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View Full Version : Extremely Stubborn Water Stains



Destroyer
Oct 16th, 2010, 10:18 PM
Ok, I got some water stains and I cannot get rid of them! Tried good Car wash 3x, using Meguiar's Soap, then tried Meguiarls Swirl removal, also tried a bit of Vinegar, and now I will try Meguiar Scratch Remover 2.0. But if it does not get removed with the Meguiar Scratch Remover 2.0, would it be any harm if I leave it just as is for few months? I am going to save money to buy all the equiptment to buff it and polish it my self......but man, one year old car, **** load of water stains.....dam apartment sprinklers.....

Murr1525
Oct 16th, 2010, 10:36 PM
Well, with good washing, you should have removed the worst of it, that would keep etching in.

As far as removing.... hard water can take some effort. Even wax is just a few molecules thick, something strong can get past it.

To remove swirls, spots, etc, the products do need worked in some. A common mistake is to wipe them on and remove like a polish or wax.

J. A. Michaels
Oct 17th, 2010, 04:13 AM
If they are type 2 water spots that would require more effort. They are stubborn as you well know. I personally would get after them as soon as possible. It is always easier to maintain, then to let them build up for a couple of more months, then try to remove them all.

AWD_Junkie
Nov 13th, 2010, 12:56 PM
Sounds like a case of extremly hard water. I had an '06 WRX recently and I washed it for the first time at my house and it looked like I had given it a limestone bath. Took it to a friends house a town or so over washed it there a few times, waxed it real good and no more spotting. I've since installed a water softining system on the house. and no more spots.

ShinyChevy
Nov 16th, 2010, 01:12 PM
Yep, water spots can be a hassle. Here in Houston the tap water can get up over 270 ppm TDS and leave spots which are difficult to remove. I've had some mild ones which came off with a claybar and some very tough ones that took #105/cutting pad/rotary to remove. Hopefully yours will be the easier ones!

If you don't have the time or equipment to tackle the spots right away, it does make sense to keep up your regular wash & wax program. While it probably won't do a lot to remove existing spots, it certainly can't hurt and a good wax job will help prevent new calcium deposits from sticking.

Good luck and let us know how it comes out :bigups

DragoneFire
May 28th, 2011, 03:20 PM
So I have the same problem, I have used vinegar, clay, swirl remover, although today i will try with buffer, is there any other way to get rid of them. When I was before the clay, should i do with like dawn to get all the wax off?

Isla
May 30th, 2011, 01:26 PM
prevent : wipe with QuickDétail , Last touch , ONR
remove : paint cleaner ( less to most ...)
DC1 to UC or 105

try aquagleam filter or something like it .

Michael Stoops
May 31st, 2011, 07:07 AM
We've seen extreme cases of water spotting caused by reclaimed water used in apartment complex sprinkler systems. When this gets really bad, even rotary buffing with a wool pad and M105 can be challenged. Washing, vinegar, clay, a light paint cleaner by hand - none of these will touch the very worst water spots, unfortunately.

In absolute worst case scenarios we've seen wet sanding as about the only remedy. The problem with these severe water spots is not that there's something left behind that won't let go, but rather the fact that they are deeply etched into the surface of the paint, so you need to level the paint to remove them. And the worse the water spots, the more aggressive you need to go in order to correct them.

Thankfully, most of the time they aren't so severe and a little Ultimate Compound via DA takes them out quickly.

hondaguy07
Jul 21st, 2011, 07:12 PM
I know this thread is old but I'm dealing with the exact same issue right now. I have a white Tundra Crewmax that is riddled with water stains (assuming that's what they are. I have a DA but can't apply enough pressure and still keep it spinning so I had to resort to hand application with a MF pad. The Ultimate Compound is doing the trick but it probably takes me at least an hour for a fender or door. The hood took me about 3 hours to prep for NXT. I'll try posting some before and after

Before shots (you can see where I've done and where I haven't)
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v666/GoldStripe/Boat/Before1.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v666/GoldStripe/Boat/Before2.jpg

hondaguy07
Jul 21st, 2011, 07:14 PM
And after the fender was completely done

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v666/GoldStripe/Boat/After1.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v666/GoldStripe/Boat/After4.jpg

jezz12
Sep 20th, 2011, 05:26 PM
geez...mine is a lot worst than this...
whole body + windscreen full of water mark...
looks good from afar but when u come closer, you'll see the water spot...ARGHHHHH!!!!

Mark58
Sep 20th, 2011, 05:29 PM
There are many ways to remove water stains but first you need to know if it's lime or any other mineral.

chethewitt
Oct 10th, 2011, 09:42 AM
We've seen extreme cases of water spotting caused by reclaimed water used in apartment complex sprinkler systems. When this gets really bad, even rotary buffing with a wool pad and M105 can be challenged. Washing, vinegar, clay, a light paint cleaner by hand - none of these will touch the very worst water spots, unfortunately.

In absolute worst case scenarios we've seen wet sanding as about the only remedy. The problem with these severe water spots is not that there's something left behind that won't let go, but rather the fact that they are deeply etched into the surface of the paint, so you need to level the paint to remove them. And the worse the water spots, the more aggressive you need to go in order to correct them.

Thankfully, most of the time they aren't so severe and a little Ultimate Compound via DA takes them out quickly.

Different types of clear coats also play a part in this. I've noticed Japanese clear coats tend to breakdown more quickly than german clear coats. This doesn't hold true all the time...but for the most part its really important to prevent reclaimed water from ever making contact with the car.

I just did a Honda Accord with really stubborn water spots...and didn't remove them completely on a few sections of the car because I wasn't comfortable removing that much clear coat...on such a new vehicle...with an owner who most likely wouldn't be as careful as necessary to prevent future contact with hard water.

RandyBoone
May 16th, 2013, 06:19 PM
If I told you I could simply "wipe off" any water spots on a car, would you believe me? No, you probably wouldn't, but you'd be wrong. I thought long and hard before posting this because I know that some of you are going to give me a hard time over it. All I ask is that you try it before you give me the third degree.

If you want to remove water spots on a car, take any good wheel cleaner (not any of the watered down ones you find at auto parts store or wal-mart), and soak a cotton t-shirt with it and simply wipe the spots off! I promise you it won't damage the paint, not even a little bit, but the water spots will simply wash away, guaranteed!

It's important to remember that it must be a good industrial strength wheel cleaner. You can't buy industrial strength wheel cleaners in stores, I suppose the manufacturers are afraid people will bleach their rims if it's too strong. I use one from BASF industries, which is second only to Meguiar's in being the oldest car care company in the world. You can get it from your local "Pro Automotive" distributor or from http://prowax.com

After you wipe off the water spots, give the car a thorough washing and then wax. I've used this method of removing water spots to save literally thousands of hours of polishing, and I have never had a single problem with it or ran into a single vehicle that it didn't work on.

Take my word for it, you WILL be amazed!

davey g-force
May 16th, 2013, 06:47 PM
If I told you I could simply "wipe off" any water spots on a car, would you believe me? No, you probably wouldn't, but you'd be wrong. I thought long and hard before posting this because I know that some of you are going to give me a hard time over it. All I ask is that you try it before you give me the third degree.

If you want to remove water spots on a car, take any good wheel cleaner (not any of the watered down ones you find at auto parts store or wal-mart), and soak a cotton t-shirt with it and simply wipe the spots off! I promise you it won't damage the paint, not even a little bit, but the water spots will simply wash away, guaranteed!

It's important to remember that it must be a good industrial strength wheel cleaner. You can't buy industrial strength wheel cleaners in stores, I suppose the manufacturers are afraid people will bleach their rims if it's too strong. I use one from BASF industries, which is second only to Meguiar's in being the oldest car care company in the world. You can get it from your local "Pro Automotive" distributor or from http://prowax.com

After you wipe off the water spots, give the car a thorough washing and then wax. I've used this method of removing water spots to save literally thousands of hours of polishing, and I have never had a single problem with it or ran into a single vehicle that it didn't work on.

Take my word for it, you WILL be amazed!

I'm not doubting that particular product worked for your particular situation and I'm not trying to give you a hard time.

However, making blanket claims that "any" wheel cleaner will work for all water spotting situations is a bit risky.

Some wheel cleaners are highly acidic (which can't be good for the paint) and some are highly alkaline. Which category does the BASF product fall into? Got any more info on the product?

Also, there are two main types of water spots - Type 1 water spots (which are mineral deposits sitting on top of the paint) and Type 2 water spots (which are actually etched into and below the surface of the paint). In the case of Type 2 water spots, the only way to remove them is to level the surrounding paint using some sort of compound, or in extreme cases wet sanding.

Michael Stoops
May 17th, 2013, 07:49 AM
I'm not doubting that particular product worked for your particular situation and I'm not trying to give you a hard time.

However, making blanket claims that "any" wheel cleaner will work for all water spotting situations is a bit risky.

Some wheel cleaners are highly acidic (which can't be good for the paint) and some are highly alkaline. Which category does the BASF product fall into? Got any more info on the product?

Also, there are two main types of water spots - Type 1 water spots (which are mineral deposits sitting on top of the paint) and Type 2 water spots (which are actually etched into and below the surface of the paint). In the case of Type 2 water spots, the only way to remove them is to level the surrounding paint using some sort of compound, or in extreme cases wet sanding.
We're with Davey here, 100%. We also are not doubting you one little bit, but in the case of etched paint, you can't simply wipe away the damage.

"Water spots" is an incredibly broad term, and that's the problem. Heck, we've all washed a car only to find it dribble out a bit of water from a piece of trim, and when the water dries you've got water spots. But those are very fresh and will wipe away with nothing more than a bit of quick detailer and a microfiber towel. Those are water spots in the simplest form. The other extreme is when acid rain or reclaimed water quite literally etches the paint, literally eating some of the paint away. Obviously between these two extremes there are infinite possibilities - hardness of the water, acid content of the water, hardness of the paint, how long the minerals in the water were left in place, how much heat exposure was experienced, etc.

Davey is also right about the pH differences in various wheel cleaners. Our Hot Rims Chrome Wheel Cleaner has a highly acidic pH, around 3.5. We highly recommend that nobody ever applies this to the paint on their car. Don't even think about it. And if for some weird reason you do decide to use it on paint and you actually get away with it (ie, you don't do any damage) consider yourself lucky - you dodged a bullet. DON'T TRY IT AGAIN.


But Randy, if you've used this particular BASF product with success, we have no reason to doubt it's true.