Michael Johnson
Associate Editor, 5.0 Mustangs & Super Fords
June 1, 1999

Step By Step

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Though it’s not easily seen in this picture, the headlights on this GT are badly hazed-over. You’ll be able to tell just how hazy they were when you see our finished photo.
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Here’s a close-up shot of one of the headlights. The haze is easily seen at this angle, but it’s about to disappear.
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Mask off the area around the headlights with masking tape so as not to sand any area on the hood or bumper cover. You’ll notice we didn’t mask off the side marker light. That is because the previous owner used a bra that covered the marker light so it wasn’t as hazed over as the other lights. However, when we finished sanding and buffing the headlight and turn signal light, we realized we needed to go ahead and do the marker light as well.
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Start by sanding with 600-grit wet-or-dry sandpaper. Only the slightest bit of water pressure is needed in order to properly sand the lights. You’ll only need to sand on the lights for 5-10 minutes with each grit sandpaper. After using the 600-grit sandpaper, move on to the 1,200-grit paper and repeat the sanding process.
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With only the sanding part done, you can already see a huge difference between the sanded side and the still-hazed-over side. Of course the light is still wet at this time and won’t look as good once it dries, so now we’ll move on to the buffing part of the process.
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It’s time to break out the buffer and the Eastwood Autosol. We had the luxury of having a two-speed buffer to use for this article, however, if yours is not a two-speed model, just using the slightest amount of trigger pressure will get the job done. You don’t want the buffing wheel spinning too fast because you could end up burning the headlight’s surface by heating it up too much. This same principle is applied to automotive paint finishes.
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Here’s Eastwood’s Autosol polish. The polish works on a variety of surfaces from metal to chrome to copper. As you can tell, it also works on Mustang headlights. Apply the polish using an old, cotton T-shirt, then use the buffer to bring out the shine. The part number for the tube is 13170, and in can form, 13175.
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Here’s the finished product. No longer will we have to hide our headlights in shame. We can leave them uncovered with pride and not hang our heads and be embarrassed by their condition. Now about that hood...

Headlight covers are one of the most popular accessories for late-model Mustangs, for a couple of reasons. They lend a custom and mean-looking touch to the car, that’s obvious, but they also work really well at covering up ugly, hazed-over headlights. It’s a common problem—the hazy, milky finish that eventually appears on all 5.0 headlights. You can cover them up with the aforementioned dark headlight covers, but that brings with it the hassle of removing them at night. A better solution is to just remove the haze from your headlights.

We’ve ridden around with hazy headlights long enough, and we’re ready to do something about it. Headlights become hazy from the sun’s intense heat and burning rays—much like how we get burned if we stay out in the sun too long. Making them clear again is so easy you’ll wonder why it took you so long to do it.

The products we’re using to brighten up our lights are easy to find and easy to use, and even the most inexperienced ’Stang banger can accomplish this task in less than an hour. The products you’ll need are 600- and 1,200-grit wet-or-dry sandpaper, Eastwood’s Autosol polish, a roll of masking tape and a chamois. Of course, you’ll also need a high-speed buffer with a new buffing pad. It’s ideal to have a two-speed buffer like we were able to use to help control the speed of the buffing pad, but if you don’t have that luxury, use the slightest amount of pressure on the trigger of the buffer—it doesn’t need to spin at 9,000 rpm to get the job done. Furthermore, doing so may burn the headlights and leave permanent scars.