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Will a Clay Bar Remove Water Spots?


Car exteriors and paint finishes are prone to contamination elements such as water spots. But with the use of a clay bar decontaminant, you can easily remove the water spots. Clay bars aid the removal process by knocking the top of the water spots. Within the article is a comprehensive guide to help you remove the water spots.

A clay bar will remove water spots on a surface with light residues. Clay bars are effective at removing stubborn water spots from surfaces like glass.

Are your exteriors and surfaces prone to water spots? Surface contaminants leave your paintwork to feel rough and affect how a paint sealant works when applied to the paintwork. Scroll below and get to comprehend how to remove these water spots without many hurdles.

What Does a Clay Bar Remove?

Clay bar resin is an engineered compound designed to aid in the removal of contaminants from the exteriors of your car’s glass, paint, metal, and fiberglass. The decontaminant facilitates the removal of contaminants that remain stuck even after car washes.


It removes contaminants that pierce paint finishes and glass. The clay bar removes the grudge to attain a bright, clear finish. On the other hand, it won’t remove paint imperfections or improve shininess.

Using Bilt Hamber Soft clay bar on car surfaces helps to remove most embedded contaminants such as mineral deposits, grime, stuck dirt, iron, tree sap, and tar.

Water spots present along the surface are easily removed by the use of a clay bar. For easy removal of the contaminants, ensure the surface is wet and well lubricated.

How to Use a Clay Bar

Clay bar treatment is an advanced detailing form of car care. Upon selecting a fine clay bar, microfiber towel, and an ideal clay bar lubricant, follow the listed steps;

  • Ensure the car is thoroughly washed and fully dry.
  • Pinch a sizable portion of the clay bar and mold it softly until it’s pliable.
  • Flatten the clay bar into a small disk shape.
  • Spray the selected clay bar lubricant on the vehicle surface. 
  • Glide the flattened clay bar across the paintwork (around 4-6 passes).
  • Exert minimal pressure as you gradually feel the surface become smoother.
  • Fold the dirty and contaminated side inwards to reveal cleaner sides.
  • Repeat the gliding process on the same area until you stop getting any dirt transfer.
  • Dry the surface and repeat the process along with all the required exteriors.
  • Once completed use a car polish to protect your vehicle.

What Causes Water Spots?

Water spots are stains left behind on surfaces as the water evaporates. They form when water coalescing minerals fall on a surface and are left to dry rather than being wiped.

Will a Clay Bar Remove Hard Water Spots?

The clay bar will not remove hard watermarks but it will help the polishing process which is vital in water spot removal. Removing stubborn water spots on surfaces like glass requires the use of plenty of lubrication. More so, you need to use a clean side of the clay bar while exerting light pressure in order not to scrub the exterior.

Hard Water Stains on Glass

Steps to get rid of water spots on a glass surface

Clay bars are safe for use on glass exteriors but they require proper clay lubricant to prevent breakdown or crumbling. Clay bars on glass surfaces may require polishing as they leave marrying. These are the steps;

  • Use a car shampoo or a glass cleaner to wash the glass.
  • Let the windows and the windshield be wet.
  • Lubricate the glass using a clay lubricant spray.
  • Pinch and knead the bar softly into a sizable flat dimension.
  • In straight motions, glide the clay on the glass. Ensure the surfaces are well lubricated.
  • Counter-check for dirt and contamination as you glide the molded clay across the lubed area. Fold the dirty clay to expose cleaner sections.

Can I Use Soapy Water with a Clay Bar?

Soapy water is a perfect alternative to spray lubricant. Use a fresh bucket of soapy water to ensure monitored and optimized cleanliness. Rinse your wash mitt thoroughly and clay the surfaces to achieve desired cleanliness.

Are Water Spots Permanent?

Water incorporates minerals such as magnesium and calcium. Thus, the minerals found in the water plus the source of the water determines the nature of the water spot. Water spots formed from hard water can permanently damage glass and paint if not removed or treated. Hard water spots become permanent on the exterior in a span of minutes under the sun.

Why You Should Use a Clay Bar on Car Surfaces

Clay bars are recognized decontaminants that aid in getting rid of contaminants like iron fallout and hard water-heavy dirt which settles on your car.

Some contaminants are known to bond quickly on the surface of a car thus resulting in paint issues and spotty glass/ windshield.

Clay bars are effective in removing surface contamination while leaving your glass looking squeaky clean with better visibility.

Clay Bar on Car

How Often Should You Clay Bar Your Car?

Clay barring your car at least 3-to 4 times a year keeps your paintwork protected. Often claying lets your car paint look clean and smooth. Minimally, you can clay bar your car once before and after winter.

Does Rain Lead to Formation of Water Spots?         

Acid rain with a huge percentage of sulfuric and nitric acid causes bonded mineral water spots. Exteriors may experience etching water spots that emerge when water droplets dry upon being heated up by the sun.

How do I Remove Water Marks?

In instances where the clay bar fails to remove the water spot residue on a surface, you may need a stronger option. Water spots may lightly etch into the surface resulting in a need for a strong cleaning formula.

Decontaminant such as Chemical Guys Water Spot Remover can be used to remove light etchings that are hard to see.

Going traditional, you may opt to polish that area beginning with a less aggressive polish to a stronger one. Harder water spots may require the amalgamation of a powerful buffer to push the polishes in. through this method, you can remove surface imperfections from water marks and counter oxidation.

Benefits of Using Clay Bar

  • It results in a smooth and slick paint. You will notice a slick feel after a few minutes of using a clay bar on your paint/ exterior.
  • It eases waxing. waxing bonds greatly on a super slick finish. clay barred surfaces allow a more effective and tighter wax job.
  • Ensures a contamination free finish which lasts longer
  • Enhances the overall surface look

Alternative Ways to Remove Water Spots Other Than Clay Bar

1. Use of regular white vinegar

Household white vinegar is ideal for hard water stain removal, especially on shower and tub surfaces. Application of a mixture of regular white vinegar and distilled water onto the affected paint ensures the removal of watermarks. 

Upon mixing equal parts of vinegar and water, spray your surface with the solution and leave the vinegar solution to sit for at least 15 minutes. Use a dry microfiber towel to wipe and achieve a clean surface.

As an alternative, white vinegar is a recognized hard water spot remover. Vinegar being an acidic liquid features low pH level. The low pH level reacts with the hard water stains hence getting rid of the high pH levels.

On the other hand, vinegar is an acidic solution that eats paint when sprayed on a car. Spraying vinegar on car paint without water or leaving it for a long time, can rip off the paint.

Steps to follow when making homemade vinegar cleaning solution to remove hard water spots

  • In a large bowl, mix 2 portions of distilled water with 1 portion of white vinegar.
  • Mix the solution thoroughly and pour it into a spray bottle.
  • Spray the cleaning solution on the hard water spots. Let it work for 10 – 15 minutes to allow the vinegar to break down the minerals in the stain.
  • Using a soft, clean cloth, rub the water spots gently. Use the Glass Science Glass Scrub to deep clean the exterior glass.

2. Use of WD40 to Remove Water Spots

WD-40 multi-use product is a great lubricant that can be used for both bathroom cleaning and getting rid of stubborn stains. The chemical removes hard water stains without harming your surfaces. Spray WD40 lube onto the stained surface. Using a clean cloth, wipe out the liquid for a clean shiny surface.

Cleaning water spots using WD-40 leaves your surface sparkling clean. Wd-40 is imperative in ensuring you attain shiny and well-polished vehicle sections. Contrary, it is recommended not to spray it on door hinges as it attracts dirt and dust.


Cars are exposed to heavy contaminants that may not be removed via routine washing. Thus, the need to integrate a decontamination product like a clay bar for removal. Clay bars are crucial in decontaminating your car’s surface for a smooth surface. We hope the post was helpful!

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