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Headlight crazing

kgatterer

New member
Location
St Louis, MO
I just picked up a 2017 R and thought the headlights looked clear in the day time/ lights off, when I seen them with the lights on I was immediately bummed. I had restored my kids headlights on his 09 Acura TL with the Meguires kit and it came out great so I figured before I shelled out 1300+ on new housings I would try to sand these down and spray them with the meguires headlight restoration clear coat, even though a google search said crazed headlights were done for. I wet sanded with 500/800/1500/2500/5000 then sprayed them with the Meguires spray. Turned out better than I hoped! Spent the afternoon doing it but it was worth it. I’m gonna spend that money on a full front PPF including the headlights instead!
 

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kgatterer

New member
Location
St Louis, MO
These look great. Is it from road rash or is it clear wear? Hard to tell by the pics.
Thanks! It is apparently tiny cracks in the clear/ UV coating I am guessing. Lights were smooth and clear, you couldn’t see it unless the lights were on or the sun hit it from the right angle. I just kept sanding and periodically turning the lights on to check progress.
 

GTIJones1

New member
Location
York pa
These looks great now! Did you sand by hand or use a drill/ polisher? Mine look terrible with lights on or off. They seem to have a texture to them if you run your hand across them though. Yours were smooth before you started?
 

kgatterer

New member
Location
St Louis, MO
These looks great now! Did you sand by hand or use a drill/ polisher? Mine look terrible with lights on or off. They seem to have a texture to them if you run your hand across them though. Yours were smooth before you started?
Thank you! Yeah, mine were pretty smooth, just looked like crap with the lights on or if you looked at them at an angle. I actually started with a cheap headlight restore kit from Harbor freight just for the drill attachment and pads. https://www.harborfreight.com/search?q=headlight restore kit
I used the 500 and 800 discs in that kit with my 20v drill and wet sanded to get most of the crazing spots off (which took a while). I just kept checking progress by turning the lights on and seeing how they looked, even though they were hazy from sanding you could see the crazing clearing up. Then I just wet sanded by hand with the 1500/2500/ 5000. I was really surprised that I was able to get them this clear! I had low expectations and already had new housing saved in a cart online if it didnt work, haha! I am getting them PPF'd next Friday to hopefully keep them looking nice for a while!
 

Maiden69

Autocross Champion
Location
Texas
Car(s)
2020 GTI
That's a great job. I used to restore headlights with Opti Coat using their coating when I had my business open. Now, since I no longer detail I advise owners to restore the headlights up to 1500-2000 grit and cover them with a good quality PPF. They will last longer and most decent PPF now are self healing, which will help them look like new unless there is a tear on the plastic. PPF will seal over the sanding marks. You can also polish before, but it is not necessary.
 

kgatterer

New member
Location
St Louis, MO
That's a great job. I used to restore headlights with Opti Coat using their coating when I had my business open. Now, since I no longer detail I advise owners to restore the headlights up to 1500-2000 grit and cover them with a good quality PPF. They will last longer and most decent PPF now are self healing, which will help them look like new unless there is a tear on the plastic. PPF will seal over the sanding marks. You can also polish before, but it is not necessary.

Thank you! I am supposed to get them PPFd next Friday when I get my tint done. And Up The Irons!
 

ecsta

Go Kart Newbie
Location
Toronto
Car(s)
2017 R
Wish I had put PPF on my headlights when the car was new.

My problem is on my old car I did the headlight restoration and even with the Meguires "clear coat" it yellowed every year and needed to be re-done constantly, which got annoying.
 

kgatterer

New member
Location
St Louis, MO
Wish I had put PPF on my headlights when the car was new.

My problem is on my old car I did the headlight restoration and even with the Meguires "clear coat" it yellowed every year and needed to be re-done constantly, which got annoying.
I had PPF put on the headlights yesterday, so we shall see how long they stay clear!
 

MrFancypants

Autocross Champion
Location
Ho,e
Car(s)
GTI
Wish I had put PPF on my headlights when the car was new.

My problem is on my old car I did the headlight restoration and even with the Meguires "clear coat" it yellowed every year and needed to be re-done constantly, which got annoying.
I used the Sylvania kit on mine and over a year later there's no yellow.
 
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