So you’ve cracked a tail light and don’t want to pay $100 for a new assembly. What do you do?
A small rock, an angry punch, or just bad luck, broken tail lights are an eyesore and, in some cases, can get you pulled over. So, how do you repair a tail light lens cheaply but durably? Here’s three cheap ways that should last for a long time.
Cheapest, temporary, but not durable
For temporary tail light lens repairs use regular tape. You must use the same color tape as your broken tail light piece.
If you live in a place that rains a lot, use a strong tape that can withstand a soaking like duct tape or heavy-duty packing tape.
A roll of tape is less than $5 or free if you already have it.
Dedicated translucent tail light tape
Tape and auto parts makers know broken tail lights are a common problem so they make tape just for broken tail lights. You can find this brand of tape on Amazon, at Wal-Mart (or on Wal-mart.com) and available at most auto parts stores. Here are a couple links below to show you what I mean.
The Duck Brand one is less than $4.
Durable tape and lens repair kits that can last for the life of the vehicle.
The best temporary solution is to buy a dedicated tail light lens repair kit made to, just about, permanently patch up a tail light. These are much stronger than tape and more durable than even the strongest duct tape.
- 3M High-strength clear lens repair film. It also comes in red.
- Blue Star Auto Lens Repair Kit Multi-Pack.
- Auto Lens Tail Light Repair Kit (Clear)
You can buy all for less than $10 each.
If the tail light crack or hole is too large, then the next best thing will be to source a used tail light assembly (listed from cheapest to most expensive) from a junkyard, used online, a new aftermarket non-oem unit online, or a brand new OEM one from a dealership.
Broken tail lights are a pain, but cheap and durable fixes are available.