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Removing asphalt from Paint and Chrome

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Removing asphalt from Paint and Chrome

Old 05-05-2016, 03:02 PM
GMCSierraFan's Avatar
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Midwest
Posts: 1,559
Default Removing asphalt from Paint and Chrome

Let me be clear- this was NOT tar. This was asphalt caked about 1/4" deep on my tailpipe, rear fender, inside wheel wells, step bars, and front fender. It was tough!

I tried about three different bug and tar removers with absolutely no luck... Even the heavy duty ones wouldn't even change the color of a white t shirt.

I read a few articles online saying to try diesel fuel or kerosene, and not having either, I went on to WD-40. AMAZING!

Painted areas: I coated the affected areas in WD-40 and waited five minutes. With light rubbing, it began to come off. I dried and coated again. Repeated the step. On the third coating, I began to use my fingernail protected by the t shirt to pry off the pebbles of asphalt. They came off quite easily as did much of the tar residue. A fourth coating and wiping with a new dry t shirt took off the remainder. Good as new. Time: 30 minutes.

Chrome and Tailpipe: I coated the areas with WD-40 and allowed it to work for fifteen minutes. Many of the specs came off quickly with a t-shirt, but to expedite the process I grabbed some steel wool and went to town. One-two passes over every area and it looked as good as new. I wiped dry, coated again, and wiped with a clean cloth. Time: 20 minutes.

Plastic mud guards: Repeat same step but use plastic putty knife instead of steel wool. Time: 25 mins.

Tailpipe: Soak for thirty minutes in WD-40 and use a COARSE scrubbing pad. Everything came right off.

All in all I am extremely happy with the results. All it cost me was a bit of time and a can of WD-40. As an added bonus, I don't have to worry about weeds in my driveway for awhile!
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