Monday, October 8, 2012

Good As New!

We obtained our Toyota Highlander in Tucson about what, 3 years ago, to keep for us to drive when we visit "Ketelsen East" in St Charles.  It has been a great, reliable car, even though it only gets used less than 7 weeks a year.  There are some minor issues - like the seat belt retractors don't work great - but can you really complain about such piddly little things in a car?

Anyway, another issue is that the headlights were fogged/frosted - you see it pretty often in cars as the plastic covers get sandblasted and exposed to UV rays - it happens.  This trip I finally decided to do something rather than pay the $250 for new Toyota covers.  The auto parts place had a couple kits - the 3M kit was on sale for $16.  It is effectively 4 grades of sandpaper/polish with an attachment that goes on your drill to grind the plastic cover down to new material and re-polish it.  Since I polish as a profession, I was a little fussy, and took about 90 minutes for the process.  The electric drill we had was on its last legs - throwing sparks and got so hot it was hard to hold sometimes.  But it survived long enough to work through the 2 grades of sandpaper for the bulk of the work.  Switching to a polyurethane pad w/fine diamonds the surface cleared like magic, and a little buffing with polishing compound finished the job.  The pictures show the before lamp with masking tape just before starting, and the finished job.  It worked amazingly well, and the night time improvement is quite striking!  Best part is that there are enough pads left to repeat the job a few more times, or I can set up shop on a street corner somewhere!
(This post written by Dean, of course!)

1 comment:

cary kittrell said...

I've got this windshield...