How To Clean Foggy Headlights

There’s nothing more annoying than driving at night with headlights that barely emit any light thanks to foggy covers. Not only is it an indication of lack of care, but it is one of the biggest safety hazards on the road. Most people assume that poor headlight performance is an indicator of bad bulbs, but the effectivity of your headlights can be hampered by foggy or dirty lenses. So, what exactly causes foggy headlights?

If your vehicle’s headlights have a yellowish tinge to it, they need cleaned. Most lenses are made from thick plastic that is comprised of polycarbonates. These plastic lenses are exposed to UV rays from the sun, and over time, the outer layers begin to break down. This causes the lenses to absorb blue light from the bulbs and produces a less effective, yellowish light.

What Products to Use to Clean Headlights?

You can buy products from most auto stores that are designed to clean headlight lenses. They are usually tagged with “headlight restoration kit” or “headlight lens restoration.” These products are relatively easy to use and quite effective. You can also try using toothpaste and baking soda. Both of these products are abrasive enough to tackle the fog but will not scratch or damage the headlights.

How to Clean Foggy Headlights

Here are a few simple things that you can use to tackle your foggy headlight problem:

  • Cleaning kit, baking soda, or toothpaste
  • Old rags
  • Latex gloves
  • Water
  • A soft-bristled brush
  • Mild Cleanser

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Steps Required

  1. Clean the surface of debris – You want to ensure that you are working with a clean surface. Spray the headlights with a mild cleanser and wipe away any dirt.
  2. Towel dry
  3.  Apply headlight restorer – You can use any commercial cleaner, baking soda, or toothpaste for this step. Rub thickly over the headlights. If you are using baking soda, be sure to mix with some water to create a thick paste. Let the cleaner sit on the lens for a few minutes.
  4. Remove cleanser with brush – Rub the headlight with your brush in gentle circles. Do not press too hard. You should be able to see the yellowing disappear as you go around.
  5. Clean off excess cleaner.

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