Polishing headlamp glass

Recently I bought an eight year old Corolla from a dealer. The headlamp glass (actually it's plastic) looked cloudy and opaque and dirty looking.
Whilst sorting out the paper work a chap there buffed it up to a new shiny and transparent appearence.
I was not able to watch what he was doing. What kind of abrasive would he have used to completely clean off the surface and then get it to such a high polish?
Also is there anything i should be doing to stop it getting in that bad condition again? In other words what should I be doing to it and polishing it up with?
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Anything that does the same with car paint. T-cut, etc. Just harder work by hand.

Just the usual cleaning techniques.
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Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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there are special compounds such as displex. I would not use any metal/paint polishes as they may re-act with the plastic and make things worse.
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On 11/08/2011 8:07 PM, Mrcheerful wrote:

I have referred to the aviation industry usage. This has to be good stuff there acrylic windscreens and windows are expensive to replace.
Here are some good reads they may help to understand the process.
http://www.lpaero.com/CAREINS.html
http://ronkilber.tripod.com/acrylic/acrylic.htm
http://www.aircraftspruce.com/menus/cs/windshieldrestoration.html
http://www.glasstechnics.co.uk/aircraft.html
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I've used various metal polishes on various plastics without any ill effect. What polish were you thinking about and what plastic?
FWIW I keep Solvol Autosol (chrome cleaner) in this workshop and is my first choice to polish near anything that needs an abrasive.
FWIW, I'd find it odd a car maker using a plastic which could be damaged by contact with another product commonly used on car paint.
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Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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