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8 comments on Removing Water Spots

  1. Great write up…. this vehicle had some some pretty serious water spots!. Great job removing them!

  2. Ken Coons says:

    Zach, thank you for the well written review above. I detail my cars as a hobby and appreciate the reviews and articles here. I’m curious if either the CarPro or Optimum products can be used on matte black plastic trim around the windows on GM cars? If not, any recommendations on what product to use for water spots on that type of surface? Thanks Ken

    • Hi Ken – both products specifically state they can remove spots from “paint, chrome, and glass”. I have never tried a spot remover on plastic, so I cannot speak to the results that you may have. If the trim is a surface that responds well to dressing, then I would simply clean the area thoroughly and apply a dressing like 303 or if you wanted a longer lasting option, CarPro DLUX or 22ple VR1 are both great!

  3. Greg C says:

    Zack
    I’ve recently worked on vehicles with water spots etched into the paint. I was able to improve the paint appearance but unable to remove all the etching. I tried wet sanding a test spot with 3000 grit but even that didnt help.
    Based on your experience, how do you determine when to continue removing etching and when do you call it a day.?
    Would you also wet sand to remove etching?
    Thank you
    Greg

    • Hey Greg – sounds like you had some severe etching to deal with. As I mentioned in this article when referencing the 50/50 shot, sometimes etchings are too severe to safely remove. I use my paint thickness gauge to provide a reference as to how much material I may have to work with before getting too aggressive. In the instance above, I was working on extremely thin paint, so sanding was not an option in my opinion, however if I had healthier paint thickness to work with and the owner was seeking perfection, it would be something that I would certainly consider. There is a point where you have to determine if chasing severe defects are worth the risk, or if preserving the clear coat is a better choice. Hope that helps.

  4. Todd says:

    Zach, I live in an area where water spotting is some of an issue if I can’t get the truck dried fast enough. Basically its a beat-the-clock game. In fact sometimes I actually wash part, like the roof and windows, and then dry before continuing. Looking at the spotless water systems and the cost I’m wondering if I’d get the same benefit if I used that filtered water just for final rinsing. I use a lot of water when washing so using it for the entire process could get expensive. Thoughts/suggestions?

    • Hey Todd – yes, as I understand it that is a common practice to simply switch to the de-ionized water for the final rinse instead of the entire wash process. You may also consider rinseless washing as you work panel-by-panel instead of trying to wash the entire truck at once and then hurry up to dry it.

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