Just like any other car part, your headlights also experience normal wear and tear, and will deteriorate over time. A tell-tale sign that the headlights need attention is when you notice that they look foggy during the day, and aren’t as bright when used for night driving.
Luckily, dull and foggy headlights are easy to fix on your own. You don’t need expensive tools or materials just to bring back your headlights’ performance. It will only need a bit of effort and time on your part.
Read the rest of this guide to learn how to clean car headlights with vinegar and baking soda – DIY-style using simple supplies, and bring them back to their original brightness.
What Causes Foggy Headlights?
Several factors can cause foggy or dull headlights. These include frequent exposure to the sun’s UV rays, debris and harsh chemicals encountered on the road, as well as the direct heat from the headlight bulbs themselves. All these factors contribute to discolor and wear down the headlights, resulting to the yellowed or foggy look.
You need to address the problem as soon as you notice your diminishing headlight brightness, or its dingy or yellowish looks due to headlight fogging.
What Home Remedies to Clean Car Headlights?
Aside from cooking, vinegar has long been used for cleaning purposes. You can also use the liquid to get rid of dirt or discoloration from the foggy headlights. When mixed with baking soda, the mixture can be an effective remedy for foggy, yellowed, or hazy headlights.
Best Way: How To Clean Car Headlights with Vinegar and Baking Soda?
Following is an easy to follow step-by-step guide on cleaning car headlights using simple household materials like vinegar and baking Soda.
Things You’ll Need:
- ¼ cup distilled vinegar
- 2 tablespoons baking soda
- Microfiber cloths
- Car cleaning soap
- Spray bottle
- Clean water
How to (Step by Step Instructions):
Step 1: Clean the headlight.
Use the car cleaning soap to clean the headlight thoroughly. Make sure to remove all visible dirt and smudges. Then thoroughly dry using a microfiber cloth.
Step 2: Mix baking powder with vinegar.
Dissolve 2 tablespoons of baking soda in ¼ cup of vinegar. Mix well or until you achieve a thick consistency.
Step 3: Apply the mixture on the headlights.
Use a clean piece of microfiber cloth to generously rub the mixture on the headlight surface in small, circular motions. Spend a few minutes on each headlight, making sure to cover the whole surface with the mixture. Apply more, if necessary. Leave for a couple of minutes to allow the surface to absorb the mixture.
Step 4: Spritz with water to rinse.
Fill the spray bottle and rinse the mixture-coated headlight surface. Completely wash off the solution. Then, dry the headlights thoroughly with a microfiber cloth.
Step 5: Repeat the 3rd and 4th steps, if necessary.
If you still notice some yellowish or hazy spots, reapply the baking soda/vinegar solution, then rinse and wipe dry.
To help give you a better idea on how to clean foggy headlights using simple household materials, check out this video we found online:
How to Keep Your Headlights From Fogging Up?
Different types of surface protectants like car wax and plastic protectant can help shield the headlights from damage and oxidation caused by UV exposure. Apply the protectant to the headlight surface to create a buffer between the headlight and any debris it may encounter on the road. Application on a regular basis can help prevent foggy headlights.
Key Points Review:
To help get a good grasp on the how to clean headlights using a vinegar/baking soda, let’s review the steps:
- Clean the headlight surface, then dry thoroughly to make sure that all visible dirt is removed prior to application of the vinegar/baking soda solution.
- Make the vinegar/baking soda solution by dissolving 2 tbsp. of baking soda into ¼ cup of vinegar.
- Generously apply the mixture to the headlight surface using slow, circular motions. Completely cover the surface.
- Rinse to completely wash away the solution.
- Repeat the 3rdand 4th steps if there are still yellowish spots on the headlight surface.
To prevent foggy headlights from occurring in the first place, regularly apply a surface protectant such as car wax and plastic protectant.
Foggy headlights pose night driving hazards. Fortunately, there are simple ways to prevent or fix foggy headlights at home using common household items. Just follow the steps provided in this post on how to clean foggy headlights with vinegar and baking soda, as well as how you can prevent foggy headlights from happening.
Just leave a comment below if you have any feedback or any tips of your own to share.
Recommended Related Articles:
If the problem is headlight fogging, there are simple ways to address it. Read this article to learn what causes fogging, and how to easily restore it with a DIY style.