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Brake Lamp Bulb Fault- Meaning, Causes And Solutions?

There is a one vital safety feature in your car is a functioning brake light. Whenever you press your brake pedals, your brake lights are meant to shine bright, warning drivers at the rear that your car is slowing down or halting. The Brake Lamp Bulb Fault message is shown when the brake lamps have failed or are flickering. Have you ever faced this error message? If yes, then do not worry! You are not the only one who has faced this problem. These types of problems do not happen every day.

What Does Brake Lamp Bulb Fault Mean?

The faulty brake lamp bulb warning light comes on when there is a problem with the braking system, just like the check engine light comes on when there is an issue with your car’s engine. This warning light alerts you to a problem, but further investigation is needed to determine the cause of the issue. If you see this lamp illuminated while driving, find a safe place to park your car and check the vehicle. You might notice that the engine has shut off or failed brakes.

What Are The Causes Of The Brake Lamp Bulb Issue?

In this section, we’ll explain the main causes of the brake lamp fault warning and give solutions to them.

1. Faulty Brake Light Bulbs:-

Usually, when bulbs become old, they tend to lose their bright light and become dim, and, in most cases, die out. The rear brake lights will not illuminate any time the bulbs pass their useful life, and the rear brake lights will not illuminate. So when the bulbs have passed their useful life or span, the brake lights would cease to illuminate.

2. Faulty Brake Switch:-

When we press the brake pedal the rear lights on our cars come on automatically. A brake light switch is located near the brake pedal that senses the pressure of our foot and turns the rear lights on. When this switch isn’t working correctly, the ABS light will turn on. When this happens, you won’t see your rear lights flash on when you press the brake pedal. It means that any drivers following you won’t see that you’re slowing down and might crash into you from behind.

3. Blown Fuse:-

Another possible cause of the “Brake Lamp Bulb Fault” message could be a blown fuse. Fuse control the brake lamp bulbs in our cars. If there is no issue with the switch and brake bulb, the fuse is possibly not working. A faulty fuse can make the lights fluctuate or go off completely. The fuses are present in the main fuse box of the car i.e. in the power distribution center, located usually underneath the dashboard or under the hood. A faulty fuse shows that its visible wire has changed its color to brown or might get separated into two parts.

4. Faulty Relay Or Module:-

A brake relay or module is an automated part of the braking system. It sends information to the computerized braking system such that when you use the brakes, the data from the brake pedal is relayed to the central system, which stops the car. It also sends signals to brake lamp bulbs and lights them up. The faulty brake relay doesn’t operate the rear brake lights properly and might cause brake failure. Such faults can turn off cars’ engines, having a push start feature. This issue can also activate the ABS warning light on the dash to blink.

5. Low Brake Fluid Level In The Brake Master Cylinder:-

Master cylinder is present in the hydraulic system of vehicles. It has a fluid that makes the braking system possible. It is also known as the master brake cylinder. When the brakes are applied, the pump pushes the incompressible fluid in the hydraulic brake line, which in turn causes the vehicle to come to a stop. If the fluid level is low, there wouldn’t be enough pressure for the pedals to work with; thus, the brake lamps won’t come on.

A leakage in the master cylinder can reduce its fluid level. It may also decrease after a specific time in old modeled vehicles because their brake pads wear out after use and can cause problems in the braking system.

6. Wiring Problems:-

The wiring issue is another main reason behind the cause of this issue. Wires are responsible for all electrical connections, like all devices, switches, and sensors are connected through cables. In this case, wires connect the brake lamps to the buttons, the brake pedals, and the fuse. If a wire is cut, burnt, or loosely connected, it could disrupt the flow of electricity, causing the brake lamps not to function correctly.

Hence, these are some basic common causes of the faulty brake lamp bulb message occurring on the dashboard of your car.

Is It Safe To Drive With A Faulty Brake Lamp Bulb?

It is not safe to drive with a faulty brake lamp bulb as it can cause you to have an accident. However, if you discover that your brake lights are faulty while still driving, you should activate your hazard lights to warn your fellow road users on time, especially while driving on an express road.

How To Solve The Issue Of The Brake Lamp Fault Warning Light?

Till now we’ve discussed the meaning and causes of the brake lamp bulb fault warning light. Now we’ll discuss its solutions in the following information.

Solution 1:- Replace The Faulty Brake Light Bulb

You need to replace the faulty brake light bulb and not repair it. Because we can’t repair a blown bulb, we can replace it with a new one. You can do this by carefully following the steps below;

  1. First, loosen the defective bulb’s case using a bolt.
  2. Carefully unplug the bulb and carefully inspect the bulb filament if it has dark smoke on it or is dark brown, then it is blown away.
  3. Proceed to replace it with a spare bulb or a new one you can get from an auto shop.
  4. Carefully close the bulb’s case and tighten it. And we’re good to go.

Solution 2:- Call The Mechanic To Replace The Bad Brake Switch

It is not suggested to replace or repair the bad or faulty brake switch because it needs a certain level of knowledge and probably a qualification as the brake switch is an essential part of the braking system. A mechanic can replace the faulty brake switch if he is an expert.

Solution 3:- Replace The Damaged Or Faulty Fuse With A New One

A repaired fuse cannot last long, we should always prefer to replace the burnt fuse with a new one. The new fuse doesn’t cost much, and it’s easy to replace.

  1. First, switch the vehicle off to prevent electric shock.
  2. Locate the fuse box.
  3. Find out the burnt fuse. The faulty fuse would have a dark brown color, and you would probably cut its wire.
  4. Simply remove the defective fuse and just replace it with the new fuse.
  5. Check that the problem is no more.

After doing these steps, check that the problem’s been solved. And if this doesn’t fix it, you’d probably need an auto mechanic.

Solution 4:- Fix The Faulty Wire

If the fuse, bulb, and brake switch aren’t faulty, there might be a wiring problem in the car’s braking system. A short circuit in the wiring can also create this difficulty There are 3 ways to fix a faulty wire:

  1. You can replace the damaged wires or rewire them using the same cables if they are not critically destroyed.
  2. Tape the exposed wires.
  3. Tighten the wires if their connection is loose.

Solution 5:- Repair Or Replace The Faulty Relay Or Module

There is a need for a multimeter to check whether the brake relay is working or not. It isn’t very costly. Therefore, we can replace the old one if it’s irreparable. You can replace it ourselves if you have the required knowledge and instruments. Otherwise, get it done by an expert.

Solution 6:- Refill The Brake Fluid To The Reservoir

This problem is easily fixed by adding more brake fluid to the reservoir, so its level is at the max. Also, you can consider replacing your brake pads as worn-out places could also lead to a reduction in the brake fluid level.

How Much Would It Cost To Replace A Broken Lamp Bulb?

Replacing a damaged brake lamp bulb isn’t much of a hassle and is something almost anyone can do. It would cost around $10-$30 to purchase a brake lamp bulb.


When a problem results in the brake lamp bulbs going off, you receive a “Brake lamp bulb fault” warning message from your car. The brake lamp bulb is a warning that helps you alert other vehicles if you’re braking or decelerating suddenly. If you’re having this issue, it’s best not to ignore it because you wouldn’t even be aware of an incoming rear collision. And remember, if you feel you are not up to performing any of the repairs above, feel free to consult your mechanic. It’s mainly used at night when visibility is worse. The bulb also helps drivers behind you be more cautious.

We hope the above-mentioned information will be helpful to all the readers. If anybody’s doubts persist feel free to comment in the comment section below. We’ll try to solve your doubts as soon as possible.