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foggy headlights


toyhon750
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hi to all, does anyone know of a foolproof way of restoring foggy headlights,(outside) other than buying a kit from a motor store ?, so far , don't laugh!, I have tried baking soda and vinegar , and plenty of elbow grease, poor results, over to you, thanks.

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Rubbing it with brake fluid will clean off the surface oxidation, then polish up with rubbing compound (or toothpaste if money is tight).

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I tried Meguiars PlastRX on mine, less than a tenner for a bottle from Halfrauds - ideally it needs to be applied on a sponge attached to a drill, but as I dont have one, I rubbed it on and buffed it with a cloth. Takes a lot of rubbing and buffing, and just about removes enough of the fogging to get the car through the MOT, but the fogging usually comes back quite quickly, and every year, gets worse as the fogging proceeds to go from the top of the headlights, further down toward the bumper. Mk1 and early mk2 models are really bad for headlight plastics going foggy. The plastic surface seems to get permanently damaged by the sun. Yaris is not the only car to have this issue, it affects a lot of older cars with plastic lenses. Aftermarket headlight units are about £100 to £150 each, and if your car fails its MOT for excessive deterioration of the lenses adversely affecting the beam pattern, they will probably have to be replaced.

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  • 2 years later...

I think simple car maintenance is enough to get rid of foggy headlights. Using baking soda and vinegar is effective, maybe you don't know how to clean with them. I have tried with them and it shows me a good result. Any ideas like me.

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I had a Merc with crazed headlights.  I was lucky to find a 'Baltic' cash wash (Crowders at Horncastle) who did it for £20.  £25 altogether allowing for the coffee I had while I waited. 😁

More importantly for both DIY and commercial cleaning, you then need to apply a coating. I have 'Surface sealant easy clean coating' from glasspolishshop.com.

Two applications about 5-10 minutes apart.  Suitable for glass, plastic or metal. UV protection, water repellent, easy clean coating and virtually self cleaning. 

Can't remember the cost, it's a 50 ml bottle and I used about 10 ml on the two large Merc headlights.  I might try on one of the  Yaris headlights to test the self cleaning property. 

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If you have a car polish at home just try that first with a microfibre.  Might need some effort but just take your time.  As above, it is important to use some UV protection otherwise it will yellow again in a short space of time.  After the polish, seal it with wax.

If you really want to go the whole hog get some polishing attachments for a drill and use those with various compounds - makes it easier to do, but use gentle pressure

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  • 3 weeks later...

For detail, I tell you the way to clean foggy headlights by Baking Soda and Vinegar. Firstly you need to make sure to remove dirt in the outer layers of the car’s headlights by using a clean rag and some dish soap. Then, mixing baking soda and vinegar to make a cleaning paste. After that you cover the headlights with the cleaner and let it sit for 5 – 10 minutes and make sure to wash off the remaining baking soda-vinegar mixture with water and a clean cloth.

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