Did you know that bird poop is one of the most common causes of car paint damage? Whether from a Copper’s Hawk or a chubby Finch, bird droppings are quite high in uric acid, which corrodes car exteriors like no one’s business. With an average pH of about 3, dried bird poop will peel away clearcoats, bleach paint, and leave cartoonish etchings of itself even after a car wash.
But the world isn’t over just because Tweety Bird left a present on your red car’s hood! Here are the best ways to clean bird crud off your car before permanent damage sets in.
- Cloth Soaked in Cleaner
If you’ve had bird poop stuck to your car for a while, the first solution to try is a cloth soaked in a vehicle-safe cleaner.
Submerge a soft microfiber cloth in a small bowl full of cleaner – ask your Phoenix Valley body shop for product advice – and apply the cloth to the bird poop stain. Leave the cloth on the stain for 15 to 20 minutes, then gently wipe away. If the first attempt was unsuccessful, repeat once more.
WD-40: the bird-poop cleaner to rule them all. Left on bird droppings for just 30 seconds, WD-40 works its magic by loosening dried stains. Just rinse the remnants away with a hose, and reapply on any stubborn markings. (Look, Ma! No hands!)
- Club Soda/Seltzer Water
The innate acidic qualities of bird poop are broken down by the carbonation of seltzer water or club soda, allowing for a quick wipe-and-walk.
Simply pour a capful of the soda on fresh or dried bird droppings, let it bubble for a minute, then clean off with a soft cloth or sponge. (Warning: For the love of the automotive gods, do not use cola to clean bird poop off a car, as this can leave a sticky residue that can eat away paint, polish, wax, and even rubber sealers!)
- Unscented Liquid Laundry Soap for Car Seats
An open sunroof essentially transforms your parked car into an avian bathroom. But there is a solution to getting bird poo out of upholstery, like car seats or a fabric convertible top!
- First, you’ll want to let the bird droppings dry completely. (Do you really want to smear all that over fabric? No. No, you don’t.)
- Once dried, bird poop can be scraped off with a nail file, plastic scraper tool, old credit card—whatever tool won’t tear your seats or upholstery.
- Treat the chalky, white stains with a single drop of unscented laundry soap, patting it all into the fabric with a dampened cloth.
- After the laundry soap is worked into the fabric, rinse the cloth in warm water and gently scrub the stain. Repeat until the detergent is no longer producing bubbles and the stain appears to be cleaned.
- Park your car in a safe place – no trees, you crazy person – and allow it to air-dry.
- Bird Poop Cleaning Wipes
Made of composite bamboo fibers and soaked in acid-neutralizing cleaning solution, biodegradable Drop Wipes make quick work of wet or dry bird dookie. Keep a pack in your glove box so you’re always prepared to clean up “surprises.”
- Baking Soda
We use baking soda to clean teeth, deodorize refrigerators, and neutralize ammonia smells in litter boxes. Oh, and it is a great way to get bird poop off of a car!
In a small spray bottle, mix together 2 tablespoons of baking soda, a drop of liquid dish soap, and hot water. Shake. Spray. Soak. Wipe away.
- Car Detailing Spray
Perhaps the best car cleaner for etched-in bird poop is one specially designed to clean etched-in bird poop. (Who would have thunk?)
Hit two birds with one stone by cleaning bird poop off your car with detailing spray. Put a few spritzes of car detailer spray on dried bird droppings to dissolve the stain entirely, then clean the area with a damp cloth or rinse with a hose. Products like this are safe on car paint and wax, and can restore coatings when polished thoroughly with a clay bar. If you need a recommendation for a quality auto detailing spray, ask a trusted body shop or car dealer near you.
About Phoenix Valley Honda Dealers
Serving the entire Phoenix region, Valley Honda Dealers provides shoppers with thousands of new Honda models, used cars, and certified pre-owned vehicles. Our Honda dealerships also offer a variety of auto services, financing solutions, and monthly specials on new and used vehicles. Find your nearest Honda dealer around Phoenix to learn more about us, schedule a test drive, or ask about available car detailing service.