What is Fallout?
Over time, paint can become contaminated with organic and inorganic “fallout”. Contamination / fallout comes in various forms and can be separated into a few main categories:
Iron (Ferrous Oxide) Fallout
Airborne metal shavings from the brake pads and discs of cars, trucks, buses on the road can embed themselves into your soft paintwork. When these shavings next see rain, condensation or moisture they rust and expand (rust occupies four times the space of iron) When this happens, the paint is slowly ruptured around the embedded particle. This destroys both the aesthetic and protective qualities of the finish. When the iron particles rust they also turn orange which is why you can sometimes see little orange spots on light coloured vehicles. These iron contaminants have very jagged edges, and if inadvertently dragged across the paintwork, well, we’ll leave the rest to your imagination!
Sap from leaves can drip onto your vehicle. It can be extremely sticky, and can cover your entire vehicle and prevent it from beading. Road grime, dust and and grit sticks to the sap like glue and without the right products can be a nightmare to get rid of.
Tar, Bitumen & Traffic Film
Tar and Bitumen from the roads we drive on can be pulled up by tyres and can then be flicked off onto your vehicle. Tar spots can be a pain to remove from paintwork, wheels, wheel arches and undercarriage, but must be done before claying.
Bird droppings are very bad for your paint. They contain Uric Acid and if not removed in a very short period of time they can eat through a coating of wax or sealant and on into the paint.
Fallout removers are designed to deal with these issues, although no single product can deal with them all completely. Some work to neutralise and shrink the metal particles, which allow them to break the bond with the paint surface and then they can be hosed or power-washed away. Others soften tar and bird droppings and allow them to be removed easily. Often, fallout removers have a colour change function to allow you to see when the product is working.
As a guide, we recommend decontaminating your vehicle 2-3 times per year, and definitely in April, ready for Summer and September so that you’re ready for Winter!
Remember, Always use a fallout remover before you use a claybar! If you don’t, the clay will drag the fallout across the paint and cause scratches.
Spray your preferred product, we recommend Dodo Juice Ferrous Dueller or Bilt Hamber Korrosol, onto the surface. Wait for the chemical in the product to react, usually visible by a colour change. What occurs is that the active ingredient in it forms a complex with the iron, changing its shape and structure, causing it to loosen its bond with the surface. The iron particle is loosened up enough to be rinsed off.
Spot spray your tar remover onto the tar spot, we recommend Valet Pro Citrus Tar and Glue Remover. Wait for it to soften the tar spot, and wipe away with a soft clean microfiber. Repeat for every spot! This stuff is also great for de-badging and removing residue from stickers or vinyl wrap
Spray a good TFR (Traffic Film Remover), such as Dodo Juice Crudzilla onto the surface. Allow it to soak in for a few minutes, then powerwash off.
Traffic Film Removers are extremely strong cleansers designed to blitz contaminants at a pre-wash stage, so that the wash stage is made easier later on. They are also very good at stripping old wax. Just make sure you rinse thoroughly!