As we head into summer, we will be on the roads more often and at different times of the day we all know what driving in Maine means? It means way more bugs splatting on your windshield, hood, and all other parts of the vehicle.  

During the late spring and early summer I am on the roads of northern Maine almost every day. I ride into Presque Isle for work and then at the end of the day I'm heading to other parts of the County to umpire baseball. I've been to the St. John Valley, central Aroostook County, and have even traveled route 11 to get to the Katahdin region. These travels have allowed me to spot many moose, a bald eagle, and collect bugs all over the front of my vehicle. 

Over the years I have tried many methods to get the black flies, butterflies, mosquitoes, and even June bugs off the car and keep the paint looking fresh. Some of these have worked well for me, and some have been less than stellar. What method do you use?   

Dish Soap, baby shampoo, hot water and a good cloth 

This is my go-to method and I've found that the cloth is what makes this work well. I recommend a micro-fiber cloth that you know won't scratch the paint. You'll want to make sure the water is hot to help loosen the splats and guts. When you rinse make sure you have fresh clean water. Reusing the dirty water you've dipped your cloth in won't get you very far. Put a few squirts of baby shampoo in the bucket of water, dip the cloth in the bucket and some soapy water and scrub away. 

 Substitute baking soda in for the soap and shampoo. 

Using the same process from the first method, you can add baking soda to a bucket of hot water and begin making that ride look new again! 

 Vinegar and spray bottle 

This one is simple and has done a decent job for me in the past. All you need is to add a cup of white vinegar to a spray bottle of warm water and spray the area and wipe away. I have found that this method does not work nearly as well on cooler days. This has worked great for me on an afternoon when it's in the 70's. 

Dryer Sheets 

All you do here is grab a spray bottle with warm water, spritz the area, and wipe away with the dryer sheets. I have found that the bugs I collect are so juicy that dryer sheet just doesn't quite work well for me. You can use a magic eraser as well but as always proceed with caution on the first few swipes. 

WD-40?! 

When I grab a can of WD-40 its usually to spray a door hinge  or to for the chain of my daughters bike. I have not tried this method because I don't want to waste my WD-40. I need that for other things, right? I was told by my friend that he prefers this method but he also has more time on his hands than I do. Give it a try and let me know how it goes for you. 

Wash, Wash, Wash! 

You'll never get every single splat of guts off of your vehicle. Washing your vehicle more often than you typically do other times of the year will help you manage the mess. Each time you wash you are removing more pests and are loosening up the ones that just won't go away. 

That's for protection?  

There are some substances you can add after you wash to help prevent bug buildup such as a layer of petroleum jelly on the front will help deflect the bugs. If you wax that whip, you'll have defense layer that some of the bugs may bounce off when they meet your path.

Spray's 

There are a number of products on the shelves at your local store that can help you remove bugs. You'll want to check what is in the spray just in case you or someone who rides in your vehicle has any sensitivities to certain ingredients.  

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So tell me, what works for you and your vehicle?  

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