We all hate it. We all have to deal with it from time to time. It’s bird poop. That unsightly, black and white goopy mess that all too often is found on freshly washed cars (and sometimes your innocent, unassuming shoulders). While we just blindly hate it in general, have you thought about what it really does to your car? It can actually be pretty destructive to the paint job.
Forever, we’ve been told the acid in bird droppings was to blame for the seemingly permanent markings left after it was washed away. It turns out that was only part of the problem. The actual cause of damage is the heat from the sun, making the paint on the car expand. Once the bird poop has a chance to settle on the paint that has by now cooled, the paint contracts, forming itself around the hardened excrement.
The result from the paints reaction to bird dung and sunlight causes the paint to look dulled or etched. The light bouncing off the paint that would normally be a glimmering reflecting, is interrupted by the now imperfect surface. Wax and polish treatments help to an extent with combating this problem, in that they make it easier to remove bird droppings, but not much else as far as a benefit to the issue.
The key to making sure your paint job isn’t damaged beyond repair, is to make sure you clean up the bird mess before it has a chance to sit too long. The sooner the droppings are cleaned up, the less likely a tarnished spot will be left on the vehicle. So if you must park under trees or areas heavy in fowl, you should really consider cleaning the inevitable mess off the car as soon as possible.