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Best Practices When Using Detour Auto’s One-Step Headlight Restoration Spray

In this guide, we will teach you best practices and tips when using Detour Auto’s One-Step Headlight Restoration Spray. By the end of this guide, you'll know everything you need to know about using the product.

First, it's important to understand that our product works differently than other headlight restoration products. With our One-Step spray, you are applying a 2-in-1 specialized headlight restoration coating that simultaneously restores the lenses' clarity and protects them against further oxidation. There is no need to sand the headlights prior to application. Just spray on and let dry, do not wipe it off after. You can learn more about how SmartClear Technology works here.

Issues with headlights that it will not correct:

  • Crazing, cracks, deep scratches, or dents

  • Severe oxidation

  • Condensation (moisture inside the headlight assembly)


Vehicle Location and Weather Conditions

For best results, we recommend parking the vehicle in an enclosed area such as a garage or a carport to minimize any conditions that can interfere with the application.

Spraying Outdoors

If you’re not able to park the vehicle in an enclosed area, try finding an area with minimal wind. A slight breeze can deter up to 50% of the product while spraying and may result in a speckled appearance.

For best results when spraying outdoors, use when;

  • Humidity: Less than 70%

  • Temperature: 10°C to 37°C (50°F to 98.6°F)

  • Minimal to no breeze

  • Not in direct sunlight

  • No rain forecasted

Tip: You can wet the lenses with water to get a glance at what they will look like once treated.


Prepping Headlights for Application

The better the prep, the better the product will perform. It’s important to make sure that the headlights are completely clean and dry before using the product. This will ensure a strong bond between the coating and the lens surface.

Cleaning The Lenses

Thoroughly clean each headlight using an all-purpose cleaner and a clean cloth. Do not use any cleaner that has wax in it as it will not be compatible with the coating. Make sure to clean the surrounding area of each headlight for better masking tape adhesion.

Pro-Tip: To remove the yellowing on the headlight, clean both lenses with a professional-grade degreaser/cleaner that is safe to use on your vehicle. If you have a concentrate, dilute the product for heavy use. Perform this cleaning step until all of the yellowing residue is gone.

Ensure both headlight lenses and the surrounding areas are completely dry before continuing to the next step.

Masking Around the Lenses

Use masking tape to mask around the headlights to prevent overspray on the paint or trim. We recommend a border thickness of at least 2 inches around each headlight. You can also use a few layers of paper with the tape to protect larger areas of the vehicle.

Tip: You can lift the hood of your vehicle to save time and masking tape.


How to Spray like a Pro:

Before use, shake the can well to properly mix the product.

Tip: Before starting, plan out your spray pattern by stepping back and visualizing the grid pattern on the headlight.

Hold the can approximately 8 inches away from the lens. Spray in a grid pattern, side-to-side, and then up and down, making sure you are slightly overlapping the previous stroke for full coverage. Aim to achieve an even, smooth wet coat on the entire lens surface.

Note: Spraying too slowly may result in sags and spraying too fast may result in dry spray (speckled appearance). Work at a smooth, relaxed pace to achieve the wet coat.

Spraying the Second Coat

For best results, spray the second coat once the first coat begins to get tacky.

Tip: You can gently touch an inconspicuous area of the headlight to test this.

For reference: If spraying indoors, wait approximately 2 minutes. If spraying outdoors, wait approx. 20 to 30 seconds

The second coat is your finishing coat. Again, you’re aiming to achieve an even, smooth wet coat on the entire lens, this may require you to spray slightly heavier for the second coat.


Drying and Curing:

After spraying the second coat, allow the coating to air dry - do not wipe it off. It will be dry to the touch in 20 minutes or less.

Once dry, carefully remove the masking tape and lower the hood.

Moisture can safely touch the headlight in as quick as 2 hours, however, we recommend a full cure cycle of 24 hours before exposing it to moisture.


How To Safely Remove Overspray on Paint/Trim:

If overspray occurs, don’t worry – our formulation is safe and will not damage any vehicle paint or trim.

To remove, use rubbing alcohol and a clean cloth to rub away any minor overspray on paint or trim. With a little bit of elbow grease and time, any overspray will come off without damaging the paint or trim of your vehicle.

As always, please carefully read the instructions on the product container before use.


For more information:

Watch our short demo video here or download/print full instructions here.


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