Meguiar's Thursday Night Open Garage classes are typically an open format, no classroom instruction style class. We open up the garage, & attendants are welcome to try any Meguiar's products out on their car, and we also if the attendant has a specific defect or area to address, we can help show the attendant proper technique for their car. We work on as many projects as we can handle in a night.
First up tonight was some headlight restoration help on this 2003 Jaguar. The car was in great shape for just under 100,000 miles and in our opinion many of the surfaces can be restored quite well.
Headlights from new (typically poly carbonate) come with a protective coating from the manufacturer on the face of the headlight. Over time, this coating wear & tear from the environment, the coating begins to subside. When the lights begin to yellow & oxidize, this is a sign the protective coating from the manufacturer is wearing off. So that is the "Why" this is happening, so "How" do we have the ability to restore the lights back to like new clear again? By removing the yellow & clouded appearance from the face & top of the headlight. How does one choose which Meguiar's Headlight Restoration Kit to use? The biggest factor in choosing a kit is that it all depends on the severity. Light oxidation? PlastX should do it. Moderate Oxidation, our Two Step Kit would be a good choice. Heavy to Severe, our Heavy Duty Headlight Restoration Kit would be our recommendation.
We started by performing a waterless wash on the front end with Meguiar's Ultimate Waterless Wash & Wax.
These lights did not look too bad, so we started with Meguiar's Two Step Headlight Restoration Kit, which is a clean & coat no buffing type process. I had a feeling these lights were going to require more aggressive means of repair, but we tried the two step kit to see how they would react.
The cleaning step of our two step kit leveled the lights pretty well, and if we would have just proceed to spray on the step 2 coating, they would have looked good. There was one little problem though, I could see that the remainder of the factory coating was being pretty resilient, and did not want to come off. In order to take the lights to a greater level of clarity, I knew this required moving up to air tools & our Professional Headlight & Spot Repair System. This system has specialized UniGrit papers which actually go all the way down to 320 grit. Especially on european cars, if the lights are in a state of moderate oxidation, sometimes the factory coatings can take some time to remove. We ended up using our Unigrit 800 Sanding Disc dry with a pneumatic DA, then our 800 UniGrit Sanding Disc dry with a pneumatic DA, then UniGrit 1000 Grit Foam Finishing Disc Damp with a pneumatic DA, then UniGrit 3000 Grit Foam Finishing Disc damp with a pnematic DA. I apologize I don't have a picture of what I am referring to on the light, but what we are referring to is pretty easy to identify. And again, our Two Step Headlight Kit would have made them look good, but we had the Professional Tools to take it to another level, so we decided to proceed with the Professional Headlight & Spot Repair Process.
Brad from Brad's Auto Detailing in Orange, California is a regular at TNOG & is always up for helping out. He buffed out the sanding marks with M105 Ultra Cut Compound & M205 Ultra Finishing Polish using a Dewalt 849 Rotary.
After a couple hours of work, we then applied the new wipe on headlight coating which is included in our Heavy Duty Headlight Restoration Kit, which provides one year of protection, and quite a bit of added gloss also.
Next Santiago, Alan, and Scott the car owner decided to try out our new Hot Rims All Metal Polish on the factory chrome plated wheels:
After, not bad for a little elbow grease by hand!
Ever seen a Rigid LED Light Bar on an Audi? NICE
Some M105 Ultra Cut Compound being used to remove oxidation on Santiago's daily.
Lastly on the Jaguar, the car owner was looking to learn about remove scratches & defects, & so showed what Meguiar's DA Microfiber Correction System can do on our MT300. It is hard to see in this picture on this light color, but if you look towards the top, you can see our tape line & the Random Isolated Deep Scratches & lack of clarity spread throughout. The lower reflection of the florsccent light shows just after the compound step, and the improvement in the clarity & overall scratch removal. Still a deep scratch that will have to be sanded to remove, but big improvements.
Thanks to everyone for coming out and feel free to contact me with any questions.