In time, your vehicle's headlights will become hazy in appearance from oxidation from the illumination under the glass. Many people opt to buy a new headlight when this occurs, often at a hefty price. If you have a bit of patience and the proper tools, you may be able to remove the hazing from the highlight on your own. Here are some instructions to follow in getting your hazy headlight looking like new.
Materials You Will Need
- Non-abrasive sponge
- Bucket of soapy water
- Garden hose
- Painter's tape
- Fine, medium, and coarse-grit sandpaper
- Block of wood
- Spray bottle
- Microfiber cloth
- Headlight polish
- Rubbing alcohol
Clean The Headlight
Before you start sanding down the surface of your headlight, it should be thoroughly cleaned so the only scratch marks added will be from your sandpaper. Cleanse the headlight using a mild detergent mixed in warm water. Apply using a non-abrasive sponge. Scrub the surface of the headlight, removing any dead insects and debris. Rinse well with a garden hose and allow to dry in the sun for a few hours before starting the repair.
Dry Sand The Headlight
Use painter's tape to cover all edges of the metal portions around your headlight so you do not accidentally scratch your paint job when sanding. Place a piece of coarse-grit sandpaper around a block of wood and attach using a piece of your painter's tape to keep it in place. The wood will help give you leverage as you sand the surface of the headlight. Start sanding in one direction for about ten strokes. Do not sand in a circular motion.
Change the direction you are sanding and tackle another area of the headlight by rubbing it for another ten strokes. Continue to change directions, rubbing the headlight for ten strokes at a time, removing all pitted areas and bumps from the surface as a result. Polish the headlight with a piece of microfiber cloth after it has been sanded. Your headlight will appear opaque in appearance.
Wet Sand The Headlight
You will now repeat the same procedure, but will add water to the process. Place your medium and fine-grit sandpaper in your bucket of soapy water to soak for a few minutes. Scoop up some of the soapy mixture into a spray bottle. Remove the medium-grit sandpaper and place it around the block of wood. Sand the headlight for ten strokes and spray the surface of the headlight with the soapy mixture. Switching the direction, sand for ten strokes, and add more soap. Continue until the entire headlight has been sanded. Switch to the fine-grit sandpaper and repeat the process.
Shine The Light
When you are done sanding, dab a piece of microfiber cloth into some headlight polish. Apply it to the headlight using short strokes, in the same way you had sanded. Use a dry microfiber cloth to remove the headlight polish. Apply more to the headlight by stroking it on in another direction. Again, dry it with another piece of cloth. Continue this process several times to help fill in all the scratches the sandpaper had left on the headlight. When you are satisfied with the appearance of your headlight, add a layer of rubbing alcohol to give it a crystal-clear shine.
For more help, contact a company like Hawaii Import Parts.