Subaru Forester?

A: Changing your Subaru Forester headlight should take roughly 10-15 minutes if you have the correct tools and follow the steps mentioned above.

Q: Can I replace my Subaru Forester’s headlight without going to a mechanic?

A: Yes, you can replace your Subaru Forester’s headlight by following the simple steps outlined above. If you have any issues, you can always consult your car manual or seek guidance from a trusted mechanic.


Changing your Subaru Forester headlight yourself is an easy process that anyone can handle with the right tools and guidance. The benefits of performing the task yourself include saving money and gaining independence by handling straightforward car maintenance tasks on your own. With the comprehensive guide provided above, you’re now equipped to take care of your Subaru Forester’s headlight with ease.

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Alton Brobst

As a longtime Subaru enthusiast, Alton brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our blog. From his early days of tinkering with engines to his current role as a certified Subaru technician, Alton has seen it all when it comes to Subarus. When he's not working on cars, he enjoys hiking and exploring the great outdoors.

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