How to Clean Bugs Off Car With WD40 & Tip for Reducing Bug Splats

Written by

Bruce Sonnier


Marcus Dutton

how to clean bugs off car with wd40

Bug splats can be a problem if you often travel long distances or live in a place that’s highly populated with bugs. They can cause paint damage with their acidity, can get stuck on your car’s paint, and can even obstruct your view on the windshield and windows when driving.

Cleaning them should be done as soon as possible to prevent further damages. An effective solution for bug splats on your car is WD40. In this article, you’ll be guided on how to clean bugs off car with WD40.

Basically, it would involve spraying WD40 on affected areas and wiping them. But there are also other steps you have to do for preparation and after. Read further and you’ll know all the steps as well as an additional tip for reducing bug splats.

What You Will Need to Follow This Tutorial


Apart from WD40, there are a couple of other tools you would need in getting the job done. See the list of tools needed below.

1. WD40

There are bug removers available in the market that are specially designed for removing bugs and their acidic stains from a car’s surface. But if you don’t have such a product available, you can use WD40 to remove bugs from car.

WD40 is an excellent alternative for bug removers that most of us probably have. It is a multi-purpose product that can also remove bug splats from a car’s surface. WD40 has a penetrating ability that can help loosen bug splats. At the same time, it can also do deep cleansing.

2. Bug Mitt, Microfiber Towel, Insect or Road-Kill Sponge

A bug mitt would work well in wiping or scrubbing bug splats off your car. It can even clean hard-to-reach areas in a car’s grill and bumper that a sponge may not reach. Bug mitts are usually made of microfiber and are safe on car paint.

An alternative that’s also effective and safe for wiping and scrubbing bugs off a car would be a microfiber cloth. For very stubborn bug splats, you may use an insect or roadkill sponge. You should avoid using cleaning tools that are too abrasive such as a tough sponge, steel wool pad, or scrubbing brush, as they may scratch your car’s paint.

3. Dish Soap and Water or Car Window Soap

When it comes to the windshield and windows, it’s advisable to use dish soap and water instead or other. WD40 is an oily substance that would be hard to remove from the glass parts of the car.

If your car’s glass parts are in terrible condition, it would require a tougher solution, which is a car window soap.

4. Scrubbing Sponge

You would need a scrubbing sponge if there are stubborn bug splats on the glass parts of your car. This would help make scrubbing off tough bug splats easier.

5. Wax

One side effect of cleaning bug splats off your car with WD40 is the stripping of the wax on your car, especially when the application, wiping, and scrubbing are done several times. So it’s advisable to re-coat the car’s surface with wax.

This will also help prevent bugs from sticking on your car’s surface in the future, as it will cause them to slide off instead. Cleaning your car would also be made easier in the future.

6. Bug Deflector (Optional)

To help reduce bug splat on your car’s exterior, you can have a bug deflector installed around the front of your car’s hood. This would get bugs off front of car because it can either block bugs from your car or alter the flow of the air going over your car’s hood, which would push bugs up, bringing them over the windshield.

Step by Step Instructions


Following these steps using WD40 will allow you to efficiently and effectively remove bug splats from your car. In addition, the procedure for cleaning bug splats off the exterior of a car with WD40 is similar to using WD40 to remove tar from car.

So if you have also been wondering, “will WD 40 remove tar from car paint?” Yes, indeed, you may also apply the steps below for removing tar from your car.

Step 1: Wash Your Car

You must wash it first to be able to better see the affected areas. This would also help repel the live bugs.

Give your car a wash with soap and water. Then brush its surface to get rid of the bugs that haven’t gotten stuck on the paint.

Step 2: Apply WD40 on Affected Areas

Spray WD40 on the areas that have been encrusted and stained by dead bugs. Let the WD40 soak on the affected areas for 10 minutes.

But don’t apply WD40 on the windshield and windows. It would be very hard to remove if you applied it on those areas since WD40 is an oily substance.

Step 3: Wipe Off the Bugs Splats, Scrub if Necessary

With your bug mitt, microfiber towel, insect sponge, or road-kill sponge, wipe the affected areas in a circular motion. If there are especially tough-to-remove bug splats, scrubbing them would be necessary. But don’t scrub too hard, as it may damage the car’s paint.

If the bugs have not completely dried on your car, one round of cleaning would likely be enough. But if they have dried on your car, it may be necessary to repeat steps one to three until the car’s surface is finally free of bug splats.

Step 4: Clean the Windshield and Windows With a Cleaning Solution


Spray the windshield and windows with a mixture of dish soap and water. But if you think the condition of your car’s glass parts requires a much stronger solution, you may opt for a car window soap. Allow your preferred solution to soak on the glass parts for 10 minutes.

After letting the solution soak, wipe the areas with a towel. For stubborn bug splats, use a scrubbing sponge.

Step 5: Wash the Car Again

After wiping or scrubbing the bugs splats off your car, give your car another wash. This will remove any residue of the cleaning products used and bugs.

Step 6: Apply Wax on Your Car

Using only a silver dollar-sized amount of wax placed on the foam applicator, apply the wax on your car’s surface evenly in gentle, overlapping circular motions section by section. Then as per product instructions, allow the wax to sit on the car for a few minutes. Then remove the wax and give your car a polished finish with a microfiber cloth.

Additional Tip: Install a Bug Deflector

To install a bug deflector, you must first clean the edge of the hood with the provided alcohol prep pad. This would allow the deflector’s adhesive to stick properly to the surface.

Then, line up the deflector on the hood. Make small markings at the back of the hood wherein the clips would be placed. Next is to place a piece of anti-scuff film over each marking.

On the deflector, pull out the backing on each of the adhesives’ ends to be able to remove them easily later. Then set the deflector on the hood and apply the clips.

Carefully shut the hood and remove the backing for the adhesives. Thereafter, press down on the deflector to ensure that it sticks to the hood.

Lastly, you would apply the bump-ons behind the deflector. This protects your hood in case something would hit the deflector and cause it to bend back. Find the areas of the hood that the deflector can touch when bent. Clean those spots with alcohol cleaning pads.


Don’t let bug splats be a nuisance in your driving. When you get some on your car, just apply the steps on how to clean bugs off car with WD40 shown in this article, and you can avoid all the adverse effects of bug splats. Keep in mind to do it immediately and carefully to avoid further damages to your car.

Did this tutorial help solve the bug infestation in your car? If you found it helpful, kindly leave a like or you may also share this to help those with the same problem.

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