General Question

Joe_Freeman's avatar

What is that yellow-orange, waxy substance that I find on my car's paint all the time, in the form of neat little spots?

Asked by Joe_Freeman (504points) June 14th, 2009

Some say it is dumped jet fuel, others say it’s droppings from bees, and still others say it’s droppings from birds. What’s interesting is that everyone who I’ve asked was absolutely positive they were correct which, as you can see, is not possible. I believe the prevalence of the substance is seasonal, with more spots in the warmer months here in San Diego, California.

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13 Answers

sandystrachan's avatar

This seems to have been asked on various other sites in the last 2 years or so, i have no clue what it could be but here a link from one of them . Shame its askville maybe you asked it there aswell as here to see what came up .

Runs and washes brain in bleach to remove askville from my memory

ragingloli's avatar

some say it is excrements from lice (if you happen to park under trees very often.)

richardhenry's avatar

Why does Askville enclose their titles with quote marks? Completely unnecessary.

Lightlyseared's avatar

The first thing that popped into my mind was tree resin.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

It is not bird faeces, as that is always black and white. I agree with @Lightlyseared, the most likely substance is resin from trees.

sandystrachan's avatar

Tree resin would be sticky rather than waxy tho would it not ? stuffs like glue

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

I get it under all over my vehicles under my Walnut Tree during the Spring. It’s clear, and even wiper fluid has a hard time taking it off.

Joe_Freeman's avatar

@evelyns_pet_zebra Yes, that’s tree resin, but not what I’m speaking of here. My stuff is waxy and comes off easily and cleanly with a fingernail, but that’s tedious to do when there are 100 of them on the car. Tree resin is quite hard to remove.

Joe_Freeman's avatar

@richardhenry Yeah, I agree completely.

sandystrachan's avatar

Earwax of a very elusive creature maybe .

YARNLADY's avatar

It is most likely from spent airplane fuel exhaust. Refined gasoline contains an amount of desolved waxy substance, and it spews everywhere.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

@YARNLADY but isn’t airplane fuel basically kerosene? That’s always been my assumption from people I’ve spoken to about the makeup of various vehicle fuels.

YARNLADY's avatar

@evelyns_pet_zebra Sorry, “gasolene” should have read “petroleum product”. Per wikipedia: “Jet fuel is a clear to straw colored fuel, based on either an unleaded paraffin oil (Jet A-1), or a naphtha-kerosene blend (Jet B). It is similar to diesel fuel, and can be used in either compression ignition engines or turbine engines.”

Paraffin is the stuff you have on your car.

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