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Truck is looking a bit tired...any advice?

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Old 10-24-2013, 07:17 PM   #1
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Truck is looking a bit tired...any advice?

Hey folks,

My truck really isn't that old. It's a 2007 with just 33k on the odometer. But the faded plastic, yellowed headlights and base-model-ness really makes me feel like the truck looks worn out.


I initially replaced the headlights with some black housing aftermarket units, but they leaked. So I returned them, and got sent another pair...which also leaked. So I sanded the stock headlights, smothered them in toothpaste and Meguiars headlight repair kit and rubbed as hard as I could...they are still yellowed and hazy. The grille has been plastidipped, but the 'derp' peeled off from areas where my truck murdered bugs the last time I drove across Florida for 8 hours during love bug season.
Additionally, my unpainted front bumper has a weird pattern that I have not seen on seven year old plastic before. It's odd, and washing the bumper does nothing to it.

Does anyone have some cost-effective solutions to "making my truck look young again"? It has another 200k miles left in it easy, and I want it look brand new as it rolls across those milestones. (Aftermarket grille? Will it not fit very well?)

Smudgey
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Old 10-24-2013, 07:49 PM   #2
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Try using a machine to do the headlights..I think Meguiar's makes the Power Ball for instance. That will always work harder than just doing it by hand.

Either dip the grille again or just take it all off.

Post a good pic of the bumper effect if you can..
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Old 10-24-2013, 08:32 PM   #3
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Lots of elbow grease.
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Old 10-24-2013, 08:40 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABA180 View Post
Try using a machine to do the headlights..I think Meguiar's makes the Power Ball for instance. That will always work harder than just doing it by hand.

Either dip the grille again or just take it all off.

Post a good pic of the bumper effect if you can..
I tried attaching a polishing piece to the end of a drill and liberally applying water to try and clear them, with the results that you see in the picture.

The grille is sun-faded and discolored underneath the plasti-dip; I think I am going to buy a brand new SSM/chrome and Satoshi it eventually. I would re-derp it right now, but I don't think the parking enforcement on campus would be to pleased about that.

Here's a bit better look at the bumper...it looks like waves. Only visible in direct sunlight.
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Old 10-24-2013, 08:46 PM   #5
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Research 303 aerospace protectant I keep hearing people have success with it on vinyl and some of the plastic trim on vehicles.
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Old 10-24-2013, 08:56 PM   #6
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I've never been a fan of the black plastic bumpers. They look good at first but look terrible when they fade. I'm sure you could find someone selling their stock silver bumper and you could go the color match route. A lot of people buy the aftermarket offroad bumpers and sell the stock ones for cheap
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Old 10-24-2013, 09:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ErocksTaco View Post
I've never been a fan of the black plastic bumpers. They look good at first but look terrible when they fade. I'm sure you could find someone selling their stock silver bumper and you could go the color match route. A lot of people buy the aftermarket offroad bumpers and sell the stock ones for cheap
I have been actively searching for one on Craigslist and the TW Marketplace for a while now. However, the few that I have seen for sale in SSM have been several states away, and its a heavy & bulky item to ship. I will continue looking but not holding my breath.

I'm guessing spraying my own bumper SSM wouldn't match? I have only had the truck for a few months (sat on a Toyota dealership used lot from March to June 2013 because it's a manual) but the paint seems to be in fantastic shape. I don't know who owned the truck before me, but they obviously didn't drive very often.
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Old 10-24-2013, 09:42 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smudgey View Post
I tried attaching a polishing piece to the end of a drill and liberally applying water to try and clear them, with the results that you see in the picture.

The grille is sun-faded and discolored underneath the plasti-dip; I think I am going to buy a brand new SSM/chrome and Satoshi it eventually. I would re-derp it right now, but I don't think the parking enforcement on campus would be to pleased about that.

Here's a bit better look at the bumper...it looks like waves. Only visible in direct sunlight.
Looks like at least the part of the light that you need cleaned up okay. Living where you are the sun is more intense and for more of the year than myself here in New England. It could be that inside has faded, in which case you'll need to open them up and that's a pain. Might be better to buy a good aftermarket set, not the Flea-Bay crapola. The name brand escapes me but I've heard of one that's pretty good and reasonably priced here.

Chrome might be your better long term bet on the grille. I'm a firm believer that short of a full bra (which I'm not a fan of, for the record) you'll eventually run into that.

The bumper..not sure, but try one of the plastic cleaning products. Wipe-New might help, I've heard mixed reviews but it's only 20 bucks or so..worth a roll of the dice if it works.
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Old 10-25-2013, 02:51 AM   #10
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I am picking up my arb this weekend so my bumper will be for sale very shortly. It has holes for a tag though.
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Old 10-25-2013, 05:53 AM   #11
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Truck is looking a bit tired...any advice?

Quote:
Originally Posted by The End View Post
I am picking up my arb this weekend so my bumper will be for sale very shortly. It has holes for a tag though.
Oh really? I'd definitely be interested in that. I'm actually going be driving from Pensacola all the way down to Palm Beach on November 1st, and I'll be in south FL for the rest of that weekend. What kind of price would we be looking at?
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Old 10-25-2013, 06:26 AM   #12
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I'm not to sure I don't want to ask to much and scare you away how does $150 sound?
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Old 10-25-2013, 04:30 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABA180 View Post
Looks like at least the part of the light that you need cleaned up okay. Living where you are the sun is more intense and for more of the year than myself here in New England. It could be that inside has faded, in which case you'll need to open them up and that's a pain. Might be better to buy a good aftermarket set, not the Flea-Bay crapola. The name brand escapes me but I've heard of one that's pretty good and reasonably priced here.

Chrome might be your better long term bet on the grille. I'm a firm believer that short of a full bra (which I'm not a fan of, for the record) you'll eventually run into that.

The bumper..not sure, but try one of the plastic cleaning products. Wipe-New might help, I've heard mixed reviews but it's only 20 bucks or so..worth a roll of the dice if it works.
Was the company you're referring to "Depot"? I have seen those on a couple different "automotive accessory" sites and have heard some positive comments from members about then. Trouble is, they look literally identical to the my other 2 sets of leaking aftermarket headlights, and I'm weary to spend even more money on these (they seem to list between $160 and $200). I'm wondering if there is any way to bake open the aftermarket headlights I have and seal them properly.
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Old 10-25-2013, 11:33 PM   #14
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For your headlights wet sand them down with 1000 sand paper evenly until they are dull then clean well with water and wet sand with 1500 clean off and use a good polish. I like mothers scratch and polish wax
For any of your black trim you can use all the crap they sell but will only last for a bit or you can use a heat gun. If you want to know how to do it with heat just message me ill explain
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Old 10-26-2013, 01:11 PM   #15
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Old 10-26-2013, 05:56 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DCGirl View Post
Research 303 aerospace protectant I keep hearing people have success with it on vinyl and some of the plastic trim on vehicles.
303 won't help with that problem plus it is way overrated. It will wash off after 1st rain. I would recommend Adam's Super VRT or Adam's In and Out spray. Both have better durability than 303.
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Old 10-26-2013, 10:46 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smudgey View Post
Was the company you're referring to "Depot"? I have seen those on a couple different "automotive accessory" sites and have heard some positive comments from members about then. Trouble is, they look literally identical to the my other 2 sets of leaking aftermarket headlights, and I'm weary to spend even more money on these (they seem to list between $160 and $200). I'm wondering if there is any way to bake open the aftermarket headlights I have and seal them properly.
I believe that's it yes.

Re the headlight bake, there's write-ups on that here. That might be worth a shot if you already have them, short money job.
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Old 10-27-2013, 04:45 PM   #18
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For your headlights you need to sand them to get rid of that yellowing. Just polishing never works for me. I usually just take 3000 girt sandpaper and wet sand it down quite a bit and then shine it up with some cut polish.

I think the heat gun is probably the best way to restore the plastic. I'm not sure how the plastic will react to being heated up a bunch of times though,
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Old 10-27-2013, 05:29 PM   #19
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The heat doesn't last on plastic.
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Old 10-27-2013, 06:07 PM   #20
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Thanks for the tips guys. My Dad suggested I have the bumper wrapped in C/F...I feel like that wouldn't last very long.
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