Prevent and Remove Condensation Inside Headlights
Aftermarket HeadlightsPosted March 24th, 2008 by TheProfessor
Many times aftermarket headlights have trouble with moisture sneaking into the housings and giving the light that foggy look. We show you how to avoid it all together or fix it if it's already happened to you. Read the full article that inspired this video at AmericanMuscle.com's tech article page.
What You'll Need
RTV Silicone Sealant: 2-3 tubes should be enough for a pair of light housings. Pick it up at most auto parts stores or Wal-Mart.
Cardboard: If you want to use the oven trick.
This video applies to any headlight that has two sections bonded together.
Notes and Warnings
The tubes of RTV sealant will develop tiny holes if you bend them too many times while squeezing.
You've just purchased your brand new set of headlights or tail lights and if you're like me you can't wait to install them. Well before you put them on your car do yourself a favor and find where the two pieces of the light assembly meet. On this headlight you can easily follow where to the two halves come together.
Now go to a local parts store or Wal-Mart and pick up a few tubes of this RTV silicone sealant. Then lay down a nice bead along the crease. Having a thinner tip helps the silicone fall into the crease but you have to squeeze the tube pretty hard. You may want to cut the tip a little bigger.
So we continue to follow the crease along the bottom of the light housing and down the side as well.
But what should you do if you already have moisture trapped inside your lights?
Your first option is to remove the light from the car, take out all the blubs and sockets and leave it in the sunlight. After the water has evaporated out of the housing you can follow the previous steps to seal the light.
For the less patient enthusiast you can place a wet piece of cardboard in the oven and then rest your headlight in there with all bulbs and wires removed. Set a timer to 3 minutes and the oven to 250. When you go to remove the light be careful not to burn yourself and it's still hot squeeze the assembly together to close any holes in the manufacturer's sealant. Then go ahead and add a layer of clear silicone as shown before.
If you have projector style lights keep an eye on the rubber boot. This can sometimes let moisture in if not properly attached. This video was based on American Muscle's tech article on headlight sealing. Stop by americanmuscle.com to read or print it out. While you're at it check out their large selection of headlights and bulbs for the Mustang.