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Thread: headlight lens degradation

  1. #61
    Registered Member Triton46's Avatar

    2013 Mazda CX-5 GT

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    Our 2000 Ford Taurus wagon has bad headlight degradation. I used two Meguiars products about twice a year:

    http://www.amazon.com/Meguiars-G1231...KJC0FAR1HG8ARE

    http://www.amazon.com/Meguiars-G1711.../dp/B006FUT15Y

    The latter is like a UV wax. As you wipe it on, thin, it completely disappears.

  2. #62
    MoMo MikeM.'s Avatar

    2013 Mazda CX-5 Touring AWD 2.0L

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    Quote Originally Posted by Triton46 View Post
    Our 2000 Ford Taurus wagon has bad headlight degradation. I used two Meguiars products about twice a year:

    http://www.amazon.com/Meguiars-G1231...KJC0FAR1HG8ARE

    http://www.amazon.com/Meguiars-G1711.../dp/B006FUT15Y

    The latter is like a UV wax. As you wipe it on, thin, it completely disappears.
    Polycarbonate headlights come with a hard UV protective coating from the factory. It's important to maintain this as long as possible because, while it won't last forever, you are unlikely to duplicate it with over the counter restoration products. In fact, many of these products remove the UV coating and should only be used after the original coating is gone.

    Don't use "all in one" cleaner/waxes that contain polishing abrasives on your new lenses. Use of a high quality Carnauba wax will fill in fine scratches and protect the original UV coating. Apply often.

    I'm of the opinion that most badly weathered polycarbonate lenses had the wrong products used on them early in their lifecycle. Treat them gently like the coated plastic lenses in your glasses/sunglasses and don't delve into the world of restoration products until they really need restoration.

  3. #63
    Registered Member Panaplayer's Avatar

    Mazda CX-5 2016

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    Thanks guys, when I read this thread I learned about the problem with the headlights. I bought my CX-5 2016 on July of last year and by the time I read the thread I was taking my car for 5k checkup. I told the guy about this problem and he told me I had to get an appointment on a week day (which was hard for me) finally I took my car today and they told me to take it back in 9 days because they are going to change the headlights under warranty. Big thanks to you all because probably I would not have noticed.

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  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by paris1 View Post
    After restoring the lights on my wife's '06 Miata a couple of years ago (and therein removing any semblance of UV coating) I started using this once a month http://www.amazon.com/Blue-Magic-730.../dp/B0051PJWQW on both her car and my CX-5. Seems to help, but there's nothing like keeping a car garaged to ward off this kind of damage.
    Resurrecting this thread, after using this stuff for a year the headlight fogging literally stopped. Good stuff, highly recommended.

  5. #65
    Registered Member PatrickGSR94's Avatar

    2014 Mazda CX-5 Touring

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    Quote Originally Posted by madar View Post
    Resurrecting this thread, after using this stuff for a year the headlight fogging literally stopped. Good stuff, highly recommended.
    Nice. I have some Meguiar's headlight sealant (2nd link posted by Triton above) that I've been using every couple of months on our CX-5. The headlights still looked very good when we purchased the car in August of last year. Hopefully they'll stay looking good.
    1994 Acura Integra GSR - 360K miles, a few mods
    2014 Mazda CX-5 Touring - 65K miles, new family hauler!

  6. #66
    手前の言葉が俺は聞き捨てよう TheMAN's Avatar


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    All of you just need to invest in some headlight protection film (I recommend Xpel)... it'll not only provide chipping protection, but it'll also protect your lights from fading... my 10 year old Corolla beater (always parked outside) has Xpel on and it's still crystal clear to this day without me doing any special "treatment" or "maintenance" to it, besides washing the car

    protection film is cheap, headlights are not
    TheMAN
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  7. #67
    Registered Member yrwei52's Avatar
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    Arrow headlight lens degradation

    Quote Originally Posted by TheMAN View Post
    All of you just need to invest in some headlight protection film (I recommend Xpel)... it'll not only provide chipping protection, but it'll also protect your lights from fading... my 10 year old Corolla beater (always parked outside) has Xpel on and it's still crystal clear to this day without me doing any special "treatment" or "maintenance" to it, besides washing the car

    protection film is cheap, headlights are not
    My 1998 Honda CR-V which is never garaged for almost 19 years and 17,6538 miles under Texas sun, both headlight lenses are still as clear as new. They don't need any protection film or UV wax. I believe the quality of polycarbonate or what ever the material is still making big difference on longevity! If you use right material to make very reliable headlight lens, it'll show its true colors after 19 years like my Honda CR-V. And I know Honda didn't cut corners on my CR-V headlights like many other car manufactures did!

  8. #68
    手前の言葉が俺は聞き捨てよう TheMAN's Avatar


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    You're right... the quality makes a big difference
    Your CR-V has ECE markings on the headlight lens, which tells me that they just used 1 lens for all markets of headlights, and just have different internals accordingly (but not too many differences, since IIRC, the CR-V has VOL/ECE style beam pattern)... My point is, ECE rules have very strict mechanical durability requirements, thus in order to meet their environmental degradation tests (under Regulation 20 or 31, now 112/113, etc), the manufacturer has to build the headlight with tough enough materials to pass this test

    DOT rules have no such requirements to my knowledge, and so, the manufacturer can make it however they like... this results in a North American market flooded with crappy headlights everywhere (not to mention poor beam patterns)
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  9. #69
    手前の言葉が俺は聞き捨てよう TheMAN's Avatar


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    Also, one thing is for sure, Honda sold cars with very good (DOT) headlights back in the 90s... not to mention, Honda and Toyota built up their reputation to their peak in the 90s with super durable and reliable cars... as the old saying goes, "they just don't build them like they used to"
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  10. #70
    Registered Member Moonlighter's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMAN View Post
    protection film is cheap, headlights are not
    You are not wrong!

    I noticed some of those white fleck mark on the inside of my LED headlight lenses and it looks like the adhesive issue as per the TSB listed earlier.

    Mentioned it to my Mazda dealer , the service rep had a look and took some photos - so they can see what Mazda says re a warranty replacement.

    He mentioned that here in Aus, each LED headlight assembly costs $2000 at dealer cost price!

    Yikes! Imagine the cost of a nose to tail crash - your insurance is up for $4K in headlights alone!

  11. #71
    Registered Member yrwei52's Avatar
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    Arrow headlight lens degradation

    Quote Originally Posted by TheMAN View Post
    You're right... the quality makes a big difference
    Your CR-V has ECE markings on the headlight lens, which tells me that they just used 1 lens for all markets of headlights, and just have different internals accordingly (but not too many differences, since IIRC, the CR-V has VOL/ECE style beam pattern)... My point is, ECE rules have very strict mechanical durability requirements, thus in order to meet their environmental degradation tests (under Regulation 20 or 31, now 112/113, etc), the manufacturer has to build the headlight with tough enough materials to pass this test

    DOT rules have no such requirements to my knowledge, and so, the manufacturer can make it however they like... this results in a North American market flooded with crappy headlights everywhere (not to mention poor beam patterns)
    Yes, 1998 CR-V does have "ECE" marking on the headlight lenses. But if you see the pictures I posted at post #55 in this thread, my 2001.5 VW Passat has the worst condition among cars we current have. The lenses degraded and yellowed after 7 years. And that headlights are ECE certified and have "ECE" marking on the lenses.

    I agree, Honda and Toyota built up their reputation to their peak in the 90s with super durable and reliable cars ⋯

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by yrwei52 View Post
    My 1998 Honda CR-V which is never garaged for almost 19 years and 17,6538 miles under Texas sun, both headlight lenses are still as clear as new. They don't need any protection film or UV wax. I believe the quality of polycarbonate or what ever the material is still making big difference on longevity! If you use right material to make very reliable headlight lens, it'll show its true colors after 19 years like my Honda CR-V. And I know Honda didn't cut corners on my CR-V headlights like many other car manufactures did!
    The upright profile and small surface area of the light of that year's cr-v helps too. Less of a direct sun angle to hit it. The bumper also juts out from it at such an angle to help shadow light reflected off the ground too.

    My old 3 started hazing after about 6 years in the sun. But those lights are large and fully exposed.

  13. #73
    Registered Member CX-5um's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheMAN View Post
    All of you just need to invest in some headlight protection film (I recommend Xpel)... it'll not only provide chipping protection, but it'll also protect your lights from fading... my 10 year old Corolla beater (always parked outside) has Xpel on and it's still crystal clear to this day without me doing any special "treatment" or "maintenance" to it, besides washing the car

    protection film is cheap, headlights are not
    I highly recommend Xpel as well but just not for the CX-5 (pre 2017 at least). Its too hard to install due to some funky creases. Xpel is a premium thick film. Too think for the CX-5 for me to install. I used thinner 3M paint protection film and the lenses on our CX-5 with 60k+ miles looks nice and shiny. No chips.

  14. #74
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    I just noticed this like 2 months ago, and it seems to be getting worse by the day.


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  15. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by CX-5um View Post
    I highly recommend Xpel as well but just not for the CX-5 (pre 2017 at least). Its too hard to install due to some funky creases. Xpel is a premium thick film. Too think for the CX-5 for me to install. I used thinner 3M paint protection film and the lenses on our CX-5 with 60k+ miles looks nice and shiny. No chips.
    Do you have any suggestions on where to get paint protection film for the headlight?

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