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Old 09-04-2015, 06:04 PM   #1
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Cleaning / restoring black plastic below windshield

Was lucky enough to have some time this afternoon to wash and wax the Boxster.

Each time I do this, I am left looking at the black plastic panel at the end of the windshield and before the hood starts (the place the windshield wiper arms connect).

This black plastic is faded and I would love to be able to clean / restore it.

Anyone ever done this? If so, what worked and we're you happy with the results?

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Old 09-04-2015, 06:12 PM   #2
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I use the tire shine products. Makes them deep dark black.

One brand (Meguires) sells Ultra Black wipes just for that. Black plastic looks new & restored.
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Old 09-04-2015, 06:16 PM   #3
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I have had good results from a Mother's product "Back to Black."
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Old 09-04-2015, 06:37 PM   #4
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I took mine out and spray painted it. It looks new and is easier to keep looking right.
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Old 09-04-2015, 06:40 PM   #5
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What is the cost to just replace it with a new cowl? I just replace it on my Mini because the rubber seal (the rubber on these cars is pretty crappy) that's attached to the cowl went bad and the whole thing cost $85. This is for a OEM piece not aftermarket. If I had to replace it on the Boxster I'd be willing to spend up to $200.
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Old 09-04-2015, 06:41 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by landrovered View Post
I took mine out and spray painted it. It looks new and is easier to keep looking right.
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Old 09-04-2015, 07:09 PM   #7
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I have no idea of cost

But a few years ago on my 98 E36 this cowl was in terrible shape''I tried everything until on another forum I got informed a brand new one was $55...ordered it and installed and it still looks good

Anyone know the price for a new one
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Old 09-04-2015, 07:21 PM   #8
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I used Meguiars Ultimate Black Plastic Restorer about 4 months ago and the black color is still holding. I had just bought my car and all the exterior stuff was faded and looked horrible. I didnt use the wipes, i bought a foam applicator instead and wiped away with a microfiber towel.
Amazon.com: Meguiar's G15812 Ultimate Black Plastic Restorer - 12 oz.: Automotive

After the car wash I did two applications letting it dry in between. Then the next car wash about 2 weeks later I did the same thing and haven't used any more since. Maybe all this stuff is unnecessary but it's worked great so far.
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Old 09-04-2015, 08:05 PM   #9
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I used Meguiars Ultimate Black Plastic Restorer about 4 months ago and the black color is still holding. I had just bought my car and all the exterior stuff was faded and looked horrible. I didnt use the wipes, i bought a foam applicator instead and wiped away with a microfiber towel.
Amazon.com: Meguiar's G15812 Ultimate Black Plastic Restorer - 12 oz.: Automotive

After the car wash I did two applications letting it dry in between. Then the next car wash about 2 weeks later I did the same thing and haven't used any more since. Maybe all this stuff is unnecessary but it's worked great so far.
I did one application and it looked amazing for about a month, then started to return to faded gray. It sounds like the multiple applications are the way to go.
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Old 09-04-2015, 08:09 PM   #10
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If you dare

A method to restore faded gray black plastic is to take a heat gun with careful control and heat until just the surface changes....and yes you can see it as it happens. It will last years and you can do the same thing again....but careful careful

I did this to several parts of my E36 and it looks wonderful...but you have to have a steady hand and good control. If you have an old piece of trim laying around off the car give it a try and you will get an idea of what it takes.
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Old 09-05-2015, 03:28 AM   #11
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2 years ago I removed mine and cleaned it with detergent and then sprayed Krylon Fusion Satin Black #2421 with 2 light coats.Don't use too much or the shine will be too much.Very happy with the results

This paint is used for outdoor plastic furniture and it's great.Practice on and old plastic trashcan.

I looked into the cost of replacing this cowling and I think it was $100 or less.There might be a 2 small pieces that but up against the large center piece as well.

Don't get me started on how ALL the manufacturers are using this cheap plastic trim junk on the cars.Even the S Class Mercedes Benz comes that way.Go look at one!
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Old 09-05-2015, 05:17 AM   #12
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Quote:
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One end had come unfastened due to broken plastic so I took it out to epoxy putty it and painted it while I had the chance. I painted it with flat black first then used clear coat to get the correct patina.
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Old 09-05-2015, 06:08 AM   #13
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+1 on Back to Black

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I have had good results from a Mother's product "Back to Black."
I've used it on several parts with great luck.
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Old 09-06-2015, 06:53 AM   #14
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I've used it on several parts with great luck.
Mother's Back to Black

Me too, including the rear black bumperettes. Product delivers as promised.
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Old 09-06-2015, 07:12 AM   #15
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Mine had broken at each end where it attaches with bolts. I fixed that with epoxy and glass cloth, but I gave up trying to keep it nice, broke down and bought a new one last week. Still not installed as I had to order the closeout plugs and gasket. I did use the tire shine and it worked well, but the corners were never perfect after the repair so coupling that with constant maintenance means it is getting replaced.
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Old 09-06-2015, 08:29 PM   #16
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Got the same problem with my cowl..anybody know what a new replacement will cost?
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Old 09-06-2015, 09:37 PM   #17
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mine is broken where the bolt is at one end
depending on what year, up to 01 ~$75, 02-04 ~130
the earlier on has round bolt covers and the newer one square ones


Did the repair work?
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Old 09-07-2015, 03:18 PM   #18
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Did the repair work?
I used epoxy putty (grey tube) and fashioned a metal part to replace the plastic that was broken and now it is stronger than the original. The key is plenty of surface area between the metal and the plastic for the putty to adhere to.
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Old 09-07-2015, 03:44 PM   #19
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The repair worked very well. the corners are slightly raised due to the additional material (epoxy and glass fibers) under the plastic cowl where it bolts down, but unless you know it is there (i do) it is not noticeable. I performed this repair with the plastic panel off the car, and made sure to have a thin layer of glass reinforced epoxy (5 minute epoxy) on the top and bottom of the broken piece. The hardest part was figuring out how the broken end pieces under the nuts fit onto the cowl after everything was removed, so pay attention to the geometry when you take it apart. Not a hard repair but getting the epoxy/glass into thin layers so everything fits back together is fussy.
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Old 09-07-2015, 05:52 PM   #20
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Mother's Back to Black

Me too, including the rear black bumperettes. Product delivers as promised.
There appears to be several products by Mother's that fall into the "Back to Black" category.

Are these basically all the same thing? Is there one people have used ?

"Mothers 06112 Back-to-Black Plastic and Trim Restorer"

"Mothers 06141 Back-to-Black Heavy Duty Trim Cleaner Kit"

An earlier post in the thread mentioned "Meguiar's G15812 Ultimate Black Plastic Restorer" as another option.

The Mother's kit above comes with a brush, which may be helpful in cleaning this particular part.

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