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Monthly Archive for February, 2016

Here’s a quick article I wrote for Detailed Image a while back highlighting some tools/accessories that I like to use on an almost daily basis.   Some of My Favorite Detailing Accessories include:

Clay Bar Storage Container

These little containers can be used for claybar, but also other items like storing steel wool, small screwdriver bits, nuts and bolts, etc.

Plastic Razor Blade

These plastic blades are great for removing stickers from cars, but also cleaning wax residue and dirt from hard to reach areas between panels.

Disposable Floor Mats

Whether in a shop or home garage, these are great at keeping the vehicle carpets and mats clean from footprints, especially during winter time.

Pressure Spray Bottles

These work great for just about any liquid and are much easier on the hand as you don’t have to constantly pump the sprayer of a typical spray bottle.  Just build up some pressure and they’re good to go for a little while.

Speedy Stone Pet Hair Remover

This stone works VERY well on removing pet hair as well as other fibers from the carpets and upholstery.  A must have if you transport animals.

It seems that 95% of the time we are doing some level of paint correction and applying a protective coating to a vehicle.  That is our specialty and what most clients need for their vehicles.  However, we also do quite a few additional services.  These include interior detailing, headlight restoration, paint protection film (PPF), etc.

In this case, we were asked to bring back to life some old and weathered headlights on a client’s Chrysler Pacifica.  The car came in dirty, so we were hoping most of the haze on the headlight would wash off.

LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(1)Unfortunately, much of the haze was in the actual headlight lens and would need to be thoroughly corrected.LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(2)

A close up shows the damage from regular driving and road debris.  This not only looks bad, but can greatly limit the light output of your headlights and be a huge safety concern. LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(3)

LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(4) We decided that in order to correct these headlights, we needed to fully sand the plastic lens and then polish them to perfection.  First, we masked off the adjacent paint to protect it.LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(5)

We then completely sanded the lens leaving a very hazy finish.  This was required in order to remove the deep scratches, chipping and faded layer.  LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(6)

Sanding was followed by two stages of machine polishing in order to correct the haze and bring back perfect clarity.  We were extremely pleased with the results as the lens looked almost brand new.LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(7) LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(8)

Even up close, the headlight was near perfect and improved greatly over the previous condition.  The fade was gone and light output was now 100%. LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(9)

We normally apply a protective coating after a headlight restoration, which keeps the lens from fading for up to a year, sometimes more.  This time though, the headlights turned out so well that the client decided to have us apply some protective film before we put the coating on, for even better protection and preservation.LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(10) LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(11) LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(12)

The protective film (PPF) is only visible if you’re a few inches from the lens and looking around the edges.  Otherwise, it’s invisible to the naked eye and looks great on the headlights.  Not only does it allow light through easily, the film helps to protect the lens from UV radiation as well as daily road debris causing damage to the headlights.

headlight restorationNeedless to say, our client was extremely pleased with the results and we were as well.  The photo clearly show the huge improvement made by correcting the headlight.  These headlights are now protected for years to come and only maintenance will be to replace the film for under $100 after a few years depending on how it wears.

For these headlights the protective film investment may not have been a “must”, but when you consider most cars these days come with HID headlights and many luxury manufacturers charge well over $1000 per each headlight, it becomes a great investment.

You can see some a full list of our car detailing and additional services on our Services page.  Don’t hesitate to call or email us with any questions or to schedule your appointment today.