What is a water spot?

What is a water spot?

Water spots are incredibly common in our state of Washington for natural reasons. It rains ALL the time. It takes water to make a water spot, believe it or not, and we have plenty of it in our state! What makes this life bringing substance turn into the little rings from satan that plague our windshields? Well, I’m about to tell you. 

The water spot itself is not water. It is minerals and chemical deposits left behind after the water dries. You see most water has minerals like calcium and chemicals like chlorine in it. This is what actually causes the water spotting. When the water dries it leaves behind only the minerals and chemicals left over. These deposits then get baked by the sun and become demon dots all over your car! 

How can we stop them from happening then? The simple answer is, you can’t. Water spots will always be an ongoing battle and will require regular maintenance to keep them in hell where they belong! We can however reduce the occurence of water spots using these methods. Ensure you are drying your vehicle thoroughly after each wash. You also want to ensure you’re doing your regular washes. This will dramatically reduce how difficult it is to remove water spots as they develop. 

The bigger concern with leaving the water spots or ignoring them is etching.Etching happens when we leave minerals and deposits on the vehicle’s windows and paint. These deposits heat cycle with the sun and begin to etch into the clear coat and windows. This makes them considerably harder to remove. Sometimes, water spots can even etch through your clear coat. This means a repaint is the only fix in that scenario. 

Moral of the story? Keep up with your maintenance as best as possible, do not let water dry on your vehicle’s surfaces and use neutral soaps when washing your vehicle. This will dramatically decrease the appearance of water spots. The absolute best way for a DIY person to maintain their vehicle is with a rinse-less wash using distilled water. Distilled water contains no mineral deposits. Therefore, distilled water will not cause water spotting. 

Thanks for reading, 
Jonathan Monson

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