Let’s talk about your headlights, do they look terrible? Are they yellow, faded and foggy? Is it driving you crazy? Not to worry, this is a very common problem with all modern cars today. In fact 4 out of 5 cars on the road suffer from faded and foggy headlights. Depending on how bad the lenses are they may be restricting your visibility by 45-65%. Since it’s starting to get dark by 5 PM this isn’t great for your evening commute, and it’s a danger for you and other drivers on the road. The steps below should tell you exactly what you need to do to clear them up and make them shiny and beautiful again. Before I do that let’s talk about why they look the way they do.
As time goes by the combination of sunshine and the heat produced by your headlights causes the Clear coat on the headlight to breakdown and oxidize. The longer they go without proper care the worse they get and it doesn’t take long to ruin an expensive headlight unit.
Your options are pretty straight forward, you can head down to your local auto parts store and buy a $15.00 restoration kit which will require a fair amount of elbow grease but will achieve the desired effect for a period of time. However, since we didn’t put anything on the headlight to protect it from the sun it’s only a matter of time before they go right back to looking faded and yellow. This can be pretty frustrating. If you don’t mind a bit of work you can repeat this process about once every 3-6 months and not really worry about it.
If you are anything like us we prefer more permanent solutions. So here is what we recommend to solve this problem once and for all. Oh and it shouldn’t cost you more than $125 bucks.
The process is simple, fast, cost effective and easy. We use a 4 step process, its clean, sand, polish and protect, sounds pretty simple right. That’s because it is pretty simple. Here are the tools you will need to do this yourself.
- Soapy water just enough to clean the lights.
- Clay bar pad
- 2 towels
- 2000 grit Sandpaper
- Dual action polisher. (Check harbor freight, they are cheap and work pretty well)
- Polishing pad (I like to use a blue pad, or light cut pad)
- Polishing compound (use a very light cutting compound, almost a finishing paste)
- Clear coat protectant wax or Paint protection film.
The first step is to clean and clay bar the headlights. Be thorough here, you want to remove any hard stuck on dirt, debris and bugs. Before you move on to the next step give the headlights a good visual inspection. Make sure they are perfectly clean and decide now how bad the oxidation is, we may be able to clear it up with just a quick polish so we recommend you try that first before moving on to the sand paper.
The next step is to buff and polish the headlight, this should remove most of the oxidation and yellowing. This step may have to be repeated a few times so be patient and take your time. We highly recommend using a dual action polisher, this will eliminate the chances of damaging the headlight or the painted surfaces around the light. Use a blue pad, a light cutting compound and gently and slowly go over the headlight. Remember to keep the polisher moving and don’t apply to much pressure to the head of the polisher. There are a ton of great videos on you tube showing the proper method of doing this. I would recommend watching a few of them just to get the basics down.
If you have gone over the headlight a few times with the polisher and you still have a lot of left over oxidation the next step is to GENTLY, EVENLY and SLOWLY start to go over the headlight with a very light grit sandpaper. (Only do this in extreme cases, most of the oxidation should come off with a focused buffing.) This will remove the oxidation and get rid of the fog on the headlights. You’ll want to really take your time with this step, you can easily do PERMANENT DAMAGE to the headlight if you are not careful. Remember to use plenty of water and slowly go over the headlight. It doesn’t take much force or scrubbing. After you have evenly gone over the headlight repeat step two and buff and polish to a shine.
The last step is the most important, now that we have cleaned and restored the headlight we have to protect the headlight from future damage. We have two options for doing this, the first is to apply a layer of Paint protection film to the light. This is the most effective method, however it can be very difficult and can get expensive. Instead we recommend that the DIYer use a clear coat protectant wax to protect the lenses. You can get this stuff at any auto parts store and it works really well. You will need to apply it at least twice a year to keep the headlight looking nice and shiny.
The clear coat protectant can be applied with your new Dual action polisher or by hand with a polishing pad/cloth. This part is pretty easy, just follow the directions on the bottle and you can’t miss.
This is the best way we have found to properly and permanently restore Headlights. Don’t take our word for it, give it a try for yourself. Or if you would rather spend your free time watching football and hanging out with family than give Express Mobile a call. We can come to you and take care of that on site and in no time at all. Thanks for reading. Please comment and share, and if you have any questions just let us know.
3 Ways Window Tint Will Change Your Life
Automotive window tint is an amazing product that offers many benefits to the consumer. Since we spend so much time sitting in our cars, tolerating traffic and singing out loud to Arianna Grande Songs that come on the radio. It’s important to make your car as comfortable and private as possible. If you have never had the pleasure of tinted windows on your vehicle here are 3 ways window tint will change your life.
The first and most important benefit is Ultra Violet Ray reduction. Ultra Violet Rays or UV Rays are put off by the sun and they destroy virtually everything they come in contact with. UV can damage your skin, cause sunburn, shine through your car windows, and destroy and fade the interior of your car. Have you noticed your upholstery looking dry and faded, that’s Ultra Violet Rays having their way with your car’s interior. This is where window film comes into play. By placing even a light shade of tint on your windows we can cut UV rays by almost 100%, 99% to be exact.
Our second favorite benefit is window tints ability to drastically reduce the heat that comes into your car. Here in Denver the Sun gets intense, even when its only 70 degrees you can still feel the wonderful sunshine cooking your skin. Spend an hour sitting in I25 Traffic on a sunny day and you’ll find yourself getting a little red and pushing your Air Conditioning to the max. With high quality window film we can reduce the heat coming into your car between 50-75%. That’s cutting out more than half of the heat beaming into your car. We will try not to bore you with the details but window film does this by blocking, rejecting and absorbing Infa-Red heat put off by the sun. There by drastically reducing the heat that comes into your car. Saving your air conditioner, and saving you from burning yourself on a hot steering wheel or seat belts.
If you are anything like me when my favorite pop song comes on the radio I’m going to sing along and probably dance a little too. This brings us to our third life changing benefit of window tint, Privacy. Whether you want to be totally invisible to cars around you or just want to get out of the “Fish Bowl” window tint can be a real help. By cutting out some of the visual light that comes through your windows tint can give you the privacy you need to sing, dance, or yell at fellow drivers on the road.
There you have it, 3 ways window tint can change your life. It can cut Harmful Ultra Violet rays from your life protecting your skin and vehicles interior. It will reduce heat making your commute more tolerable and efficient. Best of all, it frees you up to be your wonderful singing, dancing , nose picking self. Thanks for reading and feel free to send us any questions you may have.