Run your hand along the lower portion of your car and two things will happen. You'll probably get quite a few puzzled looks but more importantly, you'll more than likely feel small bumps all over your once shiny paintwork.
Those flecks are tar that have flicked up onto your car from the road. The problem gets worse during summer when the temperatures rise and the roads degrade more and it's a really annoying deposit to remove. It's adhesive and most normal shampoos won't shift it. We've found the best tar removers to lift those stubborn marks away.
The best tar removers
WD-40 Multi-Use Product Original Spray Can
The best tar remover
Tar removal is another task WD-40 can add to its already bulging CV. The miracle spray can be used to dislodge and dissolve tar in as little as a minute. Aim it directly at the tar and then rub it with a cloth to shift and dissolve the tar. All you'll need to do after is wash away any WD-40 residue.
Armor All Bug & Tar Wipes
The best tar remover wipes
Ridiculously easy to use, especially if you're on the go, these wipes from Armor All are great for use on more than just tar. They're also good on tree sap, brake dust and dead insects, all very hard to remove deposits. Each set comes with 30 wipes and requires very little elbow grease to use too.
Autoglym Intensive Tar Remover
Useful for more than just tar, Autoglym's Intensive Tar Remover is also effective at removing glue residue, pen marks, oil and fuel stains. Pour a little onto a cloth and wipe over the affected area and allow it to get to work. the best part is that it can be used on your interior too, for ink stains, glue and even embedded chewing gum. Perfect for a family car then.
Chemical Guys Bug & Tar Heavy Duty Car Wash Shampoo
The best tar remover shampoo
This product combines tar removal with the shampooing process which will help you save time as you clean your car. The shampoo is concentrated so a single bottle should last you a while, it's also safe for clear coats and will be good at removing other embedded deposits, like insects.
Simoniz Tar, Sap & Glue Remover
The best budget tar remover
You don't necessarily need to break the bank to get rid of tar. This simple aerosol from Simoniz can be sprayed onto tar, sap and glue to remove them in as little as a minute. This product can also be used around the home too, it's great for sticker marks and is safe to use on wood, tiles and glass.
Gtechniq W7 Tar and Glue Remover
The best tar removal spray
A solid alternative from Gtechniq, this spray is really easy to use and will remove tar in as little as a minute. It can be used on both tar and glue and will also not damage any wax or sealant you may have applied to your car (Gtechniq only claim it's safe for its products but it'll more than likely be fine).
What you need to know about tar removers
What are tar spots?
In hotter temperatures roads can begin to degrade, meaning bits of tar become loose and get thrown up onto your car. These bits of tar are adhesive and stick to your paintwork making them a real pain to remove.
What else do tar removers work on?
These tar removers are brilliant for loosening embedded contaminants that regular shampoo can struggle to dislodge. They're great for dead insects, glue and fuel stains too. Some can even be used around the home and in your car's interior.
Are tar spots harmful?
These little spots of tar aren't the most harmful thing you can have thrown at your car but they aren't exactly good for them. They're like little blobs of glue that if you don't remove properly can cause nasty damage to your paintwork.