View Full Version : Headlight polish

09/17/2018, 07:27 PM
Ok, here we go with my headlight polish write up.........
This is what my headlights looked like when i bought my 2001.
http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/thumbs/MVC-033S.JPG (http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/MVC-033S.JPG) http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/thumbs/MVC-034S.JPG (http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/MVC-034S.JPG) http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/thumbs/MVC-030S.JPG (http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/MVC-030S.JPG)
Pretty kruddy, and it really distracts from the beauty of the truck, I couldnt stand it, and although there are buffing compounds, and buffing wheels available from eastwoods. frankly, I didnt want to spend that kind of money without trying some other alternatives.
So I was in my local autozone and I found a product called "5 minute optical polish". first off, PLEASE, spend more time on this than 5 minutes, because you need more than this product for optimal results.
Materials for this procedure are as follows..........
1. a cordless drill with 2 speeds
2. a water spray bottle (wal-mart about 2 bucks)
3. wet/dry sandpaper in 1500 grit, and 2000 grit (wal-mart, about 5 dollars)
4. 5 minute optical polish (from autozone, i think it was around 10 dollars)
5. Meguires "PlastX" plastic cleaner and polish (autozone, 4 bucks)
http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/thumbs/tools.JPG (http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/tools.JPG)
The optical polish comes with stick on pads, and back-up pad. thats what im holding in the pic, back-up pad with pad attached

Raise your hood to expose as much of the lens as possiable.you dont need to remove light assembley, just be careful, and take your time so you dont put any scratches on paint. You might also tape off the fender area if you want to prevent paint scratchs if you arent used to using a drill/sandpaper. There is alot of FEEL in this process. Get in touch with your gentle side, and your lenses. This IS plastic we're dealing with.

Step 1
Tear 1500 sandpaper down to about a 3" x 3" piece, then fold that in half.
Spray down the lens, and 1500 sandpaper completley with water.... Lots of it, and begin sanding the lens in overlapping circles with LIGHT pressure. DO NOT RUSH THE PROCESS WITH PRESSURE. You will feel the paper "hang up" on the oxidation. Just keep using LOTS OF WATER. Spray water, sand in circles, spray, circles, etc. dont stay in one place, circle all over the lens several times with lots of water and you will start FEELING the lens becoming "slick" under the sand paper. it should start looking like this...
http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/thumbs/MVC-016S.JPG (http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/MVC-016S.JPG)
after getting the lens slick with the 1500 grit, spray it down and wipe it clean with some paper towels. Now dont be scared at what the lens is looking like. Check the areas where the oxidation is, or was. If it is still present, continue with the 1500 grit LIGHTLY in those trouble spots.
If oxidation is pretty much gone, and the lens is feeling slick, then move on to the 2000 grit, and repeat the process just like the last step. LOTS OF WATER, I CANT STRESS THIS ENOUGH. Again, circles, water, circles, water, and again, you will feel the lens getting slicker. These two processes will take about 10 minutes, maybe a little less. Just dont rush it. Your lenses should look something like this now.
http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/thumbs/MVC-007S.JPG (http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/MVC-007S.JPG) http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/thumbs/MVC-017S.JPG (http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/MVC-017S.JPG)

Step 2
Get your cordless drill out, and switch it to the LOW SPEED, or LOW RPM'S
Get out the optical polish you got from autozone, assemble the two pieces together, and chuck it into the drill. Squirt JUST A LITTLE bit of water on the pad, and a dab on the lens. Start the drill up, and in an orderly fashon, start at the top of the lens, and slowly start going over the whole lens, occasionally spraying just a bit of water on the pad. The pad will start creating a thin paste over the lens. Work this paste all over the lens, again take your time.
http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/thumbs/MVC-010S.JPG (http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/MVC-010S.JPG)***Note, this is a pic after I realized I forgot to take a picture in process. the "paste" is much thicker.

CRITICAL NOTE: Pay special attention around the dragon eyes {bumps on lenses} the back up pad is a somewhat hard plastic, and can easily burn a mark in the bump. I polished my "eyes, bumps" with the pads, it can be done, just be very VERY careful, it's just awkward angles.
http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/thumbs/MVC-022S.JPG (http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/MVC-022S.JPG)
It can be done, youll get the hang of it. Again, just be careful.

At this point, I just really used the pad all over, and just polished, and polished using water when needed. You always want the pad to be slightly wet. After about 5 minutes or so, spray the lens down, and clean it up with paper towels, and take a look........... What do you think?
http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/thumbs/MVC-013S.JPG (http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/MVC-013S.JPG)
should be looking pretty good at this point. If not, pull another pad out of the box, and repeat step 2 again. I used 3 pads per headlight, using each one till there was no more "paste" left in them. Use your own judgement on this. My lights were pretty bad.

Step 3
You're almost done!! The final step is to get the Meguiars Plastix out, (i love Meguiars products, and this really tops it all off) and really rub this stuff into the lens, wipe it off, and repeat 1 or 2 more times.
Your lenses should look like this.
http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/thumbs/MVC-014S.JPG (http://www.vehicross.info/gallery/data/500/MVC-014S.JPG)

Step 4
Go wash the vx up, detail it out and after you're done, admire those headlights. makes all the differance in the world!!!

If you have questions, let me know. Also, if you cant find the product, let me know that also, and maybe I can get some for you, and send it.
Its been several months since I've done this, and lenses still look great.
I hope this was an enjoyable experience for you, it was for me. There is a lot of satisfaction taking something from ugly, to something smooth and beautiful.

Thanks and good luck
God bless you,