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What Is Fallout On Cars

What Is Fallout On Car? Fallout is basically tiny shards of metal. They can come from a lot of places but mostly industrial areas. 

The heat of the metal makes it easy to embed themselves into most surfaces they touch. The tiny shards of hot metal can come from a variety of surfaces so has many applications but all comes down to the friction of metal on metal.

Paint on cars is very resilient but the heat of the particles literally melts into the top coat. And once embedded the fallout can easily oxidise and therefore rust. Rust can be seen as tiny orange dots; most visible seen on white car paint.

If you have a dark colour car you may not be able to see the fallout or iron filings so easily but you can probably feel them. If you’ve ever rubbed your cars paint then you may of realised that it felt rough, or at least not as smooth as it should be; like glass (unless your glass is affected by fallout!).

Your paint can be rough for a few reasons but the most common reason is fallout and tar. You can easily see if it is fallout if you use a traditional white clay bar. It will quickly turn orange and brown; the signs of metal beginning to rust!

Where Does Fallout Come From

Fallout can come from nearly any application where there is metal on metal contact, but keeping on track and sticking to our industry knowledge we will be concentrating on common fallout problems on cars.

Ever parked your car near a train track? The hot brake dust from trains covers cars in fallout. Park near a factory or industrial estate? Hot metal sparks from factories and manufacturing produces lots of fallout.

You will also find your car having a problem if its been near someone grinding, cutting metal or anything with sparks!

New Car Fallout Problems

The most common problem that we rectify with new cars is finding fallout across brand new paintwork.

You may be thinking why does my new car have small orange dots on the paintwork? This is caused from fallout. Fallout can come from trains, industrial factories and shipping yards.

As new cars get transported around a lot they are easily susceptible to fallout. They get delivered by boat and train which are full of industrial waste and fallout. They get transported from one shipping port to another before heading on a transporter. Once they finally reach the dealership they are far from being ‘new’.

This can obviously take a few days but most often takes weeks from being made to reaching the dealership. Plenty of time for the paintwork to contaminated with fallout.

Learn how to remove fallout from cars with our free guide!

Used Car Fallout Problems

Just like new cars, all older and used cars suffer from the same external fallout contamination by driving near, or parking at, train stations, factories, industrial yards but also, from on-board factors such as brake discs and brake pads.

The most common problem you may come across is fallout on wheels. This type of fallout is predominantly iron from the brake discs and brake pads.

You will find that larger and more luxury cars expel off far more iron than smaller, lighter or cheaper cars.

Automatic vehicles will also have far more fallout, especially iron filings, on their wheels due to the way that they are constantly pushed forward and require far more braking.

Owners of such vehicles, or wheels that haven’t been cleaned for many months, will require a strong wheel cleaner where the use of an acid will break down the metallic particles and brake dust.

An even better solution is to use a specific iron remover that is safe on car paint, wheels and glass.

The advancement of car care technology has led to the development of iron removers that are still PH neutral making them safe on ANY surface.

Iron removers quickly break down the metallic particles and whilst doing so turn purple to make it easy to see if fallout, or iron particles, are present.

Using a specific wheel cleaner followed by a fallout remover and tar remover will give you the cleanest possible wheel and will look like its just come out of the showroom!

Removing Fallout From Cars

The easiest way to remove fallout is with chemical and physical treatment. can be removed by the use of a clay bar or fallout remover.

If the contamination is bad then using a firm clay bar to remove any protruding particles first will help to break down the fallout quicker which is useful especially as iron removers aren’t cheap.

You can then apply the fallout remover, allow it to dwell, agitate with a wash mitt or sponge then rinse thoroughly.

You may need to repeat this process, especially if the contamination is severe but it WILL work! If it doesn’t then its probably not fallout..!

Once complete, wash your car with regular shampoo and protect the paint with a sealant.

Have you had a problem with fallout or metallic particles on your car? Comment below and we will give you free advice!