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Old Mar 21st, 10, 03:08 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Aggravating oxidation on headlight lens

Okay, I am sure there are alot of you out there who have opinions on the best method (or product) to get rid of the discusting oxidation on headlight lens.
I've talked to alot of guys at car shows and all say there is no escaping the high degree of "elbow" grease required regardless of any chosen product.
There's this one guy where I live who setup shop at a street corner and has been doing increasingly good business on headlights as a sole business! I hear tell he charges $40 a headlight which seems expensive, but maybe he's just covering his a** because of all the hard work. Others tell me to use a hand drill which obviously would make it better.
Still other opinions are to just spend the $$ and buy whole new OEM headlight lenses??
I counted 4-different products at my local Wal-Mart ranging from Mothers to McQuaries, to Turtle Wax and one off-brand which is $15.

Any other opinions out there??
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Old Mar 21st, 10, 04:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Aggravating oxidation on headlight lens

I've used a metal polish, one of them is Mr. Buffer and a t-shirt or towel.
All you can do is polish out the cloudiness - the cracks remain and warrants replacement assy. 3M Finesse III is good, alum wheel polish is good.
Mr. Buffer is internet only sales.
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Old Mar 22nd, 10, 03:43 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Aggravating oxidation on headlight lens

hi speed buffer and 3m polish and keep moving the buffer around dont let it sit in one spot.thats what we use at the dealership to do cars all the time, no need to go out and buy cleaning kits?
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Old Mar 28th, 10, 04:50 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Aggravating oxidation on headlight lens

...over the weekend I bought a McQuaries restore kit for $20. Hooked up the buffer wheel to my variable speed drill, turned on some oldies, popped a top on a brew and went to work.
Following the instructions I worked on each headlight for about 20-25 minutes and was fairly satisfied with the results.
Next w/e I may try again, but to me it seems like some oxidation spots may be permanent? ...we'll see next go round, but overall I am satisfied and they look pretty nice to me.
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Old Mar 28th, 10, 05:53 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Aggravating oxidation on headlight lens

The composite headlights have a protective film that is extremely durable. This film is usually what discollors and cracks. The best way to get rid of the yellow, cracked or cloudy lense is to first remove/sand the coating off. ail lights dont have this coating and are much softer/easier to polish.

I use a DA sander with 220 paper to remove the film and come back with 600 and final sand with 1000 wet. You dont need the plastic specific polish, regular 3M polishing compounds work best with a high speed buffer/polisher. The 3M heavy duity polish makes quick work of things while a medium cut like finess it is good for the final polish.

If you take your time and do it correctly the lights will look like brand new.
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Old Mar 29th, 10, 03:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Aggravating oxidation on headlight lens

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremiah View Post
The composite headlights have a protective film that is extremely durable. This film is usually what discollors and cracks. The best way to get rid of the yellow, cracked or cloudy lense is to first remove/sand the coating off. ail lights dont have this coating and are much softer/easier to polish.

I use a DA sander with 220 paper to remove the film and come back with 600 and final sand with 1000 wet. You dont need the plastic specific polish, regular 3M polishing compounds work best with a high speed buffer/polisher. The 3M heavy duity polish makes quick work of things while a medium cut like finess it is good for the final polish.

If you take your time and do it correctly the lights will look like brand new.
I sorta did the same on our 2 daily drivers. ('01 Mustang & '05 Corolla.)

Wet sanding, starting with 800, to 1000, to 1500, to 2000. Tape/mask off surrounding areas. It's o.k. for it (the tape) to get wet during sanding, just don't let it peel off when you start to use the buffer.
Grabbed my variable drill & got a Mothers powerball. Bought a bottle of the headlight cleaning stuff from the local parts store, buffed away to it looking brand spankin' new.
Took a little time, had the radio on in the garage, with a beer, or 2....but was worth it.
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Old Apr 11th, 10, 02:56 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Post Re: Aggravating oxidation on headlight lens

Try here: http://www.doublehornproducts.com/home.php?cat=1
I used this on my 2001 and it works very well
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Old Apr 15th, 10, 06:13 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Aggravating oxidation on headlight lens

i have used headlight fix stuff before, and i found the best way is o use sandpaper in 3 steps, then use plastix polish

just be aware that once you do it, you need to use the polish every once in a while or the headlights will just get messed up again

i started with 800, then i used 1200, and finished with 1400
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