If you are not a car enthusiast, chances are you don’t spend a lot of time thinking about your car’s headlights. That is until they go bad and you have to get them replaced. This can be costly and can be easily avoided. For this reason, we’ve reviewed the best headlight protection films for your car.
3 Best Headlight Protection Films:
- VViViD 3M Scotchgard Clear Protection Vinyl Film
- Meguiar’s Clear Headlight Coating
- 3M Scotchgard Clear Protection Film
Your headlights need to care for just as much as the other parts of your car. The good news is, that you can make sure your headlights are safe from scratches with headlight protection films.
Over time, your headlights tend to get cloudy from the weather and as a result of the sun’s harmful UV rays. However, you can protect them using a special coating made especially for headlights.
We know that not all headlight protection films are created equal, and some are better than others. So here, we have created a list of the top 3 headlight protection films you can find on the market and ranked them by their benefits.
We have also included a list of pros and cons that can be helpful when deciding on what type of headlight protection you want to purchase.
Best Headlight Protection Films
1.VViViD 3M Scotchgard Clear Protection Vinyl Film (Best Overall)
This type of protection vinyl is the best of the best. The crème de la crème, if you will. For just $20, you can make sure your car’s headlights are kept safe from rocks, scratches, and any other debris that could cause them harm.
All you have to do is remove the backing and adhere it to the headlights to apply it. Despite being impenetrable, the protection film is stretchy and can be adjusted to fit on just about any headlight, no matter the shape or size.
It’s long-lasting, so you can rest assured your car’s headlights will be protected for years to come. Having this film on your headlights also means you’ll be spending less time polishing them and more time behind the wheel.
- It’s unnoticeable once it’s on
- The film is thick enough to resist any damage to it
- The adhesive backing makes it easy to install
- It’s affordable
- No installation instructions come with it, but it is simple to install on your own.
This long-lasting film is a favorite amongst many due to the fact that it’s cheap, easy to install, and does a great job at protecting the headlights. To put the film on, all you need is a bit of soap and water.
2. Meguiar’s Clear Headlight Coating (Best Value)
Unlike the previous vinyl film we reviewed, this is a coating and not actually something you stick on. It comes in a spray can, and once sprayed, it can help keep your headlights clear. This is the best bang for your buck since a can goes for $8. Although it doesn’t protect your headlights from scratches, it will certainly keep them clear.
Frequently the weather will damage your headlights, leaving them hazy and cloudy. This keeps you from being able to see, but it makes your car look old and dirty.
By applying Meguiar’s Clear Headlight Coating onto the headlights, your car’s headlights will remain to look brand new and clear.
Even if you don’t have foggy headlights, you can use the coating as a preventative measure since the coating will protect your headlights from the sun’s UV rays.
To apply the coating, clean your headlights and rid them of any dust, dirt, and debris so you have a clean surface to work with. Next, you are going to apply the coating in the shade, making sure the headlights are cool. You may also want to tape around the headlight to make sure the coating doesn’t get anywhere else.
If you accidentally get some of the coatings on another part of your car, you can easily clean it off with rubbing alcohol.
Apply the first coat and let it sit for a little before applying the next one. It should only take about five minutes for the coating to settle and about a day for it to cure completely.
- Keeps your headlights looking like new
- Spray on
- Doesn’t protect from scratches
Thanks to the sun’s harmful UV rays. Your headlights tend to get foggy and lose their coating. But with this protective spray, your headlights will be left looking brand new.
3. 3M Scotchgard Clear Protection Film (Best Premium)
This clear film also sticks to your headlights like the first one we reviewed. Like the first vinyl tape, this film is easy to apply to your headlights. It is made out of clear polyurethane film and is 8mil thick with adhesive backing.
The vinyl will keep your car’s headlights looking shiny and brand new while also protecting them from falling debris. The vinyl can also be used on other parts of your car, like on the body itself, as a way to protect that paint from chipping or scratching.
- Keeps your headlights free of scratches
- Easy to install
- Pricier than most of the other ones we have reviewed
This vinyl guard is a bit pricier than most of the other ones but does include step-by-step instructions on how to apply it.
Headlight Protection Film Benefits
There are many benefits to having headlight protection film on your headlights. Aside from the fact that it can protect them from scratches and other debris hitting them, it is a cost-effective and easy way to keep your car safe.
It can be incredibly easy to hit your headlights on things like mailboxes and trashcans, thus causing cracks in your headlights. Instead of having to fix them, you can keep them protected with a film.
Even better, they are easy to maintain. Once you’ve finished using the first one, you can always replace it.
Headlight protection film makes your car look brand new, even if it isn’t.
What to Look for When Buying Headlight Protection Film
There are many things to consider when buying headlight protection film. The style of car you have is one thing to think about. If you have a particular shape of headlights and are having a hard time finding a protective film for it, you may want to consider a spray instead.
Keep in mind that your headlights should not have any scratches or blemishes before you apply the vinyl or the coating. The blemishes will make it harder for the vinyl to stick. If your headlights are already damaged, you should first perform headlight restoration and apply headlight sealant or clear coat.
Believe it or not, adding headlight protection film adds value to your car. So, if you try to resell it, you’ll be able to sell it for a better price.
If you use your car a lot at night, you may want to consider headlight protection film as it helps with the fogginess of the night and will help you see better when you drive in the dark.
Things to Avoid When Buying Headlight Protection Film
Make sure you read reviews before buying headlight protection film for your car. Not all of it will be of the same quality, so be aware.
The type of material that headlight film is made of is one of the things you need to keep in mind. Some film is of heavier duty than others, so if you find yourself off-roading often, you may want to have a film that will be strong enough to protect your headlights from debris.
Make sure that the type of vinyl you are getting is also clear and doesn’t put a strange tint on your headlights or cover them up entirely.
How long does headlight protection film last?
Headlight protection film lasts up to four years, depending on how often you drive your car and what turf you’re driving it on. A coating will not last as long but is easy to reapply.
Less expensive films will last up to a year and will need to be changed out once they’ve expired.
It’s worth it to invest more money on a heavier duty protection film than one that isn’t going to protect your car as well.
How hard is it to install headlight protection film?
It’s incredibly easy to install headlight film. All you have to do is wipe down your car lights with soap and water. You then want to peel the film and apply it to the headlights without removing the film. Make sure you keep your headlights wet since it will allow you to move the vinyl around with ease while adjusting it.
How long does it take to install headlight protection film?
This all depends on the type of headlight protection film you have. It can take anywhere from a few hours to a few minutes. The coating takes just minutes to spray on, making sure you are letting the coats dry in between.
What tools do I need to install headlight protection film?
There aren’t many tools needed to install headlight protection film, and you already have most of them. You will need soap and water, spray bottles, paper towels or rags, a squeegee, and perhaps a sharp tool or knife to help you lay it down.
You can use the spray bottle to hold the soap and water solution and make it easy to apply. The paper towels and rags should be used to clean the headlights before applying either the vinyl or the coating. As mentioned earlier, make sure your headlights are as clean as possible before you apply the vinyl.
The squeegee can be used to flatten out the vinyl and take out any air bubbles that may be left after having applied the vinyl.
How to install headlight protection film?
The first step you want to take is to wipe down your headlights with a rag of cloth that won’t leave behind any lint. You want to clean the headlights to remove any waxes or silicone to make it easier to put on the film.
Next up, clean the headlights with a glass cleaner or alcohol. To test whether or not the surface is clean enough, wipe it down with your finger. If you hear the “squeaky” sound, it’s perfect.
Before you stick on the film, make sure you measure it out. This way, if the film is too big or too small, you can adjust it without reapplying it all over again.
Lastly, use the soap and water spray bottle to get the headlights wet. The solution will allow you to position the headlight film onto the headlight. Make sure you keep your hands wet; you aren’t leaving any fingerprints behind.
Make sure you peel the protecting paper off the film and then place it onto the headlights. Use a squeegee to get all of the air bubbles out.
Is headlight protection film easy to remove?
You can easily remove headlight protection film from your headlights with baking soda and toothpaste. Next up, spray the headlight with water. Cover the headlight with wax so it makes it easier to remove.
Once you’ve successfully removed the headlight vinyl, wipe down the headlights to remove any excess debris.
There are essentially no cons to getting headlight protection film. It’s easy to install, cost-effective, and an easy way to keep your car’s headlights safe from debris.
You can choose from several different types of vinyl, depending on your needs. The best part is that most protection films are stretchy, so can be customized to fit just about any car headlight.
You only need a few tools to apply it, and it’s easy to remove once you need to switch them out again. After putting on the vinyl covers, you’ll be surprised at how brand new your car looks.
Believe it or not, headlight protection film can also be used on shoes, bicycles, and anything else you may want to keep protected.