How Can You Change License Plate Light Bulb of the 2003 Ford Escape?

If you’re seeking an SUV at an affordable price, the 2003 Ford Escape is an excellent alternative. While not intended for severe off-roading, the Ford Escape provides SUV aficionados with the convenience and driveability they crave in an affordable, well-designed vehicle.

You have come to the right place if you want to learn how to change the license plate light on your car. To prevent being pulled over and having to pay a penalty, you must have them functioning properly.

Keep reading to learn how to replace the license plate light bulb of 2003 Ford Escape and get ready for the road.

The Warning Signs of a Failing License Plate Light Bulb

  1. The light alternates between on and off

The license plate light of Ford Escape may frequently flicker. This is frequently the result of a frayed cable or connection powering the license plate light. This symptom is highly dangerous since a flashing light is incredibly distracting to other motorists. Additionally, it will attract the notice of the authorities and will very certainly result in a “repair it” ticket.

To avoid this, it is a good idea to take a short walk around the light once a week before driving at night. Just turn on your headlights, walk to the back of your car, and check to see if the license plate light is fully lit. 

  1. The light appears to be foggy

Another sign that there may be a problem with the license plate light is if the light seems foggy.

This is caused by condensation or trapped water inside the lens cover of the light. When the trunk lid of the automobile is fractured or becomes loose, water might enter into the light lens.

This will cause misty lights. If this occurs, you should change the light lens and bulb, as well as remove any water or condensation that may produce an electrical short – which may affect other systems within the car.

  1. Lights do not illuminate

If the license plate light bulb does not ignite when the headlights are switched on, this is the clearest sign that something is wrong with it.

This might be caused by a faulty relay switch, a loose connection, or a burned-out license plate light that requires replacement. While the majority of license plate lightbulbs are interchangeable, you should always verify with an auto parts retailer or a professional technician to ensure you are replacing the correct lightbulb.

The license plate light is more critical than most people realize since when it fails, it might result in safety and legal issues. 

Changing the License Plate Light Bulb

In addition to familiarizing yourself with how to use a tire repair kit and changing a flat tire, you should also know how to change the lighting fixtures of plates.

Before we begin with our step-by-step instruction, gather the essential items for installing the lightbulbs:

  • Gloves for protection.
  • Flashlight.
  • Screw.

Replace Both Lamps Concurrently

Both tag lamps should be removed together.

If one has burned out, the other will soon follow suit, regardless of upkeep. To begin, determine the type of light available for your model and determine whether your local auto supply store carries it. As previously said, it is recommended to purchase LED lightbulbs rather than incandescent lightbulbs.

They typically cost between $2 and $3. Two license plate lights are standard on the Ford Escape. 

Procedure for Changing the Bulbs

1. Take the Light Assembly Apart

Approximately halfway open the hatch door so that you are staring at the license plate lights. Ignore the bolts you see; they have no bearing on this fix.

The lens cover must be pressed in order for it to be disengaged. The lens body is sprung-loaded into the vehicle’s body.

Thus, by pushing/sliding the lens to the right the left side will readily disengage, allowing you to simply take the assembly out.

2. Disconnect the Light Bulb

Now that the lens assembly is disassembled, twist the bulb socket to remove it. It will detach from the lens body, revealing the bulb.

Now, remove the bulb directly from the socket; do not twist it. Avoid becoming irritated and breaking the bulb.

3. Assemble the Lighting Unit once again

This is essentially the opposite of what you’ve done previously. Replace the bulb, twist the socket into the assembly to secure it, and then install the assembly into the automobile (remember that one side is spring-loaded).

Many people who own 2003 Ford Escape don’t pay any heed to license plate bulb lights, but it is very important if you want to avoid getting fined. Moreover, a well-kept car with no faulty parts enhances the elegance of your Ford Escape. 

We hope this article gave you the required information that you inquired about.

Liam Dare

As CEO of, my passion for the automotive world motivates me to build online businesses that provide information and entertainment to users. I am proud to contribute in a positive way to the automotive community.