MR2 left at home this morning
Anyhow parked up and looked around the car, its looking a little tired. 2000 w reg 110k miles of back lane commuting in all weathers and the main issue is lazy careless sods who just open their car doors onto it and dent the sides!
the headlights looking rather yellow and i have done the toothpaste thing before a few times with some success. I happened to have 1000-2500 grit wet and dry in the garage and some masking tape and having read up on this thought what the hell. It feels really wrong rubbing clear perspex with wet and dry, it really goes against my instincts. But plenty of water and literally 20 min's a side 10 on 1000 grit and 10mins on 2500 then t-cut and finally some paint/uv sealant (Autobrite) and the transformation is simply amazing. I wish i had taken pics to show the extent of the yellowing and dulling as it was creeping into the part of the cover which affects the focus of the beam.
For anyone nervous about doing this, don't be. use plenty of water and rub gently, you will see the weathering coming off as grey/yellow stained water, use lots of water, every 30 seconds or more if its real hot as it must be wet. you could use polish instead of t-cut and a higher grade of paper say 3000-4000 but tbh 2500 has left mine bright and shiny and no complaints.
This is without doubt the best method. but apart from plenty of water (i may have mentioned that a few times) make sure you use a decent sealant to protect from the UV or you will be doing it all again in a few months.
I have a friend in the trade who is sending me a pot of SiRamik (i think that's what it's called) can be used for paint and plastics and is the business but not cheap but will give long lasting protection. plenty of places will sell spray on and water based uv protectors so buy and use one.
This is an incredibly quick and satisfying job to do as a diy-er, just take your time and use the right materials - and WATER!
Now i am sure a few are thinking whats it got to fo with my Saab? well the principal is the same, same materials and process. my 2003 9-3ss AERO has covered 120k miles and the lights are dulling over and starting to yellow, just done them, slightly more elbow grease required, not sure why as MR2 lenses are bigger but there you go. pics give some idea of what is achievable.