Headlight cover broke. is it repairable? - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-10-2019, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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Headlight cover broke. is it repairable?

Hi,

I was getting gas and noticed that the right headlight cover seemed a bit out of place. I just wiggled it a little and it came out. I drove 35 miles through a twisty canyon road to work this morning, rather spiritedly. Lucky it didn't just fly off. Looking at the underside of the cover, there are 3 brackets that appeared to be sheared off. Is my best option to just get a brand new cover? And where can I buy it?
Thanks!!!
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-11-2019, 06:28 AM
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Yes, it's repairable. I'd do it by riveting some thin aluminum where the mount clip nuts were, and then pop some new clip nuts on. A better question is just how it got broken. Is there any sign of scuffing, or were the fasteners just really overtightened?
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-11-2019, 06:52 AM
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-11-2019, 08:26 AM
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GRP does it again - thanks for the heads-up! Exactly the fix I was thinking of in a ready-to-go kit form.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-11-2019, 08:35 AM
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I actually came up with a simple way to repair it. No need to purchase anything.

Drill hole close to the tab location, insert zip tie into drilled hole, put zip into the clam hole and secure the zip tie with a washer. It is simple and you can always cut the zip tie if you ever need to remove the head light cover

PM me if you need any help.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-11-2019, 08:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubera View Post
I actually came up with a simple way to repair it. No need to purchase anything.

Drill hole close to the tab location, insert zip tie into drilled hole, put zip into the clam hole and secure the zip tie with a washer. It is simple and you can always cut the zip tie if you ever need to remove the head light cover

PM me if you need any help.
Clever. There should be a repository of quick cheap fixes on these cars that have been discovered over the years..maybe there already is?
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"In general, the Elise will be kept in best operating condition by regular use."
Page 152 Lotus Elise owner's manual
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-11-2019, 10:00 AM
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@blaising

Ask and you shall receive -quote by some dude.

Lots of useful info and fixes documented at Sands Mechanical Museum

Lotus Elise at the Sands Mechanical Museum

2005 Elise- Katana II Supercharged and other fun bits
2011 Evora - Daily Driver
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-11-2019, 10:17 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubera View Post
I actually came up with a simple way to repair it. No need to purchase anything.

Drill hole close to the tab location, insert zip tie into drilled hole, put zip into the clam hole and secure the zip tie with a washer. It is simple and you can always cut the zip tie if you ever need to remove the head light cover

PM me if you need any help.
I assume that the car will need to be on jack stand, and remove front wheel for any work relating to the headlight?
Thanks!!
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-11-2019, 10:21 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by steelypip View Post
Yes, it's repairable. I'd do it by riveting some thin aluminum where the mount clip nuts were, and then pop some new clip nuts on. A better question is just how it got broken. Is there any sign of scuffing, or were the fasteners just really overtightened?
I don't know. I've had the car only since March, and the cover just came loose. I expected to find broken pieces like clip nuts, black plastic remnants of the brackets that broke, but nothing. Weird. Maybe, just maybe, it's been loose like that since I bought the car, but never was displaced enough for me to notice until yesterday.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-11-2019, 10:23 AM
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I assume that the car will need to be on jack stand, and remove front wheel for any work relating to the headlight?
Thanks!!
Maybe, maybe not. If I rotate the wheels to the right angle, I can actually get all three embellisher mounting screws out with the car sitting on its wheels in the garage. It does get easier if you jack the front end up a little - the suspension droop is convenient.

Discovering the no jacking required trick allowed me to adjust my headlights quicker when I was fixing the stock too low/too high adjustment.

To get the screws loose/tightened in I used a 3/8" ratchet and an appropriate-sized allen socket.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-11-2019, 11:20 AM
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@blaising Creativity does not have a manual!
@Darren Donovan yes it will require to remove the front wheels and have the car on jack stands
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-11-2019, 01:34 PM
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I don't know. I've had the car only since March, and the cover just came loose.
I think this is pretty common, I had almost the exact same experience after I bought my car. Looked like the PO used some sort of putty that cured to hold the headlight bucket on.

I used the plumber's strap/rivet method to reattach it and ordered the GRP kit, but have not gotten around to installing it.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-12-2019, 02:11 PM
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Yep, pretty common.
I had this same problem as well. I used the kit from GRP, worked great. I bought the kit for both sides for when the other one falls out.
Those housings new from Lotus are $900 .

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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 05:48 AM
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Posting my zip tie repair, quick and easy:
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