Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 11-28-2019, 12:55 AM   #1
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Arizona
Posts: 614
Default Related to brighter headlights

I believe one of my brightness issues has to do with the lens over the light itself. It's cloudy. Has anyone ever tried the products to restore these lenses to a clear state? If so, any recommendations as to branding?

thx.glenn
__________________

GallenH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2019, 01:14 AM   #2
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 8,749
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by GallenH View Post
I believe one of my brightness issues has to do with the lens over the light itself. It's cloudy. Has anyone ever tried the products to restore these lenses to a clear state? If so, any recommendations as to branding?

thx.glenn

I tried a couple of different methods with my old Escort, and all were marginal and short lived at best in terms of improvement.
__________________

booster is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2019, 02:59 AM   #3
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: California
Posts: 134
Default For Me, Replacement was the Solution

I have an '04 Sprinter and the headlights were pretty cloudy. I tried a polishing kit on them and wasn't satisfied with the results. So, I replaced them.

It took two tries on one side; one unit arrived with the angle-aiming mechanism damaged in shipment. Fortunately, the parts vendor replaced it.
rvsprinterguy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2019, 12:56 PM   #4
Silver Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: California
Posts: 63
Default

Depends on cause. If abraded surface, polishing works. Donít need a kit, just treat it like plastic finishing. Wet sand with finer and finer grits then rouge polish. If darkened plastic then replacement only.
mikeehlert is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2019, 04:10 PM   #5
New Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Washington
Posts: 11
Default

I used a 3-M product cost wasunder $30 on my Dodge pickup. Took my time didn't rush the process and they were like new. They were then waxed and have lasted for years. Do it slow do it right.
Don Kohler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2019, 04:30 PM   #6
Silver Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: WA
Posts: 54
Default

I used cheap toothpaste and a buffing machine with wool bonnet, and the lens cleared up in 10 seconds. The machine plus a mild abrasive is the key.
YMMV
Peder_y2k is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2019, 07:21 PM   #7
New Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 8
Default

I have used MaQuires (sp?) headlight polishing kit. It worked very well, but the restored clarity only lasted a feww months.
jschurman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2019, 08:22 PM   #8
Platinum Member
 
Storysrvwego's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Idaho
Posts: 115
Default

Over the years I have tried a couple of headlamp lens polishing kits. The last and best one I personally I tried was a 3M kit. Convenience and fast "ehh ok" results I think is the reason to try kits if you have an electric or cordless drill. Frankly I get the same results with a bucket of water with generous dips of no less than fine and extra fine grit wet & dry sandpapers on a block. No super aggressive moves with spin kit or sandpaper method so you do not overheat the plastic lens. The results do not bring the lens quite back to original. And usually the polish job is short lived but might be long enough to warrant a try. Oh, if you bought a vehicle used, you might have the bonus work to remove an initially sparkly clear spray coating that turns yellow they sometimes, generously coat everything including headlights with. Grrrr.

I recommend you protect the painted surfaces surrounding the headlight in case you skitter of the lens with your polishing wheel or fine/super fine grit wet sandpaper.

Depending on the vehicle and bulb type - in many cases you can buy a pair of replacement headlamp assemblies for under $150. Hunt around places like AMAZON or even eBay but try to buy from a seller with a good record.

Give the polish of your existing headlamps a shot first though. They will at least iimprove some, perhaps lasting good enough for a few years. Assuming you have halogen removable bulbs, replace both of them with a brand new pair of original 55/60 watt'rs. They will last longer and not get you in any trouble with oncoming drivers than the spendier, higher power bulbs offered. Depending on the age of the bulbs you have now, a pair of new ones may restore some light output loss of the aged pair. Still seem not to produce what they should? You might have a low voltage/inadequate current flow situation address. If that is the issue -

Someone that has a solid knowledge of electrical principals and can work under the hood SAFELY with an engine running can first do a simple measurement of the voltage at the headlamp connector with lights turned on to replicate driving conditions. If your not sure you can do this safely. STOP. It can help even the best tech sometimes to connect meter leads while the engine is not running; checking for potential tanglement and once sure of ones connections, meter cables layment in the engine compartment area and meter secured so that it won't fall into the path of moving engine parts, then start the engine yourself before looking at the meter reading. Reverse the process before disconnecting the meter or other under hood actions.

Otherwise take your vehicle to a proper automotive shop who has an electrical service-savvy tech. The dealer if you have too. Your probably going to have to shell out for a non-refundable diagnostic look see wherever you go. Maybe repair time and parts added to the cost if needed. But your not going to risk personal injury or worse and/or add to vehicle issue if your not 100% on how to do this safely.

No kidding around here. Safety glasses in place of course, diagnostics in this case, under the hood needs to be done with a running engine to have the charging system AND battery delivering full power, typically at least 12.6 volts but can be as high as a little over 14. What you do not want to see is something less than 12+ volts at the headlamp-end of the wiring with a reasonably accurate voltmeter. Voltage at this end will be nearly identical to what you also read with the voltmeter measuring directly across the battery terminals. Is the voltage measured at the headlamp connectors/lights on/engine running noticeably less then what is measured at the battery? Then it is time to turn off the ignition switch and disconnect the battery. If your vehicle loses radio memory settings when battery is disconnected, determine the proper procedure to keep alive the radio while the vehicle battery is disconnected.

What has to take place at this stage may be a tedious, time consuming examination starting with the headlight bulb connectors which often will be the only point of dimmed light issues. If these check out good, then the rest of many possible connections, switch(s), relay, battery ground path and even potentially fuse/fuse holder need to be examined one at a time to insure they provide zero resistance to continuity. During the hunt, you might just replace the headlamp fuse with a new one even if the old fuse looks good. It is faster to toss and replace a fuse that will at the same time, at least partially if not completely clean the connectors with just the action of extracting and inserting a new fuse with it's own new-clean contacts. Any relay the factory might have used in the wiring path should be at least unplugged and re-inserted to insure good contact with the relay fully re-seated in place. Contact cleaner suitable for automative connections (NOT WD40) should be used where applicable. Is the Headlight switch on the dash or column stalk? Both can be a real bugger to get at to unplug and clean their connector and the switch contacts themselves. Kind of impossible in some cases without a careful and experienced approach to avoid a costly broken gizmo here or there. Except for old cars and trucks, mostly I find modern vehicles rarely have issues in dash or steering column areas. Excepting vehicles that even just once, experienced condensation inside. Those vehicles will with almost certainty have a variety of electrical issues pop up randomly over time.

Yes - Oh my goodness way over the moon involvement to do all of that. And not likely to need to in most cases. Clean & polish your lenses and drop in a pair of new bulbs of same wattage spec shown in the vehicles owners manual. And clean your battery posts and terminals now! Even if they outwardly look ok. Your usually going to be done with just these few easy steps.

StorysRVwego
Storysrvwego is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2019, 12:54 AM   #9
New Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Ohio
Posts: 7
Default Sam's Club -$45

Yes, I have refinished a couple sets. I used 3 stages of sandpaper, finishing with 2000 or 3000 grit. Final polish was with a small air-powered orbital buffer and rubbing compound then polishing compound.

On one set I used Eastwood plastic adhesion promoter then a 2-component UV blocking clearcoat. This set was clear for 2.5 years, then the clearcoat started to crack and separate.

On another set I used the same sandpaper/polisher prep, and then used a simple spray-on plastic headlight UV protectant from the auto section of a big box store. Probably McGuires or something like that. It has lasted a year so far.

But - the easy answer is: Sam's Club. For $45 they will prep, clearcoat, and use an infrared lamp to cure the clearcoat. Takes about an hour, and is guaranteed for 5 years I think. Our local club required us to schedule an appointment. This set has also lasted a year so far.

A side note - I asked if they could clearcoat the ones I had just finished myself and they would not, because they could no guaranty the clearcoat would adhere to them. I then asked if they could go ahead and prep then clearcoat them - the answer was no again ?!?! I asked why and he said that the would not look as good when they were finished with them, so they declined to touch them.
ohiobmwbiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-19-2019, 08:03 PM   #10
Platinum Member
 
Dogman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: USA
Posts: 158
Default

Young Whippersnappers, I walked into a Car center for some new headlights. The young man asked my issue with what I had. Thinking I said well trouble seeing the road at night and not seeing people in front of me.

He suggested a new light set. That knight driving home in the RV I was stopped by the POLICE. Sir the officer asked is this RV an emergency Vehicle. NO, I replied to the young female officer. Well, sir, she informed me did you notice folks pulling off the roadway in front of you. YES, and I thought it was nice of them all to get out of my way. WHY I asked. Well, sir did you just have your headlights changed, yes I did as a matter of fact.

She went on to inform me that in the State of Florida only Police Cars can have Blue Lights in the front.

JOKING
__________________
Enjoy, and let the adventures begin outdoors in an RV Class B
Dogman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2019, 01:26 AM   #11
Silver Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Daytona Beach, Florida
Posts: 56
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by GallenH View Post
I believe one of my brightness issues has to do with the lens over the light itself. It's cloudy. Has anyone ever tried the products to restore these lenses to a clear state? If so, any recommendations as to branding?

thx.glenn
I just did my headlight lens/cover today and they look like new. I used Turtle Wax Polishing Liquid, My cordless drill with a wax applicator and a buffer.

I applied the polishing liquid to the applicator and applied moderate pressure to the lens/cover in a clockwise then counter clockwise motion. I then cleaned the lens/cover with a damp clothe and redid the process. To finish it off i applied a liquid wax and buffed the lens/covers.

Took me 20 minutes to do both, total cost was $6.99 for the polishing liquid.

I used painters tape on the surrounding body parts to protect it from the applicator and buffer.
RAA357 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2019, 02:07 AM   #12
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Arizona
Posts: 614
Default

I notice that some of you advise masking off the body from the headlight assembly. Does this mean that you only polish the outer surface of the lens?
GallenH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2019, 02:21 AM   #13
Silver Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Daytona Beach, Florida
Posts: 56
Default

That is all i had to do on my lens/covers was the outside.
__________________

RAA357 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT. The time now is 02:24 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×