Ah, Hawaii. “Enjoy paradise” was probably the most constant refrain we heard once we found out we were moving to Hawaii, but it isn’t all sunshine and surf. Being a detailer here, there are three absolutely awful enemies – water spots, red clay, and sand. For whatever reason (all the saltwater?), pretty much every single vehicle in Hawaii is just slammed with water spots. I prefer to avoid polishing as much as possible – anytime you can avoid removing clearcoat, you want to.
Darker paint and mirrors typically show water spots the most, and this 2021 Kia Telluride was already covered in them.
I started with concentrated 30% vinegar from a big box hardware store, and it didn’t even touch them. Next up was Gyeon WaterSpot, which unfortunately had as much effect as the vinegar.
Finally, a fellow detailer recommended Chemical Guys Heavy Duty Water Spot Remover – AND HOLY CRAP THIS STUFF IS AWESOME:
The CG Water Spot Remover is a thicker gel than any other water spot remover I’ve tried, and far more effective. Usage is simple – wash, dry, and then use a microfiber applicator (towel works too) to apply, work it in, and then remove. Wash afterward and you’re done! I also tried applying it with a Griot’s Garage Micro Fiber Fast Cutting Pad, and that sped things up even more.
Even a compound (Griot’s Garage BOSS Correcting Cream) and cutting pad (Lake Country Force Orange Cutting Pad) wasn’t enough to completely remove these water spots, whereas CG’s Water Spot Remover took care of them in two passes by hand, or one pass by buffer. It’s easy to use, the price is great, and it’s effective – 5 of 5 stars.