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I have a Honda Civic 2008 whose exterior plastic on one of the taillights was broken sometime ago. I duck taped it to keep it in place. The taillight bulb itself is good and functioning properly.

What options do I have in terms of doing this DIY? Is it possible to just replace the exterior plastic/glass?

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Usually the glass is bonded on to the reflector unit, so you probably won't be able to buy the glass on its own - You'll have to buy a complete unit.

Your best bet is to ask around any scrapyards/junkyards in your area, see if they have any Civics in stock, as that would be considerably cheaper than a new unit from Honda.

A decent workshop manual should describe the removal/refitting procedure, most cars I've seen it is usually held in by 2 or 3 bolts and/or a couple of plastic clips.

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It is possible to replace just the exterior plastic/glass, but the problem is finding it for a decent price. Since your car is a 2008 (newer), it may be harder to find at a scrapyard. If you can, then buy the part. If not, you'll have to get the replacement from Honda and probably pay an arm and a leg, but once you have the part, the actual replacement is not too difficult.

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