Electrical & Lights Headlight Fogging - Toothpaste Method

Discussion in '7th Generation (2003-2008) [Acura TSX]' started by Heckler, Wednesday 22nd Jul, 2015.

  1. Heckler Top Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    Like many people, my front headlights are suffering from fogging and discolouration... As one side was ok and the other really, really bad. I thought I'd try the toothpaste method and see if that had any effect.

    Below are before and after pics... This was after just a few minutes of cleaning, then washing of with warm water and a damp cloth. Then drying with a fresh cloth.

    IMG_20150722_194006699[1]. IMG_20150722_194637273[1].

    As you can see, it's clean up a huge amount, smoothed out some of the scratches, got rid of the discolouration... but hasn't removed the fogging to the actual cover itself.

    I suspect that a lot of this is on the inside and if they can be opened up without too much trouble, it might be possible to clean them up from the inside.

    Of course if replacement covers can be bought... it would probably be simpler to do that unless they're ridiculously expensive. I think this is one of the Japanese quirks as it's never happened on US or EU built cars with plastic headlight covers that I've owned... Maybe I've just been lucky in that regard.

    If anyone has any better suggestions and pictures of results... please add them.

    Oh and in case any one was wondering... I used Colgate whitening toothpaste... and yes... my headlight is minty fresh. :lol: :Drums:
     
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  2. Nels Moderator Staff Team

    There are many, many posts on this subject. (Search Results for Query: headlight restoration

    @RogerH69 recently added this guide:
    Headlight Scratch, Fade and Yellow Tint Removal

    There was also a problem with some early 7th gens, where they had water getting inside the unit. Whilst the warranty on this has run out, Honda produced extra replacement light units. IIRC, they are a similar price to the aftermarket ones. If yours need replacement, give HH a call and the guys will give you the current price.
     
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  3. RogerH69 Premium Member Club Supporter

    South Africa Roger Oxford, UK
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    Not bad for toothpaste :Smile:

    You will find that a lot of the foggy headlights are due to the plastic sealant perishing. By using a lens restoration kit (which is pretty much just varying levels of sandpaper), you can scrape away the perished sealant and scratched plastic, revealing clear plastic which can then be sanded smooth and buffed, and then sealed. This is pretty much what I did in the guide linked above by Nels, and from what I've seen online, this really is the best way to get a lasting result.
     
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  4. Heckler Top Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    I'll give that 3M kit a try, it's £16.99 on amazon and I've been looking at headlights on ebay which are used and £70 each... It's worth trying to clean them up... although I might remove them before attempting it, don't want to risk the paintwork.


    The results are certainly impressive.
    - - - Updated - - -

    What did you use to seal them afterwards?
     
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  5. Heckler Top Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    @RogerH69 Just ordered the 3M kit, some sealant and the blue masking tape... Will give it a test run next week and and if it works well, will do the other headlight too.
     
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  6. RogerH69 Premium Member Club Supporter

    South Africa Roger Oxford, UK
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    @Heckler I used this to seal the lens after I was done.

    The 3M Kit I bought actually came with the masking tape. As long as you tape around the edge like I did and control the drill you use, you shouldn't have to worry about taking the headlight out. Also, you need to ensure the headlight doesn't move around while you are sanding it, so best to leave it in.

    If nervous, just put down more layers of the tape.
     
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  7. Heckler Top Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    3M kit arrived today, along with sealant and some tape... only to find there was a small roll of tape in the kit itself... Oh well, it was only a few quid and will come in handy at some point.

    If the weather stays dry, I might have a go at it tomorrow... but first... I need to get both my cordless drills on charge or I'll be doing nothing. :Smile:
     
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  8. Nighthawk Guest

    United Kingdom Richard Milton Keynes
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    Use some 2500 wet and dry sandpaper, sand the lights down till they are baby smooth, then buff them using a DA polisher if you have one, or an equivalent, and then protect them with sealant and they will be good as new.
     
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