I posted this as do it yourself originally. I have a mercury cougar, 01, white. I want painted headlights, is it ok to sand off the stock reflective surface and paint the sanded surface white? What paint should i use? How do i pop off the lenses without causing damage?
NO. It is not OK. You will likely change the light output. It is likely illegal as well. If you want a different look, you need to get headlamps designed with that look, not try to modify what you have.
To function properly the reflectors need to reflect. It would be like painting the mirror in your bathroom white, it would no longer function properly.
Some Light Shed On Headlights
Headlights are meant to appear white when they are “on” not “off.”
Headlight capsules don’t have a lens that “pops” off. They are constructed to be sealed, even using gaskets around the bulbs.
A) You could drive with bright lights on during the day, making them appear “white.”
B) You could paint the outside of the lens white and stay home at night.
C) You could paint the outside of the lens white and hide some other lights on the front of the car, maybe below the bumper or in an intake, etc.
D) You could chrome the car body to match the headlight reflectors.
E) Consider making white covers to be placed over the headlights during the day.
F) Trade the car for a car with covered headlights, such as an earlier model Cougar.
G) Once the headlights are white, how are you going to turn the taillights white?
Seriously, Buy Covers And Paint Them
I’m sure there are other online stores that sell them for your car. I found this one on my first try. You will need to paint them.
No, you should not. It is a bad idea. The reflective part is shaped like a parabola to reflect the light to where it is needed. In fact, on most new headlights, the bulb and element are not exposed and only reflected light comes out of the lens. You would be better off just painting the lenses white (also not recommnended).
Find something else on the car to customize, like the wheels, the license plate frame, trim, or a body kit.
I’m not talking about the cover I asking about the area behind the bulbs like on the corvette’s see the picture below. Is it still a bad idea?
The headlights on the Corvette are not the same as the headlights on your car. The round part you see on the Vette ARE the headlights. The painted part does not reflect any light. Notice how the insides of the headlights themselves are NOT painted?
If you paint the reflectors on your headlights you will get almost ZERO light on the road, and your car will be illegal. Think of another way to customize your car.
Ah, I see now. You don’t want to paint the part that reflects light from the heldlight lamp (bulb). You want to paint the part that reflects light from other lights to help your can be seen and prevent a head-on collision. It still isn’t a very smart idea. If you want that custom look, though, look for aftermarket headlight housings from custom parts suppliers. I doubt the paint will bond well with the surface you are thinking about painting.
lol ok I didn’t think about that good point.