No doubt, parking your car under a tree keeps it safe from the scorching heat, but you may see a lot of tree sap on your car. Unfortunately, removing the sap isn’t easy since it has a sticky nature, and scraping it off can damage the paintwork.
So how to remove tree sap from the car? Well, the process of removing the sap depends on the car’s components it has fallen on, such as the windshield or the hood/metal parts.
I’ve multiple oak trees around my house, so there is always some sap on one of the cars. This article rounds up the methods that I’ve tried to get rid of tree sap.
Why Should I Remove Tree Sap from My Car?
Tree sap does more harm than you think, and if it hardens, you won’t be able to remove it quickly. But why should I spend time removing the sap when it is not impacting my ride?
It Affects Visibility
A small amount of tree sap fallen on the windshield won’t do anything, but a good amount of sap will surely affect the visibility.
It Makes Your Ride Look Filthy
I love my car clean, and if you too love it neat and clean, it is essential to clean the sap. A four-wheeler loaded with sap won’t look good at all, and cleaning the vehicle can become a daunting task.
The Windshield May Crack
The tree sap doesn’t have any direct effect on the windshield. But the glass may crack when cleaning it. Cleaning the dried-off sap of the glass is challenging, and if you use a scraper, it will certainly lead to cracks.
It Damages the Paintwork
Tree sap has similar properties to a strong adhesive, and it can damage the car’s paint if you don’t remove it or use the wrong method to remove it.
Furthermore, the sap will affect the value of your vehicle as not a lot of people will be interested in buying a car with several stains and damaged paint.
How Can I Remove Tree Sap from My Car?
Seeing your beautiful car covered in tree sap can definitely make your heart sink. However, the good news is that you can remove the tree juice quickly while keeping the paint intact.
Below, I’ve covered the easiest step-by-step processes to remove tree sap from the windshield and paintwork of your car.
How To Remove Tree Sap from Car Paintwork?
Scrapping is not the best approach to remove tree sap from the paint since it can lead to chipping and scratches, especially if the tree juice is baked in the sun.
Here’s how to remove tree sap from the car without damaging the paint.
Things You Need:
- Soft microfiber cleaning cloth
- Shining liquid (My Recommendation: Torque Detail Mirror Shine)
- Stoner Car Care 91154 Tarminator
- Isopropyl alcohol
- Car washing liquid
Step 1: Start with Washing Your Car
It would be great to wash your car before you go ahead with the process. Washing helps remove dust and debris, while you can even remove some fresh sap with a good pressure car washer.
Step 2: Spray the Stoner Car Care 91154 Tarminator
Stoner Car Care 91154 Tarminator is the best product to remove tree sap from cars. Spray the solution on the tree sap by, carefully directing the nozzle directly towards the area with the sap. Ensure other parts of your vehicle don’t get covered with the spray.
Let it sit for some time, and use a clay bar to remove the sap. Also, wear gloves so that the solution doesn’t irritate your skin.
Step 3: Saturate with Isopropyl Alcohol
You can remove the thick and big chunks of tree sap with the spray solution. But cleaning the tiny spots needs alcohol. So pour a little amount of isopropyl alcohol on a microfiber towel, and rub it on the stains.
You can even dab the towel on the sap so that it loses its grip. Be patient and gentle, as being harsh can lead to scratches.
If the sap is stubborn and doesn’t get clean, use more alcohol, and you will see the sap getting cleaned off with your strokes.
Step 4: Rinse and Get Ready to Wax
Rinse the vehicle again so that you can clean the leftover alcohol and liquified sap. Use a good quality car soap, and rub it gently all over the car, especially on the area with tree sap.
Now spray some shining liquid on your car, and rub it gently in circular motions. I prefer using Torque Detail Mirror Shine because the shine lasts longer and protects the car’s paint.
How to Remove Tree Sap from Car Windshield?
Removing the sap from the windshield isn’t a lot different from removing it from the paint. However, you have to be extra careful as you are now getting it off from the glass.
Also, you cannot spray anything over the windshield, as it may crack, and the crack can spread over time. So how to remove tree sap from the windscreen? First, gather the following items, and follow the below-mentioned steps.
- Windshield glass cleaning solution
- Soft microfiber cloth
- Hot water
- Glass shine liquid
- Plastic scraper
Step 1: Wash the Windshield with Hot Water
Using hot water may not be the best solution to defrost a windshield, but it works pretty well when it comes to removing the tree sap. Hot water liquifies the dried-off sap, and you can remove it using a scraper.
Use the plastic scraper carefully, and ensure it doesn’t scratch the glass.
Step 2: Spray Windshield Cleaning Solution
Spray windshield cleaning solution all over the glass, and wipe it off with a soft microfiber towel. The solution will saturate the sap, and you can remove it easily.
Furthermore, it cleans the extra and debris that was leftover after washing the glass.
Step 3: Spray WD-40 on a Cloth and Cover the Sap with It
If the entire windshield is covered with tree sap, I’d recommend using multiple microfiber towels. Pour WD-40 on the towel and spread it on the sap. Make sure the towel drenches the sap completely so that it loses its grip and becomes easy to remove.
Let the towel rest on the tree sap for 30-45 seconds.
Step 4: Rub and Remove
Now take another microfiber towel with a little amount of WD-40 on it, and rub the loose sap. You will see the dried sap coming off as you stroke the glass with the cloth.
Repeat the process until you remove the sap fully. Next, make use of a scraper to remove the tiny sap stains and then rub them off with the cloth.
Step 5: Spray Wax to Make the Windshield Shine
The glass wax forms a layer over the glass and protects it by creating a barrier. Spray some wax on the entire glass, and buff it with a soft sponge. The wax gives the windshield glass a new life while removing the sap residues.
Tips For Removing Dried Tree Sap from a Car
Dried-off sap isn’t anything less than concrete, as it is very hard and difficult to remove. But you can remove the fried-on sap without damaging the paint or cracking the windshield.
Here are a few tips that I’ve been using for years to get rid of tree sap from my ride.
Blot with Nail Paint Remover
Nail paint remover is an excellent solution to remove the baked-on tree sap. Take a good amount of solution on a cotton ball and dab it over the dry sap. Make sure to cover the entire sap stain with the nail polish remover and let it sit for some time.
You’ll see the sap getting slimy as the chemicals present in the remover liquify it. Now use a soft microfiber towel, and use the power of your muscles to remove the sap.
Scrape It Off
You cannot scrape fresh sap off, but once it dries, you can remove it using a razor blade. Pour some hot water over the sap to make it soft and lose its grip.
Now press it with your finger and check if the sap has become soft and slimy. Use a razor blade and try to scrape it off gently. Be sure that the blade doesn’t scratch the paint or the windshield glass while removing the sap.
Let the Hairdryer Help You
High heat can melt down the sap, so it becomes easy to remove. Get a hairdryer and hoover it over the hardened sap. Do not keep the dryer in one position as it may end up damaging the paintwork.
Focus on one chunk of sap at a time, and you can make your car squeaky clean again.
Keep a Clay Bar in Your Car
Clay bars are an excellent option to remove tree sap and detail your car. The ingredients present in the clay moisten the sap, and it becomes easy to remove. Apply the clay over the sap right away as you see dry sap, let it sit for some minutes, and remove it using a blade.
How Do You Keep Tree Saps Off Your Car?
As you have removed the tree sap from your car, you know how challenging it can be when you are already getting late for the office. The best way to get rid of following these time-consuming steps is to keep tree sap off your car.
But how to prevent tree sap on the car? Here are a few handy tips every car owner should know.
Park Your Car in the Garage
The cheapest way to prevent tree sap from falling on your car is by parking it in the garage. If you don’t have a garage, get a parking space without trees.
Cover the Car
Using a car cover will be a great help, as it keeps the sap away from your gorgeous vehicle. Invest in a good quality cover that protects the car from downpours as well and is washable.
Wash Off the Sap As You See It
Cleaning the dried-off sap is hard, but you can easily clean the fresh tree juice as it’s in liquid form. So, another way to prevent tree sap from ruining your ride is washing the car often.
Just a few strokes with a pressure washer, and you’ll see your car neat and clean.
Get Your Car Waxed
Applying a coat of wax or a protective film creates a protective layer on the car’s surface and helps prevent tree sap from damaging the paint.
Furthermore, wax acts as a barrier and safeguards the vehicle from harsh climate, so using it is a win-win for you.
Q1: Can Rubbing Alcohol Damage Car Paint while Removing Tree Sap?
A: Nope! Rubbing alcohol doesn’t have any side effects on the car’s paint. However, make sure to use diluted alcohol, which has a 10% to 15% concentration. Here’s how to dilute rubbing alcohol at home.
Q2: Does WD 40 Remove Pine Sap?
A: Yes, WD 40 is an effective solution to remove pine sap. Also, using the solution is pretty easy, and it doesn’t create a mess.
Spray it over the tree sap, and clean the sap using a soft microfiber towel.
Q3: What should you do after Removing Sap from your Car?
A: After you remove the sap, use a good-quality wax to make the car look squeaky clean, and new again. Take a few drops of wax on a sponge, and apply it to the car in a circular motion.
Q4: Can I use a Razor Blade to Scrape Tree Sap off my Car?
A: Yes, you can use a razor blade to scrape tree sap off the car. Be careful when using a blade, as mishandling it can lead to scratches. Moreover, use hot water or a clay bar to moisten the dried-off sap before scraping it off.
Q5: Does Pine Sap Damage Car Paint?
A: Yes! Pine sap or any other type of tree sap can damage the car paint in the long run. So, it is essential to remove the tree sap from your car.
It can be tricky to remove tree sap from the car, but the methods listed in this article will help you get rid of it without damaging the paint.
It would be great to make a tree sap removing kit in your car, and this kit should contain a clay bar, car wax, and a scraper so that you can remove the tree juice quickly without letting it harden over time.
Be patient and gentle as it’s a matter of your ride’s cleanliness and beauty. Lastly, if you still see the sap stains after following all methods, it is essential to see an expert.
Get a protective film applied to your vehicle to get added protection against the sap.
Last update on 2023-05-16 at 20:00 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API