A Tale of Woe: how do I clean &^%^%* oil from the finish?

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-Current)' started by Shameless, Apr 6, 2018.

  1. Shameless

    Shameless Member

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    Tuesday night, I picked up my brand new 2017 Prius Prime. First new car I have ever owned. I'm loving life. 48 hours later, I'm driving home from work on the interstate when a large truck (not a semi, but more like a large moving truck) appears ahead of me, producing so much smoke it looks like a mobile EPA hazard.

    So I says to myself, "Self, you'd better get past that guy, pronto."

    As I'm passing him, I realize that this is not just foul-smelling smoke. No, I realize with horror, this contains black oil -- I presume from the tailpipe, but who knows with such a disastrous wheeled conveyance?

    The entire front third or so of my car is now streaked with black oil. I smeared it around with the wipers when it happened, but even there, there's still a film of oil. I wiped the windshield with detergent, and wiped the finish with the cloth while I was at it. It helped a little. But it's not all off the windshield, and there's an oily film over everything.

    What a joy!

    And the Toyota sales guy? Now gone silent, of course. Was hoping maybe the dealership could advise, if nothing else.

    Another nearby dealership, through one of the weirdest coincidences I've ever experienced, texted me via a wrong number. Turns out the service manager was trying to contact one of their customers. She's set me up with their detail guy for Monday.

    But in the meantime, I'm wondering what, if anything I should do. I get the nagging feeling that, if this is diesel, or even hydraulic oil, my finish may be getting messed up every minute I wait.

    Some days, you just have all the luck!
     
  2. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    I once found a really good parking spot, free street parking, very close the theatre we were going to. What a stroke of luck! Came back after the show, and the car was pretty much coated in tree sap.

    What worked best for me was to moisten a rag with kerosene, then add a dab of car polish, turning over and changing the cloth frequently.

    I've not tried it, but I believe something commercially available, described as "bug and tar remover", would have similar efficacy.
     
  3. ForestBeekeeper

    ForestBeekeeper Active Member

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    It sounds like a diesel engine was not tuned well, or maybe he blew a head gasket and was 'burning' oil.

    Either way you need a de-greaser. There are some god de-greasers on the market, the best is often dish-soap.

    If you have a pressure-washer, you can put some dish-soap in it, and that should remove all this oil for you.
     
  4. Buzzhead

    Buzzhead Non-Interference w/ devel of pre-Warp civs

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    Simple Green is an excellent degreaser, also. Don't let it puddle on the asphalt, though; it'll strip the oil out of it.
     
  5. Shameless

    Shameless Member

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    The Toyota detail guy advised against hitting it with water or going through a car wash. Not sure what that's about. I was thinking about, as ForestBeekeeper mentioned, dish detergent with water. I can't see what harm that could possibly do. Seems like a viable solution (if you'll pardon the pun!).
     
  6. Shameless

    Shameless Member

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    The Toyota detail guy advised against hitting it with water or going through a car wash. Not sure what that's about. I was thinking about, as ForestBeekeeper mentioned, dish detergent with water. I can't see what harm that could possibly do. Seems like a viable solution (if you'll pardon the pun!).
     
  7. huskers

    huskers Senior Member

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    They take oil off animals with Dawn dish washing liquid. Please let us know how this turns out for you. It is a terrible thing to have happen to a new car owner and a PRIME.
     
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  8. KennyGS

    KennyGS Senior Member

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    ^ This! ^

    Of course, Dawn will remove any wax or paint protection you have. So you'll need to re-wax afterwards. (y)
     
  9. David Beale

    David Beale Senior Member

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    You can wash it with Dawn occasionally, but don't make a habit of it. I would first try a car detergent and warm water. If that doesn't work use the Dawn. Mix in a bucket and use a mit. Rinse with a hose. NEVER use laundry detergent and read carefully the labels to ensure you don't get an abrasive cleaner. Once clean you will want to wax it with carnuba wax based car wax or the synthetic "polymer" car waxes. The car detergent won't take the original wax off but the Dawn will.

    My FJ Cruiser got sprayed by a blown diesel, a mixture of oil and coolant, both partially burned. The car wash detergent worked for it. I used the Zaino detergent.
     
  10. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

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    I, too, would start with a car detergent ... less harsh than dish detergent. If you're right that the stuff is an oil, a detergent ought to lift it off nicely ... I mean, that's what they do.

    -Chap
     
  11. Shameless

    Shameless Member

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    Exactly! :) Which is why I'm confused that the detail guy says don't hit it with water!

    The good news is that it snowed and rained today (I live in Massachusetts and work in Vermont), and to my delight and surprise, the, well, water alone seems to have removed a fair bit of the oil on my commute back home, just after I initially posted.

    So I think I can resolve this pretty easily now. Thank you all for your suggestions! Car detergent and maybe something stronger ought to do the trick, it seems.

    I am also extremely pleased right now that the only car they had in the color I wanted came with the paint protection on the front. Maybe that has helped.
     
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