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How to Restore Your Headlights

How to Restore Your Headlights

You depend on your headlights for your safety and that of your family. Faded, yellowed or cloudy headlights are unsafe, costly to replace and may reduce your nighttime visibility by as much as 50%.

Headlight lenses are manufactured with a plastic coating which can become dull, oxidised, yellow and hazy from exposure to pollution, sunlight, harsh chemicals and climate conditions. The damage reduces the effectiveness of your headlights, making driving at night less safe. New headlights are expensive; however it is possible to restore your yellowing headlights in just 3 easy steps…


WHAT YOU WILL NEED…


  • Clean Microfibre Cloth
  • Cutting Compound such as car polish, metal polish (liquid abrasives)
  • Wet & Dry Sandpapers (dry abrasive) in a range of 600 grit, 1500 grit, and 3000 grit (the higher the number, the finer the grit size)
  • Foam backing pad to wrap sandpaper around, ensuring uniform pressure as you sand
  • Masking Tape to protect the surrounding paintwork
  • Water Spray Bottle
  • Isopropyl Alcohol
  • Headlight Protection Film Heat Gun or Hairdryer Craft Knife
  1. Rinse and dry the outside of your headlight and the surrounding area with a microfibre cloth to remove any surface dirt. Prepare your work area by masking the surrounding areas of the headlight lens with masking tape to protect the paintwork on the headlight panels.

  2. Spray water on your headlight lens and the 600 grit sandpaper; and begin by sanding in a horizontal direction all over the lens. Spray water as you need, using light to medium pressure on your sandpaper, repeating the process until the colour of the water on the lens turns from yellow to milky white. Wipe the lens and change to 1500 grit sandpaper. Repeat the process using vertical strokes to eliminate the vertical scratches from the previous sanding. Wipe lens again and repeat using the fine 3000 grit sandpaper, again using horizontal strokes and light to medium pressure. Remove the masking tape, you are now ready to use the compound. Place the compound on a clean, dry microfibre cloth and start buffing, using uniform pressure covering the entire area; alternating between horizontal and vertical passes, then wipe the headlight lens with isopropyl alcohol ensuring it is clean, dry, and dust free.

  3. Apply a headlight protective coating to keep the headlight from yellowing again. Headlight protection film is invisible and lasts about 5 years. The best thing is the film doesn’t bind to the headlight light, so when the film starts to yellow, simply peel off and replace. Ensure your hands are clean to avoid fingerprints on the film. Spray the lens and the film with water and place the film over the lens. Then start smoothing the film diagonally from one corner to the other, working from the centre of the headlight. That way you can push all the wrinkles to the edges. Use the heat gun to stretch the film around all the curves. Once completed, use your craft knife to trim the excess film around the edge, and smooth off the folds one last time.

Choose from a range of affordable headlight restoration kits @