Homemade VW Headlights

Tools and Materials; Heating the Headlamps

To perform the Joey mod, you will need black spray paint (preferably with enamel), Glad Press and Seal Wrap, tape, an X-ACTO knife, all-weather outdoor clear silicone sealant and an oven.

First, remove the bulbs, bulb covers and the rubber drain hoses of each headlamp. Pop off the four metal retaining clips that hold the lens onto the headlamp.

Preheat your oven to 185 degrees and, when you hit thedesired temperature, put the headlamp in the center of the oven and leave it in for 90 seconds so that the black strip holding the lens and assembly will soften. Carefully pull the lens off of the assembly, but make sure not to go too quickly as this will have to go back on.

Repeat this process on the other headlamp.

Masking the Headlamps; Painting

This is where the X-ACTO knife and Glad Press and Seal comes into play. Cut an excess piece and put it over the blinker light, making sure that you are covering the entire glassy part. Carefully run the X-ACTO knife between the plastic housing and the blinker light until all of the excess has been cut. Then slowly peel away the excess being careful that you have cut all of the excess off. Repeat this same procedure on the foglights as well, if applicable.

Now this will be the biggest part, the main reflector. Cut a piece of Press and Seal that is bigger than the reflector. Press along the edges of the reflector to make sure the Press and Seal on and make sure not to kink or overlap the wrap anywhere on the reflector. However, instead of cutting the excess away, fold the excess in toward the center of the reflector and tape it. Check to make sure there are no holes in the wrap anywhere as not to mess up any of your lights.

Make sure you are in a well-ventilated area for this next step.

Shake the can up to make sure that all of the paint inside is mixed; a minute is usually a safe estimate. Then test the can on a piece of paper to make sure it sprays right and doesn't come out blotchy. Make one pass for the hard-to-get spots on the headlamp. Let that dry for about five minutes and then make another pass along it. Let it dry for another five minutes. Continue this process until you are happy with the final product.

Let the headlamps dry for about four hours and then pull the Press and Seal wrap off.


Make sure the paint is well-cured; otherwise, condensation will mess up the paint. Let the headlights sit for another two hours after pulling off the Press and Seal, and then you should be ready to re-assemble.

Apply silicone along all the edges between the headlamp housing and the lens. Let the silicone cure for half an hour and then proceed to putting the lens back on and re-attach the four metal retaining clips. Finally, put back the drain hoses, making sure they are all pointing down to the bottom of the headlamp for easy drainage.

That's it--you have officially made yourself a unique set of VW headlamps. If you are tired of having the same replicated headlights as everyone else, there is an easy and affordable fix. Soon after Volkswagen came out with its Mark 4 series of cars, a technician named Joey found an easy custom for novices and gearheads alike. The Joey mod is a modification you can easily do to your Volkswagen's headlights.