Vehicle Headlight Restoration

Headlight Restoration

Now that you have your new paint job, you’ve realized how bad your headlights look next to the new paint. You’ve likely known for a while that they weren’t as bright as they should be but you didn’t realize they looked this bad! And looks are only part of the issue. The reality is cloudy headlights can be a real hazard when driving at night in rainy, foggy or snowy weather.

It’s easy to overlook the fading and yellowing of your headlights because it doesn’t affect the performance of the vehicle like a bad battery, brake pads or even a burned-out headlight. Since it happens over time you may not even notice the difference until you drive a car with new headlights or restore your own.

What Causes Headlights to Become Yellow and Cloudy?

In the past, headlights were made of glass and weren’t prone to the same issues as the newer polycarbonate plastic material used today. Although these headlights are very durable, over time they are prone to the effects of UV rays from the sun, gravel, salt from the roads in cold climates and deterioration of the clear coat (new headlights come with a protective clear coat). Once this happens they will lose their effectiveness which can be dangerous. Not only does it impair your view ahead, it reduces the visibility of your car to others on darkened roads. Add to this driving in inclement weather and you can have a very dangerous situation that is completely avoidable and doesn’t cost a lot of money.

DIY Headlight Restore or Go to a Pro?

If you are a DIY type you will probably want to tackle your headlight restoration yourself. There are some very good products on the market like Meguiars Headlight Restoration  or 3M Headlight Restoration both which come with detailed instructions on how to use the products. There is a certain amount of skill and caution you will want to take since you are using a sanding material which, if not used properly can damage the headlight. You can even find complete video instructions on exactly how to use the products.

If you aren’t really into DIY you may want to look for a professional to handle your restoration. This service is sometimes offered by car detailers, auto repair shops and some window tinting businesses. They will essentially do exactly what the DIY kits do but will use professional materials and equipment.

Whatever you decide the one thing to remember is that keeping your headlights bright and clear is a good safety measure and one that shouldn’t be overlooked when maintaining your vehicle. Don’t wait until you find yourself on a dark unlit road at night with headlights that don’t function 100%.

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