How to Clean Bird Poop Off a Car
As a bird watcher, you know these flying beauties aren’t too particular about when and where they “go” while flying. Unfortunately, this means your car might get hit with bird poop while you’re out in the field birding or even just sitting outside your home. This frustrating situation can lead to severe paint damage that may require professional painting help if you let it worsen. Damaged paint can even lead to metal chassis damage that may lead to rust.
Thankfully, you can get bird poop off your car using multiple techniques. These simple concepts can break apart stains on your vehicle and minimize damage to your paint. Most of these methods utilize simple household items that just about anyone should own. Try these methods to get the best results for managing bird poop. We strongly recommend starting with the first step and moving through each in order if the bird poop refuses to come off with the previous step.
Special Bird Poop Wipes
Bird poop wipes are a unique product designed to break apart these stains on your car. They use a concentrated cleaning solution that quickly breaks apart bird poop and removes the acid that can cause paint and chassis damage. You can find these wipes online or in various outdoor sporting goods stores at very reasonable prices. Follow these steps to use these wipes effectively:
- Open the wipe container and read the instructions to make sure they’re suitable for your car
- Identify the bird poop stains you want to remove, starting with the freshest ones
- Wipe the stain with the grain of the paint, using just a little pressure to break it apart
- Dry the area with a paper towel to remove the cleaner and further destroy stains
- Repeat this cleaning process until you’ve eliminated all stains from your car’s surface
This method works best with fresh poop and may be less effective with older stains. Nevertheless, we suggest starting here because the wipe’s cleaning solution is less robust than other types and is designed specifically for vehicles. However, harder stains may require strong cleaning methods with more concentrated solutions. Nevertheless, we strongly suggest keeping these wipes in your car whenever you go birding. Note: general cleaning wipes may also work if you can’t find bird-poop-specific types.
Club or Baking Soda
Club soda may not seem like a valuable tool for cleaning bird poop at first. However, its carbonation can break apart the acid in the bird poop and help make it easier to wipe away. Avoid using sugary sodas or colas, as these contain harsher acids that may wear away the surface of your vehicle. Instead, stick to club soda and use this simple process to break apart bird poop stains on your car:
- Pour a little club soda directly on the stain or spray soda on vehicle surfaces to help it stick easier
- Let the soda soak into the stain for 5-10 minutes so that it works into it more effectively
- Wipe the stain away with a cloth using one sweeping motion that eliminates it from the vehicle
- Repeat this process, as needed, to break apart stubborn stains that don’t want to go away
- Dry the surface with a cloth or paper towel to keep the soda from damaging your paint
If club soda isn’t strong enough to remove your bird poop stains, upgrade to baking soda. This cleaning tool can easily break apart bird poop stains but must be used carefully to avoid damaging your car’s surface. Mix two tablespoons of baking soda with dish soap and dilute with water before applying directly to the bird poop stain. Let it soak for 10 minutes before wiping it away with a fresh cloth.
Vehicle-Safe Cleaning Solution
When cleaning wipes don’t work for your vehicle, you should upgrade to more robust cleaning solutions. These cleaners typically contain more concentrated but safe chemical compounds that break apart bird poop when wipes can’t. Many people may manage bird poop stains using this method without having to try anything more advanced. Follow these steps to get great results removing bird poop stains from your car with a concentrated solution:
- Wet a vehicle-safe cleaning cloth with warm water and wring it out before cleaning
- Spray or apply the cleaning solution directly to the stains before scrubbing with the cloth
- Scrub the stains gently with the cloth, pressing lightly into each to break apart the poop
- Hold the cloth against stubborn stains to help the cleaning solution soak in a bit more
- Dry the area with paper towels and repeat the cleaning process, as needed, to eliminate the stain.
There are many cleaning solutions you can use for this process. For example, hybrid car wax may work well with many vehicles, while even window sprays may be helpful in this cleaning. However, avoid using toilet cleaners or anything with more robust acidic solutions. While these may successfully get bird poop off your car, the severe damage risk is not worth it. Instead, stick to safer, less powerful cleaners that won’t damage your vehicle.
When your bird stains resist the previous cleaning methods, it’s time to bring out the big guns. Unscented laundry detergent can help get rid of bird poop on your car’s metal surface, as well as on its upholstery. Avoid scented detergents because they have more corrosive chemicals or may leave a lingering smell on your vehicle. Instead, follow these steps to get great results with this method:
- Apply the unscented laundry detergent directly to the bird poop using a rag or brush
- Let it soak into the stain for a few moments to break it apart before wiping it away
- Wipe the stain away from the car using a cloth or paper towel with a bit of pressure on the car
- Dry the area and try to break apart the stains with a towel or cloth if any remain
- Repeat this cleaning process if the stains refuse to lift, using a little more detergent
Make sure that you avoid getting this detergent on your car’s metal whenever possible. Instead, apply it directly to the bird poop stains and use as little as possible to keep it from running. While a little might not damage your paint, it might leave behind streaks that require cleaning. If the bird poop still doesn’t come off your car, there are a few other steps that you can take to get rid of it.
Have you ever gotten your car detailed and wondered what fantastic cleaners they use to make it look great? They typically use detailer spray to break apart stains and make your vehicle look great again. This spray is found in most auto repair suppliers and even major retail outlets. Use the following steps to break apart bird poop that won’t go away with any other methods:
- Spray the bird poop with the detailer spray and let it sit for a few moments to work into the stain
- Wipe the surface with a moist cloth to break apart the stain, using warm water to improve the effect
- Dry the cleaned area with a paper or cloth towel to further break apart any stains
- Repeat this process a few times, if necessary, to get rid of the stain and keep your car’s surface safe
The great thing about this process is that detailer spray is designed specifically for vehicles, making it very safe and effective. We suggest it lower on this list because it can be expensive or difficult to find and is often more potent than other spray options. If it doesn’t take care of your bird poop stains, there’s one last method you may use to get rid of them. Apply a little WD-40 directly to the stains, let it soak into each, and wipe away before the oil gets on the car’s metal. If this last method doesn’t work, take your vehicle to a professional detailer.
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Wrap up – How to Clean Bird Poop Off a Car
We know that this range of options will teach you how to clean bird poop off of a car. No matter what type of car you have and how much bird poop is on it, at least one of these methods will work for you! And keep in mind, going to a professional car detailer is a great way to take the problem out of your own hands!
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