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nc211

Scratched Plastic

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Tried the lense repair stuff yesterday. The tops of my headlights were foggy. Used their four-pad procedure as described on the box....scratched it all to hell and back. Any suggestions on how to correct it? After realizing what I had done, I used just the reconditioner only on the other lense...looks great. Oh the joys....

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NC...my neighbor did the same thing on his older Jag. Use what they have in the kit and keep working it. It should appear scratched up but should feel smooth. Then take the finishing polish and polish it back out until it is clear again. He used a buffer on his after he taped the paint up to get his back the way he wanted and they look great now. You could even try Mequires Scratch X if the polish wont take the scratches all of the way out and then go back over with the polish.

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nc, how deep are the scratches? Can you feel them with your fingernail?

If so, you'll need to wetsand and buff them out, probably best to machine polish.

Go to a store like Advanced Auto Parts or Autozone, and get some sandpaper. You'll need 1000 grit and 2000 grit. Also get a good cutting compound, personally i like 3M's Scratch Remover. Meguar's ScratchX is much too fine to remove wetsand scratches.

First, like LexiRx330 said in the last post, mask off the areas around the headlight, such as the bumper and any other plastic/metal trim. Layer it pretty good.

Then get a pale and fill it with water, just regular tap water is fine. First start with the 1000 grit sandpaper, cut a piece maybe 2"x4", and fold it in half (so it'll be 2"x2"). Dip it in the water and splash a little water over the headlight. Then proceed to sand the areas that have been scratched, but sand in a horizontal direction only, making sure not to swirl around. Just keep sanding until the scratches you made previous are gone. Then go over the entire area with the 2000 grit sandpaper, just enough so that the scratches made by the 1000 grit are gone.

Then, you're ready to polish. I "guess" you could buff by hand, but i'd recommend machine polish as it'll be MUCH faster. If you don't have access to one, then just do it by hand.

Start with the 3M's Scratch Remover. Squeeze some out, about the size of a dime. With a cotton cloth, just rub the compound over the areas you've sanded, rubbing in all directions until the area becomes more transparent. If you're doing it by hand, it could take... a long time. Just keep at it, adding compound as it goes away until the shine is back.

Then you can try a more gentle compound such as Meguar's ScratchX to add more luster.

I know some Lexus headlights (my 03 Rx300 had this) have a special hard coating over the entire lens, so by sanding only one area you may go through this layer, which may result in an uneven result (since the hard coat doesn't sand/polish the same as the soft plastic beneath). If this happens, just wetsand the entire headlight...

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Thanks guys! The scratches give it that "fogged" look. Not terrible, but you can tell a difference if you really look at both lenses at the right angle, when it's dry outside. I've decided to not worry about it though. It doesn't appear to have any noticable impact at night, so it still works fine.

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