Puddle Lights/Side Mirror Lights 4Runner

 In 5th Gen Mods, Install, Lighting, Maintenance

Puddle Lights aka the Side Mirror Lights 5th Gen 4Runner

Puddle Lights aka the Side Mirror Lights (LED SWAP) on 5th Gen 4Runner

The puddle lights aka the side mirror lights on 5th Gen 4Runner are a pretty cool feature if you have them. Not all models come standard with the these.

When you unlock your 4Runner, your puddle lights, as well as your dome light and map lights turn on. If you are looking for any of the other light bulb numbers, we wrote a post on that a while back.

When you are in a dark parking lot or out on the trail, it is nice to have bright clear light to shine on the ground. With our factory puddle lights, they will give you of light but will not carry as much light output as a set of super bright LED bulbs.

With a set of bright LED bulbs on your side mirrors, you will light up much more ground than your factory bulbs.

If you swap out the factory lights with aftermarket LED lights, you will also have a much better look, overall. Replacing these lights in combination with your license plate lights, reverse lights and interior lights will give you a pretty good looking light set-up.

With the wide variety of lights out there, be careful on what brands of LED bulbs you choose. There are hundreds of options on eBay but I personally wouldn’t recommend much on eBay. What you need to focus on is a company with a reputable brand name, not knock-off brands.

Puddle Lights – T10 Flat Bulbs

Puddle Lights (Side Mirrors): 168/194 (x2 bulbs)

If you are looking to complete the entire 4Runner’s exterior lights with LEDs, please check out the list below.


  • License Plate Light Bulb: 168 (X2 bulbs)
  • Side Marker Light Bulb Front: 168 (x2 bulbs)
  • Puddle Lights (Side Mirrors): 168/194 (x2 bulbs – T10 – T Shape with Flat Bottom)
  • Turn Signal Light Bulb Rear: 7440A (x2 bulbs)
  • Turn Signal Light Bulb Front: 7444NA (x2 bulbs)
  • Parking Light Bulb: 7444NA (x2 bulbs)
  • Back Up/ Reverse Light Bulb: 912/921 (x2 bulbs)

Step #1: Remove Mirror

This whole process is a bit nerve racking but with patience, you will be fine. Start by removing the actual mirror. Grab the outside of the mirror and push out. Once your mirror is pushed out enough, you can grab the whole mirror housing with one hand and then pull the glass off with the other hand. It will pop right off. You won’t break anything here, it just seems pretty sketchy.

Step #2: Pop Tab on Cover

Once you have the actual glass face off, you will need to locate this little white tab. This white tab is holding the other side of the mirror into place. This one tab holds the whole white piece in place.

Step #3: Plastic Pry Tools for Tab

Using your plastic pry tools or a flathead screwdriver, you will need to pop this plastic tab. Once the tab is released, you can wiggle the white housing loose and pull it off.

Step #4: Unscrew Housing

Step #5: Pull Bottom Housing Off

Here is where things get a little interesting. To access the puddle light bulb, you need to remove this lower black housing. There are multiple tabs on the backside of this housing that you need to release. Be patient with this section, as everything in here is very tight. Start by pulling and release tabs all the way around the bottom and top of the black housing. Once everything is semi-loose, you should be able to remove the whole assembly.

Step #6: Twist bulb housing to remove

With the bottom assembly and housing removed, locate the bulb housing. Twist the bulb housing and then pull the light bulb fixture out.

Step #7: Pull out OEM Bulb

Step #8: Swap in New LED Bulb & Test Bulb

Step #9: Run Yellow Wire & Twist Bulb Housing in Place

When you are putting everything back together, just make sure to run this yellow wire back to its original location. If you don’t run this wire back in the original location, you will probably be fine. But, it’s always nice to have things back the way they were.

Lock your light fixture back into the light housing. You are now ready to start putting everything back together.

Step #10: Button Up Housing

Start putting your assembly back together. Just make sure to put your turn signal light into place, before you start snapping down the lower black assembly. If you forget, you will need to pull it off again, and then align the turn signal light into place.

Step #11: Attach Mirror

Line up your tabs and watch everything very close. Make sure everything is lined up before pressing down on your glass plate.

Step #12: Firmly Press Mirror Into Place

Once you have everything lined up, press firmly. Everything should snap into place and your bulb swap is complete!


This light bulb swap was by far the most difficult of the 4Runner lightbulbs so far. As long as you have patience, you will be fine. The look of the side mirror with LEDs is much better than the OEM bulbs.

If you have any questions, please let us know in the comments below.

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Showing 7 comments
  • David

    Just a tip….you do not have to remove the glass portion of the mirror. I had success pulling on the cap with both of my hands and it came right off. Just pull from the left bottom corner.

    • Brenan - Trail4R

      David, That tab that holds the white surface cap on is pretty tight. To each their own for sure, if it worked for you, awesome. But, I would still pull the glass off. Thanks for the tip.

      • Charlie Nguyen

        Which way would you guys pull the tabs?

    • Chad

      David was correct. You don’t have to remove the mirror or mess with the white tab. Simply pop off the painted outer cap, then unscrew the two screws, and follow the rest of the instructions as written.

  • Matthew

    Hey Brenan, Great post! (as always)
    I see this post was written in Jan of this year, how are these bulbs holding up ?

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