Last updated: 10 Feb 2023

Best Bug Remover For Cars

Great weather accompanies bugs and bug splatter. There’s nothing you can do about it except clean it off. If you don’t clean it, the splatter is baked on pretty solid within a few days.

It’s not just about the bug splatter, although that messes up the look of your paintwork and windshield; there’s also the dirt, grime, tar, bird droppings, and tree sap to contend with.

Suppose you’re hoping to clean it with regular shampooing; best of luck. No matter how hard you scrub, there’s always some residue left behind, and anyway, who wants to spend hours cleaning that c**p off the car. 

What are your options? Leave it and let it sit there and irritate the life out of you or get the bucket and water out and start scrubbing?

The good news is there are some terrific products to help sort out your problem. These products will take all the elbow grease out of elbow grease and do it for you in a matter of seconds.

There is one sticking point; however, there are so many of these products; how do you know which will work and get the job done? 

We’re going to lay them out for you in this handy buying guide. We have spent hours poring over which products are the best available and now we can show you the best bug remover for cars.

Best Bug Remover For Cars


McKee's 37 MK37-100 Road Kill Bug Remover

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McKee’s 37 acts super-fast and destroys the mess left behind by bug splatter on your vehicle. Don’t leave this mess hanging around for long because bug acid can cause permanent damage to your paintwork. While it’s fantastic on bug residue, it works equally well on those other annoying contaminants such as tar, dirt, grime, tree sap, etc.

Put a 1:1 solution of McKee’s 37 into a bucket with water and just wipe away the problem; there’s even no reason to rinse it off. Do it every time you notice bug splatter, and don’t give those nasty bug enzymes time to get to work damaging your paint.

McKee’s 37 is perfectly safe; the formula applies advanced clear-coat surfactants on wheel rims, chrome, glass, plastic, and of course, paintwork.

Using McKee’s 37 is quick and straightforward; spray the bug remover directly on the bug splatter, wait for 30 seconds, then wipe off with a soft microfiber cloth, or if the bugs are baked on, use the bug scrubber, rinse and dry off.


Turtle Wax T-520A Bug and Tar Remover

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Turtle Wax is one the most well-known names in the automotive detailing market, and their T-520A (sounds like a Terminator, which can’t be a coincidence) is one of the best-selling brands.

The T-520A formula will work equally on tree sap, tar, and dried on bug guts. The formula is potent yet safe to use on glass, paint, and plastic.

Spray on the area you need cleaning, wait for between thirty seconds and one minute, then start to wipe off. Always use a microfiber cloth or soft sponge to avoid scratching the paintwork. If you have large areas of contaminants such as tree sap, we recommend you wash the vehicle first.

Easily one of the most affordable products on this list.


Chemical Guys CWS_104_16 Bug & Tar Heavy Duty Car Wash Shampoo

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Chemical Guys have a terrific reputation in the car dealing fraternity, and their bug & tar remover is another product that works exceptionally well.

Most drivers know that flying bugs that splatter on your car’s paintwork will have a corrosive effect if you do not remove them and just ignore the issue. The result can be permanent damage to your paintwork and plastics.

Chemical Guys bug and tar remover is a heavy-duty cleaner that effectively washes away the residue left behind by bugs and other contaminants such as tar, tree sap, and bird droppings. You can safely use this formula, and it’s perfectly safe on paintwork, bumpers, windshields, mirrors, plastics, chrome, grilles, and more.

You simply add 1 to 3 ozs. to your regular car wash liquid and wash the car as usual. If you have left bug residue or tar etc., for some time before cleaning it off, you might need to treat those areas. If so, dilute the bug remover 6:1 in a spray bottle. Spray the affected regions, leave for a minute or two, and then wipe with a clean microfiber cloth.


Griot's Garage 10982 Bug and Smudge Remover

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Griot’s Garage bug and smudge remover is available in a 22 oz. Spray that will eliminate bug splatter, heavy oils, road grime, and stubborn gunk stains.

This contaminant remover is an excellent all-around exterior spot cleaner. If you run into an exceptionally massive amount of bugs and you have bug guts all over your grille, windshield, bumpers, and paintwork, just spray on Griot’s bug spray, leave for 30 seconds to one minute then wipe off with a microfiber cloth.

Suppose the bugs, tar, or other contaminants have been on your vehicle for some time. In that case, you might need to agitate the area where you have sprayed the bug remover to ensure you remove the residue if you have a hose available, rinse of the cleaner’s remnants and bugs, etc. Or you can safely wipe it off, whichever happens, to be more convenient.


Detail King Bug Off Automotive Bug Cleaner

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Detail King bug off cleaner contains protein enzymes that remove insect splatters quickly and safely. There’s no reason for concern bug-off spray is perfectly safe on all of your vehicle’s exterior surfaces. If you live in the state of Florida and have to endure ‘love-bug’ residue continually, you will be eternally grateful to bug off.

Professional detailers choose this bug spray and speak in glowing terms regarding its cleaning capabilities. The spray has a blueberry scent, is 100% biodegradable and environmentally friendly.


Thetford Premium RV Bug Bust

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Thetford premium bug bust is a highly versatile bug removal spray safe to use on RVs, cars, SUVs, vans, motorcycles, and boats. Remove even bugs that have been baked in the sun for days with this super effective cleaner. 

Even though it removes contaminants quickly and easily, it will not harm your vehicle’s surfaces—the spray is non-toxic and 100% biodegradable. You don’t even have to worry about if it’s corrosive to rubber seals; it isn’t.

Premium bug bust uses alkaline detergents; if you own an old vehicle, we would advise you to spot treat your surfaces before using the cleaner for the first time.

Ensure the surface where you are planning to use bug bust is suitably clean and dry first. Spray on the formula and leave to sit for at least one minute. Use a soft cloth, such as microfiber, to wipe off, then finally rinse away any residue.

 Gel coats, fiberglass, decals, and painted aluminum are all perfectly safe from harm with bug bust.


WIZARDS - Bug Release

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Wizards bug release speedily softens and neutralizes bug proteins; you can wash or wipe them away; bug proteins are acidic, which can seriously damage paintwork, chrome, and plastic finishes.

This bug spray is safe for most vehicle surfaces such as plastic grills, rubber seals and trims, vinyl stripes, clear coats, and all paintwork; use Wizards on cars, trucks, SUVs, motorcycles, cars, etc.

You can also use the bug spray as your vehicle’s glass cleaner, especially the windshield, if you have bug residue and difficult to remove stains. If you have bug residue that’s sun-baked, use Bug Release as a pre-soak routine before washing the vehicle.

Wizards Bug Release is non-toxic and biodegradable; the solution is pH balanced and does not contain any caustic soda, acids, bleach, or petroleum solvents.


Stoner Car Care 91154

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Stoner Car Care’s Tarminator 91154 is a fast and straightforward way to remove bugs, tar, sap, and asphalt, containing MicroActive cleaning technology that will quickly break down these contaminants for speedy removal.

Stoner’s micro active cleaning technology is precisely engineered to remove even baked-on contaminants and is safe to use on paint and clear coats; you can also use it on chrome without impacting the shine.

The remover breaks down even the toughest grime, tar, bugs, etc., in just a few seconds. All that’s necessary is for you to wipe away the residue with a clean cloth. Ensure the area for treatment is perfectly cool before applying Stoner’s car care; spray on small areas at a time for best results.

Stoner manufactures, formulates, and distributes its products within the USA.


Armor All Extreme Bug & Tar Remover

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Bugs, tar, and other road grime are a constant thorn in the sides of motorists. If the mess isn’t cleaned from paintwork and other vehicle surfaces, it’s not just unsightly; it will eventually eat into the paintwork and cause permanent damage.

Armor All Extreme Bug & Tar Remover has the formula to remove contaminants before they can cause harm to your vehicle and paintwork, yet still maintaining your vehicle’s wax finish.

To use as a spot treatment spray onto the area that needs cleaning, if they are stubborn stains, leave the bug remover to soak in for at least one minute. Then wipe dry with a clean microfiber towel. Armor All can also be useful as a pre-treatment before washing your vehicle. Spray on and leave for at least one minute and proceed to wash the car.

The formula is streak-free and will preserve your wax protection. Use as directed to protect your external finishes.


Thetford Premium RV Black Streak Remover and Bug Remover

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Premium RV Black Streak and Bug Remover Ultrafoam is exceptionally versatile and is suitable for use on nearly all vehicles, including cars, motorcycles, trucks, SUVs, boats, and RVs.

This high-performing formula will effectively remove bug splatter, tree sap, bird droppings, and black stains from your car.

Even though Premium RV will deliver potent results, it’s non-toxic, non-flammable, and 100% biodegradable. It’s also safe to use around your window seals.

Convenient and straightforward to use, simply spray on and wipe-off. There’s no reason for you to scrub at the stains; the Premium Rv foaming action will remove even baked-on stains. The foaming action starts to work as soon as you spray it on the surface.

This remover is an aggressive cleaner utilizing alkaline detergents; pick an inconspicuous area to test first, particularly on old or weathered vehicles, to ensure compatibility with your vehicle’s surface. To obtain the best results, ensure your vehicle is cool and you apply in the shade.

Best Bug Remover For Cars Buying Guide

There are several important factors to consider before you buy your first or next bug remover. Our guide helps you determine if you are getting value for money and the correct formula you need.

We are providing you a list that we believe has something to offer everyone. We also include two or three non-toxic versions and 100% biodegradable. While the environment isn’t something that worries everyone, the local laws might. It’s illegal in some states and towns to use harsh chemicals and flush the residue down the drains.

It might be worthwhile to check on the legality of what you put into the drains before using it or before a neighbor causes you a problem.

In fairness, the non-toxic and biodegradable versions we have put into the list are just as effective, so if you get the same results, they don’t make any difference.

Some on the list are suitable for all a vehicle’s surfaces, including rubber seals, etc. However, some are not safe to use on clear plastics. Always double-check the manufacturer’s recommendations before you use a specific brand; don’t forget to use the formula as a spot treatment first to ensure you aren’t going to damage any surface.

We are confident our best bug remover for cars will guide you to finding the right formula for yourself. This buying guide is an excellent cross-section of the bug removers available.

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