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  1. #1
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    hard water spots on glass?

    Hi Mike

    I know you have addressed water spots and their types on other threads but I'm wondering if you have any posts on how to remove them from glass?
    I have an older vehicle, and these spots have baked on in the Florida sun with all the salt and everything else by the beach, presumably for years. I haven't been able to get them off with vinegar, and I'm wondering since glass is not paint, if there is anything stronger to take them off with? Should I try M47? What if they don't come off with that and have etched the glass? A car restoration company suggested rubbing compound, and that it would leave small scratches that would not be visible. I'm scared to do that.

    Thanks for sharing your knowledge and experience!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Calendyr's Avatar
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    Re: hard water spots on glass?

    If you cannot remove them chemically, the only option is to do it with an abrasive.

    Try with a polish first, this is the least agressive. If it doesn't work you can move up to a compound.

    There are specialized compounds for glass that can be used, one is made by CarPro and is called Ceriglass.

    I have polished glass a few times and never noticed any visible scratch marks. Quite the opposite, polishing the glass usually removes a little bit of the damage done over time.

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  4. #3
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    Re: hard water spots on glass?

    I've had success using Meguiar's Water Sport Remover. Brian from Apex Detail featured this in a recent video for the exact purpose you mention (removing water spots and etching from glass). It can be found fairly cheap as well...I picked up a bottle for around $5 or $6 at a local Pep Boys. He talks about it here around the 4:10 minute mark.



  5. #4
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    Re: hard water spots on glass?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sports Fan View Post
    I've had success using Meguiar's Water Sport Remover. Brian from Apex Detail featured this in a recent video for the exact purpose you mention (removing water spots and etching from glass). It can be found fairly cheap as well...I picked up a bottle for around $5 or $6 at a local Pep Boys. He talks about it here around the 4:10 minute mark.


    Thanks! I was looking at that earlier...wonder if M47 is stronger, since it's for marine use. Any idea? I live just blocks from the ocean and the salt seems to make things worse.
    Last edited by hyperbolic; 05-15-2019 at 01:10 PM. Reason: add info

  6. #5
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: hard water spots on glass?

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperbolic View Post

    Hi Mike

    I know you have addressed water spots and their types on other threads but I'm wondering if you have any posts on how to remove them from glass?

    I also have lots of articles on removing water spots it's just a matter of using the right key words on Google and adding my name --> Mike Phillips.

    Back when I started working for Autogeek EVERY article or website stated to use a ROTARY BUFFER. So after a few years of doing it, teaching it and sharing with others how to polish glass using a rotary buffer one day I tried and tested to see if it coujld be done using a SIMPLE free spinning orbital polishers.

    My thinking was - most people don't own a rotary buffer but a lot of people own a Porter Cable type polisher. So I tested and YES it could be done. So I wrote and article sharing this info back in 2014, perhaps earlier, I would have to do more searching.

    Glass polishing - How to remove scratches in glass






    I think I was the first guy to show using a NON rotary buffer to polish glass. At least I can't find anything dated older.




    Quote Originally Posted by Sports Fan View Post

    Brian from Apex Detail featured this in a recent video for the exact purpose you mention (removing water spots and etching from glass).
    Looks like he started with a Griot's 6" DA which is the more powerful version of a Porter Cable. Then shows a rotary. Good for him.


    Mike Phillips
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  8. #6
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: hard water spots on glass?

    Here's one dated 2005 for just TOPICAL cleaning on the MOL forum.

    See what I say in post #6

    Glass Polishing - Deep Cleaning




    Here's one from 2011 using a rotary buffer to remove tiny pits in a Mercedes windshield

    How to remove tiny pinhole pits in glass windows using a rotary buffer


    Here's a project I tackled this last Monday morning. In order to see the tiny pinhole pits in the glass you have to inspect for them early in the morning or late in the afternoon when the sun is out and low in the sky to expose the defects on the surface of the glass.


    Not sure how the tiny pinhole pits got into the glass but using my finger to enable the camera to focus on the glass surface you can see them here...

    Tiny tiny tiny pinhole pits in the glass






    And I teach both types in all my classes. Both types means, topical glass polishing and sub-surface glass polishing.


    Mike Phillips
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  10. #7
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: hard water spots on glass?

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperbolic View Post

    Hi Mike

    I know you have addressed water spots and their types on other threads but I'm wondering if you have any posts on how to remove them from glass?

    I have an older vehicle, and these spots have baked on in the Florida sun with all the salt and everything else by the beach, presumably for years.
    Common problem on older vehicles that are stored or parked outside. Being from Oregon, I know a lot about water spots and what I call,

    Drizzle Stains



    Quote Originally Posted by hyperbolic View Post

    A car restoration company suggested rubbing compound, and that it would leave small scratches that would not be visible. I'm scared to do that.

    If the compound is safe for modern clearcoats it will be safe for glass. I talk and type a lot about ABRASIVE TECHNOLOGY on this forum and there's good stuff and basically crap. The crappy stuff will remove defects but leave its own defects behind in the paint. I wouldn't use junk on glass.


    That said, any of the compounds you see me use in any of my car detailing write-ups or in pictures of any of my classes uses great abrasive technology and I use it and show it to polish glass.


    Also - RUPES Zephir Gloss Coarse Compound is one of the few GOOD compounds that you can actually FEEL some grain particles in it. Most of the really good stuff now days all feels like Jergans Hand Lotion. Chunky stuff works better in my opinion and experience to remove films off glass.


    Mike Phillips
    Director of Training Autogeek & Marine 31
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  11. #8
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    Re: hard water spots on glass?

    Duragloss NuGlass works great for removing hard water spots, as long as the glass isn't etched.

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