Many people complain about not being able to see at night while driving. This could be attributed to oxidized or dirty headlights. Oxidation or a damaged lens can lead to diminished visibility by up to 70%, thus lowering the amount of visible light while driving at night. Lowered visibility while driving at night can lead to an increased probability of an accident.
Oxidation and damaged lens’ on your vehicle can have many negative effects. Damage to the headlight can be caused by a number of reasons.
- The first being heat from the light bulb can cause damage to the plastic.
- Second, many people do not think to apply wax or a protectant to their headlights like they would to the rest of their vehicle. Neglecting to do so may result in the damage to the plastic of the headlight lens over time.
- Third, scratches and nicks may occur during highway or long distance driving and from driving on gravel, pitted or dirty roads.
- Lastly, our vehicles are exposed to the weather on a daily basis. Over time moisture can accumulate on the inside of the headlight and begin the oxidation process.
As an auto body shop we most commonly see oxidation as the problem behind poor nighttime visibility. Oxidation can be defined as the interaction between oxygen molecules and different substances they may come into contact with. Rusting is an example of oxidation. When oxygen comes in contact with the plastic lens of the headlight the oxidation can cause the plastic to appear cloudy, faded, or discolored. Having a dull, cloudy, or oxidized lens can make your vehicle look old and neglected. If you are experiencing trouble seeing at night, dim lights, or lowered visibility it might be a good idea to look into replacing your headlights or restoring them.