Replace headlight 2009 malibu

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Chevrolet Malibu Headlight Bulb Replacement

A headlight bulb replacement is one of the simplest car services, though the cost can vary depending on your car.

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RepairSmith offers upfront and competitive pricing. The average cost for Chevrolet Malibu Headlight Bulb Replacement is $178. Drop it off at our shop and pick it up a few hours later, or save time and have our Delivery mechanics come to you.

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2016 Chevrolet Malibu

• 65,000 miles

West Covina ,  CA 91790

$108 - $132

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2012 Chevrolet Malibu

2.4L L4 • 79,999 miles

Dallas ,  TX 75214

$232 - $284

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2011 Chevrolet Malibu

2.4L L4 • 136,000 miles

Laveen ,  AZ 85339

$202 - $246

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2005 Chevrolet Malibu

2.2L L4 • 152,825 miles

Moreno Valley ,  CA 92553

$65 - $79

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2015 Chevrolet Malibu

2.5L L4 LS • 101,919 miles

Phoenix ,  AZ 85033

$121 - $147

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2008 Chevrolet Malibu

2.4L L4 • 102,750 miles

Irving ,  TX 75063

$216 - $264

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2004 Chevrolet Malibu

3.5L V6 LS • 117,000 miles

Long Beach ,  CA 90802

$74 - $90

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2010 Chevrolet Malibu

3.5L V6 • 115,904 miles

Mesa ,  AZ 85210

$145 - $177

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2011 Chevrolet Malibu

2.4L L4 • 91,900 miles

Lakewood ,  CA 90715

$228 - $278

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2012 Chevrolet Malibu

3.6L V6 • 139,460 miles

Fresno ,  CA 93722

$212 - $259

Last Updated:
Sep 7, 2021 3:36 PM

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What is a Headlight Bulb?

It feels a bit silly to have to explain this to you, but here we go. Let’s break down what headlight bulbs are. Your headlights are the lights on the front of your car. They light the road in front of you when you drive. They’re what you turn on when you’re driving at night. The bulbs are the actual light bulbs that make up the headlight. And, that’s really it. The headlights are powered by electricity, which means they get the bulk of their energy from the alternator (when your car is running), and from the battery when your car is turned off. When you turn your headlights on, electrical current is sent to the headlights, and they turn on. Voila. Now, with that said, headlights can be a little more complex than that. There are different types of headlights, notably halogen, High Intensity Discharge (HID), and light emitting diode (LED) . They can have different angles and shapes, to better project light onto the road. But at their core, they’re just light bulbs, making sure you can drive safely and see the road. And like all light bulbs, sometimes they wear out, die, and need to be replaced. If you’re feeling like getting your DIY on, they’re usually one of the simplest car repairs in the books.

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Signs of failing headlights

Lack of light

Do I really need to spell this one out for you? When your headlights fail, what exactly do you think is going to happen? They’ll burn out, they won’t work, and you’ll have a lack of light. It’s really that simple. So, if you turn on your car, and it looks like it’s blinking at you, or you’re driving at night and realize you can’t see, you’ve got yourself a good old fashioned headlight bulb problem. Now, there are a few notes on this. Your headlight bulbs won’t always die all of a sudden. Sometimes they will fade out with time. So, if you feel like your lights aren’t as bright as they usually are, then you probably have some bulbs that are nearing the end of the light. You also might not always notice a headlight bulb being out. If you rarely drive at night, or you drive in a brightly-lit city, they can sneak by you. That’s why a technician (should) always check your lights when you go and get your oil changed. But it’s also a good idea to get in the habit of checking your lights yourself. You can do this by just turning them on, getting out of the car, and giving them a peek.

Warning light comes on

Here’s the deal: when your headlights start to die, your car will often let you know. Most modern cars have a headlight warning light that will illuminate on the dashboard when one of the light burns out. It might say “headlight”, or just be an image of a shining headlight. Either way, it’s trying to tell you something, so listen.

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How urgent is a Headlight Bulb replacement?

Ooh, this is a hard question. Because it really boils down to two things: Do you like seeing the road? And do you like getting fix-it tickets?

Yeah. These aren’t hard questions here. Get your headlight bulb fixed asap. It’s an affordable service, so just get it done.

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How to Replace the Headlight Bulbs in a Chevrolet Malibu

All vehicles must have functional headlights. Driving at night without them can lead to an accident resulting in injury or death. If a headlight is out on your Chevrolet Malibu, you can replace it yourself and save some money. Replacing headlights on a Chevy Malibu is a little time-consuming. Thankfully, it's a relatively straightforward process.

Step 1

Park the Malibu on a level surface and turn off the engine. Put on the gloves.

Step 2

Put the jack under the Malibu and raise the car until the headlamps are at a comfortable working height. If you are replacing the left headlight, remove the front left wheel, using the tire iron. Remove the front right wheel if you intend to replace the right headlight.

Step 3

Use the pop rivet tool and screwdriver to take off all the pop rivets and screws holding the wheel well facing in place. Now that the wheel well facing is loosened, completely remove it from the vehicle by pulling it off.

Step 4

Remove the two bolts holding the front bumper in place, using the socket wrench. Slide the front bumper off the vehicle using slight force. This will provide access to the headlamp unit itself.

Step 5

Use the socket wrench to remove the two bolts holding the headlamp in place. Remove the headlamp from the vehicle. Rotate the old bulb and pull it away from the headlamp unit to remove it. Push the replacement bulb into the unit and rotate it to lock it into place.

Step 6

Reattach the headlight unit into the vehicle and reattach the bolts. At this point, make sure to test them by turning the headlights on.

Push the front bumper back into the vehicle and reinstall the two bolts. Reattach the wheel well facing and make sure to put back all of the pop rivets and screws. Place the wheel back into its original position and secure it with the tire iron. Lower the vehicle from the jack.


  • "2009 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Manual"; General Motors Corporation; 2008


  • Keep extra bulbs in the vehicle in order to be able to replace burned-out bulbs immediately.
  • Make sure to test the new bulb before reattaching the front bumper and wheel well, otherwise everything will have to be removed again if the new bulb doesn't illuminate.

Things You'll Need

  • Gloves
  • Car jack
  • Tire iron
  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Pop rivet tool
  • Socket wrench
  • Replacement headlight bulb


  • Allow some time for the Malibu's engine to cool down before performing any maintenance procedure.
  • Make sure to wipe off the replacement bulb before installing it, and don't touch the glass with your bare fingers. An oiled bulb can form hot spots and cause it to malfunction.

Writer Bio

Daniel Valladares began his career as a medical writer in 2008. He has written patient education brochures for several pharmaceutical companies and has worked as an auto mechanic at Kim's Speedy Auto Service since 2007. Valladares holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Rice University and is currently studying to become a personal trainer.

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How To Install Replace Headlight and bulb Chevy Malibu 04-08 pic 1
Replacing the Headlight Bulb on a 2004-2008 Chevy Malibu is an easy task that falls into the DIY category.

Of course, always call a professional if in doubt.

The entire headlight assembly can also be replaced with the steps below if bad.
How To Install Replace Headlight and bulb Chevy Malibu 04-08 step 9
Below are the steps with screenshots to replace a bad bulb along with a video at the bottom of the page for a visual walk through.

2004-2008 Chevy Malibu Headlight Bulb Type

H11 Headlight Bulb on Amazon
Philips H11 Standard Authentic Halogen Replacement Headlight Bulb,1 pack

Changing headlights and front turn signals are simple and easy with the Chevy Malibu.

The process requires 10 millimeter wrench.

Steps to Install Replace Headlight and bulb Chevy Malibu 2004-2008

  1. At the top of the headlight assembly remove the two 10mm bolts with a 10mm wrench or socket.
  2. How To Install Replace Headlight and bulb Chevy Malibu 04-08 step 1
    How To Install Replace Headlight and bulb Chevy Malibu 04-08 step 2
    How To Install Replace Headlight and bulb Chevy Malibu 04-08 step 3

  3. After the bolts are removed lift the assembly up and out the headlight assembly.
  4. How To Install Replace Headlight and bulb Chevy Malibu 04-08 step 4

  5. Disconnect the plug.
  6. How To Install Replace Headlight and bulb Chevy Malibu 04-08 step 5

  7. To replace the Bulbs twist the covers off and the Bulbs are inside, you can twist and pull the bulb out.
  8. How To Install Replace Headlight and bulb Chevy Malibu 04-08 step 6
    How To Install Replace Headlight and bulb Chevy Malibu 04-08 step 7

  9. It is the same process for the parking side.
  10. How To Install Replace Headlight and bulb Chevy Malibu 04-08 step 8

  11. Screw back in the two 10mm bolts and then tighten them up with the socket.
  12. How To Install Replace Headlight and bulb Chevy Malibu 04-08 step 12


Head Light Bulbs


Headlight Change 2008-2012 Chevrolet Malibu

1. Getting Started - Prepare for the repair

Learn More >

2. Open the Hood - How to pop the hood and prop it open

3. Remove Bulb - Steps to remove a burnt out bulb

4. Helpful Hints - How to find replacement bulb type and other hints

What would you like your bulbs to do? See ClearerUpgrade To LEDHID Style

Consider a premium bulb like the Silverstar Ultra with a specially designed filament, proprietary gas mixture and lamp coating for the best downroad lighting. Learn more about Silverstar Ultra.

Upgrade your fog lights to LED with a direct install option that will connect easily to your car’s existing bulb housing. Sylvania has an option with aviation grade aluminum body and a turbo cooled fan. Check out Sylvania LEDs.

Consider a bulb like the zXe with a proprietary Xenon gas mixture to match the white light of HID lights for the brightest headlight and added clarity. More information on zXe bulbs.

5. Replace Bulb - Procedures to replace the new bulb

6. More Info. - Additional information on headlights

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The video above shows you to replace the headlight in your 2009 Chevrolet Malibu. Headlights grow dimmer by up to 20% over time and eventually burn out - for this reason, we recommend changing your headlights in pairs. Changing both headlight bulbs on your Malibu at the same time will allow both bulbs to have the same intensity and prevent the new headlight bulb from appearing brighter than the bulb on the opposite side. In some Chevrolets, the highbeam is the same bulb as the headlight and it is possible for the highbeam to work, but the headlight be burnt out even if they are the same bulb (and vise versa). Some Chevrolets have high intensity discharge headlights, sometimes referred to as xenon lights. These bulbs have a very high voltage that runs through them, even if the battery is disconnected. If your Malibu has this type of bulb, we do not recommend that you attempt to change it yourself.

When you change the headlight on your Malibu, it is important to not touch the glass part of the bulb with your fingers because the oil from your fingertips will cause that part of the bulb to burn hotter, which significantly shortens the life of the bulb.

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2009 replace malibu headlight

2008-2012 Chevrolet Malibu Headlight Bulbs Replacement Guide
How to replace the low / high beam, turn signal &  side marker bulbs in the headlight of a 2008 to 2012 GM Chevy Malibu.

Replacing the headlight bulbs in a 7th generation (2008-2012) Chevy Malibu does require at least partially removing the front bumper in order to unbolt the headlight assembly and access the bulbs. I've replaced headlight bulbs on many vehicles and the 08-12 Malibu is by far the most time consuming one. But it's not a difficult procedure if you follow the steps below. 2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-001
08-12 Malibu Headlight
Black Plastic Radiator Cover
Remove 10mm Bolts
This automotive maintenance "how-to" guide was specifically written to assist owners of the 7th generation (2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 & 2012) General Motors Chevrolet Malibu in replacing a burnt out low beam, high beam, turn signal or front side marker bulb in the headlight assembly.

Owners of other related GM vehicles such as the Buick Regal, Buick LaCrosse, Saab 9-5, 9-3, Opel Insignia, Saturn Aura, Cadillac BLS, Fiat Croma, Opel Vectra, Signum and Pontiac G6 may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

Replacement headlight bulbs for the 08-12 Malibu include the following with their part numbers: Low Beam # H11, High Beam H9, Front Turn Signal 4157NA, and Front Side Marker 168.

The tools needed to complete this procedure include a 7mm socket, a 10 mm socket, a ratcheting wrench, a flat head screwdriver and a pair of needle nose pliers.

10mm Bolt By Hood Latch
Different Bolts At Center
Two Types of Bolts
The first step is to remove the eleven 10mm bolts and four black plastic pop rivets that hold the radiator cover in place.

Nine of the bolts are the exactly the same but there are two 10mm bolts with larger heads on either side of the hood latch mechanism near the front of the vehicle.

Pry Out Center of Rivet
Pull Out Center of Pop Rivet
Pull Out Plastic Fastener
To remove the four black plastic pop rivets near the front edge of the radiator cover, pry out the center piece first with a flathead screwdriver and then pry out the outer piece from the cover.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-010
11 Bolts & 4 Plastic Fasteners
Remove Radiator Cover
Front Wheel
Once you are done removing all of the bolts and pop rivets, set them aside in a safe place such as a small parts case or in a Tupperware container. You should have 2 large head 10mm bolts, 9 regular head 10mm bolts, and four black plastic pop rivets with their center pieces.

Carefully lift off the radiator cover and set it aside in a safe place.

Turn Wheels To Left
Remove 7mm Screws
2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-015To make more room to work in the wheel well liner area, turn the steering wheel all the way to the opposite side of your burnt out headlight bulb.

Some people may choose to remove the wheel entirely for easier access to the wheel well liner.

If you plan on replacing both headlight bulbs at the same time, it may be easier to just remove both front wheels and secure the vehicle with two jack stands.

Move to the front of the vehicle and lay down beneath the front bumper. Locate the black 7mm screws along the black plastic underbody cover and remove them with a socket or wrench.

There is also 1 black plastic rivet that needs to be removed per side of the underbody cover.

If you are only replacing bulbs in one headlight assembly, you'll only need to remove 4-6 7mm screws and 1 pop rivet.

Pry Out Xmas Tree Fastener
Four 7mm Screws & 1 Rivet
Wheel Well Liner
Next move to the wheel well liner and locate the black plastic pop rivets or "Christmas Tree" fasteners that hold it in place.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-019
Pry Out Christmas Tree Rivets
Pull With Needle Nose Pliers
There are three plastic rivets along the edge of the wheel well liner and one a few inches in towards the engine bay.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-022
Four Wheel Well Clips Removed
Pull Back Wheel Well Liner
Organize Bolts & Screws
Once all four wheel well fasteners have been removed, you can peel back the liner in order to access the last two 10mm bolts that hold the bumper cover in place.

Be sure to keep all of the bolts, screws and rivets organized for easy re-assembly later.

Front Bumper Cover Bracket
Two 10mm Bolts
Remove 1st 10mm Bolt
There is one 10mm bolt closer to the wheel well and another a few inches in towards the front of the vehicle.

The closest 10mm bolt needs to be removed entirely. The 2nd inner bolt only needs to be loosened a bit.

Outer Bolt Removed
Liner Propped Open
Loosen Inner 10mm Bolt
To make it easier to remove the first bolt and loosen the inner bolt, prop open the wheel well liner with some rags, a rubber mallet or some other soft item that won't damage the body work.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-031
Pull Off Side of Bumper
Inner 10mm Bolt Still In Place
Pulling Off Bumper Cover
Once the bolt closest to the wheel well has been removed and the inner bolt has been loosened a few turns, you can gently pull the bumper cover away from the side of the vehicle.

If the side of the bumper doesn't pull away with moderate force, you may need to loosen the inner 10mm bolt a few more turns. Try to avoid removing it entirely, since it may be difficult to re-insert.

Pull Off Top of Bumper
Headlight Bolts Accessible
Side 10mm Bolt
Move to the front of the car and gently pull the bumper cover away from the headlight assembly.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-037
10mm Socket - Remove Bolt
Remove Front Lower Bolt
Two Silver Bolts - Bracket
The headlight assembly is held in place by four 10 mm bolts.

There is one black bolt on the side of the vehicle, one black bolt at the front of the headlight, and two silver bolts that hold a black plastic bracket in place just above the headlight lens.

2 Black Bolts, 2 Silver
Pull Off Black Plastic Bracket
Pull Headlight Housing Off


Set the four 10mm headlight bolts aside in a safe place, preferably with a Post-It note to help you remember where they go during re-assembly.

Pull off the black plastic bracket above the headlight.

Now the headlight assembly can finally be pulled away from the front of the vehicle.

Turn the headlight assembly upside down and gently rest it on the bumper. To help avoid scratching the plastic headlight lens or the painted surfaces of the vehicle, place a rag in between the headlight and the bumper.

Turn Headlight Upside Down
High Beam Bulb
1/4 Turn Counter Clockwise
The High Beam bulb is located near the center line of the vehicle and has a light blue plastic label.

Grasp the base of the bulb with your thumb and forefinger. Rotate the base 1/4 turn counter clockwise to unlock it from the assembly. Pull the bulb straight out of the headlight housing.

Pull Out High Beam Bulb
Pry Off Power Connector
Power Connector & Bulb
Use a small flathead screwdriver to gently pry off the high beam bulb's power connector.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-049
Philips H9 Bulb 12V 65W
Insert New H9 Bulb
1/4 Turn Clockwise To Lock
Avoid touching the glass part of the new halogen bulb. If you do touch the bulb or it gets dirty, wipe it clean with a paper towel moistened with rubbing alcohol before installing it.

Insert a new H9 high beam bulb straight into the headlight housing and rotate the base 1/4 turn clockwise to secure it in place.

Low Beam Light Bulb
1/4 Turn Counter Clockwise
Pull Out Old Low Beam
The Low Beam headlight bulb is located closer to the outside edge of the vehicle and has a bright green plastic label.

Rotate the base of the bulb 1/4 turn counter clockwise before pulling it straight out of the headlight housing.

Pry Off Power Plug
Power Plug & Low Beam
Philips H11 LL 12V 55W
Use a small flathead screwdriver to gently pry off the low beam's power connector clips and separate the bulb.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-058
Insert New H11 Bulb
1/4 Turn Clockwise
Sidemarker Bulb Socket
Insert a new H11low beam bulb straight into the headlight assembly and rotate it 1/4 turn clockwise to lock it into place.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-061
1/4 Turn Counter Clockwise
Pull Out Side Marker Bulb
# 168 Bulb
The Side Marker light bulb is located at the outer edge of the headlight assembly.

Rotate the side marker light socket 1/4 turn counter clockwise and pull it straight out of the headlight.

Pull the side marker bulb straight out of the socket and push in a new # 168bulb.

If you would like to have brighter side marker lights, install some compatible replacement 168 LED bulbs.

Insert the bulb and socket back into the headlight and rotate it 1/4 turn clockwise to secure it in place.

1/4 Turn Clockwise
Turn Signal Bulb Socket
Pull Off Wire Loom
The turn signal light bulb socket is located at the inner edge of the headlight assembly.

Gently pull the wire loom away from the rear of the headlight to make some slack. Then rotate the turn signal bulb's socket 1/4 turn counter clockwise and pull it straight out of the headlight.


1/4 Turn Counter Clockwise
Pull Out Old Turn Signal Bulb
# 4157NA Turn Signal Bulb
Pull the old turn signal light bulb straight out of the socket.

Push in a new # 4157NA(or 5702NAK) amber colored light bulb straight into the socket.

Insert the turn signal socket back into the headlight and rotate it 1/4 turn clockwise to secure it in place.

Alternate Bulb # 5702NAK
Re-attach Wire Loom
Line Up Plastic Spikes
Re-attach the wire loom to the rear of the headlight housing.

It would be a good idea to test the new light bulb(s) now before re-assembling the bumper.

Turn the headlight back over and line up the plastic spikes on the rear with the holes in the car's metal body work.

Insert Peg Into Hole
Headlight Assembly Replaced
Tighten 10mm Side Bolt
Push the headlight back into place until the plastic spikes are fully seated.

Insert the black 10mm bolt on the side of the headlight and tighten it with the socket and ratcheting wrench.

Insert Black Front Bolt
Re-Attach Black Bracket
Black Bracket In Place
Insert the 2nd black 10mm bolt into the front of the headlight housing and tighten it.

Re-attach the black plastic bracket in place over the top edge of the headlight. Insert and tighten the two silver 10mm bolts.

Insert 2 Silver 10mm Bolts
Line Up Front Bumper
Lower Bumper Over Bracket
Line up the front of the bumper and gently push it towards the vehicle.

Lower the top part of the bumper over the black plastic bracket until the bumper is flush with the quarter panel.

Top Of Bumper In Place
Insert Bumper Side Over Bracket
Side of Bumper Installed
Next insert the side of the bumper over the black plastic bracket by the wheel well.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-085
Test New Headlight Bulbs
Line Up Bumper & Bracket
Insert Closer 10mm Bolt
If you haven't already, test the new headlight bulb(s) before continuing the re-assembly process.

Pull aside the wheel well liner and insert the 10mm bolt back into the closest hole. Tighten the closest 10mm bolt and also the other one located a few inches forward of the wheel well.

Further 10mm Bolt
Tighten Both 10mm Bolts
Wheel Well Liner
Line up the black plastic wheel well liner with the holes in the bumper cover and re-insert the Xmas tree fasteners.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-091
Insert Plastic Pop Rivets
Line Up Liner & Hole
Bottom Of Bumper
Push all four black plastic pop rivets firmly into the wheel well until they are flush with the liner.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-094
Insert Xmas Tree Fastener
Insert 7mm Screws
Tighten 7mm Screws
Move to the underbody cover located below the bumper and insert the 7mm screws. Tighten the 7mm screws and re-insert the black plastic pop rivet fastener.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-097
Replace Plastic Radiator Cover
Replace 11 Bolts & 4 Rivets
2 Large Bolts - Front Center
Place the black plastic radiator cover back over the top of the engine bay.

Replace the 9 standard 10mm bolts, the 2 large head 10mm bolts (front center near hood latch), and the 4 black pop rivets (front edge).

10mm Bolt By Latch
4 Pop Rivets - Front Corners
Insert Center of Rivet
To re-install the black plastic pop rivets, first insert the larger outer piece and then push in the smaller piece into the center.2008-2012-Chevy-Malibu-Headlight-Bulbs-Replacement-Guide-103
Tighten 11 10mm Bolts
Re-Assembly Complete
Test Low, High Beam, Signal
Tighten all 11 of the 10mm bolts and close the hood of the car to complete the job.

Be sure to record the bulb change in your vehicle's service records.

Please check out my other 2008-2012 Chevy Malibu Repair & Maintenance Guides.

2008-2012 Chevy Malibu headlight and plug replacement

He pulled a wooden shoe from his foot and threw it at the rat. Shushara, releasing the wooden girl, with difficulty pulled out his club, still shuddering, and did not have time to pour out a fountain of rat sperm. He gritted his teeth and disappeared. That is what self-indulgence leads to.

Now discussing:

Madeleine appeared in the doorway out of nowhere, asking if she could help me with something. It struck me that her full body was a darker shade than Sherrilyn's, and I shook the thought away before telling her I was going to. Take a nap. Once in my room, I washed my face with water and filtered everything that happened through my sore brain.

Why did I let her control the conversation like that.

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