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How to Clean Oxidized Headlights? – Easy Step by Step Complete Process

In modern times, vehicle manufacturers used plastic for headlights instead of glass. It is lighter, less likely to be harmful, needs less care, and, naturally, less expensive to produce, which means significant savings when you manufacture millions of vehicles every year.

The headlights of such vehicles might become cloudy or tarnished over time. This is due to oxidation which is naturally happening over time.

Therefore, from here we can say that poor maintenance does not necessarily cause oxidized headlights. The common culprits are UV light, road debris, and chemicals in the atmosphere.

This cloudiness decreases the visibility at night and should therefore be repaired periodically. Fortunately, it’s often a tedious job to repair oxidized headlights.

How to Clean Oxidized Headlights

How to Clean Oxidized Headlights

Oxidation does not really result in a cloudy appearance on polycarbonate and plastic lens. Built – up grit and grime can sometimes give these surfaces a hazy look. Provide a thorough wash of your headlights before making the decision to repair oxidized light.

All in all, the headlights will have a yellowish tint, and it will feel harsh to the touch when you run the hand through the lens.

Why does it need to repair?

Your car headlights little love and care to enhance utility and looks of it. We certainly want these light enclosures to look great, and want these headlights to work correctly. Yellowish, foggy lenses decrease light output, which is a safety concern.

It is almost impossible to drive in the dark with such poor headlights.

Most of the cars on the road today come with a plastic lens, and they are prone to oxidation with passing time.
Maintaining your headlights in top shape will ensure safety on the road. So let’s explore several methods and products used to keep our headlights clear and clean.

How to clean oxidized headlights?

The three best methods to clean the oxidized headlights are:

1. How to clean using toothpaste?

Yeah, toothpaste is a great product to clean your LED headlights. To clean your headlights, here are the steps which you need to follow in order to sparkling headlights:

  • Step 1- Gather the correct materials

    You will need car wax, masking tape, plastic or vinyl (optional for people with sensitive skin), soft cloth, toothpaste (any kind), water for cleaning the headlights by means of a toothpaste procedure.

  • Step 2- Start by cleaning with soap

    First, wash the headlights in a firm back and forth motion with soap and water, using a cloth or sponge, and then rinse with plain water. Wait for the headlights to dry and they continue with step 3.

  • Step 3-Protect surrounding area with masking tape

    Use masking tape around the headlights to protect them against accidental sculptures.

  • Step 4- Wear gloves –

    If you have sensitive skin, wear plastic or vinyl gloves.

  • Step 5- Put some toothpaste and water on a clean cloth

    Take a clean, and soft cloth and put some toothpaste and water on the cloth.

  • Step 6- Use toothpaste-laden cloth

    Rub your headlights firmly in small circles with your toothpaste-laden cloth. Add water and toothpaste as necessary and wait up to five minutes to clean the light.

  • Step 6- Rinse –

    Then rinse with water and let the headlights dry.

  • Step 7 – Apply car wax

    You may consider putting car wax on your lights in a smooth circular motion, then again rinse it with water to help protect your headlights from future damage.

Why does it work?

Since toothpaste can remove undesirable particles in your teeth from the enamel, therefore, it can also remove stains from the headlights.

Because toothpaste consists varieties of gel and whitening elements which helps to breathe out the surface to make it look shiny and clearer.

2. How to clean using glass cleaner and automotive polish?

  • Step 1- Gather the correct materials –

    You will need the following materials: automotive polishing, car wax (optional), cleaning glass headlights, masking band, plastic or vinyl gloves (sensitive skin optional), rosary buffer (special), soft cloth, and waterproofing materials (optional).

  • Step 2- Tape off the surrounding area

    Like the previous method, remove the headlights in order to protect your trim and painting and put plastic or vinyl gloves if you have sensitive skin.

  • Step 3- Spray headlights with cleaner

    Spray your headlights generously with a glass cleaner and then wipe the surface with a soft tissue.

  • Step 4- Apply automotive polish

    Apply car polish to a clean, soft tissue and wipe every headlight in a circular fashion. Polish each light for at least five minutes in this way. A rotating buffer can be used to apply polish for more shine.

  • Step 5- Rinse –

    Rinse with water and apply auto wax as protection against future oxidation damage.

Why does it work?

The use of standard glass and automobile polishing which are available in automotive parts and general stores often is an efficient method to repair oxidation. The surface is prepared by the glass cleaner, whilst the polish, which contains slightly more gross abrasives than toothpaste, cleans your headlight.

3. How to clean using a polish compound kit?

  • Step 1- Gather the correct materials –

    You will need to use a polishing compound kit to start cleaning the headlights. You will need wax or dressing material (optional), clothes, masking cloths, mild dissolvers such as dish soap or cleansing kit, polishing compound, paper sandwich (from 600 to 2.500 grit), waterproofing compound.

  • Step 2- Cover surrounding with masking tape

    Top your headlights with masking tape (as in Methods 1 and 2) and put on gloves if you have sensitive skin.

  • Step 3- Wash and rinse

    Dampen a clean cloth, add a light detergent or cleanser, and then wash the surfaces of your headlights followed by a plain water rinse.

  • Step 4- Apply polishing compound

    Use small circular motions to apply a polishing compound with a different cloth. Take your time to allow the compound to function properly – up to five minutes per headlight.

  • Step 5 – Wet sand your headlights

    Wet your coarsest sandpaper in cool water (smallest grain number). Rub firmly the surface in the back and forth motion of each headlight. Make sure that the sandpaper is always wet and dip it into the water when necessary. Repeat with each sandpaper variety (smallest to largest grit number) from coarsest to smoothest grade.

  • Step 6- Rinse

    Rinse the compound with plain water thoroughly.

  • Step 7- Apply car wax

    Use a clean cloth and apply the car wax in circular movements. Then follow it up with another rinse.

Why does it work?

In case the preceding methods fail, consider using a polishing compound kit for an intensive repair for highly oxidized headlamps. Such kits are frequently available in car parts stores and are widely available online. Most –if not all– oxidized lights are required to resurface and restore for better clarity.

If the droplets of moisture from inside of the headlights

Oxidation can occur both outside and inside of your headlight (although in most cases it occurs on outdoor portions). If your headlights are hit by minute droplets of moisture, you must remove them to repair them effectively. Treat the interior in the same way that the exterior is treated.

If any of these techniques do not remove the fogginess of the headlamps, you may have to search for professional services, such as your mechanic.

Regular Maintenance

With regular maintenance, hopefully, for years to come, you will not need to touch your headlights. A good tip is to simply add a small buffer every six months as part of your detail routine–so they should never get too bad, or at least keep the oxidation away for a bit longer. In all honesty, you can do nothing to stop the wear and tear in reality. You can do everything to keep it in check and maintain it.

Also, using headlight covers is an excellent way not only to protect your lights against harmful UV light but also against chips and grimes that wear the hard plastic cover. Naturally, you cannot use it at night, but it’s a great idea to put the cover on during the day.

All of us want clean and clear headlights for our cars. The maintenance of this look will only be done through cleaning. Clear headlights not only enhance the look of the car but also maintains safety on the roads.
Therefore, it is essential to always do regular checks and keep your car headlights clean and up to date.

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