Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls
  1. Home
  2. Articles
  3. What Kind of Bulbs Are Used Behind the Dashboard

What Kind of Bulbs Are Used Behind the Dashboard

dashboard lights

Your dashboard contains a number of light bulbs. They’re used for everything from lighting up your speedometer to turning on the Check Engine Light. What kind of bulbs are used behind the dashboard? Actually, that might not be a simple question to answer.

Year, make, and model

The vast majority of cars on the road today use traditional incandescent bulbs behind the dash. They’re specially made and very small. They’re sort of bullet shaped, with a very narrow bottom end where the two wires that lead into the bulb are exposed. They fit into holes pre-cut in the circuit board behind your dash, and use special bottom pieces to both secure them and tie them into the circuit board itself.

However, that’s not the case for all vehicles on the market. Newer vehicles, particularly higher end vehicles, have started seeing LED bulbs in use behind their dashboards. Note that this is only applicable to certain makes and models – the use of LEDs in the automotive industry is increasing, but it is far from widespread, even today.

With that being said, LED technology is here to stay, and more and more vehicles are being produced with LED bulbs behind the dash, in the headlight assemblies, in the taillight assemblies and in many other areas.

Advantages of LEDs over older technologies

LEDs are being used more frequently for a couple of simple reasons. First, they last immensely longer, meaning that the chance of having a dash light bulb fail during your ownership is much lower. Second, they use less power, making the overall vehicle more efficient.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

How to Buy Fuel Treatments
Adding a fuel additive to your gas tank when you fill up is one way to clean vital engine parts of deposits, improve the performance of your engine,...
How to Transfer a Car Title in Idaho
In order to prove ownership of a car, you must have the title. However, when a car is sold, given away or inherited, the title needs...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...

Related questions

Q: During rain, dashboard lights & radio fade out - 1999 BMW 332is

Probably one or more electrical connections are getting wet when it rains. The wheel speed sensor for example is at wheel level (inside the wheel arch), and catches all sort of road spray. Once you find the problem connectors, spray...

Q: Started running rough when ESC light came on

Thank you for writing in about this problem. The Electronic Stability Control system (ESC) could have been activated due to driving conditions (wet, dusty, etc.). However, the light should turn off when the conditions warrant (dry, no slip). Sometimes the...

Q: Q: How do you use the map lights?

Your map lights provide additional illumination for the driver and front passenger. They turn on when your interior lights are set to on or the door setting, but they can also be operated independently. To use your map light, just...