: Non-Cadillac question



docestes
12-04-08, 05:48 PM
OK, I realize this is not about my 08 CTS4, but I want to tap the resources of the very knowledgeable members of this forum.

My "second car", which I use to haul mountain bikes, trash, etc., is a 2001
Audi A6 with 180,000+ miles. My problem is one of the clear plastic headlight housings has been through 180,000+ miles of dirt, grit, sand, etc, to the point it is so hazy to obscure the headlight. I had to replace one side several years ago for a different problem, so it is new and clear. I am certainly not interested in paying >$700 to replace the other one. My Dad suggested I could possibly polish this clear with some rubbing compound, but I am skeptical.

Has anyone here ever done anything like this, and if so, what material and method should I use?

Superjim
12-04-08, 06:05 PM
Saw a sign in Wal Mart the other day... they "CLAIM" that they can make them "LIKE NEW." :) :)

I have used Jewelers Rouge to polish the ones on my old car. I did it by hand. Small area at a time. It took a long time. Couple of hours.

Really fine rubbing compound SHOULD work and be a LOT faster.
(Try it on a real small area first.)
There are several different grits of rubbing compound, as you know.
I would want the finest grit I could find.

I would probably do it by hand, not use a buffer on it.

Texas Jim

Mac141
12-04-08, 07:18 PM
OK, I realize this is not about my 08 CTS4, but I want to tap the resources of the very knowledgeable members of this forum.

I am certainly not interested in paying >$700 to replace the other one. My Dad suggested I could possibly polish this clear with some rubbing compound, but I am skeptical.

Has anyone here ever done anything like this, and if so, what material and method should I use?

For what it's worth. Have you seen this? http://www.permatex.com/videos/video_headlight_eng.html

I have had no reason to try it but I know there was a write up in Popular Mechanics sometime ago. It may be worth Googling for reviews on the stuff. I believe it would be a less expensive option. Good luck.

:)

C&C
12-05-08, 06:25 AM
Rubbing compound, polishing compond, they make specific polishes, and even toothpaste will work. Basically you are taking an outer layer (oxidized) of plastic off and then smoothing the remaining surface.

gary88
12-05-08, 01:44 PM
I use 3M plastic cleaner. It works great.

Rolex
12-05-08, 01:51 PM
I posted a link to headlight polish kit for someone a few weeks back that said it worked great when they used it.

Google "3M plastic cleaner and polish" or "Mother's Power Plastic." There are TONS of headlight restorer kits on the market. I'd try your local auto parts store before ordering and paying S&H on something you may find locally.


ETA: I just noticed you live in Siloam. :wave: neighbor!

Coma
12-05-08, 04:43 PM
I have used Jewelers Rouge to polish the ones on my old car.

There is a man named Corwin who would like to have a word with you.

Ranger
12-05-08, 05:11 PM
You could also wet sand it with 1000 grit sand paper, then go to 1500 and finally 2000.

hueterm
12-05-08, 09:29 PM
I posted a link to headlight polish kit for someone a few weeks back that said it worked great when they used it.

Google "3M plastic cleaner and polish" or "Mother's Power Plastic." There are TONS of headlight restorer kits on the market. I'd try your local auto parts store before ordering and paying S&H on something you may find locally.


ETA: I just noticed you live in Siloam. :wave: neighbor!


Hey Siloam -- Bentonville here :welcome:

dirt_cheap_fleetwood
12-05-08, 11:34 PM
We sell some stuff called headlight restorer in my Wal-Mart. I have used it on our '94 Ford van with great results. It is a time consuming process (about 1 hour per light) but the results are well worth it. The best part is its only $20. It consists of a fine finishing compound and sand paper to remove dirt/debris and then a re-sealer to fill in the small cracks and scratches.

MauiV
12-06-08, 02:13 PM
Junkyard replacement FTW!!!!

RippyPartsDept
12-06-08, 02:31 PM
You could also wet sand it with 1000 grit sand paper, then go to 1500 and finally 2000.

we recently started to offer this service at our dealership and from what i know about it it is basically a wet-sand of the lens

however, if the oxidization is on the inside of the lens then you're pretty much screwed and should probably go used ( http://car-part.com )

Rolex
12-06-08, 06:59 PM
we recently started to offer this service at our dealership and from what i know about it it is basically a wet-sand of the lens

however, if the oxidization is on the inside of the lens then you're pretty much screwed and should probably go used ( http://car-part.com )

The Escalade is prone to a smokey film on the inside of the lens. It's easily fixed by swilling a little warm soapy water around inside the lens, and a thorough rinse. Several people have had excellent results with this method and saved BIG $$$.....the Lade's lamps are something like $900 a piece to replace. :ill:

Aron9000
12-08-08, 03:38 AM
I had the same problem on my 1999 Camaro Z28. I ended up buying a sligthly used set of OEM headlights off of another forum member on ls1tech.com They came off of garage queen 2001 Camaro SS with 10k miles, he upgraded to the aftermarket halo headlights.

Cost me about $130 total, I had these on the car for about 2 and a half years, looked like brand new lights when I sold the car a couple of months ago. The UV rays are what destroy the lights and make them cloudy. If you go the used route, make sure they haven't been exposed to the sun.

RippyPartsDept
12-09-08, 09:55 AM
The Escalade is prone to a smokey film on the inside of the lens. It's easily fixed by swilling a little warm soapy water around inside the lens, and a thorough rinse. Several people have had excellent results with this method and saved BIG $$$.....the Lade's lamps are something like $900 a piece to replace. :ill:

right... i forgot that some on some vehicles you can remove the lens, but on many/most you cannot