Is Bird Poop Bad For Car Paint?
There is nothing worse than bird droppings or bird poop stains on your car's exterior paint. Bird droppings can seriously damage car paint. Bird poop has high uric acid levels of pH between 3 and 5. This is powerful stuff. Acidic substances can cause severe issues with your car paint if left untreated. If dried bird droppings are left on the paint for an extended period, remove them as soon as possible, as they will eat into your paint layer and leave an unsightly and hard-to-remove mark. Here we show you how to clean bird droppings off your car paint cheaply and in most cases easily.
If you don’t want to risk damaging your paintwork, you could consider getting a specialized cleaning product specifically for removing bird poop. Some products contain enzymes that break down the acids in dry bird poop, while others include chemicals that neutralize them. Avoid any type of abrasive car polish.
The best way to remove bird poop from the windshield or surface of your car is to apply a cleaning product specifically designed to remove bird droppings. There are many cleaners available at most auto supply stores. See our advice below on some of the products available. These products will work on any type of car including luxury car paintwork and run-of-the-mill paintwork, as well as soft top cars that need bird droppings removed from the material roof of the car.
If you decide to use a homemade solution, then you must remember to test it first on a tiny part of your paintwork or windshield. This will ensure that you don't end up ruining your entire windshield if something goes wrong. You should use nothing that contains ammonia because it could damage your paint job. Also, avoid using citrus fruits like oranges and lemons because they contain oils that could cause harm to your paint.
Your car windscreen is an important part of your car and needs to be free of scratches. Ensure that you only use a soft cloth and warm soapy water, plus any products that are specifically designed to clean glass. Lift your wiper blades so that they are clear of the windscreen, and will not collect any of the leftover waste. Do NOT use any type of abrasive product on a car windscreen. This could lead to permanent damage that could seriously obstruct your windscreen wipers and your view out of the car.
Once you've cleaned your windshield, you'll want to wipe it down with a soft cloth to prevent any streaks from appearing. Be careful not to rub too hard or scrub the surface because this could lead to scratches. Make sure you lift your windshield wipers so that non of the droppings remain attached to them when you wash the windscreen.
Car owners. If you need to remember anything from this advice, just make sure that if you see ANY bird waste on your vehicle's paint or windows, you wash it off immediately, as leaving it on for any length of time can cause damage.
Different Types of Bird Poop
We are not going to go into detail here, however, there are some heavy-duty birds out there that can cause some serious mess on your car if you are parked in the wrong place. Always be careful where you park your car when you are visiting an unknown area that may be on a bird flight path, or going to the sea. Did you see the size of that seagull? Can you imagine the mess that makes when it drops a bomb right onto the roof of your convertible, or even worse, straight onto the luxury leather seats as the roof is down.? Oh my, an image of that would be worth its weight in gold.
Therefore, every car owner should know how to get bird poop off the car. Fortunately, it is not too difficult. You just need to know the right materials to use and the steps to take.
First, choose a method to follow to remove bird poop from the car:
- Club soda
- Baking soda
- Laundry soap
- Special wipes
- Detailer spray
- Specialized cleaner
Then, take these four simple steps:
- Putting on protective gear and identifying the bird poop stains
- Softening the bird poop stains with water and a spray bottle
- Applying the cleaning product onto the bird poop stains
- Scrubbing the bird poop stains off with a microfiber cloth
Finally, continue to read for the details!
You Will Need The Following Kit:
Get these ready before you follow the rest of this tutorial and take the bird poop stains off the car:
- Wash Bucket with warm water
- Microfibre cloth or clean cloth
- Liquid designed to remove stubborn bird stains
- Shammy leather
- Disposable gloves – Bird droppings do contain germs and diseases
- Warm soapy water
- Plastic scraper
- Glass cleaner
- Nail file
- Paper towel
- Rubber restorer
- Spray water bottle
- Mask if your are concious of your health
And one of these PRODUCTS to use on the bird poop:
- Wet soapy sponge method with laundry soap
- Baking soda
- Seltzer water or club soda
- WD-40 – 259 automotive uses
- Specialty Bird Poop Wipes
- Laundry soap
- Detailer Spraying
- Specialized Cleaner
Here Are The Simple Steps You Need To Follow
Step 1: Put on your protective clothing before tackling the stains
Find a good quality pair of gloves to ensure your hands are protected from acidic stains. Walk around your car and find all of the bird stains you need to clear.
Step 2: Soften the bird stains with warm water and a simple spray bottle
Put some liquid soap into your spray bottle and fill it with warm water. Spray the affected parts of your car with warm water. Follow a pattern around your car so that all of the bird dookie stains have been sprayed. It will take time for the warm water to perpetrate the hardened bird poop if you have let it bake into the paintwork.
Find a soft clean microfiber cloth, and soak it in clean water. You should be able to buy a specific solution to help to remove and clean bird droppings. If not, you can try simply soaking a microfiber cloth with warm soapy water or car shampoo until the bird excrement softens. Apply enough soapy water to let it get right in. This will more than likely take over one attempt to remove, as this can be really stubborn if left for too long in the scorching sun.
Step 3: Take the cleaning product of your choice and apply it to the hard-to-remove bird poop stains
Once you have sprayed enough water onto the stains and you have given it time to sink in and soften the hardest and worst stains you can then apply one of the products below onto the worst offenders and let it sink into it to help to remove the stains.
If you are struggling with basic products like plain soap and water you may need to buy a specific specialist cleaner to remove the stubborn item. If you live in an area where you are likely to get more bird droppings over time, then this would be an excellent investment to keep your paint and windscreen clean.
Step 4 – Place a soft microfiber cloth over the hard-to-remove and stubborn bird stains
Get your microfiber cloth and add the solution that you intend to use to your cloth along with some warm water. Place this cloth over the bird poop that is the most stubborn and allow it to sink into the spot. Keep the cloth moist by adding more soapy water to it if needed.
If possible, try to leave your wet microfiber cloth on top of the affected area so that it can allow the dampness to sink in. This will make it much easier to remove the heavy-duty bird droppings.
Depending on how stubborn the stains are and how long they have been drying in the sun you may need to be prepared for a couple of hours of work whilst the products get to work and soften the bird crap.
Once you are happy the stains are out, give the whole area a final washdown.
Step 5 – Wash the whole car
Rinse your car clean of any remaining residue, and consider giving your car a full car wash to remove any traces. A good quality high-pressure washer not on full power and with a wide wand should easily remove all traces of the bird poop. Personally, I would never use an automatic car wash as the strands of plastic can do more paint damage than good.
Cleaning Products & Methods:
Wet Soapy Sponge Method with Laundry Soap
Homemade bird poop remover. A simple and free solution that requires little to no expense, as you will already have the ingredients and products available to use. Simply put soapy warm water onto your cloth and place the soaking wet cloth over the bird poop-stained area and allow it to soak in for a couple of minutes.
If you didn’t know, baking soda is pretty outstanding at cleaning a massive variety of jobs around the home. Not only does it deodorize fridges and clean your teeth, but it also helps to remove bird poop from cars. A simple mixture of baking soda (2 tablespoons), dish soap (a teensy squirt), and hot water, spritzed from a spray bottle onto the droppings and left to soak for 10 minutes, should clear off most stingy bird crud. Rinse with a hose and repeat. Make sure you clear the whole area after you rinse the crud and leftovers away.
Seltzer Water or Club Soda
If you don't want to use a paper roll, just wipe the soft poop off using a clean, wet microfiber cloth and then sprinkle some sparkling mineral water (or any kind of bubbly drink) onto the nasty stains. Leave a wet paper tissue or cloth over the stubborn stuff to soften it before removing it.
(WARNING: Do not use cola or sugary sodas as an alternative! These products could do more damage to your paint, wax, and rubber seals, and will leave a sticky residue. Cola could also be corrosive to auto paintwork)
Do you have a can of WD-40 handy? WD40 is a multipurpose liquid cleaning solution that can be used for many different tasks around your car. It is normally associated with seized nuts and rusty chains. However, WD40 can also remove dried bird poo. Just spray it onto the mess and let it sit for 30 seconds before wiping it off with a rag. This also works on tree sap and stubborn stains. Keep any type of product like this off of your window rubbers. Wipe them down if you get any run onto them.
WD40 can be purchased from any local hardware store or directly online. It is a simple solution that is not expensive and can be used for a multitude of other things around your car and home.
Laundry soap is a simple and easy solution as most homes have this alternative product already within their reach. Apply a squirt into your spray bottle or onto your microfiber cloth and cover the bird poop allowing the soap to sink in and do its work. Rinse and repeat until the affected area has been completely cleaned.
Specialty Bird Poop Wipes
Drop Wipes do a great job of ridding your vehicle of bird droppings. They are made of biodegradable materials. The company’s patented cleaner neutralizes the acid in the poo, allowing you to simply wipe and go. If the stains are deep you may need to apply soapy water before using the wipes. If you frequently park under trees this is a great product to keep in your glove box so that you can remove any fresh bird droppings before they have a chance to dry and harden into the paintwork.
Pop into your local car accessories center and you will find many different types of car care brands that will have a detailing spray or wipe that can be used to remove bird droppings and stubborn stains like road tar. Most of the products will be in a spray formula in a bottle for a simple and easy application. Something as simple as this you can store in your trunk so that it is available should you have to park under a tree or be near the sea where you are likely to get the odd seagull crap on your paintwork.
It is best to remove any bird droppings whilst they are still soft, as once hardened are really stubborn stains. Take a look at the different brands. My favorites are Meguiar’s G14422 Ultimate Quik Detailer, Mother’s California Gold Instant Detailer, and Adam’s Detail Spray. They are not cheap, but will last a long time, and will do a perfect job.
A specialized cleaner should not really be needed unless your car has been completely covered in bird crap and it would be easier to take it to a garage and have them remove and clean the vehicle. This would more than likely need to be sprayed and left wet for a while and allow the water and soaps to sink in and soften the bird poop. Then a soft pressure washer would more than likely be used to remove all of the stains from your paintwork.
Get Help From a Professional Car Detailer
With a really disgusting bird-poop bombing, it may be in your best interest to pop into an auto repair shop or an auto glass repair if it is your windscreen. This should only be a last resort to prevent further damage or a specific situation. They have instant solutions like quick detailer spray that will remove stubborn stains. However they do not do this for free, and car detailing places can be expensive.
Interior Car Cleaning Issues
Own a convertible or left the sunroof open and been hit by a low-flying seagull bombardment? Unfortunately, this can happen. And if you have been unlucky enough to park your car with the roof down and some seagull decides to shite, all over your car interior you have a problem.
To clean bird poop off your car seats, upholstery, or even a fabric convertible top:
- Let it dry. Dry bird droppings on your car upholstery are far easier to clean compared to the wet poop variety, which can smear and spread. If you have a leather interior, you may need to seek specialist help if it has stained the leather.
- Once the poop has dried, pick it off with anything that scrapes it away without damaging the fabric of your seats.
- If you are left with a chalky residue, treat the area with a drop of unscented liquid laundry detergent, and wipe with a damp cloth.
- Rinse and repeat with the cloth and slowly scrub until the stains have disappeared.
- Let it dry and remember to always close your sunroof or convertible.
How long can I leave bird poop on My car?
Not long, is the simple answer. You should remove the droppings as soon as you see them as they will start to eat away at the paintwork from the moment they land.
Can Bird Poop Ruin Your Car Paint?
Simple answer is yes. The acid in a bird droppings is high, and as such it starts to eat away at your car paint as soon as it hits the car.
Can You Get Sick From Touching Bird Droppings?
Breathing dust or water droplets containing contaminated bird droppings can lead to several diseases. Wear a mask and gloves if your car is badly contaminated.
Can a Car Wash Clean Bird Poop?
Yes, but I would only recommend a manual car wash by hand. Do not use an automatic car wash as the strands could cause more damage to your paint.
Does WD40 Remove Bird Poop?
Yes. WD40 can be sprayed onto the droppings and left to sink in for 30 seconds or so and then wiped with a damp sof cloth. Rinse and repeat until clean.
So we have covered the whole system of removing bird poop from your car, either from the paintwork, windscreen, or from your interior.
If you have anything to add to this feel free to drop us an email as we like to know if our methods worked or if you have used another means to sort out the issue
So, with that, you have reached the end of this article. Now, you should know how to get bird poop off the car. Did you follow along and give the methods a try? Out of the methods below, which worked out best for you?
Consider bookmarking the article on how to get bird poop off the car so you can refer back to it whenever you need to. Feel free to send it to family or friends who are car owners and may need to clean stubborn stains away.
Images are from deposit photos