Regular car maintenance needn’t take a long time. Checking your tyres once a month should take less than five minutes, while oil and antifreeze checks take just a few seconds.

But what about car lights? Many of us neglect this until we head off into the night, only to realise that one of the headlamps or tail lights has gone kaput.

A blown headlight is a danger for you and other road users, so it’s important to get it replaced as soon as possible, particularly as the darker nights roll in.

It’s obviously easier to check your lights if you have someone outside of your vehicle who can help, but if you haven’t, you can use a reflective surface (such as glass or metal) to confirm whether or not they are all working.

If you do have to replace a bulb, it really couldn’t be simpler. We’ve pulled together the top five tips to changing a headlight bulb – although every car is different and you should always check the manual if you’re in doubt. 

1. Make sure you get a replacement bulb that matches the make and model of your vehicle. It’s also a good idea to get alcohol wipes and tissues, so that you can clean and hold the new bulb. You may also need a Phillips screwdriver.

2. Access the socket via your engine compartment. When you open the bonnet, find the headlight in the bulb holder near the front of the vehicle. You’ll identify it easily because it has a power connector – usually three wires – that leads to the bulb.

3. Remove the cover of the bulb holder and unplug the electrical connector.

4. Remove the old bulb and replace with the new one – hold it by the base if possible, but clean it with the alcohol wipe if you touch it.

5. Check to ensure that you have fitted the bulb correctly, then plug the electrical connector back in and replace the cover.

It should take a matter of minutes – but it will make all the difference to your road safety.

Of course, you can always speak to your local garage or car accessories retailer, as many now offer free or low cost fitting. Whatever you do, don’t drop the bulb! 

Do you have any top tips? Let us know in the comments below or via our Facebook page.