How Headlight Restoration Works


By  AIS Windshield Experts

Category:  Headlight Service

Headlight Restoration
Over time, the plastic lenses on car headlights often become clouded, discoloured, and scratched. This reduces visibility and safety when driving at night. Expert headlight restoration services offer high-quality restoration that enhances brightness and clarity. Here's an overview of the headlight renewal process, how to clean car headlights, and why letting the experts handle this delicate procedure is wise.

Assessing the Damage

The first step is examining the headlights to identify damage type and severity. Check for surface scratches, yellow or cloudy discolouration, pits, and oxidation buildup. The deeper the defects, the more expertise and speciality tools will be needed to remedy them. DIY kits only treat minor exterior damage, so inspection should be done by professional detailers trained in lens repair.

Cleaning and Disassembly  

Technicians thoroughly clean the headlight assemblies and may disassemble the housing to access interior components. Proper cleaning removes contaminants from scratches and foggy areas using appropriate plastic-safe solutions. Any internal oxidation or moisture accumulation can contribute to re-clouding, so drying agents may be applied inside housings to prevent re-degradation.

Removing Opaque Coating

The cloudy film or yellowed oxidation coating of the lenses must be rubbed away to restore optical clarity. This delicate process is where things often go wrong in amateur DIY attempts, leading to permanent damage. Professionals use specialised power tools with adjustable speeds and water cooling to sand plastic lenses gently. Years of experience working specifically on headlight plastic allows them to remove degraded coating until the lenses are fully transparent again.

Polishing and Refinishing

After abrading procedures, lenses will look quite dull and hazy. Optical clarity comes from polishing the plastic surface to a high-gloss finish using professional-grade rubbing compounds. Continual inspection during polishing determines when the optimal light-transmissive clarity is achieved. Some shops apply a final protective coating to shield the lenses from re-oxidation and minor scratches. Any internal reflective surfaces or damaged wiring may also be repaired or replaced during restoration.

Leave it to the Experts

While DIY headlight renewal kits are sold to consumers, professional services deliver superior results. Detailing technicians are specially trained in safely handling plastic lenses. Their experience working through the careful restoration stages guarantees properly removing degraded coating until it is entirely transparent. And they have access to specialised equipment that consumers need. DIY-ers have a high risk of permanently damaging headlights through over-sanding or cracking the lenses. Professionals take meticulous care using proper pressures and grits during the abrading process to avoid harming plastic parts. Attempting lens refinishing without professional skills, tools, and training often ends poorly. For those concerned with cost, damaged headlights that must be fully replaced are far more expensive than professional restoration servicing. Even minor scratches that DIY kits cannot remedy can require entire assembly replacement if severe enough to impair safe illumination.


Though deteriorated headlight lenses may seem like a standard automotive ageing issue, restoring optical clarity is important for safe driving visibility. Rather than risking improper DIY restoration techniques and tools, the skilled expertise of professional detailers is recommended. With customised processes for expertly renewing clouded or yellowed lenses, technicians can breathe many more years of crystal-clear illuminance into faded headlights. Trust professionals like AIS Windshield Experts for excellent visibility.

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