How to paint your headlights

Discussion in 'Exterior' started by Cobalt Tom, Jul 21, 2009.

  1. Cobalt Tom

    Cobalt Tom Platinum Member

    Age:
    32
    Posts:
    3,056
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2009
    Location:
    Auburn, WA
    I did not write this:

    I know that this has been posted before, but to me, the others had some gaps in the instructions. Especially in removing/replacing the headlights along w/ a few extras I'm tossing in…Enjoy

    Difficulty Rating: 7 out of 10
    Time: 10-12 hours
    Cost: $10-$25
    Stores: O’Reilly Auto Parts or AutoZone / Wal-Mart

    Materials:
    Ratchet and 10 mm socket w/extension
    Flathead screwdriver (one you don't mind getting ruined)
    Six-star screwdriver (T15)
    Mini Screwdriver
    Needle-nose pliers
    Steel-wool (Fine Grade)
    Painter's tape (or any easy release tape)
    (2) Ultra-Flat Black Krylon Plastic spray paint (or spray paint color of your choice)
    (2) Black VersaChem Window/Gasket Sealant Tubes (Comes in many colors)

    [​IMG]

    Step 1: Removing Headlight
    First, remove the two bolts shown below. Next, push your headlight towards the middle of your car and then pivot outward. Disconnect the main power from the back. Pull up on the area shown and pull outwards to remove the headlight.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Step 2: Disassembling/Unsealing Headlight
    Take off electrical hookups as shown, use the flat-head screwdriver to remove the clip. For the little bulb in the middle you use the needle-nose pliers. Now there are two ways to unsealing your headlight: A) you can use a hair dryer to heat up the casing or B) the way I did it, an oven. If you choose to bake it, be sure to remove the three screws on the back of the headlight as shown. If you use the blow dryer method, you can wait until the casing is separated to do that. For the oven method, bake headlight for 25-30 minutes @ 200 degrees. With the silicone flexible, pull the casing apart and it’ll be in three separate pieces. Now comes the most time consuming and tedious part, removing the excess sealant. If the sealant is still hot and flexible, scrape it off w/ the flathead screwdriver. If not, you can place it back in the oven for ten minutes and then scrape it out before it cools. Repeat heating if it cools on you again. See picture for a finished look. If you plan on keeping the round, orange blinker cover, look for two small holes on the back and pop it off w/ the mini screwdriver. If not, you’ll need to buy an orange bulb to be legal. Next press out the other reflector to remove it and set those pieces aside.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Step 3: Painting
    Tape off the blinker area as shown below. If you wish, you can also tape off the grooved area inside the main chamber of your light. You can spray paint directly onto the chrome area or as I prefer, use steel wool to remove just enough of the chrome finish to see the plastic underneath. Next, be sure to clean and wipe down the area you’re about to paint no matter which method you do. Apply 2-3 coats of paint and allow it to dry. If you happen to screw up, like I did (twice..damn hairs), you wait for it to dry completely then use the steel wool to smooth it out. You won’t see any imperfections I promise, it comes out like it never happened. This next step is optional but highly recommended. Cool oven to 170 degrees and carefully place the painted section inside and bake for ten minutes. This will ensure the durability of the paint and allow for accidental bumps without scratching when reassembling.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Step 4: Sealing and Re-assembly
    First you want to reattach the square reflector then blinker cover. Look below for proper blinker cover reattachment so you don’t scratch the paint. Now place and screw in the painted section to the casing using the 3 screws removed earlier. Open sealer and put a thick bead into the grooved section of the headlight casing. It should take one tube per headlight. Now align and reconnect the front cover of the headlight making sure it’s locked into place. Once in place, you can put a bead around the outside as shown and wipe it w/ your finger to insure a complete seal. Let it set for about 30 minutes to an hour and then reattach the bulbs and clip.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Step 5: Putting Headlight back in car
    Like talking it off, you want to push the inner corner towards the middle of the car and lift up on the area shown below. With a little wiggling it should almost go in. Be sure to reconnect the power source then pop it into the place and slide it back along the groves shown. Tighten the bolts back and your good to go. Enjoy your sleek new look!

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  2. cobalt123

    cobalt123 Platinum Member

    Age:
    31
    Posts:
    15,202
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2009
    Location:
    Tyler Texas
    nice write up lol
     
  3. 06'L61'Balt

    06'L61'Balt Junior Member

    Age:
    31
    Posts:
    10
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2009
    Location:
    Stationed in Hawaii from NY
    I like it I wanna do this to mine
     
  4. gCobalt05

    gCobalt05 Full Access Member

    Posts:
    331
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Location:
    North GA
    I cant wait to do mine soon!

    ---------- Post added at 03:50 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:47 PM ----------

    Ive got laminex tint over my headlights now, will that effect anything?
    Are they going to melt in the oven?
     
  5. cobalt123

    cobalt123 Platinum Member

    Age:
    31
    Posts:
    15,202
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2009
    Location:
    Tyler Texas
    i think they could at the right temperature, try using a heat gun?
     
  6. gCobalt05

    gCobalt05 Full Access Member

    Posts:
    331
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Location:
    North GA
    I dont have a heat gun... :think:
     
  7. cobalt123

    cobalt123 Platinum Member

    Age:
    31
    Posts:
    15,202
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2009
    Location:
    Tyler Texas
    walmart has a heat gun for sale around 22 bucks get it use it return it???
     
  8. gCobalt05

    gCobalt05 Full Access Member

    Posts:
    331
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Location:
    North GA
    Haha niiice. I might do that.
    Will it looked used if I use it? Never used a heat gun.
     
  9. cobalt123

    cobalt123 Platinum Member

    Age:
    31
    Posts:
    15,202
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2009
    Location:
    Tyler Texas
    the heat gun looks like a glorified hair dryer to me, but walmart will accept anything. haha


    my parents bought a 37 in lcd tv from walmart and a week later they had a sale on a 42 in that would only have costed 18 bucks more so they packed up the 37in and took it back and got the 42 in :lol:
     
  10. Tom

    Tom Full Access Member

    Posts:
    1,169
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2009
    Location:
    Houston TX
    great write up!
     

Share This Page