How To Remove Road Paint From Your Car – The Guide

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painting lines on the road

Painting road lines is crucial for safe driving, especially during the night. There are thousands of roads, and each day they paint another section of highway. There will be a warning sign in most cases, but sometimes, they forget to put it, or you disobey the sign, and your car ends up splattered with road paint, which isn’t very easy to remove. 

On the internet, you can find many ways to remove road paint from your vehicle, but many of them won’t be good enough or will damage your vehicle’s clear coat. 

That’s the reason why I decided to write this thorough guide on removing white and yellow road paint from your car’s exterior. The methods I’ll show you will work for painted parts and plastic. I’ll also show you some tips for dried-up road paint that has been on paint for a longer time. 

Removing Road Paint From Car’s Paint

Since there are more ways to remove road paint from the car’s paint, I’ll write you a few tips and tricks. First on the list will be the most gentle way, then I’ll continue with more intense tips and tricks. Make sure to always start with the gentlest way, and if you clean everything with that step, there’s no need to go further down the list. You don’t want to treat your car with some abrasive products if there’s no need. 

So, start with step 1, then, if that doesn’t work, continue to step 2, and so on. 

1. Pressure Wash The Vehicle ASAP

When you notice road paint splatters on your vehicles, you should immediately go and pressure wash your car. If the road paint is still fresh on your vehicle, a pressure wash should remove most of it (if not all).

Most of the time, if the road paint is still fresh, you’ll remove it by using a pressure washer only. So, the sooner you notice the road paint on your vehicle, the easier you will be able to remove it.

If you can, make sure to pre-wash your car with snowfoam, then rinse it with a pressure washer. That way, the foam will loosen the road paint, which will go off quickly by doing a pressure wash. Here’s how to pressure wash your vehicle the right way. 

Just to emphasize, pressure washing your vehicle (or the part that has road paint on it) should always be the first step for removing road paint from your car. You can’t continue with other methods without washing your vehicle. 

Pressure washing is important because it’ll remove all the other dirt from your vehicle, so there’s less chance to cause swirl marks and scratches when removing line paint. 

2. Use Natural Carnauba Wax on Microfiber Cloth

If you couldn’t remove everything by pressure washing your vehicle, the second least abrasive option you can do is by working in some natural carnauba wax on a microfiber towel. Natural carnauba waxes will quickly remove any fine road paint from painted areas on your vehicle. 

Of course, you need to be gentle and don’t press microfiber cloth too much. Just make circular motions, and everything should come off quickly. You can check the video guide here.

This method requires a little bit of elbow grease but is one of the best methods since you won’t damage the clear coat. Also, you’ll save some time since there’s no need to apply waxes afterward.

I recommend you use Chemical Guys Butter Wet Wax (check the price on Amazon now) for this purpose. 

3. Use Lift Off Spray By Mostenbocker

Just spray the product on splattered area, wait a minute or two, and then wipe off with a clean microfiber towel. After that, wash the area to remove all of the product. 

Even though removing road paint isn’t the primary purpose of Mostenbocker’s Lift Off Spray (check the price on Amazon now), many people successfully removed road paint from their cars by using this lift-off spray. 

However, you need to know that this method will remove waxes and sealants from your vehicle’s finish (if you had them) too. So, you’ll have to re-apply wax to your car to make the paint protected again.

4. Try With Clay Bar

If there’s not too much road paint splatter on your vehicle, you can remove it by using a medium clay bar. The best thing is that you can combine it with lift-off spray for the quickest results.

Clay bar is abrasive and should easily remove line paint from the car’s finish. To prevent damage to the clear coat, keep the surface lubricated all the time.

If you don’t know how to clay bar your car, here’s a thorough guide on that topic. It’s straightforward and anyone can learn it quickly.

Claying will probably remove waxes you had applied on your car, so don’t forget to re-apply them when you finish removing road paint from the paint.

5. Remove Road Paint by Using a Plastic Razor Blade

If none of the above methods work, this one will work for sure. Using a plastic razor blade is the best way to remove dried road paint from your vehicle, especially if it sits there for a long time. I would suggest using this method if there’s a lot of road paint, and especially if there’s a thick layer of it on your vehicle. 

So, if there’s plenty of thick road paint on your car, you can pressure wash it and skip the 2nd, 3rd and 4th steps and immediately jump to this one since it’s the quickest way for larger splatters. 

Take a plastic razor blade and gently scrub the surface to remove all the line paint from the car’s finish. Make sure to keep the surface lubricated the whole time. You can lubricate the area with soapy water (car shampoo). This method will probably cause some light swirl marks and scratches, which will require light polishing of the area. Check my guide on how to polish a car by hand. 

After you finish polishing, don’t forget to apply some paint protection on the car’s finish. Check my list of best car waxes.

Removing Road Paint From Plastic Parts and Wheel Wells

Removing road paint from a car’s plastic parts and wheel wells is much easier and straightforward. There’s almost no chance to damage something, so you can try more abrasive and sturdier methods. There are two methods I suggest you do, so check them below.

The same as with cleaning paint, you should thoroughly wash the area first, preferably by using a pressure washer, since it’ll remove most of the line paint. 

1. Use an APC and a Brush

You can quickly remove road paint from plastic parts and wheel wells by spraying them with some APC and then agitating it with a brush. This method should promptly remove all of the paint. You can use any brush. My advice is to use a stiffer brush for wheel wells and a softer one for plastic parts. 

When you spray APC, let it sit there for a minute or two. That way, it’ll break up the road paint, so it comes off easily by agitating it with a brush. After brushing the area, rewash it, and it should be immaculate. 

Since plastic parts and wheel wells aren’t as sensitive as car paint, you don’t have to be afraid that you’ll mess up something. Don’t be scared to press the brush a bit higher too. This’ll require more elbow grease, but the results are fantastic. 

2. Remove Road Paint From Plastic Parts by Using a Magic Eraser

This second method will work primarily for plastic parts only since wheel wells are often lined with fabric. Of course, if the wheel wells on your car are lined with plastics, you can use this method on them too. 

Make the initial wash using a pressure washer, and then rub the area with a magic eraser. Since the magic eraser is abrasive, it’ll easily remove road paint from the plastic parts of your vehicles. Also, this method is plastic safe, so you shouldn’t do any damage to it. 

For prevention, however, don’t scrub the area too much, just in case. 


I hope that now you understand everything about removing road paint from your car. This problem is causing trouble to hundreds of people, and actually, it’s not so complicated.

The most important thing is to know what you’re dealing with. If you see that road paint is old, you can’t expect to remove it by using a pressure washer only. By following the methods above, I’m sure that you’ll successfully remove all of the line paint from your vehicle.

As you can see, there are more methods you can try, which is why it was harder for me to write the article. I wanted to keep it as simple as possible, and I think it’s okay. 

Just remember, if you don’t know what you’re dealing with, always start with the least abrasive method. As you become more experienced in this topic with time, you’ll be able to quickly tell which way you should use to fix it quicker. 

IMPORTANT: Whenever you finish removing road paint from your car, don’t forget to check the paint’s condition. Sometimes you’ll realize that a clear coat requires some light polishing to bring the gloss back. Also, always apply some paint protectant (wax, sealant, ceramic coating) after doing this job. 

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