How to Repair a Motorcycle Brake Light

  • 1-2
  • Beginner
  • 35-75
What You'll Need
New bulb
New light cover
Wire strippers
Crimping tool
Needle nose pliers
Electrical tape

Your motorcycle brake light is a vital piece of equipment. You need to be sure that it’s working properly. It’s the only thing that lets cars following you that you’re slowing down and stopping. Without a working motorcycle brake light, you run the risk of accident or even death.

Step 1 - Removing Old Lights

The simplest way to repair a motorcycle brake light is just to replace it. In some instances, you’ll have an integrated light unit which includes the turn signals. Other makes of bike have separate lights. For this, the assumption will be that the brake lights are separate.

To access the motorcycle brake light, you will have to remove the cowl behind the seat. Lift the seat. You’ll see that the cowl is held on by nuts. Loosen these and remove the cowl. From here, you’ll be able to reach the back of the brake lights. Now use your screwdriver to remove the cover on the brake lights. If it’s cracked, you should discard it and replace with a new one at the end of the procedure.

Step 2 - Disconnecting Wires

Unscrew the bulb. Make a note of which connector connects where and unclip them. Take your wire strippers and cut the wires just behind the connectors and discard the old ones. There should be plenty of slack on the wires.

Step 3 - Connectors

You should have purchased new connector for the motorcycle brake lights. Strip the insulation off the end of one of the wires. Allow enough to go into the connector. Push the bare wire into the connector and crimp it using the pliers. Check to make sure the wire is seated firmly and won’t come loose. Use electrical tape as an extra seal where the wire joins the connector. Repeat this for the other wires.

Step 4 - Connecting

When you have the wires securely in the connectors, push the connectors back on to the motorcycle brake lights. Push hard enough for the connectors to take hold and complete the circuit.

Screw a new bulb into the fitting so it’s just hand tight. With that done, you should test to make sure that the brake light is working properly. Either stand so you can see the brake lights, or so you can see the reflection when you apply the brake lever. If the motorcycle brake lights work well, you can proceed.

Step 5 - Finishing

To complete the procedure, fit the brake light on the fixture and screw into place. You’ll still need to replace the cowl over the motorcycle brake lights. Push the screws in place and tighten the nuts on the other side. Use pliers to hold the nuts as you tighten the screws until they’re completely tightened. You’ve now repaired your motorcycle brake lights.