With use and over time, the plastic headlight covers on your car can get foggy and hazy. This can affect your visibility especially while driving in low light conditions. They can also project higher beam light towards the oncoming traffic which can blind them too. Cleaning and restoring the headlights improves the visibility and makes it safer for other drivers also. It can leave your headlights looking new like those used in NASCAR betting cars. The following are some of the most common DIY methods to clean and restore headlights of your car:
Cleaning with Toothpaste
To start cleaning headlights with toothpaste, you should first clean them with a good quality car shampoo and wipe them dry using a soft microfiber cloth. You should then tape the headlight with painters tape to prevent the toothpaste being applied on headlight frames as they can be scratched. Using a clean and dry cloth, gently apply the toothpaste on headlights and rub thoroughly. You should use circular motions and continue cleaning each headlight for at least 5 minutes. Once done, you should rinse the headlight and dry it with a soft cloth. Depending upon the need, you may repeat this process to completely clean the headlights.
Cleaning with Glass Cleaner and Automotive Polish
Another common method to clean your car’s headlights is to do so using glass cleaner and automotive polish. You should start by using a painters tape to cover the area around the headlight. You should then spray a good quality glass cleaner generously on the headlight and then wipe it clean using a soft and dry microfiber cloth. It will be better to use different microfiber cloths for cleaning each of the headlights.
Once the headlights have been cleaned and dried, you should apply automotive polish on them and buff thoroughly to get good shine. If there is any excessive polish left on the headlights, you should remove them by wiping with a clean cloth. It is a good idea to apply a protective coating on the headlight after cleaning them. This can be done by using either car wax or ceramic coating. Car wax can last for a few months while a good quality ceramic coating will last for at least 3 years.
Cleaning with Sandpaper and Polish
This is perhaps the most effective way of cleaning the headlights and gives the best results. Before you start cleaning the headlights, you should ensure to tape it around the frames. You should clean the headlights using a good quality cleaning agent. Using a 400-grit sandpaper, wet the headlight lens with water and move the wet sandpaper in large circular motion. This should be followed by horizontal movements back and forth while keeping the headlight wet all the time. The headlights should then be rinsed with water. This process should now be repeated with 600-grit sandpaper with little more pressure. Now use a paper towel to wipe the lens and remove any oil. The final step is to apply a good polishing compound. The polishing compound should be applied slowly to remove the scratches and swirls. You can apply multiple coats of polishing compound to get the best results.