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The Top 3 Myths about DIY Headlight Restoration Tricks

So you’ve started to notice your headlights don’t look as clear as the day you bought your car, or maybe you’ve noticed your visibility at night has started to decrease. This is usually because your car is at an age where its headlights begin to oxidize, turning cloudy/hazy and maybe yellowed.

Why do your headlights become Hazy or Cloudy?

Nowadays, headlight lenses are made of polycarbonate, a type of plastic. Car manufacturers will initially apply a coating to the lenses to block the sun's UV rays from deteriorating the plastic. However, over time this coating will start to break down causing the fog/yellowing you often see on vehicles today.


3 Myths You’ll Find Online and Why You Should Avoid Them


By far, the most common myth is using toothpaste to clean headlights. The reason this is suggested is that toothpaste acts as an abrasive compound to partially remove the haze on headlights. This should not be done because while your headlights may look better for a few days, you have also removed the UV protective coating which will let the headlights become foggy again very quickly.

Toothpaste With Headlight

Mosquito repellent or WD40

Mosquito repellent, WD40, and olive oil are also a common myth found online. The oils used in these products give the appearance of clearer headlights but will not last as they will inevitably be washed off by rain or in a car wash. Some repellents have also been known to contain certain chemicals that will degrade the polycarbonate housing of your headlights making the problem worse and/or harder to fix later on.

Mosquito Repellent With Headlight
Mosquito Repellent

Car Wax

Another common DIY method has been to use car wax. This temporary fix is similar to mosquito repellent in that it might make your headlights look better for a few days, but will eventually come off.


Want to read even more about this?

If you would like to read more about how destructive using toothpaste or mosquito repellent on your headlights is, check out our other blog post:


The Right Way to Restore Your Headlights

1. Use a Professional Restoration Kit

High-quality headlight restoration kits are specifically designed to address oxidation effectively. These kits typically include specialized abrasives and UV sealants to restore clarity and provide long-lasting protection. For severely oxidized headlights, we recommend using Detour Auto's Heavy Duty Headlight Restoration Kit which comes with everything needed to tackle even the toughest jobs.

2. Protective Coatings

Applying a UV sealant after removing the oxidation is crucial to protect against future oxidation and yellowing. Professional kits include this step, ensuring that your headlights stay clear for a longer time.

3. Cost-effective in the Long Run

While professional products may seem pricier upfront, they save money in the long term by reducing the need for frequent applications and preventing the need for complete headlight replacements.

Looking For a Faster Way?

Your headlights are incredibly important to the safety of yourself, your passengers and others on the road. For a fast, easy and long-lasting way to restore your foggy headlights, we recommend using Detour Auto's One-Step Headlight Restoration Spray. Not only will it instantly make your headlights look new again, but it will simultaneously apply an industrial-strength UV protective coating that bonds to your lenses for long-lasting protection.


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