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Old 05-07-2013, 05:35 AM   #1
LensDriven
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Headlight Assemblies - Repair Options?

So, I want to freshen up my headlights. My 09 has prior tint film installed along with retrofitted HID's. I think the combination is what caused the fine cracking I'm seeing all over the lens. I thought it was the film, but after some investigation- nope, its the plastic.

So I want to do something about this and ultimately end up sans film... I really hate chrome on this car, my headlights are the dark chrome- so it's not AS bad as it could be... But I want to stay dark-ER. Thinking about going back to OE bulbs too, the HID's are cool, but I'm finding they don't offer enough road contrast at night, I have trouble picking out details and line colors (especially in the rain!)...and I know I'm being one of those blinding drivers I've complained about around our house

The options I'm thinking are:

A: Spend $270 on aftermarket OE style lights with black bezel trim on Amazon. - Least amount of work, comes with bulbs to un-retrofit with, black is cool! - would have to paint dark grille to match cause I'm OCD like that.

B: Buy donor chrome lights on ebay for $170-$200 (the chromes are the cheapest- and can't find any with intact tabs anyway) to frankenstein the lenses from. Open all four lights via baking method- put ebay lenses on my lights and stick with stock bezel color (or paint...? if the bezel comes out?... and would the plastic lens fit on my lights.. I know they are the same, but still...)

C: Carefully remove film and adhesive from my lights, lightly tint with nightshades and buff to gloss in hopes it will hide the cracking some but not be too dark. Cheapest option.

Would would you do, and why?


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Old 05-09-2013, 07:10 AM   #2
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I would go with A because the look is best and closest to OE.
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Old 05-11-2013, 12:12 AM   #3
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I ended up finding some black oe ford ones on eBay. Still pricy- but tabs intact. Going to paint the grill gloss black (instead of that smoked chrome it is now) then get the tails apart to paint the insides of those gloss black too. I want it to look oe, with a twist :)
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Old 05-11-2013, 07:28 AM   #4
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I approve. This is your gf's car, right? How is it otherwise? I hope the 2nd Focus is running well. For me, I have had my 08 SES since July 08 (new) and it has been very reliable. Like new! Best car I ever had (obviously I haven't had any expensive cars). I have had a Ford Focus since December 1999!
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Old 05-11-2013, 12:09 PM   #5
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Haha... Nope, it's mine, but I'm the gf... Or wife, as it were. We had the 06 we bought for me, but my husband decided he really liked it and kept taking it. So I had to find my own! :) we sold our other jeep and bought this for me. So he drives the 06, I drive the 09. ....but they're both mine, really... Shhh ;)

The 09 needs front brakes, got the back done so far. Everything else seems good. A few cosmetic issues I want to perfect, but also has a few tasteful mods like short shifter and exhaust. Now I've got the inside all shampooed and the outside all clayed and polished... I need to replace a few interior parts and do some painting, outside- really it's fine as is, but I figured since its already had its modification cherry popped :-D having it less oe looking and more like i want is par for the course.
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Old 05-11-2013, 04:57 PM   #6
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Great. I am pleased that you are happy with your Focus. The blue is very nice. My neighbor has a blue coupe, so I see it everyday. Mine is silver frost which is tasteful, but a bit boring. Just a FYI. I use turtle wax ICE wax which you can apply to all the paint and black plastic surfaces ( no issue with white bloom, the wax is designed to go on the black plastic ) and after it is removed with a cloth, the car looks amazing. It is a half hour job and i think you would like the results. I am a perfectionist too
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Old 05-12-2013, 12:45 AM   #7
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Oh! I LLLOOOVVVVEEEE the blue. Like seriously... I stare at it an look all creepy when the sun hits it and just sparkles. We kept seeing various cars that color in lots, and everytime I'd comment on how I love the color. I am extatic to have a car this color now. It looks real dark in the shade, but when the light hits it... Yeah. That's kinda why I was blacking everything else out (tastefully) I don't want anything competing with it visually.... Visual artist and all, I get OCD like that. I just did my emblems today, going to find some custom color overlays to put over that next- no chrome anywhere. Just can't decide on the color.

Silver isn't bad though!! It's the easiest to keep clean I've found when I had that color on another car. Our black one is the worst- I didn't want black, but it is a screaming deal for a one owner low milage SES. Black just showcases all the flaws...

Anyway! Funny you should mention it- spent three days doing some paint restoration and major detailing on my 09 last week. I tried meguiars ultimate this time. Wanted to see how it worked. Washed with the gold class, then clayed, did some heavier scratch buffing, used the ultimate polish then the liquid wax- 2-3 coats (dressed the black trims seperately). I must say- that stuff is really good! It's like glass- so shiny it's kinda hard to look at. Well see how long it holds up with the pollen and rain. I've heard good things about the ICE from TW too... We did my husbands car today, same routine, but we used the turtle wax black box, hid a lot of the imperfections. But that ICE says it repels dirt too, might see about layering both maybe next time.
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Old 05-16-2013, 11:40 PM   #8
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Got the lights in and painted the grille black. Might give the painting another go- came out kinda orange peely.

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