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IDENTIFYING PAINT FINISH SPOTS 

Acid Rain 1/16"-1/8" Circular spots with depressed centers. Etching detectable by touch Acid Rain
Alkaline Spots or Water Spots 1/8"-3/4" Roughly circular, fuzzy white edges, not depressed, appear to be within the paint Alkaline Rain, hard water sprinklers
Jet Fuel and Diesel Fuel 1/16"-1/8" Circular, but not depressed centers. May appear to be within the paint Jet Fuel spray from aircraft, truck or train diesel exhaust 
Bee Spots 1/8"-3/16" Roughly circular, depressed centers. Primer exposed after sufficient time (3days) Bee droppings (or wasps)
May Fly Spots 3/16"-1/4" Crescent shaped pits in paint. Can eat through to bare metal in 4 days May flies, contain part of insect body
Bat droppings 1/16"-1/4" Teardrop shapes usually 3 to 4 in a line gradually decreasing in size. Paint may be pitted after 3 days Insect eating bats
Ferrite Spots 1/8"-3/8" Small black granule at the narrow end of a teardrop spot with a fuzzy edge. Paint pitted near the back brake linings attracted by a magnet Ferrite particles from train & truck. Blow off from stack fallout stacks at foundries
Stack Fallout-Type A 1/8"-3/16" Roughly circular, depressed centers, may have small particle near center of spot particle + H20-pH2.5 Stack emission from power plant & factories with coal
Stack Fallout-Type C 1/4"-3/16" Roughly circular, depressed areas with small spatulate particles, pale yellow in color. Fuzzy edges, circular, pitted through paint in 24 hours Stack emission from corn processors for liquor/vitamins. Stack emission from plastics manufacturers
Stack Fallout-Type N 1/16"-1/8" Roughly circular, some depressed areas with small gray to black particle Paper & news print emissions
Bird Droppings 1/2"-3"+" Large whitish spots dappled with irregular dark marks. May be highly acid or alkaline depending on diet Local birds 3000 species U.S.
Tree Sap 1/8"-1"+" Large, irregular, sticky spots. May be acid or alkaline. Pine tree sap is the worst, contains resins Local trees
Paint Overspray 1/8"-3/16" Overall spray pattern or splash pattern in the color of the paint used Construction work, bridge repairs, painting operations
Cement Spots 1/4"-1"+ Overall splash or spray pattern of cement and/or concrete Construction operations

Caution

Bird droppings and tree sap should be cleaned up as quickly as possible.  They should come off easily if caught early.  Over time, they'll eat into a paint job.  Never use harsh detergents or abrasive cleansers to wash your car's body.  These may scratch the surface or fade the paint.  If possible, wash the car out of direct sunlight.  Wait two to four weeks after having body work done to wax your car.  Paint jobs from a body shop may require time to properly cure.

For more tips and ideas to maintain your valuable car or truck visit our "All About Cars and Trucks Blog" --->  Click Go to Blog

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