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Blocked Light Pods

Having 'Pop-Up' lights is cool and one of the many features that sets the Esprit aside from 'other' cars. But it does have it's drawbacks! One problem the Esprit's 'Pop-Up' lights suffers from is blocked Pods. Water fills up in the pod when the drain hole gets block with dirt and leaves. The lights then sit in this water and rust. This can be costly as the reflective surface can peel off reducing the lights beam (and failing MoTs) and the screws used to hold and adjust the lights corrode badly and are very expensive to replace. See here for a guide to replacing the damage blocked pods can cause.

Unblocking the pods is easy, it's just that the problem isn't noticed as the lights are down most of the time and you won't discover the problem unless you're looking for it. Below is a quick guide to how it's done. LEW's Esprit had one pod blocked with leaves and was only noticed as we where replacing our Headlight Surrounds with new Carbon Fibre versions. Unfortunately we didn't get a picture of the pod full of water, but we guess you can imagine what it would look like.


This job will take about 5 minutes and isn't particularly difficult.


You will need the following parts:


You will need the following tools:

Lenght of wire or pipe cleaner
Socket set or Spanners

Quick Fix


Rung above in red are the screws and adjusters that will suffer if you're pod is blocked. You can also see in the middle picture the right hand light has lost a lot of it's reflective backing. We used a long piece of wire which we bent at the end to help us clear the blockage. A long pipe cleaner could also be used.


Slip it into the pod at the front and in the middle as shown above. You may want to use a cloth to make sure you don't scratch the paintwork while you're moving the wire around. The drain hole is in the middle of the pod and towards the back. The hole is about the 15mm in diameter, so shouldn't be too hard to find. A few pokes should clear the hole and you'll hear the water running out under the car.

Actually cleaning the inside of the pod can only really be done by lifting the pod. We cleaned out most of the leaves, but you can see it's still dirty, so we will be keeping an eye on ours and will clean properly if they get blocked again.

Proper Fix


To get into the pods and give them a proper clean you're going to have to get the tools out and lift the pods out. Unbolt one end of the actuator rod located at the rear of the light inside the bonnet. Once unbolted, you can push the entire assembly upwards. Remember to close the bonnet when you do, so not to scratch any paint work.


You can now get your whole had in and clean out the pod of all the dirty that's been in there all those years. Once clean reattach the rod, check everything's working and you're done.

LEW's Verdict

This is something you should be checking regularly as the damage it can cause can be costly and the fix is 'quick and easy'. Just make sure you check them every month or so to make sure neither is blocked, especially when the leaves are dropping, as that's what causes most of the blockages. Look after your lights and they'll look after you.

This mod was performed by LEW on their 1992 SE, with additional picture from Tony Grasso

If you have any comments, feel free to e-mail us at admin@lotusespritworld.com


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