Most cars manufactured since the 1990s have headlight lenses made from a type of plastic. Before that, headlights were made of glass. Unfortunately, while plastic lenses are more durable, they also tend to get just as dirty and also dull and yellow with time. Dirty or dull headlights, whether plastic or glass, are a safety hazard. Sometimes it takes a bit of time to make them clear and sparking again, but the safety benefits of doing this are certainly worth it. In addition, once you’ve removed the heavy grime, future cleaning is easier (if done frequently, so that grime doesn’t have a chance to build up).
Remove Grime From Headlights
1. Wipe each headlight with a soft, dry cloth. Getting some of the grime off this way helps prevent scratches when you clean using the wet method. Now, wet a soft sponge in water. Place a quarter-sized dollop of liquid dish soap on the sponge.
2. Rub the soapy sponge over the headlights. The de-greasing properties of the dish soap will help remove grease and oil residue.
3. Rinse the headlights with clean water. Apply headlight restoration cream, available at auto-parts stores. This can be applied directly on the headlights, or applied on a cloth and rubbed on. Note that for severely dulled or discolored headlights that are not simply covered in road grime may need a buffing pad (attached to a drill) or fine-grit sandpaper to remove the yellow discoloration. A microfiber cloth, however, is sufficient if headlights are simply dirty or lightly discolored.
4. Rub the restoration cream all over the headlight with a soft cloth. Use straight back-and-forth movements across the surface of the headlight. Do one headlight at a time so the restoration cream does not start to dry on the surface.
5. Wipe the product off with a damp, lint-free towel. Now, polish the headlights with a microfiber polishing cloth or terrycloth.