How To Remove Hard Water Spots On Car In 5 Easy Steps
One of the quintessential issues which car owners from Texas, New Mexico, Kansas, Arizona, Southern California, and several isolated areas face is the presence and removal of hard water spots on car. These are the areas with the hardest water and as such, need better options for the care of their vehicles.
If you live in these areas, then you most probably have done everything you can to prevent and remove hard water spots on your car to no avail. You might have tried home remedies like vinegar and baking powder out of frustration. Unfortunately, these can actually cause more damage and may require you to take your beloved vehicle for a major paint job to body shops.
Has it occurred to you that you may not be doing it properly? To save you from further headaches and hefty body shop fees, DetailXPerts is giving you a step-by-step guide on how to remove hard water spots on car.
Removing Hard Water Stains On Car Windows With Ammonia
One of the most effective cleaners around the household also deserves a spot to remove hard water stains from car windows, as well as to remove old car window tinting.
As well as being used to unclog drains or in laundering clothes, ammonia is effective against mineral deposits on car glass surfaces.
- 1 pair of gloves
Ensure that you are well protected from this powerful chemicals effects by wearing protective gear like gloves. Put on a face mask if you are working in an enclosed space such as inside your garage, or ensure ample ventilation.
To clean a windshield without streaks, put the ammonia and water solution into the spray bottle, spraying until the car window is soaked. Allow the mixture to sit for some time, and scrub gently with the soft-bristled brush.
Rinse the car window with water and use a squeegee to wipe down with a clean microfiber cloth.
How To Remove Water Stains From Your Car
Water stains on a car can mar the appearance of an otherwise beautiful paint job. Those white-edged ovals and circles seem like they would be easy to rub off with a cloth and a splash of water. But the moment the water has dried, the stains just return. Fortunately, water stains on a car are easy to remove with common materials that you may already have on hand.
Read Also: How Much Horsepower Does My Car Have
Also Removes Cement Splatter
Not long ago I received a letter from a couple in Michigan thanking me for saving them nearly $3,000.
The woman explained how she parked her husbands car near a construction site and it was splattered with cement. Making matters worse, the cement stain wasnt noticed until 2 days later.
She took the car for an estimate: $2,700 hard earned dollars to make it right.
Guys, this is not an uncommon story!
As a friend of mine used to say, When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.
Are insurance companies and paint/body shops purposely creating unnecessary work? I dont now.
What I do know is this:
The answer to most hard water spots is distilled white vinegar. And yes, it works for minor cement spots too!
How To Prevent Hard Water Spots When Washing A Car
If you have a lot of minerals in your water at home or where ever you wash your car, youll need to take some extra steps to make sure the water doesnt leave mineral deposits on your glass or paint as the water evaporates.
Here are some tips to help you avoid water spots in the future:
- Never let your vehicle air dry. Always dry it yourself. Some of the best methods for drying your car are using a microfiber drying towel or an air dryer. Heres a great article we have on safely drying your car without scratching it.
- Always wash your car in the shade. This will give you more time to dry your car or truck off before the water has a chance to evaporate.
You May Like: How To Fix Cigarette Burns In Car Seat
How To Remove Water Spots On Your Car: Types Explained
Water spots are one of the most annoying things car owners have to deal with. Not only do they always seem to appear right after youve had your car cleaned, but they can also potentially damage your paint job.
Avoiding water is all but impossible, even if you manage to avoid every single rainy day, and take the utmost care while washing your car. All that has to happen for water spots to appear is for you to drive in front of a sprinkler.
But, its just water, how bad can it be? Well, its never just water. The water that drops on your vehicle may have come into contact with chemicals or sediments. As a result, it can contain various pollutants. Once the water droplets dry on your car, those materials remain on your car, resulting in a spot or stain.
Option : Household Water Softening System
Softeners, on the other hand are simply used to remove calcium, which can be a large part of what makes hard water. Softeners basically convert calcium and magnesium , to sodium or potassium which should spot a lot less.
These units typically last a lot longer, and are a great solution for getting your glassware shiny again, reducing water spots on shower doors, etc. If you want the added benefits softened water can have throughout your plumbing indoors, this may be the best solution.
While not as effective as de-ionization, it still should help to improve the TDS levels by up to 95 percent, and basically eliminating those very noticeable spots.
Also Check: How To Make Car Freshies
How To Remove Water Spots From Car Paint
So you have done everything you can think of and you still have water spots, what now? We are going to cover a few methods from least to most aggressive . The first thing you will want to do is simply either wash the vehicle in the shade, early in the morning, or evening. Making sure to dry the car thoroughly after washing. If you have a pretty clean car you could try to use a quick detailer with a microfiber towel instead of washing. If the water spots are still there after washing then you need to get a little more aggressive. The next thing I would try is a 50/50 mixture of distilled water and regular white vinegar. The vinegar breaks down the minerals in the water spots and makes them easier to remove. I normally choose to spray my towel a few times and then gently rub on the spots till they disappear, its best to do this on cool paint. I will then clean the area with either a quick detailer or wash the area to remove the vinegar from the paint. Most of the time washing or the vinegar solution will do the trick. But if both of these fail, then you need to move on to the clay bar. Using the quick detailer to wet the paint use the clay bar and glide it over the water spots to see if the clay will pick up the above surface mineral deposits.
Back To The Internet For More Advice
I first located a small inconspicuous, area in the bottom corner of my windshield, by the wiper. As advised, I wet the steel wool with water and made little circular motions, with a very light touch and dried with a paper towel. The glass in that area was black. This made it easy to see the spots, before and after, with the sun shining on the window. Wow! It seemed to work! Very few spots were left in one small area. They were completely gone everywhere else!
But I wasnt ready to really go for it, on the more visible areas, just yet. I next tried this on a small area of chrome molding, next to the windshield. Also, with a light touch. Success again!
Recommended Reading: How To Get Internet For Your Car
Can Water Spots Hurt Your Car Paint
And, depending on the source of the water, it can permanently damage paint, glass or decorative streaks if left untreated and removed. Unfortunately, the only thing that can prevent hard water stains is that the treated water doesn’t dry out on your car. Neither wax, sealer or color coat are sensitive to these stains.
What Is The Best Way To Get Rid Of Water Spots
Acid wash works the same way as waterless washing or car polishing, except it contains a slightly acidic solution that can destroy the bond between minerals and clear coats. White wine vinegar. Another way to remove water stains is to make a mild solution of one part white wine vinegar to four parts water.
Don’t Miss: How Much Does A Car Salesman Make Per Car
How To Remove Water Spots From Car Windows With Fine Steel Wool
For particularly difficult water spots you can use fine-grade steel wool. Apply your water spot remover of choice to the spot on the glass and gently rub the steel wool on the spot.
Fine-grade steel wool shouldnt damage glass. If anything, it should polish it. It is ideal for removing anything that is bonded to your automotive glass.
Can Clr Clean Hard Water Stains From Auto Glass
As mentioned earlier, yes it can. When it comes to the removal of calcium and lime deposits from glass, there is no better remover than CLR.
However, this is a product that is mostly used on household glass. And that raises the concern, is it safe to use CLR on auto glass.
Unlike bathroom glass, auto glass is very delicate. Plus, it may contain some treatments and products like a tint.
Moreover, it is surrounded by plastic and car paint which is also vulnerable to damage especially when exposed to harsh products such as CLR.
If you are dealing with hard water stains on your car and havent gained much success with car shampoos and other cleaners, it is worth giving CLR a try.
But, first, we recommend that you dilute. When you open CLR, the smell is enough proof of how strong it is.
Therefore, dilute it in water and dab some on a microfiber cloth and then wipe on the glass. Dont be very generous with the solution as it may spill and etch through paint.
Rub the CLR and water mixture on the car windows until the entire surface is covered. Let it sit for a minute. Clean off the residue gently and then rinse it off with water.
Your auto glass will be clean and clear, all the hard water stains will be removed.
CLR is acidic and thats why it is so effective at removing hard water deposits because Calcium is an alkali. However, CLR is only safe for use on glass and nothing else.
Also Check: How To Make Car Freshies
How To Remove Water Spots Off Your Windows
- Start with regular glass cleaning. Remove any residue or dirt from the surface.
- Spray the fabric with your favorite detergent.
- Clean the window with a damp cloth.
- Rub in small circular motions until the water spots disappear.
- Clean the surface with a soft cloth.
- Repeat if necessary.
- Wash your windows regularly to minimize water spots.
Option : Protect Your Vehicle With A Wax Or Sealant
One of the most effective ways to prevent hard water is to use a good carnauba wax or sealant. The purpose of these products is not only to improve luster or shininess, but really to protect your paint from the elements by providing a glossy layer of protection that repels water.
If water spots do form on this wax layer, they are much easier to remove as opposed to being stuck on a rough, unwaxed clear coat.
Read Also: How To Keep Squirrels Out Of Car Engine
Option : Cr Spotless Portable Water System
Out of both of the options I recommend, a spotless portable water system is probably the most affordable for most people that are simply washing vehicles. This device works using a process called de-ionization, which is the process of removing charged particles in order to release hydrogen and oxygen .
To learn more about these benefits and uses of purified water, check out a post I wrote: Deionized vs Distilled Water for Detailing When to Use It!
This entry-level single filter system by CR Spotless will provide around 150 gallons of water, which can last anywhere from 10-20 washes depending on how much water you use. Some people will it as a spot-free rinse, while using harder water to apply soap, but it really depends on your water quality.
Griots also makes a similar portable de-ionized system for around the same price point.
Keep in mind both of these units are demineralizers, not softeners. They basically remove and are ideal for washing vehicles.
How To Prevent Water Spots From Forming
If you prevent water spots in the first place, you wont have to spend time removing them. You can do so by washing your car the right way every time. To get started on the perfect car wash, youll need a hose, two buckets, car wash soap, a sponge, a car wash mitt, and microfiber towels.
Follow these tips for the perfect car wash that will help prevent water spots on your car:
- Start by making sure you wash your car in a shaded space when its cool out, not in direct sunlight, since you dont want the water to dry too fast on your car.
- Use the hose to rinse loose dirt and debris from your car.
- Use a quality soap that is meant for the job, such as TriNova Car Wash Soap.
- Dip the washing mitt in a solution of car wash soap and warm water in one of the buckets, and wash your wheels first.
- Then wash your car section by section, moving from the hood to the doors to the trunk.
- Rinse each section with clean water from the second bucket before moving on to the next one.
- Use the hose to spray the entire car with clean water to ensure its all rinsed.
- Take a microfiber towel and blot each segment of the car until its dry, making sure not to let your car air dryas that will result in water spots!
Knowing how to remove water spots from your car can help you keep it looking shiny and new for as long as possible after each car wash. This is great whether you plan on entering your car in a show or just like driving around in a nice looking car thats free of water spots!
You May Like: How Do You Make Car Freshies
Best: Optimum Mdr Mineral Deposit Remover
This usually does a better job at removing minerals that are embedded deeper into the paint, since is formulated for exactly this purpose. It is slightly acidic, so its important to wear gloves. You apply it sort of like a wax, where you let it dwell on the surface for a few minutes, and wipe away.
Using a polish to smooth out any imperfections, followed by a good sealant or wax should yield you the best results when using MDR.
The Clay Decontamination Treatment
Clay your car, and you will be amazed by the amount of crud it removes from your vehicles exterior surfaces. Photo Credit: LaCuraDellAuto.it/Facebook
The next progression for removing water spots is with a clay bar treatment. Commonly referred to as claying, this approach utilizes a synthetic, putty-like bar, or a hybridized mitt or cloth to remove contaminants from a vehicles exterior surfaces. Claying should only be attempted after the two-bucket washing method and white vinegar wipe-down prove to be ineffective.
Required Car Claying Supplies
- Bottle of claying lubricant
- Clay bar/mitt/towel
- Microfiber towels for drying and hand polishing
Lube-up Your Automobile
After spraying the entire vehicle down with water, apply some lubricant spray solution directly to the section of the vehicle that you plan on claying. Applying some lube on the clay tool you plan on using is never a bad idea either, as it will make the contaminant removal process all the smoother.
Clay It Like You Mean It
Once you got her all lubed-up, rub the clay bar in a back-and-forth motion, always following the lines of the vehicle. Regardless as to whether you have selected a bar, mitt, or cloth, all automotive claying products are designed to contour to the surface of the vehicle, so try and hit every square centimeter of surface area. Just make sure that you NEVER clay in a circular method, for this can damage the clear coat.
Rinse That Mess Off
Dry and Inspect
Don’t Miss: Can You Trade In A Lease To Carvana
Prevention Of Water Spots On Car
Unless a person is able to treat the water, it is almost impossible to remove every water spot that appears every single time. However, there are some things that car owners can do to prevent them. Try first using a few simple products on the cars paint to protect from water spots. Other solutions are available if the products are not effective.
Ways To Remove Water Spots From A Car
A wash and dry after the clay bar treatment is completed will help rinse away any debris that may have been lifted during the detailing process. Photo Credit: Wilson Auto Detailing/YouTube
Now that weve discussed the different grades of water spot, its time that we discuss their removal. There are four proven methods for removing hard water spots that professional detailers recommend, with each of the subsequent methods listed below becoming gradually more intensive.
Read Also: How Long Do Cars Last