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Old 04-24-2011, 02:20 PM   #1
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There ought to be a law!

Hi, as I was driving through a parking lot, I got a brain storm. Why do so many cars and trucks have such horrible looking head lights? You know, the plastic junk, that turns foggy and/or yellowish-brown in color. Doesn't matter whether it is a Cheap Chevy or a Mega-Dollar Mercedes, all brands seem to get it. Maybe we should go back to the days when head lights were made of real glass. Shouldn't this be considered a safety defect and warrantied for as long as this vehicle is legally licensed to drive on the public highways? NTSA? I know there are already too many laws on the books, but I think this is something being overlooked. "There ought to be a law!"

What do you think about this head light dilemma or are there other laws that there ought to be?

P.S. Please note: This is posted in the "Off Topic" thread.
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Old 04-24-2011, 02:36 PM   #2
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I still have glass headights, but I sure miss glass tail & marker lights!
Shall we call our Congressmen?, they've obviously not got anything else to do.
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Old 04-24-2011, 02:40 PM   #3
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Wait.. if you make them of glass again I cant charge to polish them out?!
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Old 04-24-2011, 03:03 PM   #4
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Question Seriously

I don't really notice that many bad looking ones around here. It must be all the brown grudge in the air, I notice as I approach the LA area, deteriorating them rapidly.

Ken
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Old 04-24-2011, 03:40 PM   #5
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Haven't noticed it in Minnesota. Hope it's not something breathable.
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Old 04-24-2011, 04:02 PM   #6
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robersunrus, perhaps you do not need headlights.[an attempt at humor]. jim
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Old 04-24-2011, 09:00 PM   #7
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Should be required by Federal Law the manufacturer replace them the lifetime of the vehicle when they fade, cloud or deteriorate. It's unacceptable that there is no lower-cost alternative when a new set costs as much as a set of tires, and there is no salvage yard alternative. The light output is seriously diminished, and the aftermarket kits to "restore" them are a joke.

Time to put spurs under the OEM's to quit compromising safety through inferior material specification. And make state inspection laws to conform, including proper aiming, etc.

The USA once led the world in road and -- in some cases -- vehicle safety. Those days are in the past.
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Old 04-24-2011, 09:09 PM   #8
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They are not difficult to polish back to OEM clarity! It takes a random orbital buffer and several grades of super-fine 3M Trizact specialty polishing paper. After that, a rotary buff with Auto-Sol and they will be good as new!

I offer this service to a lot of my clients with the big, expensive motor homes. They tend to fade after 3-4 months in the FL heat and sun. Brings them right back to life!
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Old 04-24-2011, 09:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERTSUNRUS View Post
Hi, as I was driving through a parking lot, I got a brain storm. Why do so many cars and trucks have such horrible looking head lights? You know, the plastic junk, that turns foggy and/or yellowish-brown in color. Doesn't matter whether it is a Cheap Chevy or a Mega-Dollar Mercedes, all brands seem to get it. Maybe we should go back to the days when head lights were made of real glass. Shouldn't this be considered a safety defect and warrantied for as long as this vehicle is legally licensed to drive on the public highways? NTSA? I know there are already too many laws on the books, but I think this is something being overlooked. "There ought to be a law!"

What do you think about this head light dilemma or are there other laws that there ought to be?

P.S. Please note: This is posted in the "Off Topic" thread.
Bob.......you need a life.
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Old 04-25-2011, 01:09 AM   #10
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Have noticed that the plastic lenses seem to be less prone to breakage than the glass. Would rather polish my headlights every few years than buy new at $200 a pop.

I miss the old round one size fits all, $5 seal beams.
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Old 04-25-2011, 01:35 AM   #11
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Have noticed that the plastic lenses seem to be less prone to breakage than the glass. Would rather polish my headlights every few years than buy new at $200 a pop.

I miss the old round one size fits all, $5 seal beams.
Hi, the headlights on my Lincoln have been polished, but deterioration of the plastic prevents them from looking like new. New factory headlights for my Lincoln run about $500.00 each. Or take your chances on Chinese replacements that run anywhere from $200.00 down to $50.00 each. On the old cars the round convex glass sealed beams were pretty tough, but the flat faced square sealed beams were broken quite easily. Sealed beams, even Halogen, were quite in-expensive.
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Old 04-25-2011, 07:30 AM   #12
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I have been using 40 mil adhesive coated plastic covers on my headlights for a lot of years. When properly applied, they stay crystal clear, protect the glass or plastic lens nicely and also seem to help mitigate the UV degradation and fogging.
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Old 04-25-2011, 09:36 AM   #13
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Here's what happened to both my fog lights after the Hella dealer sold me the "rock guards" and said I could run them with the lights on!
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Old 04-25-2011, 09:49 AM   #14
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Haven't noticed it in Minnesota. Hope it's not something breathable.
It does happen here too but takes longer. The degradation in my 1997 Chevrolet pickup is quite noticeable, and it's a combination of the plastic turning yellow and an accumulated sort of "etching" effect that could conceivably be polished out. I suppose that despite the seals there's some contamination of the mirror surface inside, as well.

The problem is not so much that the lenses are plastic now but rather that they are nonstandard and therefore costly to replace. It wasn't that long ago that all cars had sealed beams and a lamp replacement inherently involved replacement of the reflector and lens.

I'm not sure what the real motives were for the move away from sealed beams. The new headlights can be more integrated, stylistically, into the vehicle design, and are maybe a little lighter weight. I don't believe that the light output or distribution is any better than sealed beams even when they're new.
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