Buffing Old Faded Headlights To
Look Brand New
Using A Ryobi Buffing Kit On The Head Lights of a 94 Mustang Cobra & a 97 Dodge Stratus
Polished Mustang Headlight
Recently I replaced the faded and chipped stock OEM head lights on my 2001 Grand Prix with brand new aftermarket units made by Eagle Eyes. Then shortly after that, my brother sent me these pictures of his 1994 Ford Mustang Cobra, and 1997 Dodge Stratus.
He had purchased a Ryobi headlight buffing kit and revitalized his old cloudy headlights to like new appearance with just a few passes of his drill and some polishing compound.
Unfortunately, he didn't take any before pictures of the
Mustang's headlights but I know for a fact that they looked a lot worse than
these "after" pictures. The Cobra hasn't seen as many miles as the Stratus
so the lights didn't look quite as cloudy but they definitely couldn't pass
for being brand new.
Before Buffing Picture
Above, you can see the "before" pictures of the headlights on the '97 Dodge Stratus which we affectionately refer to as "the cloud". This vehicle has more than 150,000 hard driven miles on the odometer. Most of which were traveled on the gravel covered, construction crazy streets of South Florida that really take a beating on a car.
Once you have the buffing pad secured onto your electric
drill, get the pad rotating at a reasonable speed and apply it gently to the
headlight's surface. Be careful not to apply too much pressure or spin the
pad too quickly. This process will vary by vehicle and headlight due to
material differences so just take your time and don't rush or else you'll
end up buying new head lights any way.
Tips From Dennis Via Email -
There is a UV coating over the
face of the headlight lens. Polishing the lens smoothes the plastic but also
removes this protective coating (basically a clear coat).
After Buffing Picture
The headlights on my Grand Prix
didn't look as worn and weather beaten as the lights on the Stratus so I
wish I had tried this technique out before I spent $160 on new aftermarket
headlights. I was able to sell my old lights on eBay for a decent amount so
I'm not too disappointed. At least now I know how to extend the life of my
current ones with a headlight buffing
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