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rear view mirror exterior outside covered with a layer of dust closeup of a dry dirty red car with rubber blades on wipers of windscreen, nobody.

It may seem no matter where you park, sticky residue always finds its way onto your windshield. Road grime, tree sap, bird droppings and a host of other environmental factors will result in your windshield having an array of sticky stuff on it. There are some ways that are safer and work better than others. 

Soapy Water

This one is pretty straight forward and most accessible as everyone has soap and water on hand. Fill a bucket with warm water and add a little bit of dishwashing liquid to it. Mix it well and dip in a clean rag or sponge. It may take a little effort depending on what type of residue it is and how long it's been on there. Don't get too frustrated if this doesn't work as there are some sticky substances that may require a different approach. 

Windex or Another Similar Product

A glass cleaner works very efficiently to remove grease, dust, sap and other windshield grime. Apply a small amount to the affected area and wait a few minutes to let it work before wiping away with a clean, dry cloth or lint-free paper towels. If you notice the windshield has improved some but still isn't clear try a second treatment. 

Rubbing Alcohol

Extra sticky substances like tree sap can be a real challenge to clean off auto glass, especially if it has been sitting awhile. A simple cleaning with rubbing alcohol can work great to break through tough sticky buildup. Pour a small amount of diluted alcohol on a clean rag, then lay it on top of the sap and let it sit for about one minute. After a minute rub the area and wipe with a dry, clean cloth. Continue to add more alcohol solution and wipe with the rag until the stickiness is completely gone. Use a glass cleaner afterward to finish up the process and to remove any streaks. 

Clay Bar Treatment

Using a clay bar can work out stubborn windshield grime when other methods aren't working. This method is best used for real problem areas. There are a few steps to using the clay bar treatment so follow product instructions precisely. Before you begin you need to select an area as a starting point, since there's a lubricant in a clay bar kit that needs to be applied and will act as a moisturizer to allow the clay to be spread around. This is easier to do when you have zeroed in on an area and work from there, one section at a time. 

Windshield Replacement

A new windshield is sometimes your best option to rectify a problem with auto glass. Replacing a windshield is a small investment with big rewards, Seeing clearly out of your car is vital for safety. When a windshield is damaged, whether with residue or if it's cracked, it can seriously impair visibility while driving. Sometimes auto glass can become “pitted” meaning the surface has many small scuff marks from driving, even under normal conditions. As little rocks and dirt and weather take a toll on auto glass over time these pits in the glass can collect dirt and are often impossible to get clean. A replacement windshield will make all the difference and will be easier to keep clean. 

At Smiley’s Glass we make glass repair and replacement easy for our customers. Our mobile service will save you time while providing quality glass products. Visit us online or call (804) 320-7172. 

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7100 Forest Hill Ave
Richmond, VA 23225


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