How to Restore Foggy Headlight Lenses With Toothpaste


Dust and oxidation build-up from driving can leave your headlight lenses looking foggy. Foggy headlights can impair your driving by dimming lighting and cutting down the range of your headlights. There are a number of expensive ways to clean the film and fog from your headlight lenses, but you can also clean your headlights at home using toothpaste.

How to Restore Foggy Headlight Lenses With Toothpaste
(Laura Vryhof/Demand Media)

Things You'll Need

  • Toothpaste
  • Scouring pad
  • Handheld buffer
  • Bucket of warm water
  • Lint-free cotton cloth
  • Paste car wax
Step 1

Squeeze toothpaste generously onto the headlight. Use between 1/4 and 1/2 of the tube on one headlight.

Laura Vryhof/Demand Media
Step 2

Smear the toothpaste around on the headlight with a scouring pad, covering the entire surface of the light.

Laura Vryhof/Demand Media
Step 3

Buff the headlight thoroughly with a handheld buffing tool. You can also buff by hand, using the scouring pad; however, a buffing tool will get the job done more quickly.

Laura Vryhof/Demand Media
Step 4

Rinse the headlight clean by pouring warm water over it and then drying with a lint-free cotton cloth. Repeat the process on the opposite side.

Laura Vryhof/Demand Media
Step 5

Wax the headlights with a paste car wax and buff them again to keep dust and residue from building up on your headlights between cleanings.

Laura Vryhof/Demand Media

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Tips & Warnings

  • In cases where the fog is building up on the inside of your headlights, you may need to drill a small hole in the side of the light to release moisture and deter it from building up on the plastic.
  • Toothpastes containing baking soda and peroxide may provide better results.


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