Moisture in the Taillight – 2009-2012 Acura RL

March 6, 2015


Applies To: 2009–12 RL – ALL


2009–12 RL: Moisture in the Taillight

(Supersedes 10-021, dated August 17, 2010, to revise the information marked by the black bars)



  • Under Applies To:, 2011–12 model years were added.
  • Under CORRECTIVE ACTION, the second paragraph was changed.



Moisture, fogging, or small water droplets are visible inside one or both taillights. and it does not dry up even after several days of dry weather.

NOTE: Although the updated taillights are an improvement, they are not sealed units. They are vented to allow a free exchange of air, so some moisture in the taillights under some conditions is normal.



High humidity plus insufficient ventilation causes condensation in the taillight(s).



Inspect the taillights, and replace them if they are not the updated type. If equipped with updated taillights, replace the taillight vent caps with drain tubes.

Do Not replace updated taillights that have drain tubes installed. There is no further action required for this vehicle. Moisture will dissipate by itself and won’t affect taillight operation.



Drain Tube Kit: P/N 06335-TM8-305
Left Taillight Assembly: P/N 33550-SJA-A13 Moisture in the Taillight - 2009-2012 Acura RL » small light
Right Taillight Assembly: P/N 33500-SJA-A13 Moisture in the Taillight - 2009-2012 Acura RL » small light



OP# Description FRT
7141C0 Replace one taillight. 0.2
7141C1 Replace both taillights. 0.4
7140A7 Install a drain tube kit on one taillight. 0.2
7140A8 Install a drain tube kit on both taillights. 0.4


The normal warranty applies.

Failed Part: 33550-SJA-A11
Defect Code: 09999
Symptom Code: 01301
Skill Level: Repair Procedure



  1. Check the taillights to see if they been replaced with updated taillights (with slots).
    • If updated taillights are installed, go to REPAIR PROCEDURE, and install drain tube kits.
    • If the original style taillights are installed (no slots), go to REPAIR PROCEDURE, and replace the taillight(s).

Updated taillights with visible slots

Original taillights with no visible slots




  1. Open the trunk lid, and remove the taillight lid.

taillight lid


  1. Remove the two bolts from the taillight.
  2. Remove the maintenance lid in the trunk and the special nut from the taillight.
  3. Slightly pull out the taillight, turn the bulb sockets 45 degrees counterclockwise to disconnect them, then remove the taillight.

bulb sockets


  1. Carefully remove the two rubber vent caps from the taillight with a flat-tip screwdriver.

remove the two rubber vent caps


  1. Install drain tubes where the two rubber vent caps were removed. After installing the drain tubes, make sure they face each other at about 45 degrees from vertical as shown.

Install drain tubes


  1. Reinstall the bulb sockets, the taillight, the special nut, the two bolts, and the maintenance lid.
  2. If the other taillight has moisture in it, repeat steps 1 thru 7 on that side.






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