Birds are magnificent creatures, aren’t they? Well, I thought so too until I left my car in the open one day. I usually park it in my garage, but the weather was fine.
I’m sure you know what happened. Half of my car was covered in bird droppings. I felt as if they had meticulously planned the whole thing. What’s worse, my neighbor’s car was untouched. The birds must have hatched some sort of plan beforehand.
The truth is, there was no secret plan. Birds will drop their “bombs” anywhere — from park statues to unaware passers-by.
If the winged bombers seem to have a grudge against your car, as well — don’t worry. I’ve come up with a few nifty solutions to this problem. There are some great poop removers you can use. Some of them are homemade, while some of them are found in shops. But first…
Why Is Bird Poop Bad for Your Car?
Aside from the unappealing look (and smell), bird poop is bad news for your car. So, if you don’t take immediate action, you’ll be left with a damaged coat and an ugly-looking vehicle.
The fact of the matter is — bird poop is acidic. What’s worse, it needs as little as two days to burn through the clear coat of your car. In fact, the scorching heat makes the damage even worse because the poop will harden.
To top it off, certain species of birds also peck at gravel, which helps their digestion. Those tiny pieces end up the droppings. When you try to wipe them away, you will inevitably scratch your car.
I bet neither of us is willing to spend upwards of a thousand dollars for a new coat of paint. So here’s what you should do.
Let’s get one thing out of the way — don’t park under bird-ridden spots, like trees. But, if you find your car covered in droppings, make sure you wash it quickly.
Let’s say you can’t pay a visit to a car wash immediately. You’ll still need something to wipe off the droppings. I always keep a microfiber towel and a bottle of water in my car, just in case.
The water will dilute the droppings, especially if they are still fresh. Moreover, microfiber is a gentle, yet effective material. It will wipe off any residue left by the birds, or at least remove the softer parts. A sprinkler attachment for the bottle is also a nice addition.
However, I wouldn’t advise you to scrub too hard. In fact, you want to minimize the wiping. Remember the small bits of gravel. If the poop is stubborn, you need a different approach.
Homemade Bird Poop Removers
If you are a DIY person like me, you can try a few homemade solutions. Furthermore, some store-bought removers are honestly not that cheap. Here are a few buck-saving alternatives.
Wet Kitchen Towels
Kitchen towels are a common household item you can use to remove bird poop. First, take a few strips. Then, soak the strips in warm or hot water.
Fold the wet kitchen towel and place it on the spot you want to clean. I would also advise you to push it down on the poop. That will completely soak it and make it easier to dilute.
Now, depending on the hardness of the droppings, you’ll have to wait a few minutes. Don’t leave it on for too long, though. If it’s sunny outside, the towel will dry up.
While the water softens the poop, the kitchen towel will soak it up. After a few minutes, move the towel around. You will notice that the poop is slowly starting to come off.
For the more stubborn bits, it’s all rinse and repeat. Remember not to put too much pressure, and go gently until the spot is clean.
Another thing you’ll probably find in your kitchen is baking soda. Furthermore, it’s dirt cheap, so you can easily buy it at a local store.
You need four tablespoons of baking soda and about a liter of warm water. Mix the ingredients, then pour them into a spray bottle. Aim the bottle at the droppings and apply the mixture.
Similarly to water, the solution will dissolve the poop and make it easier to remove. Furthermore, the baking soda will counteract the uric acid. Thus, it will prevent etching.
Once the poop softens, spray it off with a hose, and you’re done.
Speaking of affordable solutions, club soda is another addition to the list. Not only is it safe for the paint, but it will clean your windshield, as well.
All you need to do is pour mineral water over the affected spot. Additionally, try getting a soda bottle with a siphon on it. The water inside is pressurized, so the additional pressure will help. It should take it about five minutes to dissolve the poop.
Then, just wipe off the softened residue. If the poop is on your windshield, your wipers will do the rest.
Keep in mind the difference between club soda and seltzer water. While the former contains certain minerals that improve the taste, the latter is only carbonated. Club soda also contains sodium, so go with seltzer if you think salt will damage the paint.
Ordinary Window Cleaner + Vinegar/Lemon Juice
So far, it seems you don’t have to go further from the kitchen to find what you need. There’s probably a bottle of regular glass cleaner out there, too.
While the cleaner is pretty effective on its own, I suggest adding in a bit of vinegar or lemon juice. Both of these are acidic and will help break down the stubborn poop. In addition, the window cleaner contains detergent, which will completely clean the surface.
However, I suggest you start with smaller amounts of these acidic substances. Too much lemon juice can cause blemishes or discoloration. Another downside is that vinegar doesn’t smell all that pleasant.
In the end, the point here is to try and find a homemade solution, so never expect professional results. Yet, these are definitely worth trying.
Store-Bought Bird Poop Removers
I understand that not every DIY solution is the best. Therefore, you might also want to look for some store-bought cleaners. Here are some cleaners that you should try.
Aside from removing adhesives and stickers, this product will also help you get rid of bird droppings. It’s pretty inexpensive, and you don’t need too much of it to get the job done.
First, get a microfiber cloth. Then, apply the product to the affected area and leave it there for a few minutes. Once Goo Gone has done its work, rub the area with the cloth. Finally, wash the area (or the entire car), and you’re good to go.
I must admit I was a bit skeptical when I first tried this cleaner. What changed my mind was the fact that it effectively removes tree sap as well.
If you’re looking for something more “poop-specific,” here’s what I suggest. Even though the remover is not strictly meant for cars, it will do the trick.
What made me try this product is the fact it’s mostly meant for cleaning bird cages. Moreover, it’s made so that it fits most bird diets. Simply put — the spray will remove the stains no matter what the bird had eaten.
I also noticed that it could deal with hardened droppings, as well. My only problem with it was the nozzle, which popped out. Yet, I was able to use the solution and get the job done. I left it on for a couple of minutes, and then wiped the poop off.
Don’t let the nozzle concern you; it’s more about the effectiveness of the liquid. In the end, if this happens to you, you can always find a replacement.
Yes, you read that correctly. The name is pretty straightforward, but so is the effect. Honestly, it was the name that got me to buy it. Yet, it’s primarily a car cleaner, contrary to the previous two.
If your car is covered in bird droppings, this product will help you remove a good 70% of them. Still, you need to have some patience with this one, so here’s how I approached it.
Once again, I took a microfiber cloth and sprayed a bit of the remover on it. Then, I put some on the affected spot as well and covered it with the cloth. I had several cloths on hand, so I was able to cover a large area.
I let it do its business, while occasionally adding some more on the stubborn pieces. Finally, I could wipe the poop away and then rinse my car.
In general, bird poop can be a pain in the neck to remove. Luckily, there are some homemade remedies for this ailment. In the end, you are always free to combine DIY solutions with store-bought ones.
For additional tips on how to get rid of bird droppings on your car, watch the video below. Speaking of car maintenance, make sure you check out my article on homemade cleaners for carpets.
In the end, I advise you to regularly wash your car. Additionally, get a car cover, if you really want to avoid the white mess.