Have you ever noticed that your headlights just aren't as bright anymore or that all the other oncoming cars seem to have much brighter headlights? Its easy to think, particularly with intermittent night driving, that it just might be your vision but often the solution is literally in front of you - your headlights are faded.
Anyone who remembers glass headlights, or at least the glass on headlight lenses, probably never had to deal with it. Although cracked headlights were a common sight in many repair shops.
As car manufacturers looked for more modern materials to replace the glass an obvious choice is plastics as they can be lighter and more break resistant, easily molded to complex shapes and quicker to manufacture. The challenge is that they do have a downslide and that is that the intense rays of the sun and the constant barrage of road grime and particles tend to fade them or sandblast them over time. Manufacturers do put a protective layer on them to mitigate the damage of UV rays but eventually that wears off.
In a previous article I talked about our fleet of Mercedes customer service vehicles and we do regular service on them here at RSP. Everything from oil changes to any maintenance required. Our fleet gets driven daily by a variety of customers all with different driving styles and regular maintenance is the key to the reason why our E class Mercedes is still running like new at 650,000 km's.
As part of the regular service, all of our courtesy car vehicles get a thorough going over, and Chino noticed the headlights could use some attention. I've got some before and after shots that give you some idea of how much they fade over time and the 'night and day' difference that a headlight polish and cleaning can do.
Although retail products are available that can help fix the issue the solution is usually not that long lasting as eventually the same process will repeat itself slowly over time. In our shop Chino does a multi step process that includes sanding all of the stone pits and cloudiness from the lens starting at a heavier grit of paper and working with finer and finer grit until the surface is flawless. That makes the lens as clear as new but the protective layer has to be added to keep it looking new. Chino uses multiple solutions for that depending on the level of protection needed. In some cases he applies a clear protective film to the lens, the same clear, UV blocking film we use when we protect the paint on a car. In other cases he uses a ceramic coating to the lens to add that extra protection and for the ultimate protection we can do a combination of both to help the lens stay clear for years.
The results - and the sudden ability to see better at night is clear.
Call us an book an appointment if you think you need better night vision.