You’re driving down the road late at night when you suddenly realize you can’t see thanks to headlights that aren’t as bright as they used to be. You start wondering to yourself, “What causes dim headlights?” Well, wonder no more. We have the answer.
The top two causes of dim headlights are corroded ground connections and cloudy lenses. Both issues are easily fixed by your local garage or auto body shop. You can attempt the fixes at home if you’d like.
Car headlights require a complete electrical circuit to operate. The circuit includes connections at both the lamps and a grounding point. Lamp connections are generally protected with seals, so, it’s unlikely they will corrode. The same can’t be said about ground connections. Car makers almost always ground headlamps to the body of the car. That’s where the corrosion occurs.
The easy fix for corroded ground connections is to clean them. With a few minutes of your time and a wire brush or sandpaper, you can get them cleaned up in no time.
Cloudy lenses are the direct result of the sun. UV rays damage plastic lenses by creating tiny pock marks and pitting that you see as cloudiness. What’s the solution? Polishing the lenses. Your auto body shop can take care of this, or you can purchase a polishing kit at the auto store. A good kit includes a cleaner, polisher, and sealer.
If you have an auto body shop do the job for you, they will use a buffer to work out the pock marks and pits before cleaning and polishing. This typically results in a longer-lasting repair as compared to using a polishing kit alone.
Now you know what causes dim headlights. Problem solved.