The outside is probably frosted from collision with road grit. The
inside shouldn't have been exposed to this.
I'm trying to think what the 92 has, I think that had the big square
headlamps with a plastic shield over the glass, right?
Well, my results have been less than spectacular......
The lens plastic tends to turn cloudy. And no amount of
polishing will fix that. Probably due to UV breakdown
of the plastic.
Also, the plastic lens develops pinholes or other leaks.
When this happens, water gets inside the lens and it has no
way out. The mirrored reflective back surface then flakes off.
Then all of a sudden you have a light that is much less bright
than it was. Or, the bulb will shatter inside from moisture
contact. I have it happen more than once on my taurus.
You can mess with if all you want. But you will probably end
up replacing it. Its had finding a used one that is not trashed.
Those spring clip retainers on the lens are a treat to take off too.
Stop in at a motorcycle shop and buy a can of the stuff they use to clean
windshields. The clouding is the result of poor preventive maintance. You
may need to apply the stuff several times, if they are really bad you will
need to use a paint compound. Once you have cleared up the lenses you can
keep them clear by applying a polymer cleaner/polish, like
NuFinish, every three or four month.
I have my doubts. Having had the said taurus (Gen II), i have been
through multiples lens. If the lens leaks and water gets inside the
lens, it cannot get out and the mirror reflective coating on the back
flakes off. Then headlight output goes WAY down. ANd that's if the bulb
does not break first from the moisture.
The plastic degrades from UV light too and gets cloudy. Personally, i
thing the government should have had a requirement that the plastic lens
last at least 10 years without degradation. This is a safety issue.
In the old days , you just got a headlamp for $10. Not anymore.
those plastic lens assemblies are expensive.
Ever notice how many cars on the road 10 years old + have very degraded
headlights lens plastic? I wish the automakers would go back to sealed
My second car is a '92 Taurus wagon. When I inherited it the headlights were
about 1/4 full of water. I removed the lamp assemblies from the back and
stuffed an air hose in there and waved it around for the better part of an hour.
I eventually got all the water out. No apparent damage. No more water in there
either.... It took it 14 years to fill up 1/4 of the way so it may take a while
to have more leak in.
That may be your opinion but it is not based on fact. If the lenses on a
vehicle become clouded it is the result of poor preventive maintenance,
nothing more. The application of a plastic cleaner, or a polymer polish on
occasion, will keep the outside of the lenses looking like new for many
years. Most of the moisture inside the lamp can be removed by drilling a
small hole at its base. The heat from the lamp will take care of the
I would like you to point out verse and section on any taurus gen 2
manual that states that Mike. I have a 93 shop manual and it states
NOTHING about plastic headlight specialty maintenance. UV breaks down
plastic. Causes dashes to crack too mike. Ever seen that on a older car?
There are some specialty products for headlight lens out there. Google
will reveal them all along with the bit about UV degradation. But you
have to seek these products out. Your the stickler for following the
manual Mike. But its not there.
Most of the moisture inside the lamp can be removed by drilling a
By the time you realize you have a problem, the mirror coating on the
back of the assembly is already flaking off. How do you fix that Mike?
Its a sealed assembly. Why there is not some sort of factory drain hole
there in the main section is beyond me.
The heat from the lamp will take care of the
If it does not burst first. I could not even find the cracks
in the lens that let the moisture in.
Use a little logic here, if what you believe to be true were actually true
then all older cars would all have clouded lenses covers and obviously, they
do not. Proper preventive maintenance includes a lot more than what one
finds in the manual.
Generally water enters the lamp when the sealant between the various piece
shrinks, a little silicon sealer will keep water from entering the lamp
Among my old cars is a 1971 vehicles that bought in late 1970, that has
nearly 300K on the clock. The interior vinyl trim, including the dash, is
all original and looks like new. The reason, proper preventive maintenance
or the past 35 years.
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