Polishing Headlights - Bimmerfest - BMW Forums

Welcome to Bimmerfest -- The #1 Online Community for BMW related information! Please enjoy the discussion forums below and share your experiences with the 200,000 current, new and past BMW owners. The forums are broken out by car model and into other special interest sections such as BMW European Delivery and a special forum to voice your questions to the many BMW dealers on the site to assist our members!

Please follow the links below to help get you started!

Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)

E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 02-09-2008, 05:32 PM
John@AstigRacing John@AstigRacing is offline
Past Sponsor
Location: SoCal
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 501
Send a message via MSN to John@AstigRacing Send a message via Yahoo to John@AstigRacing
Mein Auto: 2000 528i Sport
Polishing Headlights

Hey Guys-- I polished my headlights today because there are rock chips all over them. Below are simple steps on how to DIY...maybe the admin can STICKY this write.

It is much easier to do them when the headlights are removed from the car.

1) I got some 600, 1500 and 2000 grit wet sandpaper, a bucket of very warm water mixed with dish washing soap, and a car wash sponge.
NOTE: Use dish washing soap. You don't want to use car soap because it contains waxes that hinder what you are trying to do.

2) I got the headlight wet with the sponge and got the 600 grit sandpaper wet in the bucket and started sanding... always going in straight lines (don't swirl!!!)

3) After doing this till I felt that I had gotten the majority of little dings out, I followed it up with the 1500, and then 2000 grit sand paper in the same fashion to make the plastic smooth. The plastic at this point is very cloudy.

4) I used 3M rubbing compound which I poured onto the headlights and then took an air buffer and buffed it out.

***At this point you will be saying WOW!!!!

5) When I got home later I realized that I could still see just a few tiny tiny tiny scratches when the lights were on, so I decided to wip out my Clear Plastic Collection from Meguiars which I got for like $25.

6) I just applied the plastic cleaner as directed which filled in the scratch marks

7) Then I applied the plastic polisher as directed and wooohooooo!



Last edited by John@AstigRacing; 02-09-2008 at 06:31 PM.
Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2008, 05:53 PM
Ryan M Ryan M is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: .
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 5,274
Mein Auto: .
Very nice. I have always wondered a good technique to doing this without buying those $70 "kits" that they sell.
For Sale: M60B30 intake manifold, M50 intake manifold, 2.81 differential, new OEM upper control arm bushings, 8 M62 fuel injectors.
Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2008, 06:31 PM
MatWiz's Avatar
MatWiz MatWiz is offline
Psychology Reversalist
Location: NYC
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 17,214
Mein Auto: 528

"The greatest thing about the internet, is that you can quote something and totally make up the source." - George Washington.
Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2008, 06:53 PM
Black540i Black540i is offline
Registered User
Location: Fairfax, VA
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 29
Mein Auto: 2003 540i Sport
That works... or you could just buy new lens covers!
Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2008, 07:00 PM
Steve530 Steve530 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Knoxville, TN
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 1,281
Mein Auto: 2001 530i
Good job. IMHO, that's the right way to do it.

You can't buy new covers for 2001+ models, can you?
Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2008, 07:40 PM
Raymond919 Raymond919 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Patterson, NY, USA
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 559
Mein Auto: 1997 BMW 528i
Could I have a bite of your doughnut/cruller?
Lights look great also.
Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2008, 08:27 PM
patrickjoseph patrickjoseph is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Chicago
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 178
Mein Auto: 1998 528iA, 2015 X3 28i
where can you buy new covers?
PJ @ Chicago
1998 BMW 528ia (200k+ miles and still going strong)
2015 BMW X3 xDrive 28i
Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2008, 09:54 PM
PJB. PJB. is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Los Angeles, San Francisco, Ca
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 1,161
Mein Auto: 2000 528i (01/2000 mfg.)
Originally Posted by patrickjoseph View Post
where can you buy new covers?
DEPO is well regarded for making these in both the amber and Euro clear versions. If I were to get DEPOs, I'd look on ebay. Anybody selling DEPOs is going to advertise them as DEPOs.
Reply With Quote

See More Related BMW Stories

Forum Navigation
Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)
Today's Posts Search
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:43 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
© 2001- VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.