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Posted by Jerry Slater 
July 27, 2003 02:31AM
<HTML>OK, I have a toughy. Recently while doing a white S-10 I ran across spots on the paint that looked like small, (very small) about the size of a pinhole rust colored spots on the paint. I tried using cleaner wax, clay, rubbing my ass off. They wouldn't budge unless I used my fingernail. I couldn't figure out what this was until the owner pointed out he parks next to box elder tree. It seems they poop all over everything they come in contact with. Any suggestions for removal?


ps, I didn't try gasoline but did try WD 40.
July 27, 2003 11:33AM
<HTML>Jerry, Are you sure this is some kind of bug poop and not mold spores? I have a similar problem with numerous cars I detail on a regular basis. Your description sounds very similar to what I find with perhaps one difference. The small spots I have to deal with (mold spores) are actually slightly raised on the paint ...you can feel them quite easily with your fingernail. I had a bad time with this for a year or so and could not figure out what they were and how to prevent them. I finally put some of the scrapings in a plastic baggie and took them to a friend at the local state university and begged him to figure out what it was. He came back a few days later and said "mold spores". Bottom line is..... these mold spores come from the wood mulch commonly used around the shrubbery in commercial building landscapes and parking lots. The only way to prevent them is to ask your customer to park away from the mulched areas toward the center of the parking lot. The smart ones do so and the problem is 90% solved . The lazy ones who do not want to walk 15 extra steps or park in the sun have the pleasure of paying me an extra $75.00 to $125.00 several times a year to remove these spores from there cars. As primarily a mobile detail service who seemingly lives in parking lots I have found it beneficial for a number of reasons to ask my customers not to park near the boundaries of parking lots, the mold spore problem being only one, it also prevents grass clippings being blown onto there cars, prevents paint and window damage from rocks and gravel thrown around by mowers and other equipment and bird and insect droppings from the nearby trees. These to me are very common problems and feel it is part of a detailers job to let the customer know how to prevent a problem. Soooo, ask your customer to no longer park under the stupid tree and then charge him an appropriate amount for the time and energy for you to remove them. I have found that bug poop and my mold spores can be removed but does take time and effort($$$$$). I start with washing thoroughly and then claying with a new bar and lots and lots and lots of soapy water for lubrication. The little bit of residue that is left will come off with a paint cleaner. I then finish off with wax and the car will be beautiful again. One final word..... though it is provitable to do this I have found that "prevention" as discussed earlier is actually the best answer. An "educated customer" is not only smarter but Happier!!!!! Good luck and happy detailing. Ron</HTML>
July 28, 2003 05:39PM
Thanks for your detailed answer. I am 100% sure this is Box Elder poop. He showed me his house that has the bug problem and these little spots are all over it also, even where the sun shines on all day. I am able to pick these spots off with my fingernail but was hoping for something a little easier and not so time consuming. I will try your method of using paint cleaner. I have never tried using a paint cleaner though. Is it a paste, liquid, or gel? How do you apply it? I am thinking of a paint thinner like mineral spirits. Is this the same? Seems too harsh though.</HTML>
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